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May 2nd, 2008 friday
May 2nd, 2008

Question: Of the four men who wrote the Gospels- Mark, Luke, Matthew and John, which ones actually looked Jesus in the face and spoke with him?

Yesterday's Quiz answered below: Who wrote On Civil Disobedience, a philosophy followed by Ghandi and Martin Luther King?
History for 5/2/2008
Birthdays: Czarina Catherine the Great, Domenico Scarlatti, Manfred Von Richtofen the Red Baron, Bing Crosby, Dr. Benjamin Spock the Baby Doctor, Vernon Castle, Theodore Bikel, Lesley Gore, Roscoe Lee Browne, Satyajit Ray, Pinky Lee, Link Wray of the Wraymen, Dwayne Johnson called The Rock is 36

1349- The Kings of England and France are forced to declare a ten year truce in their Hundred Years War because of the ravages of the Black Plague. After all, how can one be expected to have a good war when everyone was already dead?

1519- Leonardo Da Vinci died at the chateau of Amboise in the arms of King Francis Ist. He had accepted the offer of the French King of a stable retirement (even then artists worried about that kinda stuff). Two hundred and eighty years later during the French Revolution peasants broke into his tomb to get the lead lining for cannonballs and threw his bones in a pile. So no one is sure where he's buried.

1797- One of the marvels of Europe today is the preservation of the City of Venice. Beyond an occasional flood Venice never had a great fire or destruction by war. Many of the buildings are as old as Notre Dame. Venice was a naval power so all of her wars were fought out at sea. Venice was besieged once by Pepin the son of Charlemagne in 967AD, this day in 1797 Napoleon pursuing his conquest of Italy declared war on the Venetian Republic. They immediately surrendered.

1808- Spanish Independence Day- Napoleon had invaded Spain and put his older brother Joseph Bonaparte on the throne. The Spanish called him "Pepe Bottaglia" (Joey Bottles-due to his fondness for drink) and bitterly hated the French occupation. Reacting to the occupation of Madrid, the Spanish people riot in the Playa Del Sol and cut up all the French soldiers they can find. The French arrest and shoot them. Francisco Goya does lots of neat drawings and paintings. The Spanish invention of organized small scale partisan actions they will give the name "guerilla" warfare.

1863- Battle of Chancellorsville - Robert E. Lee is surrounded by the superior Union army of "Fighting Joe" Hooker. Hooker bragged: "God have mercy on General Lee, for I shall have none!". Lincoln was more realistic: "The hen is the wisest of all animal creation. She does not cackle until AFTER her egg is laid." Lee gets out of the trap and defeats Hooker.

1932- Jack Benny's Radio Show on radio debuts. Oh Rochester! Mel Blanc the voice of Bugs Bunny did many characters and voices on the show, including the engine of Jacks¹ old Maxwell automobile.

1933- The first modern sighting of the Loch Ness Monster. The Inverness Courier published an account of a couple who sighted Nessie and offered a reward for proof.

1952- the British Airline B.O.A.C. began the first trans-Atlantic jet plane service. This began the class of globe-trotting rich partygoers named Jet-Setters. BOAC later became British Air.

1957- Frank Costello had taken over the Lucciano New York crime family after Lucky Lucciano had been deported permanently to Sicily. Another Lucciano triggerman named Vito Genovese felt he had been passed over. This day Frank Costello was crossing the lobby of his apartment on Central Park West when Vinny " the Chin" Gigante came up behind him: "Hey Frank, this is for you!" and started shooting. Costello was left for dead but Vinny bungled his job- Costello was only grazed in the skull. He recovered but wisely decided to retire from racketeering. Costello¹s job went to Carlo Gambino.

1957- Wisconsin Republican Senator Joseph McCarthy the Commie Hunter died in an asylum from hepatitis and advanced alcoholism.

1967-" Say It Loud, I¹m Black and I¹m Proud!" The Black Panther Party announced it¹s armed militancy to the US and the world by trying to break in with shotguns on the California State assembly during a vote. The US media would ring with the words and images of Bobby Seale, Elderidge Cleaver and Huey Newton.

1972- J. EDGAR HOOVER DIED. He had been F.B.I. director since 1934. Despite his numerous achievements like neutralizing Axis espionage in World War Two and he had half the Ku Klux Klan informing on the other half, he never seemed willing or able to attack the Mafia . While the FBI chased lone criminals like Dillinger or Bonnie & Clyde, the big national syndicates of Capone and Lucciano functioned unmolested. Some say it was because he knew they would expose the FBI chiefs cross-dressing lifestyle. Hoover lived in a long term relationship with his second in command Clyde Tollson. That didn¹t stop him from outing high profile gays in the Truman and Johnson administrations and ruining their careers. J. Edgar needed his secrecy to pursue his high profile war on "American Immorality". Hoover was convinced Civil Rights leaders like Martin Luther King were Communist spies. The Kennedy brothers hated him but he seemed to have enough dirt on them to stay in power. When Bobby was attorney general forced Hoover to come to his office at the ringing of an electric bell like a butler, which drove the old man crazy. When Lyndon Johnson was asked why he still kept the F.B.I. director around he said:" I¹d rather keep the old bastard on the inside pissing out, than on the outside pissing in.".

1972- First day shooting on Steven Speilbergs film JAWS. The giant mechanical shark used as a prop was nicknamed "Bruce" after Speilberg¹s lawyer.

1982- During the Falkland's War a British helicopter equiped with Exocet missles sank Argentina's largest battleship, the Belgrano. Tacky London tabloids ran as the headline over the burning ship- "Gotcha !" Interestingly the Belgrano was a refitted 45 year old American battleship, the U.S.S. Phoenix, that had survived the Pearl Harbor attack.

1982- The 24 hour Weather Channel started.

1997- Movie star Eddie Murphy was busted for picking up transvestite hooker Artisone Seiuli at 4:45 in the morning on Sunset Blvd in Hollywood. Murphy said he was just being a good Samaritan and giving the young He/She a ride home.
Yesterday's Quiz: Who wrote On Civil Disobedience, a philosophy followed by Ghandi and Martin Luther King?

ANSWER: The first writings spelling out the doctrine of passive-non violent disobedience was a paper written by Henry David Thoreau in 1849. Entitles On Civil Disobedience. He was against the U.S. War with Mexico, which was also opposed by Daniel Webster, Lincoln and Grant. Thoreau refused to pay his taxes as a protest and so was fined by his local constable.