Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The birthday of whippets -

August 22, 1939 -
The first U.S. patent (US Patent #2170531 A) was issued for a disposable whipped cream aerosol container on this date. 

Julius S. Kahn's patent was titled "An Apparatus for Mixing a Liquid with a Gas" and was specifically concerned with making whipped cream, using a ordinary soda bottle. I've got nothing else to say.


August 22, 1929 -
Walt Disney
released the animated short film The Skeleton Dance (The first of Disney's Silly Symphony series,) animated by Ub Iwerks, on this date.



Worried that he would be too dependent on Mickey, Walt Disney wanted to diversify. Carl W. Stalling came up with the idea of producing "musical novelties" (which would later become Silly Symphonies).


August 22, 1930 -
W.C. Fields'
classic short, The Golf Specialist, premiered on this date.



According to the wanted poster among the offenses that Bellweather has committed are "Eating spaghetti in public" and "Telling the facts of life to an Indian."


August 22, 1946 -
The last of Alfred Hitchcock's wartime thrillers, Notorious, premiered on this date.



After filming had ended, Cary Grant kept the famous UNICA key. A few years later he gave the key to his great friend and co-star Ingrid Bergman, saying that the key had given him luck and hoped it would do the same for her. Decades later at a tribute to their director Alfred Hitchcock, Bergman went off-script and presented the key to him, to his surprise and delight.


August 22, 1972 -
The movie that introduced Monty Python and its seminal brand of comedy to American audiences, And Now for Something Completely Different, premiered on this date.



According to Terry Gilliam, executive producer Victor Lownes, who primarily represented Playboy magazine (which funded the movie), insisted on getting an animated credit equal in size to those of the group members.


August 22, 1990 -
Allan Moyle's teen comedy-drama, Pump Up the Volume, starring Christian Slater and Samantha Mathis, premiered on this date.



Christian Slater became physically ill several times during filming due to all the cigarette smoking he had to do.


Our moment of Zen


Today in History:
August 22, 565
-
St. Columba, the man credited with introducing Christianity to Scotland, reported seeing a monster in Loch Ness on this date.

St. Columbia made the sign of the cross and told the monster, "you will go no further," and it fled. There was no written report on how many drams of whiskey the saint had downed before his encounter.



August 22, 1485 -
At the Battle of Bosworth, England's King Richard III was terminated for having made a fiscally irresponsible bid on a horse.



For evermore, kingdoms went for a great deal more than small pieces of hardware.


August 22, 1770 -
Captain James Cook claimed Australia for the British crown when he landed on a small island off the coast of Queensland.

This must have come as a great shock to the indigenous inhabitants there.  But then again, they didn't have a flag.


August 22, 1776
-
George Washington asked the Continental Congress for permission to burn New York City, to stop the city from being used to quarter troops arriving via the British fleet. It is declined, but his soldiers set 1/4th of the town ablaze on September 21.

There are still many in the government that would like to enact Washington's plan right now.


August 22, 1849 -
In the first air raid in history, Austria launched 200 pilotless balloons, each attached with 30-pound bombs, against the city of Venice on this date.

The bombs don’t cause much damage. But on this August day, exactly a hundred years later,

Japan dedicated the town of Hiroshima as a shrine of peace after a single nuclear bomb killed 130,000 people


August 22, 1851 -
The American schooner America was allowed, through special dispensation of Queen Victoria, to enter the annual Royal Yacht Squadron's Regatta. The America won the race, beating out 15 competitors and the trophy was renamed the America's Cup after the yacht.

The race was a 53-mile (85-kilometer) regatta at the Isle of Wight. The Cup is the oldest trophy awarded in international sports.


August 22, 1864 -
12 nations sign the first Geneva Convention specifically calling for the protection of the wounded during times of active warfare on this date. This leads directly to formation of the Red Cross.

In 1882, U.S. President Chester Arthur signed the treaty, making the U.S. the 32nd nation to do so.


August 22, 1893 -
If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy.



Dorothy Parker was born in New York City, to Henry and Eliza Rothschild (... My God, no, dear! We'd never even heard of those Rothschilds ....) on this date.



Her birth was two months premature, allowing her to say that it was the last time she was early for anything. She was quoted, when discussing her early years, "All those writers who write about their childhood! Gentle God, if I wrote about mine you wouldn’t sit in the same room with me."



While she was a successful writer, she was just plain lousy at committing suicide. Dorothy Parker attempted suicide four times herself before succumbing to a heart attack in 1967.


August 22, 1902 -
President Theodore Roosevelt became the first U.S. chief executive to ride in an automobile (a purple-lined Columbia Electric Victoria) in Hartford, Ct. on this date. The police detail covering the event rode bicycles.

I'm sure he had a bully time, but the truth is a year earlier William McKinley rode in a car, although it was the electric ambulance that took him to the hospital after he was shot.


August 22, 1906 -
The Victor Talking Machine Company of Camden, New Jersey, manufactures its first Victrola record player.

The devices, including the hand cranked unit and horn cabinet would sell for $200.


August 22, 1920 -
The late great Ray Bradbury, science fiction writer whose works include The Martian Chronicles and Fahrenheit 451, was born on this date.



Though considered by many to be the greatest science-fiction writer of the of the 20th century, he suffers from a fear of flying and driving. He has never learned to drive, and did not fly in an airplane until October 1982.


August 22, 1938 -
Fred Astaire
and Ginger Rogers, one of Hollywood's most famous dancing duos, appeared on the cover of Life Magazine.

There were on the cover to promote their current film, Carefree. The film is often remembered as the film in which Astaire and Rogers shared their first long on-screen kiss.


August 22, 1962 -
A group called the OAS (Secret Army Organization in English) plotted an assassination attempt on President Charles De Gaulle, who they believed had betrayed France by giving up Algeria (in northern Africa) to Algerian nationalists.



Frederick Forsyth dramatized the events of that August in his best-selling novel The Day of the Jackal, later made into a film.


August 22, 1973
-
Henry Kissinger, German-born American bureaucrat, succeeded William Rogers as Secretary of State under President Richard Nixon, on this date.



Kissinger won the Nobel Peace Prize in the same year, (he's also considered a war criminal by others.) He continued in office until 1977.



(I really don't care about the man but it gave me an excuse to play the Python song.)



And so it goes.


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Before you go
- Your good dr's daughter is taking ASL in high school. I saw this video and asked her did she recognized these signs. (She said no.)



I think she lied.

Monday, August 21, 2017

But the sun is eclipsed by the moon.

At some point today, the sun will be swallowed by a large evil dragon ... no, no, we will be experiencing a total solar eclipse over a wide swath of the US.



This will be the last total solar eclipse in the United States until April 4, 2024.


August 21, 1952 -
The classic John Ford film, The Quiet Man was released on this date.



During the filming of a take of the scene where John Wayne first kisses Maureen O'Hara, she slaps his face. When he blocked the blow, she broke a bone in her hand. Since the movie was being filmed in sequential order, she couldn't wear a cast to fix the broken bone.


August 21, 1965 -
The Lovin' Spoonful's
released their first no. 1 hit, Do You Believe In Magic on this date.



The Lovin' Spoonful turned down an offer to sign with Phil Spector because they didn't want to "be swallowed up under his name." The group signed to a new record label called Kama Sutra. This was the first song they recorded for the label, and it was the first of a string of hits for the group, which included Daydream, Did You Ever Have To Make Up Your Mind? and Summer In The City.


August 21, 1979 -
Gary Numan
released his hit Cars from his album The Pleasure Principle, on this date.



This song is about how people use technology and material goods to isolate themselves from human contact. Numan has stated that he has Asperger Syndrome, which is a mild form of autism, but until he was diagnosed, he had a lot of trouble relating to other people.


August 21, 1981 -
John Landis'
classic comedy horror film, An American Werewolf in London, starring David Naughton, Jenny Agutter, and Griffin Dunne, premiered in the US on this date.



John Landis had to avoid filming any full-frontal nudity of David Naughton during the transformation scene and dream sequences after Naughton informed Landis that he was not circumcised, even though his role, David Kessler, was written as being Jewish.


August 21, 1987 -
The low-budget film, directed by  Emile Ardolino, Dirty Dancing, starring Patrick Swayze, Jennifer Grey, Cynthia Rhodes, and Jerry Orbach, premiered in the US on this date.



Patrick Swayze had to convince Jennifer Grey to be in this film, because she had disliked him so much while filming Red Dawn a few years earlier.


August 21, 1991 -
The Coen Brothers take on 30s Hollywood, Barton Fink, starring John Turturro, John Goodman, Judy Davis, Michael Lerner, John Mahoney, and Jon Polito went into general release on this date.



The film is the first film to win all three major awards at the Cannes Film Festival (Palme D'or, Best Director, and Best Actor). Also, it was unanimously chosen for the Palme D'or.


Word of the Day


Today in History:
August 21, 1614
-
Erzsebet Bathory, ruler of Transylvania, died at 54, on this date. She had sought immortality by killing young virgins and bathing in their blood (or so they say.) It apparently didn't work.



I wonder if Elizabeth Arden in Union Square is still offering this service and where are they finding enough virgins.


August 21, 1888 -
William Seward Burroughs of St. Louis, Missouri (grandfather of Beat Generation writer William S. Burroughs) was granted four patents for the first successful “Calculating-Machine,” sometimes referred to as an “adding and listing machine.” (US No. 388,116-388,119)

One year after making his first patent application on January 10, 1885, he incorporated his business as the American Arithmometer Corporation, with an investment of $100,000.


August 21, 1906 (
or 1905?) -
Happy Birthday Friz




Isadore 'Friz' Freleng, one of the original tennants of Warner Bros. Termite Terrace, was born on this date.


August 21, 1911 -
Pablo Picasso
was having a very bad day.

His so called friend, French poet Guillaume Apollinaire, who had once called for the Louvre to be "burnt down," came under suspicion when the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Lourve on this day; he was arrested and put in jail. Apollinaire, as all bad French dadaist poets would do, ratted out his friend Pablo Picasso, who was also brought in for questioning, but both were later exonerated.

Very nice guy.



At the time, the painting was believed to be lost forever, and it would be two years before the real thief was discovered. Louvre employee Vincenzo Peruggia stole it by entering the building during regular hours, hiding in a broom closet and walking out with it hidden under his coat after the museum had closed. Peruggia was an Italian patriot who believed da Vinci's painting should be returned to Italy for display in an Italian museum.



Peruggia may have also been motivated by a friend who sold copies of the painting, which would skyrocket in value after the theft of the original. After having kept the painting in his apartment for two years, Peruggia grew impatient and was finally caught when he attempted to sell it to the directors of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence; it was exhibited all over Italy and returned to the Louvre in 1913. Peruggia was hailed for his patriotism in Italy and only served a few months in jail for the crime.


August 21, 1912 -
Arthur R. Eldred
was the first person to have achieved the rank of Eagle Scout, the highest in the Boy Scouts of America.

A few weeks after becoming the first Eagle Scout, Eldred helped to save another Scout from drowning and was awarded the Bronze Honor Medal for his actions.


August 21, 1959 -
Hawaii became the 50th state to enter the Union when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the order, granting the stolen island nation, Hawaii statehood on this date.



Several bills for Hawaii had been presented to the US Congress, in 1919, 1935, 1947 and 1950, but none had passed until this day in 1959. (Nixon gleefully looking on.  He was ensuring that little Barry Obama would be born on U.S. soil.  Nixon was at the heart a many a conspiracy.)


August 21, 1983 -
Longtime political opponent of Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos, former Philippine senator Benigno S. Aquino Jr. was not having a very good day. As Benigno stepped off a airplane at the Manila airport (ending his three years of self-imposed exile in the US,) he was assassinated on this date.



He was returning home to run in the Philippine's next election. These kind of things tend to put people off of travel.


August 21, 1986 -
1,700 people were killed in Cameroon when Lake Nyos emitted a huge cloud of fast-moving fog, quickly enveloping the villages of Nyos, Kam, Cha and Subum on this date.



The lethal mist, consisting mainly of carbon dioxide and water vapor, displaces the oxygen in the low-lying zones, killing thousands of cattle and even more birds and wild animals. One eyewitness later describes the landscape as being "littered with human remains and animal carcasses."

That would have ruined a vacation.



And so it goes.


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Before you go - You'll probably hear this -



or this -



or this -



and definitely this -



by the end of the day today.


Sunday, August 20, 2017

Radio is sweeping across the nation

August 20, 1920 -
The first commercial radio station begins operating in Detroit, Michigan with call sign 8MK (Now WWJ (Newsradio 950) ). The radio station was started by The Detroit News newspaper and is now owned and run by CBS.



To celebrate the event, today is National Radio Day. UNESCO formally announced the formation of International Radio Day in February of 2012 (celebrated February 13th), after a suggestion put forward by Spain to celebrate this important means of communication. In some parts of the world, radio still remains an important lifeline to the outside world.


August 20, 1941 -
William Wyler's
pitch-perfect adaptation of Lillian Hellman's The Little Foxes, starring Bette Davis, premiered on this date.



Bette Davis was a contract player for Warner Brothers at the time, earning $3000 a week. When she heard how much Warners was receiving for her services she demanded a share of the payment.


August 20, 1942 -
An almost forgotten comedy from Columbia Pictures, Talk of The Town, directed by George Stevens starring Cary Grant, Jean Arthur and Ronald Colman, premiered on this date.



This was the first time since the silent era that Ronald Colman was billed below another male lead.


Don't forget to check out our other site: Dr. Caligari's Cupboard


Today in History:
August 20, 1865
-
In the great tradition of the American presidency, President Andrew Johnson rouses himself from an alcoholic stupor,

and formally declared the Civil War over (months after Lee's surrender at Appomattox.)


August 20, 1885  -
Gilbert and Sullivan's operetta, The Mikado opened at the Fifth Street Theatre in New York on this date.



The production originally opened on March 14, 1885, in London, where it ran at the Savoy Theatre for 672 performances.


August 20, 1940 -
Soviet Professional Leon Trotsky liked his job, but the strain was wearing on him — dictatorial burnout. In the summer of 1940 he finally used some of the vacation time he'd accumulated to head down to Mexico and think through his options.



On this date, in Mexico City, Trotsky met with one of Stalin's human resources representatives, who suggested he take an early retirement.



The suggestion was accompanied by several persuasive blows to the head with an axe, which seriously impeded Trotsky's growth potential. Sadly, he died the next day before he could sue for damages.


August 20, 1948 -
... There's nothing worse than a bunch of jaded old farts, and that's a fact....



Robert Anthony Plant CBE, button phobia rock singer and songwriter, was born on this date.


August 20, 1977 -
NASA bizarrely decided to go into the record business. Scientists, not quite understanding the record industry, press only one record but make it out of gold, believing that the unaffordable price will boost profit. The record is nearly unlistenable except for the recording of the Chuck Berry song, "Johnny B Good". NASA decided to hide this costly blunder by including the recording in the payload of the space probe Voyager 2, launched on this date, on a mission to Jupiter and beyond. (This will confused the aliens when they realize that NASA launched Voyager 1 on September 5, 1977.)



The contents of the record were selected for NASA by a committee chaired by Carl Sagan of Cornell University. Dr. Sagan and his associates assembled 115 images and a variety of natural sounds, such as those made by surf, wind, and thunder, and animal sounds, including the songs of birds and whales. To this they added musical selections from different cultures and eras, and spoken greetings from Earthlings in fifty-five languages, and printed messages from President Jimmy Carter and U.N. Secretary-General (and ex-Nazi) Kurt Waldheim. Remember these facts when the aliens come to invade the planet. It passed Jupiter in the summer of 1979, and is still traveling, probably right out of our solar system .




In a memorable Saturday Night Live segment, it was announced by Steve Martin that the first message from extraterrestrials was being received. Once decoded, the message stated, "Send moreChuck Berry."


August 20, 1986 -
US Postal worker Patrick Sherrill shot and killed 14 coworkers, and then himself, on this date.

The shooting, which happened in Edmond, Oklahoma, is generally accepted as the event that spawned the "going postal" phrase.


August 20, 1989 -
The two Menendez brothers, Lyle and Erik, shot their parents to death on this date and then went to the movies to establish an alibi. They called 911 when they returned home from the movies to report the murders.



Though they weren't initially suspected, the two brothers ultimately were convicted and sentenced to life in prison.


On August 20, 1991, the Estonian parliament declared independence from the Soviet Union.



The next day, Latvia declared its independence from the Soviet Union and Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev declared he was back in full control after a 60-hour coup by old-school Communists finally crumbled.



Full control of exactly what?


Today's brief quiz:
What did Vincenzo Peruggia steal on August 21, 1911?

a. The Shroud of Turin
b. Home plate
c. The Mona Lisa
d. The Sistine Chapel
e. The Hope Diamond

Bonus: what was his day job?
(Answer tomorrow)



And so it goes.


Before you go - Bunkies as if you could forget, there's a Total Solar Eclipse all the way from Oregon to South Carolina, along a stretch of land about 70 miles (113 kilometers) wide.



Please remember mama always told you not to look into the eyes of the sun. 



I don't care if that's were the fun is - don't do it; you'll burn your eyes out!


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