Monday, February 18, 2013

Hopefully you remembered - you had the day off

It's Generic Executive Office Holder of the Government Day.

Celebrate anyone of them in style - James Garfield for example. Let's celebrate the fact that he like to perform parlor tricks. He could write in Latin with one hand, while writing in Greek with the other hand at the same time.

Or Martin Van Buren, the eighth president of United States, was the first president of the United States to have been born in the United States.

Or the fact that Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Grover Cleveland, were all draft dodgers

Or my personal favorite, Warren G. Harding.

Besides being the only President probably murdered by his wife because of his philandering ways (he actually did have sex will someone in a White House broom closet), Warren was such a lousy poker player that he once lost a complete set of china that had been in the White House dating back to President Benjamin Harrison's years.

So let's hear it for all the generic Presidents.

You know what - it's the ninth day of Chinese New Year. It is the Birthday of Jade Emperor, King of Heaven.

I'd be very tired if I had to follow a holiday this long

Today is National Drink Wine Day (please, no jokes about it being National Drink Wine Day every day in my home.)

While, I can't find the basis for the holiday, I have my suspicions:

George, the English Duke of Clarence, was convicted of treason against his brother King Edward IV and murdered in the Tower of London on February 18, 1478.

The legend arose that he had been drowned in a barrel of Malmsey wine.

What a way to go.

John Cleese was a naughty boy this weekend

His tweet refers to the fact that 'legless' means 'drunk' in England.  Not that I'm an apologist for Mr. Cleese

February 18, 1938 -
If only he had his intercostal clavicle ...

The greatest screwball comedy, directed by Howard Hawks, Bringing Up Baby,  starring Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant was released on this date. 

Howard Hawks said that he failed at making a good comedy here because of the characters were too "madcap", with no straight men/women to ground it. This comment may have resulted from his disappointment at the film's commercial failure at the time of its release, although many now consider it Hawks' best film.

February 18, 1983 -
Martin Scorsese's black comedy, The King of Comedy, starring Robert De Niro, Jerry Lewis and Sandra Bernhard premiered in the US on this date.

Martin Scorsese said later that making this film was an "unsettling" experience, in part because of the embarrassing, bitter material of the script. Scorsese said that he and Robert De Niro may have not worked together again for seven years because making The King of Comedy was so emotionally grueling.

Today in History:
February 18, 1405 -
Timur Lenk (also known as Timur the Lame, Tamerlane, Tamberlaine and Mr. Tambourine Man)

died mysteriously during an expedition to China on this date.

February 18, 1564 -
Michelangelo (Buonarotti), Renaissance painter, sculptor, architect, poet and engineer died on this date.

He may have gotten the last laugh as he thought about the number of penises he got to paint on the ceiling of any church.

Elm Farm Ollie (known as "Nellie Jay" and post-flight as "Sky Queen") was the first cow to fly in an airplane, doing so on February 18, 1930, as part of the International Air Exposition in St. Louis, Missouri, United States.

On the same trip, which covered 72 miles from Bismarck, Missouri, to St. Louis, she also became the first cow milked in flight. This was done ostensibly to allow scientists to observe midair effects on animals, as well as for publicity purposes. A St. Louis newspaper trumpeted her mission as being "to blaze a trail for the transportation of livestock by air."

Your life is better for knowing this.

February 18, 1933 -
Yoko Ono was born on this date.

What else is there to say?

February 18, 1967 -
J. Robert Oppenheimer, the father of the atomic bomb, died on this date.

His children never even send him flowers.

February 18, 2001
Race car driver Dale Earnhardt crashed into the wall at the Daytona 500, killing him instantly. His widow files a lawsuit to force the autopsy photos to be sealed, and a Florida law is subsequently passed to prevent them from ever being released.

Earnhardt was the most well known and most successful driver in the history of the sport.

And so it goes.

Also, on a personal note - Happy Birthday Matt.

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