Tuesday, May 6, 2014

As Robert Klein used to say...

Every '90s Alt-Rock Vocal Hook in one Supercut video

It was very good (but I'm so happy I recognized all the songs.)

Today is International No Diet Day (INDD). It's set aside as a day of relief from the stress of dieting.

Instead, there is an opportunity for purposeful body image acceptance. (I was going to use a John Pinette clip but I'm still saddened by his passing.)

It may be hard to believe that today is the halfway point in Spring.

May 6, 1950 -
The late Elizabeth Taylor got married for the first time to Conrad Hilton Jr on this date.

While that marriage barely lasted a year, Ms. Taylor liked to get married and married and married and married (twice) and married and married again and never got carried away.

Kids, it's fun to take the plunge now and then but for heaven sakes don't be like Ms. Taylor.

Say NO to serial monogamy.

May 6,  2004 -
The final episode of Friends aired on this date.

The final episode drew an audience of 52.5 million people, when it was first aired. This was the fourth most watched finale in US television history. Interestingly, "The One After The Superbowl" (aired January 28, 1996), in season two, had higher figures with 52.9 million viewers.

Today in History:
May 6, 1864
Generals James Longstreet (one of the foremost Confederate generals) and Micah Jenkins were both seriously injured by their own troops at the Battle of Wilderness on this date. (What is it with southern generals and friendly fire?) Unlike Stonewall Jackson, who also suffered from friendly fire and Gen. Jenkins, who died of his head wound a few hours later, Gen. Longstreet recovered, although his hearing was lost.

After the war, he spent the remainder of his life in an attempt to reconcile South with North (along with his West Point roommate, U. S. Grant) and was one of the last of Lee's top generals to die in 1904. His brilliance as a commander and tactician have only recently become widely accepted .

Kids, it's fun to lead your troops into battle now and then but for heaven sakes don't be like Gen.Longstreet.

Say NO to Civil War re-enactment.

May 6, 1856 -
Sigmund Freud
, cigar smoking Austrian, cocaine sniffing, father of psychoanalysis, was born on this date.

Even though Freud claimed he took his cigar out of his mouth every now and then, he battled cancer of the jaw from 1923 until his death in 1939 in London (from doctor assisted suicide.)

Kids, it's fun to smoke a stogie now and then but for heaven sakes don't be like Siggy - Take it out of your mouth, now and again.

May 6, 1910 -
Albert Edward Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, known as the 'Uncle of Europe' because he was related to nearly every other European monarch, was not having a good day. Dealing with a case of severe bronchitis (brought on by his life long heavy cigar smoking) and urged by his family to rest, Edward VII suffered a series of heart attacks on this date. Trying to lighten his father's mood, the future George V, the Prince of Wales informed his father that his horse had won a race that afternoon. The King replied, "I am very glad" and promptly lapsed into a coma. He died 15 minutes later.

Edward's wife, Alexandra of Denmark, is the patron saint of understanding wives (I need to interrupt myself here to remind you that Queen Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Philip are both related to both of these people.) She was known to be quite fond of and enjoyed the company of Edward's mistress, Jennie Jerome (Lady Randolph Churchill, mother of Winston.) Alexandra was equally fond of Agnes Keyser and it was said also enjoyed her company and approved of her utter need of discretion. She apparently permitted, Alice Keppel, one of the king's many mistresses (and the great-grandmother of Prince Charles' wife, Camilla,) at Edward's side when the King was on his deathbed.

Interesting aside: While Edward waited over 50 years for his mother, Queen Victoria's retirement, Edward excelled to two things: women and excessive consumption. He spent so much time at the exclusive brothel, Le Chabanais, he had his own room, with his coat of arms over the bed. The future King enjoyed nothing more that to while away an afternoon assignation with a woman in a luxurious swan-necked bath, filled to the brim with champagne.  Far more interesting was his si├Ęge d'amour.

Edward had become so overweight that he had a Love Chair, known as the "siege d'amour", specially built for himself. Examine the photo carefully, the chair not only helped with his weight but allowed the Prince to engage in relations with two, and some say more, women at the same time.  (I do not have the instruction manual, allow your imagination to work overtime.)

Oh, death and love among the royals.

And what did we say about cigar smoking!

May 6, 1915 -
George Orson Welles
, magician, director, writer, actor and producer, who worked extensively in film, theatre, television, and radio, was born on this date.

Considered washed up by age 28, Welles had to struggle the rest of his life to complete some of film history's most complex films.

It must have sucked to be Orson Welles.

May 6, 1937 -
At 7:25 pm, the German dirigible The Hindenburg (Pride of the Nazi Zeppelin fleet) burned while landing at the naval air station at Lakehurst, NJ on this date. On board were 6l crew and 36 passengers. The landing approach seemed normal, when suddenly a tongue of flame appeared near the stern. Fire spread rapidly through the 7 million cubic feet of hydrogen that filled the balloon.

Within a few seconds the zeppelin exploded in a huge ball of fire. The ship fell tail first with flames shooting out the nose. It crashed into the ground 32 seconds after the flame was first spotted; 36 people died. Captain Ernst Lehmann survived the crash but died the next day. He muttered 'I can't understand it.'

The cause remains the subject of debate even today. Once again, it's fun to take flight in a lighter than air dirigible now and then but for heaven sakes don't be like Capt. Lehmann.

Say NO to taking rides in Nazi vehicles.

May 6, 1954-
People had thought it was actually physically impossible to run a mile in under four minutes until Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile barrier in Oxford on this day.

His record didn't last long - improvements in running techniques made the four-minute mile more common - but he was still the first person to prove it possible with a time of three minutes and 59.4 seconds.

May 6, 1961 -
George Clooney,
award-winning actor, director, producer, screenwriter and humanitarian, was born on this date.

He's just announced his engagement to Amal Alamuddin, British human rights lawyer.

It must totally suck to be George Clooney.

May 6, 1962 -
The first US nuclear warhead fired from a Polaris submarine was launched. The submerged USS Ethan Allen (SSBN-608) test-fired a Polaris A-2 missile with a live nuclear warhead across the Pacific Ocean toward Christmas Island, 1,700 miles away.

The test, code-named Frigate Bird, was the only one the US ever conducted of any nuclear ballistic missile from launch through detonation. After a 12.5-minute, 1,200-mile flight, the warhead exploded in the air between 10,000 and 15,000-ft high with a yield of 600 kilotons.

Kids, don't get me started about living on a South Sea Island in the middle of a nuclear test zone.

And so it goes.

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