Monday, August 31, 2009

Happy Birthday Van (Please don't sue me)

August 31, 1945 -
George Ivan Morrison, singer and songwriter, was born on this date.

Van the Man, is still the greatest living blue-eyed soul singer.

August 31, 1957 -
This second Looney Tune with Rocky and Mugsy, Bugsy and Mugsy, was released on this date.

I don't know how yas done it but I know yas done it!

August 31, 1958 -
Glenn Tilbrook, singer, guitarist and with his writing partner Chris Difford, formed the pop group, Squeeze, was born on this date.

In for bingo, all the nines, A panda for sweet little niece.

Here's your late Today in History -
Gaius Caesar Caligula was born on August 31 in the year 12. Caligula succeeded Tiberius in the year 37, and his reign was most notable for its policy of Sex with the Emperor.

(Please note - this guy not only slept with the unwilling wives of senators and his sisters, he married his horse and tried to have him made a god.) This turned out to have been a weak Political Philosophy, because the Romans all had classical educations and saw right through him.

So they killed him.

August 31, 1422 -
Henry V of England, one of the great warrior kings of the Middle Ages, dies suddenly of dysentery on this date. He was 34 at the time.

At the time of his death, Henry had not only consolidated power as the King of England but had also effectively accomplished what generations of his ancestors had failed to achieve through decades of war: unification of the crowns of England and France in a single person.

In 2002 he was ranked 72nd in the 100 Greatest Britons poll. And yet, lack of proper sanitary conditions carried him away. Let this be a lesson to us all - wash your hands after visiting the rest room.

August 31, 1919 -
The American Communist Party is established on this date,

providing entertainment for Joseph McCarthy and J. Edgar Hoover for decades.

August 31, 1879 -
Alma Maria Schindler, noted in her native Vienna for her beauty and intelligence, was born on this date.

In her youth she was an aspiring composer. But that not why I bring her up. She was the wife, successively, of the composer Gustav Mahler, architect Walter Gropius, and novelist Franz Werfel, and lover to the painter Oskar Kokoschka. Rather than try to encapsulate the story of this very busy woman,

Listen to Tom Lehrer's song Alma, which nicely gives you the gist of her life.

August 31, 1976 -
George Harrison was found guilty of unintentionally plagurizing 'My Sweet Lord' .

Those damn Beatles could never come up with an original tune.

August 31, 1997 -
A charming, slightly addled, beautiful divorcee with two children decides to take a car ride with her very rich Middle Eastern boyfriend and his very drunk driver. She makes the fatal mistake of not buckling her seat belt and pays a very heavy toll. So ends the glamorous and controversial life of Diana Spencer Mountbatten-Windsor.

Kids, if you don't want to end up dying in the backseat of a black 1994 Mercedes-Benz W140 in a road tunnel in Paris - BUCKLE UP.

And so it goes

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