Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I guess Arnold will be sleeping on the couch.

Associated Press SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is calling out his wife, Maria Shriver, for apparently violating a state law he signed — holding her cell phone while driving.

The celebrity Web site posted two photographs Tuesday showing Shriver holding a phone to her ear while she's behind the wheel. It says one was snapped Sunday and the other in July.

The Web site later added a video it said was shot Tuesday in Brentwood, where the family lives. It shows Shriver holding a cell phone to her ear while driving a large SUV that appears to be a Cadillac Escalade. She then puts the phone down while the camera is rolling. (I feel dirty playing a video from TMZ.)

The first lady's office said it would have no comment.

Maybe Bill Clinton can make up another bed in the house (since Dave Letterman is also on his couch.)

October 14, 1953 -
Possibly the ultimate film noir, Fritz Lang's The Big Heat opens in NYC on this date.

The main thing is to have the money. I've been rich and I've been poor. Believe me, rich is better.

Today's word of the day
Cacatory: adj, followed by a bout of diarrhea. For the diners, the effects of the Activia yogurt shake and chocolate prune souffle, alas, were cacatory.

Today in History:
October 14, 1651 -
Massachusetts passed laws prohibiting the poor from dressing excessively, on this date.

It was felt that persons of limited means should save their money and learn to get by with simple vinaigrettes.

October 14, 1893-
Lillian Diana Gish, American stage, screen and television actress whose film acting career spanned 75 years, from 1912 to 1987, was born on this date. She was a prominent film star of the 1910s and 1920s, particularly associated with the films of director D.W. Griffith, including her leading role in Griffith's seminal Birth of a Nation (1915). Her sound-era film included a memorable role in the 1955 cult thriller Night of the Hunter. She closed her career in the 1987 film The Whales of August.

It would be difficult to brief sum up this brilliant actress' career, but the always cantankerous Bette Davis may have paid her the ultimate back-handed compliment. Complaining about her co-star in the "Whales of August", Miss Davis was reported to have said, "How can I compete with her in a scene, she invented the goddamn close-up."

October 14, 1912 -
Former U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt, campaigning for a return to office, was shot in Milwaukee by a saloonkeeper named John Schrank.

What saves Teddy was the bullet lodged in Roosevelt's chest only after hitting both his steel eyeglass case and a copy of his speech he was carrying in his jacket. Roosevelt declined suggestions that he go to the hospital, and delivered his scheduled speech.

He spoke vigorously for ninety minutes. His opening comments to the gathered crowd were, "I don't know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot; but it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose." Afterwards, doctors determined that he was not seriously wounded and that it would be more dangerous to attempt to remove the bullet than to leave it in his chest. Roosevelt carried it with him until he died.

Teddy Roosevelt, superhero.

October 14, 1917 -
The German spy Mata Hari, a Dutchwoman named Margaretha Geertruida Zelle, was executed by the French on this date. There wasn't much actual evidence of espionage, but she had been seen naked with German officers and the French considered this distasteful enough to kill her.

(I think I continue to kill her off at various dates this year. Sorry about that Margaretha.)

October 14, 1944 -
Field Marshal Rommel (James Mason) of Germany was visited by two of Hitler's personal staff.

They informed him that he was suspected of involvement in the July 20th plot to assassinate the Fuhrer and that he would therefore be required either to (a) stand trial and die, or (b) just die. They brought some poison along to facilitate his decision.

Hitler always liked him.

October 14, 1947 -
American pilot Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier in a rocket-powered airplane, on this date. Yeager insisted it was already broken and consequently refused to repair it despite repeated admonitions by his mother.

It remains broken to this day. (The sound barrier should not be confused with the Long Island Sound barrier, sometimes referred to as the Throg's Neck Bridge.)

October 14, 1959 -
Actor and Nazi sympathizer Errol Flynn, dubbed "the most despicable human being yet born" (and that was by a friend), dies of a heart attack in Vancouver. Flynn reported slept anything with a pulse including (but not limited to) Truman Capote, Howard Hughes, as well as countless Hollywood starlets.

Presumably, not at the same time.

And so it goes

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