Friday, March 31, 2017

Here's another book I haven't read

March 31, 1943 -
Ronald Walken
, possibly the most imitated actor in America, was born on this date.

In his over 35 years in film, he has acted in well over 90 films. He rarely turns down a part, under the belief that making movies (whether they turn out good or bad) is always a rewarding experience.

March 31, 1953 -
Stanley Kubrick's
first feature film, a war drama titled Fear and Desire, premiered in New York on this date.

Stanley Kubrick disowned the film soon after it's release and wanted to make sure it was never seen again by not re-releasing the print. What he didn't know was that Kodak when making the print had a policy of making an extra print for their archives

March 31, 1957 -
The original version of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella, starring Julie Andrews, aired live in color on CBS on this date (only black-and-white kinescopes exist today.)

The only production of the Rodgers and Hammerstein version to be telecast while Hammerstein was still alive. He died in 1960, five years before the second television production of the musical was telecast.

March 31, 1975 -
The TV show Gunsmoke, which premiered in 1955, aired its last original episode on this date.

The show was canceled in September of the previous year.  According to James Arness, the cancellation caught them by surprise. The cast and crew were expecting the series to go at least three more years.

March 31, 1987
20 minutes into the future, US network television’s very first cyberpunk series, Max Headroom premiered on ABC-TV, 30 years ago today.

The futuristic graphics used on the show were created by a top-of-the-line computer of 1987, a Commodore Amiga.

March 31, 1994 -
appeared on Late Show with David Letterman on this date. She dropped the f-bomb more than a dozen times, exchanged less- than-friendly barbs with Dave and then stubbornly refused to leave the set.

This made the episode the most censored in American network television talk-show history; it also resulted in some of the highest ratings of Letterman's late-night career.

The extra credit question, who was the musical guest that evening? - Counting Crows.

March 31, 1999 -
The Wachowskis', (formerly known as The Wachowski Brothers,) groundbreaking sci-fi action thriller, The Matrix, starring Keanu Reeves, Carrie Anne Moss and Laurence Fishburne, premiered on this date.

The Wachowskis approached Warner with the idea of the Matrix and Warner balked at the budget they had submitted, which was over $80 million. Warner instead agreed to give them $10 million. The Wachowskis took the money and filmed the first ten minutes of the movie (the opening scene with Carrie-Anne Moss) using the entire $10 million. They then showed the executives at Warner the opening scene. They were impressed, and green-lit the original asking budget.

Breaking News

Today in History:
March 31 1492
With the issuance of the Alhambra Decree on this date, King Ferdinand and Queen Isabel expel all of the Jews from Spain, except those willing to convert to Christianity. Even with the infusions of gold and silver arriving during the 16th century from the Americas, this is an act from which Spain never recovered.

By expelling their merchant and banking class, Jews and Muslims, the country is left ill-equipped to process the new wealth, which ultimately winds up in the coffers of other countries and squandered on disastrous military campaigns.

I guess that didn't quite go the way they had planned.

March 31, 1811 -
Robert Bunsen
, whose name we associate with the burner, was a 19th-century German chemist of some renown, was born on this date. He worked on explosive organic arsenic compounds--leading to the loss of one eye--and, later, on gases from volcanoes, geysers and blast furnaces.

With Gustav Kirchhoff, he contributed to our understanding of the meaning of spectra lines. (He also gained note for not bathing--one woman of polite society remarked that Bunsen was so charming that she would like to kiss him, but she would have to wash him first.)

March 31, 1889 -
French engineer Gustave Eiffel unfurled the French tricolor from atop the Eiffel Tower, officially marking its completion on this date, but its history dates back to Gallic times.

Documents that have been carbon-dated to roughly 200 B.C. indicate that King Catatonix of the Hellatians decreed, for no apparent reason, the construction of a big tower on the very site where the Eiffel Tower can be found today.

In Caesar’s Reflections on the Garlic Wars, the Roman general reminisces on having found “a curious wooden tower, tall and strange.” Baffled by this peculiar cultural monolith, and never happy to be baffled, he burned it to the ground.

Some four centuries later, with the western Roman Empire in collapse, wild-eyed Gallic nationalists rebuilt the tower using cheese instead of wood. They called it La Grande Fromage, from which we get the expression, The Big Cheese.

During subsequent invasions by and entanglements with Normans, Saxons, Angles, Ostrogoths, Visigoths, and Lolligoths, the Tower was repeatedly destroyed and rebuilt, always for no apparent reason. It had become a sort of habit by now, a national obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Rene Descartes was born on March 31, 1596. Descartes said that he existed because he thought, and although he said it in Latin everyone still had to admit that it looked like Reason had finally entered the world.

Therefore the Franks (who now called themselves the French, primarily to irritate Germany) lost interest in the tower, and at last abandoned the effort.

Unfortunately, in 1870 German chancellor Otto von Bismarck defeated the French army in a Sedan and laid siege to Paris. This made the French lose their heads (see also the French Revolution). They forgot all about Reason and made Gustave Eiffel build a Tower, this time using steel, which was stronger than cheese and not quite as flammable as wood. It stands to this day, a proud monument French culture, without which we would not have Champagne, Camembert, Brigitte Bardot, or Marcel Proust.

March 31, 1959 -
The Dalai Lama was forced to leave Tibet, after the Red Communists (Evil Bastards) make it very unpleasant for him to stay, on this date.

He accuses the Chinese of making genocide against the Tibetan people, by systematic destruction of Tibetan culture and execution of thousands of prominent citizens (At the rate I'm going, I'll be lucky to get takeout delivered to my house.)

March 31, 1968 -
In a televised speech to the nation on this date, President Lyndon B. Johnson announced a partial halt of bombing missions over North Vietnam and proposed peace talks.

Citing national divisions over the war in Vietnam, President Johnson also announced that he would not run for re-election. The stock market soared the next day.

March 31, 1995 -
The president of the Selena Fan Club, Yolanda Saldivar, killed the Tejano music popstar Selena in Corpus Christi, TX. "It just went off, I didn't mean to do it. I didn't mean to kill anybody".

That might be true, but the jury did not believe her.

Remember folks, never let a crazy fan with a gun license and bad credit be the head of your fan club.

And so it goes


Before you go - Don't forget the 12th Annual Giant Pillow Fight is again in Washington Square Park tomorrow at 3 PM - and the theme is VIKINGS!

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Opening day is April 2nd.

March 30, 1993 -
Charlie Brown (very uncharacteristically) hit a game winning home run on this date.

The pitcher on the opposing team - Royetta Hobbs.  (This year's first game is between Arizona Diamondbacks vs. San Francisco Giants.)

March 30, 1964
What game show is celebrating its' 53rd anniversary on this date?  Pens down.

Merv Griffin's game show Jeopardy! made its debut on television. He sold the rights for the show to Coca-Cola for $250 million in 1986. The show was hosted by Art Fleming until 1975. It resurfaced in syndication in 1984 with Alex Trebek as host.

March 30, 1966 -
Barbra Streisand's second television special, Color Me Barbra aired on CBS-TV, on this date.

The concert was one of the first to be filmed in color. The technology was so new that when two of the three cameras broke immediately prior to the show, there were no parts available to repair them.

March 30, 1967 -
The Beatles visited Michael Cooper's London photographic studio on this date and shot the most iconic album cover ever created.

The cover of Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band was designed by Peter Blake and put together by Peter Blake and Jann Haworth, who painstakingly combed through hundreds of photos for months before the photo shoot. (Kids, remember, this was all done before Photoshop.)

And now a word from out sponsor

Today in History:
March 30, 315
The Donation of Constantine grants to the See of Rome dominion over all earthly thrones of Europe, a document made by the Roman Emperor Constantine I after his conversion to Christianity in return for being cured from leprosy (it was the least he could do after avoiding his nose falling off his face).

But in 1440, anachronisms in the document prove that it was really a fraud written around 752 AD, during the reign of and under orders of Pope Stephen II and the Frankish king Charlemagne (more about him later).

March 30 1282 -
After vespers on Easter Monday, a French sergeant named Drouet touched the breast of a young Sicilian bride, causing an outrage that precipitated the slaughter of perhaps 2,000 Frenchmen living and ruling over Sicily.

Lesson here: don't cop a feel of someone else wife after church, especially if they're Sicilian.

One of Giuseppe Verdi's (Joe Green) most musically acclaimed operas, Les Vêpres Siciliennes is based on this conflict.

March 30, 1840 -
Fashions come and go; Bad taste is timeless.

George Bryan Beau Brummell, English dandy and former favorite of the prince regent, died of syphilis in a French lunatic asylum for paupers (I hate when that happens.)

March 30, 1853 -
Vincent Van Gogh was born on this date. Exactly 134 years later to the very day, his painting Sunflowers sold for $39.7 million.

Van Gogh’s life was full of such eary coincidences.

March 30, 1856 -
(In case this comes up) Russia signed the Treaty of Paris ending the Crimean War on this date. It guaranteed the integrity of Ottoman Turkey and obliged Russia to surrender southern Bessarabia, at the mouth of the Danube.

The Black Sea was neutralized, and the Danube River was opened to the shipping of all nations.

March 30, 1858 -
Hymen Lipman was granted a patent (U.S. patent No. 19,783) for creating the first wood-cased pencil with an attached rubber eraser, revolutionizing classrooms and art studios alike.

Unfortunately, the patent was later revoked by the Supreme Court when it was challenged by a German firm, Faber-Castell, that attached the eraser using a metal ferrule.  Lipman invented neither the pencil nor the eraser, he simply combined the two so the invention was considered invalid.

So now you know.

March 30, 1863 -
OK kids, it's your favorite topic - life among the those wacky inbred royals.

Danish prince Wilhelm Georg was chosen as King George of Greece on this date.

King George I is the grandfather of Prince Philip, yes that gadabout Greek sailor who lives in London. Kids, now follow this: Philip and his lovely wife Elizabeth are second cousins once removed: they are both descended from Christian IX of Denmark - Elizabeth II is a great-great-granddaughter through her paternal great-grandmother Alexandra of Denmark, and the Duke is a great-grandson through his paternal grandfather George I of Greece.

As well as second cousins once removed, the couple are also third cousins: they share Queen Victoria as a great-great-grandmother. Elizabeth's great-grandfather was Edward VII, while Edward's sister Alice, Grand Duchess of Hesse and by Rhine was the Duke's great-grandmother. All of this was probably painfully obvious to them on their wedding day as everyone assembled to witness their wedding was related to one another.

So goes love amongst the royals and hillbillies.

On March 30, 1870, the U.S. Congress readmitted Texas to the Union. Texas is the only state in the Union whose name is an anagram for taxes. Texas had been naughty and seceded in 1861, but they said they were sorry and promised never to do it again.

Congress didn’t think they really meant it, but let them back in anyway, after making Texas write "I will not secede from the union" 500 times.

Conclude this paragraph with the Texaphobic slur or Texaphiliac slogan of your choice.

March 30, 1909 -
...The city seen from the Queensboro Bridge, is always the city seen for the first time, in its first wild promise of all the mystery and the beauty in the world.... - F Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

The Queensboro Bridge (originally known as Blackwell's Island Bridge, affectionately known as the 59th St. Bridge, now known as the Edward I. Koch bridge, ) the first double-decker bridge, opened and linked the New York boroughs of Manhattan and Queens on this date.

The Simon and Garfunkel song Feelin' Groovy uses the bridge as its namesake.

March 30, 1954 
Canada's first subway line, Toronto's Yonge line opened on date.

Built by the publicly owned TTC (Toronto Transportation Commission, now Toronto Transit Commission) between 1949 and 1954, it was the beginning of postwar Toronto's effort to accommodate the demands of the city's prosperity and its future.

March 30, 1968 -
Two children playing in a deserted East Village tenement at 371 East 10th St come across the body of a homeless drug addict later identified as Bobby Driscoll (the patron saint of child actors gone wrong), 31, the first actor Walt Disney put under contract and the voice of Disney's Peter Pan, on this date.

So I guess he really wouldn't grow up.

March 30, 1972 -
Royal Canadian Navy sailors were issued their very last daily rum ration on this date, (the Britain's Royal Navy stopped issuing rum rations on July 31, 1970.)

This left them with merely the lash and sodomy.  There are no reports on how that's working out for them.

March 30, 1981 -
President Ronald Reagan was shot and wounded by John W. Hinckley Jr.outside the Washington Hilton Hotel on this date. Press Sec. James Brady was also shot as was Secret Service agent Tim McCarthy and District of Columbia police officer Thomas Delahanty.

While President Reagan underwent surgery for a life-threatening gunshot wound, Secretary of State Alexander Haig announced to the press: "As of now, I am in control here, in the White House, pending return of the Vice President."

As bloodless coups go, it was a brilliant though short-lived one.

And so it goes


Before you go - the demigod of the internet - CGP Grey has released a new video explaining Social Security Numbers and cards

I wonder if people in the Flying Spaghetti Monster religion believe in Social Security.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Life reduced to a refrigerator magnet

March 29, 1943 -
Talent is always more interesting - ambition is not interesting. If you have talent, you have to find ways of expressing it, but you may not be a success in the world's terms.

Eric Idle, comedian and composer, made his first public appearance at Harton Hospital, South Shields, England on this date.

March 29, 1959 -
Billy Wilder 's
film, Some Like It Hot, starring Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon, premiered on this date.

Supposedly when Orry-Kelly was measuring all three stars for dresses, he half-jokingly told Marilyn Monroe, "Tony Curtis has a nicer butt than you," at which point Monroe pulled open her blouse and said, "Yeah, but he doesn't have tits like these!"

March 29, 1975 -
Labelle's song Lady Marmalade (psst, it's about New Orleans prostitutes) hit no. #1 on this date. (Please clear a space around your desk, while watching this clip; you will immediately feel the need to shake your groove thing and might injury yourself otherwise.)

The chorus of "Voulez-vous coucher avec moi ce soir" is French for "Do you want to sleep with me tonight?" When Labelle performed this on television, broadcast standards of the day prohibited them from singing the chorus as written. It was changed to "Voulez-vous danser avec moi ce soir" (do you want to dance with me).

March 29, 1985 -
barely beat out Ellen Barkin and Jennifer Jason Leigh, for the title role in Susan Seidelman's comedy, Desperately Seeking Susan, starring (besides Madonna,) Rosanna Arquette, John Turturro, Laurie Metcalf, Aidan Quinn and Steven Wright. which premiered on this date

One of the iconic jackets that Madonna and Rosanna Arquette wore in the film was sold at a Hollywood auction in November, 2014 for approximately $225,000. One of the earrings worn by them fetched $34,000.

Today in History:
Georges Seurat died on March 29, 1891. Mr. Seurat was a dotty artist who painted the world as he saw it.

Sadly, his eye condition was never treated.

March 29, 1932 -
A vaudeville comedian made his radio debut, saying, "Ladies and gentlemen, this is Jack Benny talking. There will be a slight pause while you say, 'Who cares?' "

(this is not the episode from 1932)

The eternally 39 year old Benjamin Kubelsky premiered on his weekly radio show which ran from 1932 to 1948 on NBC and from 1948 to 1955 on CBS, and was consistently among the most highly rated programs during most of that run.

March 29, 1951 -
Julius and Ethel Rosenberg
were both convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage on this date. While Julius probably pass along secrets to the Soviets, recently declassified documents show that none of them lead to the development of the Russian nuclear weapons.

Ethel, unfortunately, is another matter. The same declassified document show that the government never believed that Ethel had anything to do with the case and the prosecution led by the lovely Roy Cohn wanted to use her as a 'lever' to pressure Julius into giving up the names of others who were involved.

She was mainly convicted on the testimony of her brother David Greenglass, a co-defendant in their trial. Greenglass was spared execution in exchange for his testimony. In late 2001, Greenglass recanted all of his testimony against his sister and claimed that he had committed perjury when he testified about her involvement in the case. Greenglass said he chose to falsely testify against his sister in order to protect his wife, who in fact was spying for the Russian.

Isn't sibling love grand?

March 29, 1977 -
Lee Harvey Oswald's
best friend, and coincidentally a friend of both Jackie Kennedy and George HW Bush, Dallas socialite George de Mohrenschildt died from a self-inflicted shotgun wound to the mouth, on this date.

It is likely he was going to be called to testify before the House Select Committee on Assassinations.

March 29, 1979 -
A U.S. House of Representatives committee report finds that John F. Kennedy's assassination was the result of a conspiracy.


March 29, 1992 -
Arkansas Governor and Presidential candidate Bill Clinton told the New York Times on this date: "When I was in England, I experimented with marijuana a time or two, and I didn't like it. I didn't inhale, and never tried it again."

Strangely, the POTUS and Monica Lewinsky had an 'encounter' on this date in 1997. It would be their final 'liaison'.

But remember, he did not have sexual relations with that woman.

And so it goes.


Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Git a Hot Tub

Today is Hot Tub Day.  Hot Tub Day is an annual “holiday” that serves as a reminder to relax and unwind after a hard day’s work.

Or you could just listen to James Brown.

March 28, 1940 -
United Artists released the Alfred Hitchcock adaptation of Daphne Du Maruier's atmospheric thriller, Rebecca, starring Laurence Olivier, Joan Fontaine and Judith Anderson on this date.

Over 20 actresses were tested for the role of the second Mrs. de Winter, which eventually went to newcomer Joan Fontaine. One of them was Vivien Leigh, who Laurence Olivier was pressing for, as they were a couple at the time.

March 28, 1941 -
Universal Pictures
released 'the B movie',  Man Made Monster starring Lionel Atwell and Lon Chaney, Jr. on this date.

Man-Made Monster launched Lon Chaney Jr.'s career as a star in horror films and the film's success directly led to his casting in the big budget role of his career, The Wolf Man.

March 28, 1942 -
Another fine Looney Tunes cartoon, The Wabbit Who Came to Supper, was released on this date.

As Bugs steps out of the bathtub and readjusts his towel (at appx 3:00 in), the white tub in the gap between his legs creates the illusion that he is exposing himself.

Try not to go back and look.

March 28, 1963 -
Alfred Hitchcock's
follow-up to Psycho, The Birds, starring Rod Taylor and Tippi Hedron premiered in New York on this date.

Rod Taylor claims that the seagulls were fed a mixture of wheat and whiskey. It was the only way to get them to stand around so much.

March 28, 1967 -
broke new ground in television programming by using a world-premiere, feature length movie as the preview of a potential new television series called Ironside, on this date.

I've often wondered what the line item budget was for nipple rouge on this film?

March 28, 1974 -
Writer and comedian, Pat McCormick, carrying a cocktail streaked nude across the set of The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson, forcing NBC censors to black out the lower half of the screen.

the streaker was arrested and later released, said Carson, for "lack of evidence."

We'd zoom our way to Mars

Today in History:
March 28, 0 -

According to Des Pascha Comutus, a treatise written in 243 CE (because you know, I sit around and read old Latin treatises all the time,) Jesus Christ's birthday was March 28. It later became the familiar December 25 after the Catholic Church changed it in 336 AD.

(kids, ask your folks if you can watch this video, it contains words that some people may find offensive.  I find the laws in North Carolina offensive but I let those people live in their hateful ignorance.)

So, Merry Christmas everybody.

March 28, 37 -
Caligula took a break from the close relationship he had with his sisters and the unnatural congress he engaged in with his horse, to accepts the titles of the Principate awarded by the Senate and entered Rome triumphantly as Emperor.

Unlike his predecessors, Caligula was the first of the men who would serve as full-fledged emperors, with unlimited power. And luckily for the Roman empire, he was cruel, probably insane and a sexual deviant.

The weekends must have been a blast at the Palace.

March 28, 193 -
The Roman ruler Pertinax was at his palace when a contingent of some three hundred soldiers rushed the gates. Pertinax was somewhat distracted. Ancient sources suggest that the soldiers had received only half their promised donativum (pay or bribe money not to kill him). Pertinax had only been emperor for 86 days and didn't have enough time to sell off the previous Emperor Commodus' property (including the concubines and youths Commodus kept for his sexual pleasures) in the giant fire sale he was having.

Neither the guards on duty nor the palace officials chose to resist them. Pertinax, although advised to flee, attempted to reason with them (never try to reason with unpaid Roman soldiers on a rampage), and was almost successful before being struck down by a member of the Praetorian Guard. There being no obvious successor and no Senatorial volunteers, the Guard auctions off the emperorship. The high bidder was Senator Didius Julianus, for 300 million sesterces. After hearing of this, Roman general Septimus Severus in Dalmatia marched on Rome, beheading the new emperor upon arrival.

Both of the films, The Fall of the Roman Empire and Gladiator,  take the same historical event as a starting point.

March 28, 1515
...I do not fear Satan half so much as I fear those who fear him....

Theresa of Avila (Teresa de Jesus), Spanish Carmelite nun, mystic writer and one of my favorite saints (remember, she's the one who was repeated pierced with God's 'golden shaft' of light) was born on this date. She co-founded with John of the Cross, the Order of Discalced (barefoot) Carmelites.

March 28, 1921 -
(Derek Jules Gaspard Ulric Niven van den Bogaerde), actor and the epitome of coolness, was born on this date.

Going to the wrong room for a British Broadcasting Corporation audition, the young Bogarde accidentally got a part in a stage play that proved so successful he was hailed as a star overnight.

March 28, 1930 -
Istanbul was Constantinople
Now it's Istanbul, not Constantinople
Been a long time gone, Constantinople
Why did Constantinople get the works?
That's nobody's business but the Turks.

(I can't help myself - I just love this song) Constantinople and Angora change their names to Istanbul and Ankara on this date.

March 28, 1941-
Virginia Woolf drowned herself by weighing her pockets with stones and walking into the River Ouse near her home because she had a dream that Nicole Kidman would portray her in a film with a truly horrifying fake nose on this date.

Lesser writers would have done the same.

March 28, 1964 -
First pirate radio station began to broadcast off the coast of England on this date. Radio Caroline debuted with a combination of rock music and lively disk jockey who's patter played to a huge audience in Great Britain.

British authorities, tried unsuccessfully, to shut down the radio station ship. Radio Caroline had become competition to the staid and usually dull British Broadcasting Corporation.

March 28, 1979 -
The Unit 2 nuclear power plant (a pressurized water reactor manufactured by Babcock and Wilcox) on the Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Station in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania near Harrisburg suffered a partial core meltdown.

The Three Mile Island accident was the worst accident in American commercial nuclear power generating history, even though it led to no deaths or injuries to plant workers or members of the nearby community.

And so it goes.


Monday, March 27, 2017

Moses supposes

March 27, 1952 -
Singin' in the Rain, the apex of movie musicals, premiered in New York on this date.

Only 19 when cast to play the film, Debbie Reynolds lived with her parents and commuted to the set. She had to wake up at 4:00 a.m. and ride three different buses to the studio; sometimes, to avoid the commute, she would just sleep on the set.

March 27, 1973 -
Marlon Brando
declined the Academy Award for Best Actor for his career-reviving performance in The Godfather on this date. The Native American actress Sacheen Littlefeather attended the ceremony in Brando’s place, stating that the actor “very regretfully” could not accept the award, as he was protesting Hollywood’s portrayal of Native Americans in film.

Brando was the second actor to ever turn down the Oscar, the first being George C. Scott, who declined his Best Actor Oscar for his role in Patton.


Today in History:
March 27, 30

A small time official in a backwater province of the Roman empire gains immortality for practicing good hygiene.

Pontius Pilate washed his hands and sealed the fate of Jesus.

March 27, 1866 -
The patent for a urinal (US Patent No. #53,488) was granted to Dr. Andrew Rankin, on this date.

Men everywhere stand up and cheer.

March 27, 1912 -
Washington DC is in the middle of it's annual celebration of National Cherry Blossom Festival (even though the recent cold snap threatened to kill of many of the blossoms,) commemorating the gift of Japanese cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo City to the city of Washington on this date.

The gift of 3,020 trees to the United States government were planted along Washington's Potomac River.

In a ceremony on this date, First Lady Helen Herron Taft and the Viscountess Chinda, wife of the Japanese ambassador, planted two Yoshina cherry trees on the northern bank of the Potomac Tidal Basin, near the Jefferson Memorial.

The gift nearly set off an international incident when the first set of trees sent by the Japanese government, in 1910, were discovered to be infested with harmful insects and disease. All of the trees had to be destroyed. After much apologizing on both sides, the Japanese government sent the new gift of the current trees.

March 27, 1945 -
Don't cry for me Argentina.

Argentina declared war on Nazi Germany, a tad late in the game, on this date.  Of course, this was just a silly charade for the benefit of the world community. Argentina would be a quiet ally of Germany for the duration of the war, even welcoming many Nazi and SS leaders to emigrate there in the aftermath.

March 27, 1958 -
Nikita Khrushchev
assumed control of the Soviet Union when he took over as premier (Evil Bastard, new style) of the country, five years after the death of Joseph Stalin on this date. Unlike most of the early Soviet leaders, who were all members of the Russian middle class, Khrushchev actually came from the working class (a very polite way of saying, he was as poor as dirt). His father was a coal miner, and his grandfather had been a serf. Khrushchev worked his way up through the ranks of the party until he became a close ally of Joseph Stalin, and during the mass executions of 1930s, when Stalin purged the party of all his suspected political enemies, Khrushchev was one of only three provincial secretaries to survive.

So upon Stalin's death in 1953, when Khrushchev began to work behind the scenes to take control of the party, there was no reason to believe he wouldn't just continue Stalin's reign of terror. But instead, on February 25, 1956, Khrushchev gave a four-hour speech to the 20th Congress of the Soviet Communist Party, viciously attacking Stalin's legacy and abuses of power, detailing all the innocent people Stalin had imprisoned, tortured, and murdered during his reign. The night Khrushchev gave the speech, no one knew exactly what he was planning to say. Witnesses said later that some members of the audience fainted from the shock of hearing Stalin criticized. Several audience members committed suicide a few days later. Many went insane having to endure a four hour speech by a semi literate politburo member.


The speech was never officially announced to the public( for fear of the mass suicides - think Monty Python's WWII 'funny' joke), and Khrushchev never admitted to having made it, but word of the speech immediately began to leak out to intellectual circles and the foreign press. It was a bombshell, and it helped bolster Khrushchev's power at home and abroad. He became the premier two years later, on this day in 1958.

March 27, 1963 -
It's the birthday of the noted filmmaker, crack addict and foot fetisher Quentin Tarantino, born in Knoxville, Tennessee on this date. He was diagnosed as hyperactive as a kid, and didn't get along with his classmates or his teachers. His parents had to tie a pork chop around his neck to get the dog to play with him. The only things that calmed him down were comic books, movies and continually swallowing wristwatches. From the time when he was a toddler, his mother let him watch whatever movies he wanted. He watched everything from kung fu movies to French art house films (perhaps a little too much kung fu movies, some might argue).

He started taking acting classes (obviously failing those courses), and in his spare time he rewrote screenplays of movies he'd already seen from memory. Instead of going to film school, he got a job at video rental store that had one of the largest video collections in Southern California. Several other aspiring filmmakers worked there, and they would watch movies all day at work, discussing camera angles and dialogue. He spent five years working at the video store, writing screenplays, but he wasn't getting anywhere in his career.

He finally got a break when he met an actor who knew another actor who knew Harvey Keitel, and Keitel agreed to look at one of Tarantino's scripts. Keitel was impressed enough to volunteer to help Tarantino produce the film, and to act in it himself. The result was Reservoir Dogs (1992), which made Tarantino internationally famous. His next film, Pulp Fiction, won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 1994, and it went on to win an Academy Award for best screenplay.

Beside having won another Academy Award for screenwriting in 2013, and toe sucking, these days, Tarantino organizes the semi-annual Quentin Tarantino Film Festival, which is devoted to B movies of various genres, including kung fu movies, horror movies, biker movies, cheerleader movies, and women-in-prison movies.

So by all means, please slap his mother or father if you come across them today and blame them for the state of today's cinema.

March 27, 1964 -
On Good Friday at 5:36 pm, Valdez, Alaska, in Prince William Sound was rocked by an 9.2 earthquake, the largest ever recorded in North America. It lasted 4 minutes and was followed by tsunamis and fires and 131 people were killed.

Much of Crescent City, Ca., was demolished and 12 people were killed by a resulting tsunami.

March 27, 1998 -
The US Food and Drug Administration approved the drug Viagra (Sildenafil citrate), made by Pfizer, saying it helped about two-thirds of impotent men improve their sexual function. Viagra’s effects were shown to last 8-12 hours (but remember if your erection last more than 4 hours, after calling your friends, please seek medical assistance.)

Pfizer had originally tested the compound UK 92,480 as a drug for angina and found that male volunteers were getting frequent erections - don't ask . They renamed it Viagra and sought sales approval.

And speaking of Viagra - the housemaid's heart-throb

And so it goes.


Sunday, March 26, 2017

A word to the wise

Here's a brief PSA from ACME

Now that spring seems to be on the ascent

March 26, 1942 -
Up in the sky, look! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Superman!

The Bulleteers, part of the Fleischer Superman animated series, was released on this date

March 26, 1971 -
Balding, middle-aged, and portly (hey I better watch out, that's starting to describe me) - the Cannon pilot with William Conrad premiered on CBS-TV on this date.

Frank Cannon was originally a policeman, but he quit the force after the tragic death of his wife and infant son in an automobile accident. The tragedy drove Cannon to become a top private investigator.

March 26, 1975
The Who's rock opera Tommy, directed with his usual flair by Ken Russell premiered in London on this date.

The original choice to play the Acid Queen was David Bowie.

March 26, 1977 -
Less Than Zero, the debut single from Elvis Costello, was released by the newly formed Stiff Records in London, England on this date.

This was Costello's first single - it was only issued in Europe. At the time, he had a day job working on a computer at Elizabeth Arden cosmetics.

March 26, 1989 -
The science fiction series, Quantum Leap, starring Scott Bakula and Dean Stockwell, premiered on NBC-TV on this date.

Scott Bakula was the first actor cast, and thus was asked to read with actors under consideration for the role of Al Calavicci. Bakula immediately felt a connection with Dean Stockwell during his audition, and lobbied the producers to cast him as Al Calavicci.

Today in History:
March 26, 1199
All seemed right with the Medieval world. Richard the Lionheart was taking an evening stroll around the castle perimeter without his chain mail, investigating the progress of soldiers trying to destroy the fortress in which he was seeking refuge. Arrows were occasionally fired from the castle walls, but these were given little attention.

One defender in particular was of great amusement to the King - a man standing on the walls, cross bow in one hand, the other clutching a frying pan which he had been using all day as a shield to beat off missiles (this is what passed for amusement in 1199). He deliberately aimed an arrow at the King, which the King applauded. However, another arrow then struck him in the left shoulder near the neck. He tried to pull this out in the privacy of his tent, but failed; a surgeon, called a 'butcher' by Roger of Hoveden, (a 12th-century English chronicler,) removed it, 'carelessly mangling' the King's arm in the process. However, the wound swiftly became gangrenous.

Accordingly, Richard asked to have the cross bowman brought before him - the man proved a boy. This boy claimed that Richard had slain the boy's father and two brothers, and that he had slain Richard in vengeance. The boy expected to be slain; Richard, as a last act of mercy, forgave the boy his crime, saying, "Live on, and by my bounty behold the light of day," before ordering the boy to be freed and sent away with 100 shillings. Richard then set his affairs in order, bequeathing all his territory to his brother John and his jewels to his nephew Otto.

Richard died on Tuesday, April 6, 1199 in the arms of his mother; it was later said that "As the day was closing, he ended his earthly day." His death was later referred to as 'the Lion [that] by the Ant was slain'. His last act of chivalry proved pointless: as soon as Richard was dead, his most infamous mercenary captain Mercadier had the boy who fired the fatal arrow flayed alive and then hanged.

So much for pardons.

March 26, 1827
German composer Ludwig Van Beethoven died in Vienna on this date. He had been deaf for the later part of his life, but said on his death bed "I shall hear in heaven."

I wonder what the first thing that he heard in heaven?

March 26, 1830 -
Joseph Smith published The Book of Mormon on this date, after translating it from golden plates turned over by the angel Moroni.

Smith maintained that the text contained in the tablets were written in Reformed Egyptian which he read by means of two magic stones from the Old Testament, the Urim and Thummim.

March 26,1920 -
They slipped briskly into an intimacy from which they never recovered. - F. Scott Fitzgerald

I don't know why I bother bringing this up but F. Scott Fitzgerald's first novel was published on this date, bringing his talents into the spotlight.

The novel This Side of Paradise immediately launching 23-year-old F. Scott Fitzgerald to fame and fortune.

But what do you care, you don't read anything, anyway.

March 26, 1931 -
As if some cosmic force far greater than any of us can understand,

Leonard Nimoy was born four day after William Shatner.

March 26, 1953 -
Dr. Jonas Salk announced he had a vaccine for polio, on this date. Following Salk's discovery, a nationwide inoculation campaign began in 1955.

By 1957, the number of new polio cases dropped from 58 thousand to under six thousand.

March 26, 2233 - (There is some controversy surrounding this date)
James Tiberius Kirk will be born to Winona and George Samuel Kirk, Sr. in a small farming community in Riverside, Iowa. As the Captain will be quoted in the future, "I'm from Iowa, I only work in outer space."

Although born on Earth, he was apparently raised, at least for a time, on Tarsus IV, where he was one of only nine surviving witnesses to the massacre of 4,000 colonists because of utilitarian extermination by Kodos the Executioner so that the colony could survive a devastating famine.

And so it goes.


Saturday, March 25, 2017

It's a busy day today

March 25, 2017  -
Earth Hour is a global event (organized by World Wildlife Fund) held usually on the last Saturday of March. Earth Hour is celebrated annually by asking households and businesses to turn off their non-essential lights and other electrical appliances for one hour to raise awareness towards the need to take action on climate change.

Earth Hour 2017 will be held from 8:30 p.m. until 9:30 p.m. EDT (hopefully you've already read this post.)

It's also the Feast of the Annunciation (now a days known as The Solemnity of the Annunciation),

I'm not even going to try to explain this one to you.

While you're in church this afternoon, sorry kids, it is a holy day of obligation, ask one of the old lady in the back saying her decades of rosary to explain it to you. (This is for extra credit,) today is also the feast of St. Dismas, the patron of undertakers and prisoners.

Dismas was the repentant thief crucified with Christ. (You can impress the old lady saying her rosaries with that fact.)

March 25, 1932 -
Olympic gold medal swimmer Johnny Weismuller first stripped dpwn to his leopard skin loin cloth - Tarzan the Ape Man premiered in NYC on this date.

At no point in this movie is the line "Me Tarzan, you Jane" spoken. When Jane and Tarzan meet, it is she who initiates the verbal exchange, repeatedly indicating herself and giving her name until he repeats it. She then points to him, indicating that she wants to know if there's a word for who he is as "Jane" is the word for who she is, until eventually he understands and says, "Tarzan."

March 25, 1942 -
Aretha Louise Franklin
(The Queen of Soul,) born in Memphis, Tennessee, is a singer, songwriter and pianist. Although known for her soul recordings, Franklin is adept at jazz, blues, R&B and gospel music.

Franklin has won eighteen Grammy Awards in total during her nearly half-century long career and holds the record for most Best Female R&B Vocal Performance awards with eleven to her name.

March 25, 1947 -
Reginald Kenneth Dwight
, singer-songwriter, composer and pianist was born on this date as well.

In 2008, Billboard magazine ranked him as the most successful male solo artist on "The Billboard Hot 100 Top All-Time Artists"

March 25, 1968 -
The 58th and final episode of  The Monkees, Mijacogeo (also known as The Frodis Caper,) aired on this date.

The four Monkees were each paid $450 per episode, raised to $750 for the second season. They received standard royalty rates for their recordings (and publishing, when they wrote the songs), but received virtually nothing for their merchandising. Micky Dolenz and Davy Jones sued Columbia Pictures in the late 1970s, but had to settle for a payment of only $10,000.

March 25, 1972 -
aired the final episode of Bewitched, The Truth, Nothing But the Truth, So Help Me, Sam on this date.

This episode is actually a remake of episode #50 "Speak the Truth" that aired during the second season.

Don't forget to tune into today's episode of The ACME Eagle Hand Soap Radio Hour

Today in History:
Anne Brontë
was baptized on March 25, 1820. She and her sisters Charlotte and Emily were avid writers. Women were not supposed to write books at the time because novels were still being written in the formal style, and it was feared that women would corrupt that classic form with their penchant for multiple climaxes. The Brontës therefore wrote under the pseudonyms Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell.

Charlotte got to be Currer, which made the other girls jealous, because Currer was the handsome and swarthy sailor: Ellis was the stuttering librarian, and Acton was the simpleminded shepherd.

March 25, 1821 - (Για τους Έλληνες φίλους μου)
Greece revolted against the Ottoman Empire on this day (starting the Greek War of Independence,) which had been occupying and ruling it since the mid-1400s.

The war for independence lasted nine years, and was only settled after significant intervention

March 25, 1911 -
It's the 106th year anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire, the largest industrial disaster in the history of the city of New York, causing the death of 148 garment workers who either died from the fire or jumped to their deaths. It was the worst workplace disaster in New York City until September 11th, 2001.

The fire led to legislation requiring improved factory safety standards and helped spur the growth of the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union, which fought for better working conditions for sweatshop workers in that industry.

March 25, 1915 -
During submarine maneuvers off Honolulu, Hawaii, USS F-4 (SS-23) sank on this day. Despite all efforts of naval authorities, all 21 of the crew members were lost.

This was the first major submarine disaster. An investigation board will later speculate that the lead lining around the vessel’s battery tank had corroded, leading to a leak that caused the crew to loose control during a submerged run.

March 25, 1967
As part of Operation Green Mist, the U.S. Army detonates explosive warheads containing the deadly sarin nerve agent at Upper Waiakea Forest Reserve on the big island of Hawaii.

The open-air tests are kept secret for more than 30 years.


March 25, 1975 -
King Faisal of Saudi Arabia was assassinated by his nephew during a reception at Ri'Assa Palace on this date.

The nephew was beheaded the following June: his head was displayed on a spike as a warning for all to see.

Kids don't let this happen to you - remember to immediately pass the Baba ghanoush when dining with your family.

March 25 1990 -
An intentionally set fire at the Happy Land Social Club in NYC killed 87 by smoke inhalation, on this date.

At the time, the fire set by a jealous ex-boyfriend, held the record for a mass murder in the U.S. (until, of course the World Trade Center disaster.)

And so it goes


Friday, March 24, 2017

Raise your glass

Today is National Cocktail Day but since it is Lent,

I shall be abstaining, (that's my story and I'm sticking with it.)

Stopping TB requires a government program that functions every day of the year, and that's hard in certain parts of the world. And partly it's because of who tuberculosis affects: It tends to affect the poor and disenfranchised most.  - Tom Frieden

Today is World Tuberculosis Day, commemorates the day in 1882 when Dr Robert Koch announced that he had discovered the cause of tuberculosis, the TB bacillus.

(also it is supposed to remind people that tuberculosis still remains an epidemic in much of the world.)

It's also National Chocolate Covered Raisin Day - a day to enjoy this tasty combination of chocolate and fruit. Chocolate lovers who like raisins, find the combination simply irresistible. Kids find them irresistible, too.

Just make sure nobody owns a rabbit (or a guinnea pig, believe me, we know from personal experience) at the home where you are enjoying those Raisinets (TM).

March 24, 1939 -
... The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.....

Twentieth Century Fox's released on this date, the first of 14 films based on Arthur Conan Doyle's fictional consulting detective Sherlock Holmes, The Hound of the Baskervilles.

The film was such a hit that Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce were hired to play Holmes and Watson on the radio series The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. This radio series consisted of new Sherlock Holmes stories written by Anthony Boucher and Denis Green.

Oh Watson, the needle

March 24, 1951 -
Scent-Imental Romeo
, another funny Looney Tunes short starring Pepé Le Pew, was released on this date.

This is the only Golden Age Pepe Le Pew cartoon in which Pepe does not continue chasing the cat (nor catches her) in the end.

March 24, 1973 -
Pink Floyd
, release the album Dark Side of the Moon, recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London, on this date.

I wonder how it did on the charts?

March 24, 2005 -
allowed us to follow the goings on at Dunder Mifflin when The Office, starring  Steve Carell, Rainn Wilson, John Krasinski,  Jenna Fischer, and B.J. Novak premiered on this date.

John Krasinski accidentally insulted Greg Daniels while waiting to audition for the series by telling him, "I hope they [the show's developers] don't screw this up," as had been done to many British series adapted to American television. It was at this point that Daniels introduced himself to Krasinski as one of the show's developers.

What you find at the edges of the interweb

Today in History:
March 24, 1401
Tamerlane conquered Damascus on this date. Tamerlane (Timur the Lane) was a descendant of Ghenghis Khan, and one of the greatest Tater leaders ever, expanding the Mongol empire from the Pacific to the Mediterranean.

Tamerlane is best remembered for having built pyramids out of human skulls, owing to a faulty understanding of architecture which no one ever had the courage to correct.

Feel free to bring this up at the next cocktail party you attend, perhaps tonight, while you are celebrating National Cocktail day.

March 24, 1603 -
Tudor Queen Elizabeth I, the "Virgin Queen," died on this date. She had reigned from 1558-1603 and claimed never to have had a date.

Scottish King James VI, son of Mary, became King James I of England in the union of the crowns.

March 24, 1874 -
Harry Houdini, Erik Weisz (Ehrich Weiss) magician, escape artist, performed his first trick when he escaped from his mother's womb in Budapest on this date.

He is still working on perfecting his final trick of coming back from the dead.

March 24, 1895 -
Arthur Murray, American dancer who founded dance schools, was born on this date.

He proved to millions of Americans that they have no innate sense of rhythm.

March 24, 1944 -
76 Allied officers escaped Stalag Luft 3 on this date. In 1949 Paul Brickall wrote The Great Escape. The story of Jackson Barrett Mahon, an American fighter pilot, and the Allied POW escape from Stalag Luft III in Germany during WW II.

The 1963 film The Great Escape starred Steve McQueen, directed by John Sturges, was based on the true story.

March 24, 1958 - (Please note, you are about to see Elvis, stripped to the waist. Should you need healing of any sort, please press your sweaty hand upon the screen and your even damper palm upon your afflicted region.)
Elvis Aron Presley entered the United States Army at Memphis, Tennessee, on this date, and then spent three days at the Fort Chaffee, Arkansas, Reception Station.

While in the army, Elvis met his future wife, Priscilla, at a party. He left active duty at Fort Dix, New Jersey, on March 5, 1960, and received his discharge from the Army Reserve on March 23, 1964.

March 24, 1975 -
Alex Mitchell, a 50-year-old bricklayer from King's Lynn, England, died laughing while watching an episode of The Goodies, featuring a Scotsman in a kilt battling a vicious black pudding with his bagpipes on this date.

After 25 minutes of continuous laughter Mitchell finally slumped on the sofa and expired from heart failure. His widow later sent The Goodies a letter thanking them for making Mitchell's final moments so pleasant. (And the address where they can send her check.)

March 24, 1989 -
Cold Fusion was announced 28 years ago on this date.

To celebrate this amazing advancement in energy, Captain Joseph Hazelwood downed, in rapid succession, five double vodka on the rocks and piloted the Exxon tanker Valdez.

He ran the Valdez into a well-charted reef at Prince William sound, spilling 11 million gallons of crude oil. An estimated 250,000 seabirds were killed.


And so it goes


Thursday, March 23, 2017

It missed by this much

March 23, 1989 -
A 1000-foot diameter asteroid misses the Earth by only 500,000 miles on this date.

(Astronomers did not see it until it passed.) To commemorate the event, today has become known as Near Miss Day.


Huzzah, it's also Melba Toast Day.

The toast so named for the the Australian Opera singer Nellie Melba by her great admirer (and world famous French chef Auguste Escoffier.)

but folks, get a grip, it's just toast.

March 23, 1910 -
Akira Kurosawa
, Japanese film director (Rashomon, The Seven Samurai, Ran), was born in Tokyo, Japan on this date.

One his closest friends was Ishirô Honda, the writer-director behind Godzilla.

March 23, 1990 –
Garry Marshall
surprise comedy hit (which at one time was called $3,000,) Pretty Woman starring Julia Roberts and Richard Gere premiered in US theatres on this date.

Edward (Richard Gere) snapping the necklace case down on Vivian's (Julia Roberts) fingers, was improvised by Gere, and Roberts's reaction (laughter) was totally natural. The filmmakers liked it so much, they decided to leave it in.

A little R & R

Today in History:
March 23, 1369
Pedro the Cruel, King and tyrant of Castile and Leon, was murdered on this date. Enrique, the illegitimate son of Alfonso XI of Castile, killed his half brother Pedro I in the Castilian civil war and became King Enrique I the Bastard of Castile.

Once again, I must ask, what the hell were people thinking when they named their children.

March 23, 1534 -
Pope Clement VII declared that the marriage between Henry VIII of England and Catherine of Aragon was still valid, even though they'd been divorced the previous year and Henry had already married Anne Boleyn.

Henry decides to trump Clement with his extra I and invents his own religion and appoints a more agreeable pope.

March 23, 1840 -
Englishman John William Draper becomes the first person to successfully photograph the Moon.

The image, a full moon, is a daguerreotype, precursor of the later photograph.

March 23, 1908 -
Love is a fire. But whether it is going to warm your hearth or burn down your house, you can never tell.

 Joan Crawford, actress (both legitimate films and porn), executive and child beater was born on this date.

March 23, 1912 -
Wernher von Braun, German - born rocket pioneer who led the development of the V-2 rocket during World War II was born on this date.

He was deemed one of the The Good Germans we collected as a bonus prize at the end of the war. Von Braun was said to be the preeminent rocket engineer of the 20th century.

March 23, 1919 -
Benito Mussolini founded his own party in Italy on this date. He had tried all the other parties, but he was an awkward young man and had a hard time getting to know people. His Fasci di Combattimento ("Evil Fascist Bastards Party") was extremely popular, however, and even the cool kids came.

It got so crowded that the neighbors started complaining, which ended up starting a big fight, and the rest is history.

March 23, 1925 -
Tennessee Governor Austin Peay signs the Butler Act into law, making illegal the teaching in public school "any theory that denies the story of divine creation of man as taught in the Bible", on this date.

Teacher John Scopes couldn't think of anywhere else to teach evolution, so he ignored the ban and was later prosecuted in what became known as the Scopes Monkey Trial, which resulted in an Oscar for Spencer Tracy.

March 23, 1956 -
The Islamic Republic of Pakistan became an independent republic within the British Commonwealth (from 1947 until 1956, it was referred to as the Dominion of Pakistan,) on this date.  Following the fighting in Pakistan and India in 1947 Muslims moved to Pakistan, creating a country where 96% of the population are Muslim.

Pakistan was the first modern nation to call itself an Islamic republic in conjunction with a largely secular constitution. Currently Pakistan has the world's sixth largest population.

March 23, 1961 -
Valentin Bondarenko was a young cosmonaut who had been doing routine medical tests in a pressure chamber as part of an isolation exercise, on this date. He removed some biosensors from his body and used a cotton ball moistened with alcohol to wash the sticky stuff off his skin.

He tossed the cotton ball aside and it landed on an electric hot plate, where it caught fire. Because the chamber's atmosphere was pure oxygen, the fire spread quickly. Bondarenko was removed from the chamber alive, but he died soon after of shock.Bondarenko's death was kept secret for 25 years. The fatal Apollo 1 disaster could have been averted if NASA had been aware of the accident

March 23, 1965 -
NASA launched Gemini III, nicknamed the “Molly Brown,” from Cape Canaveral on this date. It was the United State’s first maneuverable two-man mission. The mission was crewed by astronauts Virgil IvanGusGrissom and John W. Young.

The flight was the first for Young, who breaks quarantine regulations by smuggling a sandwich into orbit to share with Grissom. Before the end of the mission, Young would become the first man to eat a corned beef sandwich in space. Crumbs from the "weightless" sandwich scattered throughout the Gemini 3 spacecraft, posing a potential, if unintentional, flight safety risk. This rules violation caused NASA to clamp down on what astronauts could and could not carry into space.

March 23, 1997 -
Five dead bodies are found arranged in a cross formation at the burned Quebec home of Didier Queze. They were members of the Solar Temple cult who in 1994 to 1996 had totaled 69 suicides in Europe and North America.

Interestingly, in San Diego, The Heaven's Gate suicides (completely different set of nuts) leave 39 dead, all wearing NIKE shoes and many of the male members of the pact had previously voluntarily removed their members.

I believe this is the corollary to Thoreau's 'beware of all enterprises that require new clothes' - NEVER join a cult that requires you to remove your genitals.

And so it goes.


Before I forgot - here are the answers to yesterday's quiz

O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!
We will all be heading back to the Satellite of Love on April 14th when Netflix releases the reboot of  Mystery Science Theater 3000. The series, featuring Jonah Ray as Jonah Heston and Felicia Day as Kinga Forrester and Patton Oswalt as TV’s Son of TV’s Frank -

We've got Movie Sign - Again!