Thursday, October 13, 2016

Here we are, here we are again

October 13, 1947 -
Kids, a lifetime ago there was a very popular TV series featuring two puppets and a very polite lady that ad-libbed the entire show - Junior Jamboree - a version which ultimately became Kukla, Fran and Ollie premiered on this date.

One episode of the show was broadcast in color in fall 1949, in Washington, D.C., as a demonstration to the FCC of RCA's line-sequential color TV system. The same episode was performed live a second time the same afternoon, for network broadcast in black and white, but using the experimental color cameras.

October 13, 1950 -
Joseph L. Mankiewicz's brilliantly caustic valentine to Broadway, All About Eve premiered in NYC on this date.

Bette Davis admitted later on that Joseph L. Mankiewicz's casting her in this movie saved her career from oblivion after a series of unsuccessful movies. She said in a 1983 interview, "He resurrected me from the dead."

October 13, 1957 -
CBS-TV broadcast The Edsel Show, a one-hour live special starring Bing Crosby designed to promote the new, ill-fated Ford automobile.

It was the first special to use videotape technology to delay the broadcast to the West Coast.

October 13, 1966 -
The sixth episode of Star Trek, Mudd’s Women premiered on this date. In it, The Enterprise picks up a traveling con man, Harry Mudd, and his “beautiful” female cargo; the females seem to have a strange effect on the male crew.

This is the first episode in which the Enterprise's power source is named, however, they are called simply "lithium crystals", and not "dilithium" as was done in all later episodes of this and all later incarnations of Star Trek.

October 13, 1989 -
One of Woody Allen’s more serious films, Crimes and Misdemeanors, starring  Martin Landau, Claire Bloom, Anjelica Huston and Alan Alda, premiered on this date.

Originally, Alan Alda was only supposed to appear in the opening party scene with Daryl Hannah. Woody Allen expanded Alda's part after he asked Alda to improvise and Allen liked the improvisation. Allen wrote Alda's part as they went along.

Before I forget, Happy (Actual) Cultural Imperialism Day!

Psst, bunkies, remember today is really the day that Columbus' ships really landed in the Bahamas.

Today in History:
October 13, 54
Roman Emperor Claudius I (Derek Jacobi) consumes a favorite mushroom dish prepared by his fourth wife, Agrippina. What he does not know is that the meal is laced with the toxin of the Amanita phalloides mushroom. Feeling ill the next morning, Claudius summons his personal physician. Unfortunately, the doctor happened to be a co-conspirator in the scheme, administering a colocynth enema which killed Claudius instantly.

So remember kids - avoid all doctor prescribed poisoned enemas.

October 13, 1066 -
King Harold II was not having a really good day. William of Normandy (who was so important as not to need a last name, just an address) gave him the opportunity to relinquish his crown, and therefore England. Harold refused, which was not a good choice for him. The next day William took it by force at the Battle of Hastings, causing Harold’s demise.

Somehow this led to today being unlucky for everyone else, who is not a monarch of an island nation.

October 13, 1660 -
Major General Thomas Harrison, a leading member of the republican regime and signatory to Charles I’s death warrant, discovered that karma is a bitch today.

He was found guilty of regicide and was hanged, drawn and quartered by the Restoration government on this date; a spectacle witnessed by Samuel Pepys who recorded him ‘looking as cheerful as any man could do in that condition’.

October 13, 1792

It was on this day in Washington D.C. that the cornerstone was laid for the presidential residence, now known as the White House. The Frenchman, Pierre L'Enfant, who designed Washington, D.C. wanted the residence to look like the palace of Versailles. George Washington thought that was a little too fancy, so he got an Irish architect named James Hoban to reduce the design to one-fifth of its original size. Washington, once again in his Masonic sexual frenzy, laid the cornerstone and supervised the construction. John Adams was the first president to call it home.

People nicknamed it the White House from the very beginning. There was a coat of whitewash brushed on the sandstone to protect it against winter. Thomas Jefferson was the one who installed flushing toilets. Andrew Jackson got the first shower. Martin Van Buren brought in central heating. Rutherford B. Hayes introduced the telephone. Benjamin Harrison had it wired for electricity. President Truman brought in the first TV set.

October 13, 1812 -
Sir Isaac Brock, British Army Officer who fought with famous chief Tecumseh, died in Canada during the War of 1812, on this date. He became know as the Savior of Upper Canada. He and his aide-de camp, Lieutenant Colonel John Macdonell (who also died at the same battle, were buried with great military ceremony near Fort George on October 16. Thus began his zombie-like entombment (he was buried four times!)

Canada decided to built a war memorial to General Brock in 1814, so they got around to re-interring Brock and his pal Macdonell in 1824. In 1840, somehow an Irish-Canadian named Benjamin Lett, angry with the British, blew up Brock's monument. In a lightening speed response by Canadian officials, plans were drawn up to build a second memorial to Brock and Macdonell (I'm sure Macdonell was sorry he ever went to work for Brock.) Their unrested corpses were moved to a third burial site in Queenston village, near the site of their demise.

October 13, 1853 marks the fourth and final burial for these men. About fifteen thousand attended the event, some of whom were veterans of the War of 1812. The structure was inaugurated on October 13, 1859!

October 13, 1884 -
With worldwide travel becoming more common, an international time standard was in high demand.  At the behest of the International Meridian Conference and the urging of President Chester A. Arthur, the longitudinal Universal Time meridian was established on this date.

The International Meridian Conference established the meridian as the local time at the Royal Greenwich Observatory in England.

October 13, 1914 -
Garrett Morgan invented and patented a gas mask, consisting of a canvas hood placed over the head on this date. A double tube extended from the hood and merged into a single tube at the back. The open end held a sponge soaked with water to filter out smoke and to cool incoming air.

On July 25, 1916, Morgan made national news for using the gas mask to recover several men trapped after an explosion in a new waterworks tunnel beneath Lake Erie at Cleveland, Ohio. After the rescue, Morgan's company received requests from fire departments around the country who wished to purchase the new masks. The Morgan gas mask was later refined for use by U.S. Army during World War I.

October 13, 1959 -
Olive Marie Osmond, actress, singer, doll designer, Nutrisystem junkie and Osmonds family survivor, was born on this date.

Hey let's all cut Marie a break, she's had to carry Donnie's sorry ass her whole life.

October 13, 1969
The USSR launched a third spacecraft, Soyuz 8, in as many days, on this date.  Soyuz 8 was part of a joint mission with Soyuz 6 and Soyuz 7 that saw three Soyuz spacecraft in orbit together at the same time, carrying a total of seven cosmonauts. The crew consisted of commander Vladimir Shatalov and flight engineer Aleksei Yeliseyev, whose mission was to dock with Soyuz 7 and transfer crew.

The main goal was to get Soyuz 8 rendezvoused with Soyuz 7 (transferring at least one cosmonaut by a spacewalk) and to have taken spectacular motion pictures of the Soyuz 7 - Soyuz 8 docking from Soyuz 6. Unfortunately, due to a failure in the electronics on all three spacecrafts, no rendezvous was able to be carried out.

October 13, 1972 -

Due to poor visibility, a Uruguayan Air Force plane carrying the Montevideo Old Christians Rugby Club, crashed high in the Chilean Andes. Of the 45 people aboard the flight, only 27 survive the crash and just 16 make it to their rescue 72 days later.

How did they do it? Cannibalism. According to one survivor, "the slight browning of the flesh gave it an immeasurably better flavor, softer than beef but with much the same taste."

So there you go - it doesn't taste just like chicken.

October 13, 1988 -
A report published in the journal Nature declares the Turin Shroud to be a 13th century fake. Although carbon-14 testing places the shroud's fabrication somewhere between 1260 and 1390 AD, true believers spend much of the next several years attempting to explain away the radiocarbon test results.

And yet, a British art historian in 2010, re-opened the whole can of worms again by suggesting that the shroud is in fact the actual burial cloth of a man who underwent a similar execution, much like Christ, around 33 AD.

And so it goes.

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