Wednesday, April 20, 2016

In the time of darkest defeat, victory may be nearest.

A 1,800-year-old triumphal arch destroyed by Isis in the Syrian city of Palmyra last year, arose, phoenix like yesterday in London. The recreation of Palmyra’s Arch of Triumph will be on display for four days in Trafalgar Square after being made by carving stone to the exact shape of the original, working from a database of 3D photographs collected by the Institute of Digital Archaeology (IDA).

After its stay in London – which has been timed to coincide with World Heritage Week - the recreated arch will be taken around the world, visiting New York’s Times Square and Dubai, before being taken to Syria.

You couldn’t buy alcohol while polls were open in Kentucky until 2013.  You would probably think that was a great step forward.

But bars were open all day yesterday in NY State - we may want to rethink our blue laws. 

Jacob T. Swinney
has created a fantastic mashup looking at 100 years of cinema with 100 different clips from 100 different films.

The short debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival this week.

If you or your kid cut school or work today, lock up the snacks. They may come home with a case of the munchies.

If they were out celebrating the anniversary of the birth of Klara Hitler's bouncing baby little evil bastard named Adolf on this date in 1889, smack them hard across the back of the head.

If they were celebrating the anniversary of the Columbine attack, have them talk to Michael,

That's all we're gonna say.

April 20, 1959 -
Desilu Productions launched its new TV series The Untouchables with a two-part episode The Scarface Mob on this date

The only actors to reprise their roles as members of The Untouchables from the series pilot, Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse, were Robert Stack as Eliot Ness and Abel Fernández as William Youngfellow. All of the other team members were recast for the series.

April 20, 1977 -
Annie Hall, at 93 minutes, the shortest color film to ever win the Best Picture Oscar, premiered on this date (Marty, in glorious B & W was 91 minutes.)

Woody Allen and Diane Keaton had trouble keeping a straight face when working together. An example of the uncontrollable laughter between the two was the lobster dinner scene. It was the first scene shot for the movie and neither Woody nor Diane had to do much acting for the scene, for their laughter was completely spontaneous.

April 20, 1981 -
ABC unceremoniously aired the final episode of Soap, leaving many of the plotlines unresolved.

Susan Harris, the creator of the series, went on to create The Golden Girls and Empty Nest, using many of the same actors who first appeared on Soap.

Today in History:
April 20, 1233
Pope Gregory IX placed the Inquisition, in existence since 1227, under the aegis of the Dominican Order on this date. Torture is apparently sometimes necessary to save souls, and the office continues to exist today as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

And until a decade or so ago, the congregation was headed by Prefect Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.

April 20, 1940 -
The first electron microscope was demonstrated by RCA on this date.

The company was among the first to develop the electron microscope, which remains widely used in many forms of scientific research today.

April 20, 1979 -
President Jimmy Carter was attacked by a Killer Swamp Rabbit, while on vacation in Plains GA on this date. The rabbit swam menacingly towards him, and he had to repel the ferocious creature with a paddle. There were no injuries.

Press Secretary Jody Powell leaked the story to the press, and the White House had a lot of explaining to do.

April 20, 1992 -
Alone in his apartment watching TV, British comedic legend Benny Hill suffered a fatal heart attack on this date.

His bloated toupee-less body with his underwear around his ankles were found four days later

April 20, 2010 -
While drilling at the Macondo Prospect, an explosion on the rig, Deepwater Horizon, caused by a blowout which killed 11 crewmen and ignited a fireball visible from 35 miles away. The resulting fire could not be extinguished and, on this date, Deepwater Horizon sank, leaving the well gushing at the sea floor and causing the largest offshore oil spill in United States history.

BP announced on April 18, 2012 that it has reached a class-action settlement with attorneys representing thousands of businesses and individuals who made claims after the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. As late as January of 2014, BP was still attempting not to pay claims made against them in the suit.  The court has rejected BP attempts.

BP originally projected that its settlement costs would be $7.8 billion. As of two weeks ago,a federal judge approved a $20 billion settlement to end years of litigation. If agreed to, the settlement would be paid over 16 years.

And so it goes

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