Saturday, August 6, 2011

Happy Mustard Day

The first Saturday in August is National Mustard Day (in my home it is National Moutarde Day, we leave the 's' off for savings,) So please have some mustard today.

Don't put all those people out of work.

August 6, 1911 -
Once in his life, every man is entitled to fall madly in love with a gorgeous redhead.

Lucille Ball, actress,comedian and film and television executive, was born on this date.

I Love Lucy has never gone out of syndication since it's initial premiere, it is theoretically possible that every human being who has had access to a television in the past 60 years has had the possibility of turning it on and seeing Lucy every day on TV for the past 60 years.

So yes, everyone loves Lucy

August 6, 1982 -
Alan Parker's rock-musical interpretation of the classical album, Pink Floyd The Wall, premiered in NYC on this date.

The poetry that young Pink was caught with during "The Happiest Days of Our Lives" is a combination of the first and second verses of Money, off Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon.

Today in History:
August 6 is noted historically as the official end of the Holy Roman Empire, which collapsed on that date in 1806 as Emperor Francis II abdicated.

As always, please note, the Holy Roman Empire was not holy, roman or an empire (per se).

Discuss amongst yourselves.

August 6, 1890
At Auburn Prison in New York murderer William Kemmler becomes the first person to be executed by electric chair.

The first shock of electricity did not kill Kemmler, and a second shock was required. The second jolt lasted until the smell of burning flesh filled the room, about four minutes. As soon as his charred body stopped smoldering, Kemmler was pronounced dead.

It was not a pretty sight.

August 6, 1926 -
Gertrude Ederle becomes first woman to swim English Channel. Before setting out from Cap Griz-Nez, France, at 7:09 a.m., Ederle coated her body with layers of lard and petroleum jelly to insulate her from the cold waters.

Only five men had been able to swim the English Channel before Ederle. The best time had been 16 hours, 33 minutes by an Italian-born Argentine, Enrique Tiraboschi. Ederle walked up the beach at Dover, England after 14 hours and 39 minutes. The first person to greet her was a British immigration officer who requested a passport from "the bleary-eyed, waterlogged teenager."

That man's name has been lost in the miasma of history but truly he is the spiritual grandfather of the TSA.

August 6, 1926 -
One of John Barrymore's classic silent movies, Don Juan, co-starring a young Mary Astor, opened in NYC on this date.

Warner Brothers premiered its Vitaphone system in New York. (The film was the first feature-length film with synchronized Vitaphone sound effects and musical soundtrack, though it has no spoken dialogue.)

August 6, 1938 -
An early pairing of this comedy duo, Porky & Daffy was released on this date.

... In this corner, at 203 and one-third pounds, the most magnificent marvelous multiple monstrous mad mauling mass of meaty muscles ever to master, modify, mat, make mince-meat, and mangle many menacing monsters from Manitoba to Minneapolis!

The first atomic bomb used in combat was dropped on Hiroshima by the Enola Gay, piloted by Col. Paul Tibbets, on August 6, 1945.

The 9,600 pound bomb, called Little Boy, had a 2-part core of enriched uranium-235.

In minutes the massive blast and the firestorm it produced destroyed the majority of the city and killed almost 140,000 people (a third of Hiroshima's population.)

Surprisingly, New York City has not been plagued, as it has been in the past, with a large number of West Nile Virus cases this summer. ACME takes some pride in this and once again we would like to publish this importance health update:

West Nile virus can cause encephalitis, which causes swelling of the brain, which can in turn cause enlargement of the head. Contrary to the examples of encephalitis you see in the newspaper every day — such as Charlie Brown and Calvin — encephalitis is a deadly condition whose victims would be less likely to play with frisky beagles or stuffed tigers than to vomit blood and die.

West Nile virus is easy to avoid: like most viruses, it's very small, very slow, and not especially bright. Unfortunately, it's often carried by mosquitoes that are bigger, faster, and fiendishly clever.

It's not always easy to discern whether or not a given mosquito is carrying West Nile virus, so the prudent move is to avoid all mosquitoes.

This may be unfair to innocent mosquitoes who mean you no harm--the so-called "moderate" mosquitoes--but political niceties must be subordinated to threats to your survival.

It's important to remember that mosquitoes are masters of disguise. With a little makeup or a fancy hat, any mosquito can take on the appearance of several other species. They cannot, however, conceal their stingers.

Avoid all insects with stingers. If you encounter one that claims its stinger is merely a golf-club wedged into its rectum, do not believe it: insects don't golf.

Do not open your doors or windows to strangers before ascertaining whether or not they're mosquitoes. If they acknowledge being mosquitoes but deny carrying the West Nile virus, do not trust them. Some mosquitoes may even offer to show you a doctor's certificate, but such evidence is meaningless: they may have picked up West Nile virus in the time elapsed since their doctor tested them.

Be wary of delivery men, plumbers, electricians, and cable guys with stingers trailing from their jumpsuits.

Do not accept rides from unfamiliar mosquitoes.

And so it goes.

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