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I signed a deal with Focal Press to write an update of the animation how/to
TIMING FOR ANIMATION By Halas and Whittaker. It's been reprinted every year since 1981.

Now, don't all go get your knickers in an uproar, I have no plans for massive changes to screw it up. As I told the Iron Giant crew at Warners, when I inherited them after Brad Bird had left," when something works, you don't try to fix it." So Focal and I agreed, with a lot of imput from other expert reviewers, to keep much of the best lessons intact. As far as I'm concerned, it's still Halas and Whittakers book. Just some updates addressing the modern digital realities. And I'll not just focus on MAYA and FLASH, because I'm aware that every few years the technology changes and I don't want to date the book. I'll even allow for the British and American terminology- Exposure Sheets being Dope Sheets and so on.

It won't be out until next year, and I have another history book project I'm doing as well. So if I turn down too many invites to lunch, it's because I'm busy scribblin.'
Wish me luck.

Question: Which one of these was NOT named for a British Prime Minister? 1-Melbourne Australia, 2-Pittsburgh, 3- Earl Grey tea, 4-Vancouver, British Columbia.

Yesterday’s question answered below: Why is a necktie sometimes called a cravat?
History for 6/17/2008
Birthdays: King Edward Ist "Longshanks" the Great Plantangenet, John Wesley the founder of the Methodists, Igor Stravinsky, cartoonist Wally Wood, Ralph Bellamy, Pete Seeger, Mignon Dunn, Dean Martin, Barry Manilow, Joe Piscopo, Newt Gingrich, Martin Bormann, Ken Loach, Greg Kinnear is 45, Venus Williams, Thomas Haden Church

1775-THE BATTLE OF BUNKER HILL. British troops surrounded in Boston, crossed the harbor to attack an entrenched rebel position on Breeds Hill (the names got confused.). It took the Redcoats three human wave assaults until they took the hill, but the rebel farmers, instead of fleeing like rabbits, shot them to pieces. Captain Israel Putnam advised his men,” Don’t shoot until you see the whites of their eyes, then aim low.” The minutemen only retreated when their ammunition ran low. The battle exacted such a huge cost in soldiers’ lives that the British public was shocked (1,000 casualties out of 2,040 men). Based on America's lukewarm participation in the French and Indian War a decade past, had not the great General Wolf of Quebec labeled the American the "Worst Soldier in the Universe"? His successor Gen. Murray said, "The American is by nature effeminate." and General Gage once told his friend, George Washington," New Englanders are big boasters and worst soldiers. I never saw any as infamously bad." The English generals consoled themselves with the thought that it couldn't have been the Yankees that fought so well, but all the Irish and Scottish immigrants that had arrived recently.
Lexington and Concord could be dismissed as an extended civilian disturbance, but Bunker Hill convinced London that it now had a full-scale war to fight 3,000 ocean miles away.

1815- Heavy Spring rains cancel any actions as the British and French armies converge on a little village outside Brussels called Waterloo. Thunder and lightning drowned out the sound of cannon. The English were optimistic because by coincidence every major victory of the Duke of Wellington was preceded by a strong thunderstorm.

1823- Charles MacKintosh patented the waterproof rubberized raincoat. In England, a raincoat is still called a MacKintosh.

1885- The pieces of the Statue of Liberty arrive from France. Some assembly required...

1893- Cracker Jacks invented by RW Reuckheim. Their name came from Teddy Roosevelt sampling the caramel corn, who exclaimed “These are Crackerjack!”- popular slang for something very good.

1919 - "Barney Google" cartoon strip, by Billy De Beck, premiered.

1930- Using 6 solid gold pens, President Herbert Hoover signed the Harley-Smoot Act, slapping huge trade tariffs on imports from overseas. Britain and France and their overseas colonies retaliated with tariffs on American exports. The American stock market had collapsed 6 months before; now this shortsighted act sparked a trade war with the ruined economies of postwar Europe. This all but ensured that the Great Depression would spiral out of control, hitting rock bottom in 1932.

1940- The Nazis had taken Paris and the French were asking for surrender terms. An invasion of Great Britain seemed imminent. Today on the BBC radio, Prime Minister Winston Churchill inspired his demoralized people with his famous speech:”We shall fight them on the beaches, we shall fight them in the hills and in the towns… we shall defend our island home. We shall Never Surrender!”

1946- The first mobile telephone was installed in an automobile in St. Louis, Missouri.

1950-Future attorney general and Senator Robert Kennedy married heiress Ethel Scheckter.

1952- Jack Parsons died in a massive explosion in his Pasadena kitchen. Parsons was a founder of the Jet Propulsion Lab and the Aerojet Corporation. One of the nations top rocket scientists, his research into fuels powered everything from world war two bazooka shells to the Space Shuttle booster engines. But Parsons also had a strange second life in the occult. He was a follower of Alastair Crowley, sometimes signed his name as AntiChrist and once tried to raise a demon in a white-magic ceremony. His close friends included writer Robert Heinlein and Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. His mother committed suicide within hours of the explosion. No one is sure what caused the explosion that killed him, but he was cavalier in his use of dangerous materials “uh, could you hand me the Mayonnaise? It’s in the fridge between the C-4 and the Fulminate of Mercury.”

1964- The first Universal Studios tram car tour. Carl Laemmle had been inviting tourists in for a nickel to watch movies be filmed as early as 1915.

1968- Ohio Express’ single “Yummy, Yummy, Yummy I got love in my Tummy” went gold.

1972- THE WATERGATE BREAK IN- President Richard Nixon's staff, trying to gain an edge on an upcoming election, hire men to break into Democratic National Committee's offices in the Watergate Hotel to steal election strategy documents. They had already broken in once before but the batteries on the wiretap they planted were defective so they wanted to replace them and copy some more documents. Hotel security guards caught three Cubans and a man named Frank Sturgis. One Cuban had, in his pocket, a check made out by a White House employee named E. Howard Hunt.
This "Third-Rate Burglary" and subsequent cover-up ulcerated into a major scandal that eventually forced the first ever resignation of a US president. President Lyndon Johnson had bugged the Republicans in 1967 and President Kennedy used the IRS to audit politicians he didn’t like, but the general public didn’t know that yet. President Nixon said: "nobody's gonna make a big deal that a Republican President broke into Democratic headquarters."

1990- The Battle of Century City- Police attacked 500 striking building maintenance workers and janitors, mostly Central American immigrants, for trying to form a union.

1994- THE WHITE BRONCO CHASE- Movie actor and Hall of Fame football player O.J. Simpson was wanted for questioning about the grisly murder of his second wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her boyfriend Ron Goldman. This day OJ tried to escape. He and his football friend Al Cowlings led police on a strange slow-speed pursuit for two hours around the freeways of Los Angeles as the world watched amazed on live television. He eventually was convinced to surrender. OJ Simpson was acquitted of murder in a controversial trial, but found guilty in a civil wrongful death suit.
Yesterday’s question: Why is a necktie sometimes called a cravat?

Answer: During the Thirty Years War (1618-1648) Both sides hired Croatian horsemen to augment their armies. The Croats wore interesting neckerchiefs,from simple cloths to wrap their horses shins, to the officers more elaborate ties. They became a fashion craze. In France they called the style after the Croat word Hrvat, became Cravat. King Charles II brought them to England in 1660. By 1815 people were just calling them neckties.