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I had a great time last Saturday at the Creative Talent Network-Van Eaton Gallery hosted Book Look II. Forty stalwart authors braved triple digit heat to sign books under a broad tent in Sherman Oaks. I was curious how many folks would show up, but I was surprised to see the event was packed most of the day. Estimates were that about 500 people strolled through, met the authors and bought some books. It became a big boisterous, sweaty, block party!

When they asked me, I thought everyone who wanted my book already had one already. I even brought something to read so I wouldn't be bored.

Instead I had a great time seeing old friends and making new ones. I even sold about a dozen books. Gloriouskies!

Thanks to Tina, Mike and Jeanine, Nicole, and all the wonderful volunteers for doing such a great job!

vital equipment at the event.

Quiz: Name the Three Musketeers.

Yesterday’s Question: Where does Denim come from?
history for 5/21/2008
Birthdays: Plato, Fats Waller, Albrecht Durer, Andre Sakharov, Armand Hammer, Raymond Burr, John Hubley, Dennis Day, Al Franken, Harold Robbins, Judge Reinhold, Larry Terro called Mr. T.

1540- Hernand DeSoto discovers the Mississippi River , the "Father of the Waters."

1661- BLIMEY! TEA COMES TO ENGLAND- King Charles II of England the Merry Monarch, married Catherine of Braganza, the Princess of Portugal. Her dowry included Tangiers and Bombay India. Poor Catherine never gave Charles any children, and she had to endure his constant philandering with a steady stream of mistresses. But she did introduce Britain to a new custom. She preferred drinking tea to the more traditional English Ale. Soon everyone had to have some.

1674- COSSACKS AND BAGELS- Hetman of the Ukraine Jan III Sobieski crowned king of Poland. He replaced King Michael Wisnoiecki, of whom it was said ' He could speak nine languages, but had nothing intelligent to say in any of them!'. Jan Sobieski became a warrior king, some speculate that the Bagel was invented to celebrate his victories over the Turks. It's supposedly shaped like his stirrup. Others say baloney, the hole is in the bagel so you can stack them on a stick and sell them on the street.

1800- Napoleon crossed the Alps into Italy at the Great Saint Bernard Pass. Napoleon waited for his last troops to complete the crossing, then thanked the monks who aided his men and crossed himself. Artist David portrayed Napoleon as crossing on a fierce white charger. In actuality he did the crossing on a donkey and at one point tucked his big gray overcoat between his legs and slid down a snowy mountain slope on his butt.

1881- Clara Barton founded the American Red Cross as a branch of the International Red Cross.

1885- The pieces of the Statue of Liberty leave for the U.S. I wonder if the crates said "Some Assembly Required"?

1878- Mr. D.A. Buck of Waterbury Conn. received a patent for a low cost mass produced watch. Within a few years he was selling half a million Waterbury Watches a year at $3.50 each.

1892- Leoncavallo's opera "I Pagliacci" debuts at La Scala.

1906 - Louis H Perlman patents a de-mountable tire carrying rim for cars.

1914 - Greyhound Bus Co begins in Minnesota.

1921- LEOPOLD & LOEB- Two preppie millionaire's sons who were pumped up on Nietzches theory of the superman decided to commit the perfect murder. They lured Loeb's 15 year old cousin into their car, bludgeoned him to death with a chisel then had lunch. Despite their confidence in their superior intellects they were quickly indentified and tried for murder. The rich families hired famed social-progressive lawyer Clarence Darrow for the defense. He made no attempt to prove their innocence but got them off on a life sentence. In 1936 Loeb was cut up with a razor while trying to rape another prisoner, Leopold was paroled in 1958 and died in 1971. The pointless cold bloodedness of the murder today would seem like just another Jerry Springer show, but it horrified 1920's America. F.Scott Fitzgerald said the Jazz Age lost some of it's innocent fun after Leopold & Loeb.

1927-LINDBERGH- Charles Lindbergh-Lucky Lindy, The Lone Eagle, etc. reaches a field outside Paris called Le Bourget after flying nonstop across the Atlantic. In a recent biography Lindbergh’s letters reveal he owed his life to specteral appartitions he imagined he saw in the back of his plane. There was no such thing as an auto-pilot yet and he had to stay awake and alert for 55 hours straight. His fatigue would have let him crash if the gremlin ghoulies he was hallucinating hadn’t kept him company. Over Paris as soon as he was sighted huge searchlights were beamed on his plane and the light temporarily blinded him so that he almost crashed. Also as he landed people swarmed around the whirring propellor, narrowly missing another tragedy. But Lindy was down and history made. He said he had never been to Europe and had wanted to see the sights but almost immediately he was whisked by battleship back to the U.S. for tumultuous ovations and parades.

1945- BOGEY LOVES BABY-Humphrey Bogart married Lauren Bacall on a friend’s farm in Ohio. He was 48 and she was 21. Her real name was Betty Persky, but she passed for WASP. So when the publicity photographers came, they were under strict instructions from Jack Warner to frame out of the shots Bacall’s more Jewish-looking relatives.

1952- Actor John Garfield died. Some say he died in the midst of wild fornications; in truth he died alone of alcohol abuse at 40. The matinee idol of “The Postman Rings Twice” and “Kid Galahad” was too politically left for the conservative postwar age. When a young stage actor he had run guns to the IRA, later he supported progressive union movements, anti-fascism and desegregation. His outspoken politics got him blacklisted in Hollywood, his friends deserted him and he was ruined.

1952- Famed writer Lillian Hellman testified before the House UnAmerican Activities Committee HUAC but refused to name names. “I cannot cut my conscience to fit the fashions of the day.” She escaped a contempt of Congress wrap but she was blacklisted and at one point was reduced to working in a department store.

1968 - Paul McCartney & Jane Asher attend an Andy Williams concert. This is your brain. This is your brain on drugs.

1968- Future President George W. Bush graduated Yale with a C Average.

1972- A Hungarian lunatic shouting I am Jesus Christ attacked Michelangelo’s statue La Pieta with a hammer. He is the reason why today we can only enjoy this beautiful sculpture from behind 3 inch thick bulletproof glass.

1980 – Star Wars “The Empire Strikes Back" premiered.

1983 - David Bowie's "Let's "Dance," single goes #1. The tracks featured a then little know guitarist named Stevie-Ray Vaughn.

1991- Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Ghandi was blown up by a suicide bomber girl carrying a bomb in a bunch of flowers. She was believed to be one of the Tamil Tiger separatists.

1992- Tonight Show host Johnny Carson did his last show “I bid you a very heartfelt goodnight.” After a behind the scenes political tussle with David Letterman, comic Jay Leno became the permanent Tonight Show host. Johnny spent his remaining years in privacy, even ignoring an invitation to the NBC 75th anniversary spectacular.
Yesterday’s Question: Where does Denim come from?

Answer: The tough cotton weave that is denim is the most durable
ever used was produced in the French city of Nimes. It was originally to make ship sails in the days of wind powered ships. The Levi family bought bolts of the material when it's value was dropping, because of the use of steam power at sea. They made workpants from the material, called Serge DeNimes..
ey voila !