Sunday, July 26, 2015

I'd rather be dead than singing 'Satisfaction' when I'm forty-five.

July 26, 1943 -
Michael Philip Jagger, Golden Globe and Grammy Award winning singer, songwriter, occasional film producer and actor, was born on this date.

Remind yourself - his daughter Jade is a grandmother

July 26, 1951 -
Walt Disney's 13th
animated feature, Alice in Wonderland, premiered in the UK and New York City on this date.

The movie was a huge box office failure. However, it did become something of a cult film during the 1960s, where it was viewed as a "head film". Several years later it became the Disney studio's most requested 16mm film rental title for colleges and private individuals. In 1974, the studio took note of this fact, withdrew the rental prints, and reissued the film nationally themselves

Today in History:
July 26, 1753
Professor Georg Wilhelm Richmann, German physicist, died of electrocution in St. Petersburg, Russia on this date. He was attending a meeting of the Academy of Sciences, when he heard thunder. The Professor ran home with his engraver to capture the event for posterity. While the experiment was underway, a supposed ball lightning appeared and collided with Richmann's head leaving him dead in a red spot. His shoes were blown open, parts of his clothes singed, the engraver knocked out; the door frame of the room was split, and the door itself torn off its hinges.

Beside not telling him that hemlock was poison, his mother did not sit Little Georg upon her knee and tell him about the evils of electricity. He was apparently the first person in history to die while conducting electrical experiments.

July 26, 1775
The Continental Congress established a postal system for the colonies with Benjamin Franklin as the first postmaster general in Philadelphia on this date.

Franklin also established the standardized method of charging for mail delivery based on weight and distance.

July 26, 1826
Schoolmaster Cayetano Ripoll was hanged in Valencia, after uttering his last words: "I die reconciled to God and to man," on this date. He was the last person executed by the Spanish Inquisition.

Gee, I guess at that point everybody should have expected the Spanish Inquisition. (I promise I won't mention the Inquisition for a while.)

Winsor McCay
, an American cartoonist and animator, died on this date in 1934. A prolific artist, McCay's pioneering early animated films far outshone the work of his contemporaries, and set a standard followed by Walt Disney and others in later decades.

His two best-known creations are the newspaper comic strip Little Nemo in Slumberland, which ran from 1905 to 1914, and the animated cartoon Gertie the Dinosaur, which he created in 1914.

July 26, 1947 -
President Harry Truman signed the National Security Act, creating the Department of Defense, the National Security Council, the Central Intelligence Agency and the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The act forbade the CIA from operating within the US.

With the NSA surveillance program, that's not quite working out at the moment, is it?

July 26, 1956 -
A little more than 11 hours after colliding with the Swedish liner Stockholm, the Italian liner Andrea Doria, carrying 1,134 passengers and 572 crew, sank off New England coast.

46 people on the Andrea Doria and 5 crew members of the Stockholm died as a result of the crash. The SS Ile de France had been near the collision site and was able to assist in the rescue of many of the passengers of the Andrea Doria.  Within four years, the Ile de France was used as a floating prop for the nautical disaster film, The Last Voyage, which had some plot similarities to the disaster involving the Italian liner SS Andrea Doria.

July 26,1959   -
There was a partial nuclear reactor meltdown at Rocketdyne’s Santa Susana Field Laboratory 30 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles, on this date. Little known outside of the area, the nuclear accident released far more radiation that the Three Mile Island accident.

A report in 2006 said it may have caused hundreds of cases of cancer in the community, and that chemicals threatened to contaminate ground and water.

July 26, 1984 -
Serial killer, cannibal and flesh suit wearer Ed Gein died at the Mendota Mental Health Institute, a home for the criminally insane on this date.

Gein inspired the films Psycho and Silence of the Lambs.  Kiddies, please follow this advice from your old Doctor - don't check out some of the true crime scene photos attached to Mr. Gein's name unless you'd like the truly grizzly.

July 26, 1991 -
Paul Reubens (Pee Wee Herman) was arrested in Florida, for exposing himself at the South Trail XXX Cinema on this date.

Following the incident, Reubens lost his children's television show and product endorsements. But Pee Wee is back. There is still talk of a new Pee Wee movie sometime soon.

And so it goes.

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