Friday, August 4, 2017

It's St. Sithney Day again.

He is the patron saint of mad dogs.

Make of this what you wish:

A Breton folk story, states that God asked Sithney to be the patron saint of girls seeking husbands, but Sithney said he would rather be the patron saint of mad dogs and get some rest.

(And you thought there were no Jewish comedians as saints.)

Barack Obama is 56 years old today and now into his retirement.

Hopefully, he's enjoying being a citizen of the world more than we're enjoying being a citizen of the USA.

August 4, 1942
The Paramount Picture film, Holiday Inn, directed by Mark Sandrich and starring Fred Astaire and Bing Crosby was released in theaters on this date. Kemmons Wilson, who founded the "Holiday Inn" motel chain in 1952, named it after this movie.

When Irving Berlin won an Oscar for his song White Christmas from this movie, he became the first artist to present himself with an Academy Award.

August 4, 1954 -
Douglas Sirk's first Technicolor gift for film goers, Magnificent Obsession, was released on this date.

Forget the silly plot, this film was Rock Hudson's breakthrough film (the first of eight studio pictures he would make with Sirk) and Sirk began to realize his masterful visual language skills

It's always that time somewhere in the world!

Today in History:
August 4, 1693 -
Oh, great day in the morning (this day should be a great religious and national holiday),

Blind Benedictine Dom Perignon invents champagne on this date.

He has been quoted as saying, "Come quickly, brothers, I'm drinking stars!" upon tasting his accidental brew.

August 4, 1790 -
US Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton urged the Congress that ten boats for the collection of revenue needed to be built. This was to stop smuggling, especially of coffee, which was hampering trade. Congress passed the Tariff Act on this date.

The Coast Guard was born as the Revenue Cutter Service. The Coast Guard was empowered to board and inspect any vessel in US waters and any US boat anywhere in the world.

August 4, 1792 -

Percy Bysshe Shelley, one of England's greatest Romantic poets was born on this date. He died in a tragic boating accident (along with two others) before the age of 30, but he gave us many masterpieces, including Ozymandias, Music, When Soft Voices Die and Ode To The West Wind.

The fish eaten bodies were washed ashore at Viareggio, where, in the presence of his friend Lord Byron, he was burned on the beach - his heart was given to his wife, Mary Shelley, who carried it with her in a silken shroud everywhere she went for the rest of her life.

All I can say is that I'm glad it was just his heart.

August 4, 1884 -
Thomas Stevens wearily arrived in Boston on this date, 104 days after leaving San Francisco (April 22, 1884,) completing the first bicycle trip (on a penny-farthing) to cross the US.

He later continued around world (two years, nine months) on a trip financed with articles for Outing and the Wheelman magazines. The bicycle part of his journey around the world ended on December 17, 1886, when he reached Yokohama, Japan. Stevens returned by steamer to San Francisco, on January 3, 1887.

It’s important to note that some areas were inaccessible to Stevens during his journey so he had to get around them via boat or train, but he did bike through everything he could.

August 4, 1892 -
Someone took an axe and killed Lizzie Borden's millionaire parents; Andrew receives 10 whacks and Abby 14.  Based on strong circumstantial evidence, Sunday school teacher Lizzie was later tried for the murders.

She was acquitted of the murders by an all-male jury.

August 4, 1901 -
Louis Armstrong (medicinal marijuana and laxative enthusiast) always stated that his birthday was on the Fourth of July, a date that has been noted in many biographies.

During the 1980's, Louis Armstrong's baptismal certificate was discovered in the Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in New Orleans, showing his actual birth date was August 4th, 1901.

August 4, 1914 -
The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime -  British foreign secretary, Sir Edward Grey

Britain and Belgium declared war after German troops entered Belgium. The United States proclaimed its neutrality (more on all of this later.)

August 4, 1922 -
All 13 million telephones in North America went silent for one minute at sunset during the funeral services of Alexander Graham Bell on this date. Bell was buried in a coffin built by his lab staff in a tomb carved into the solid rock of Beinn Bhreagh Mountain on his estate in Nova Scotia, Canada.

To commemorate his pioneering contributions to telecommunications technology, AT&T and the Bell System suspends service at their switchboards and switching stations across Canada and the United States.

August 4, 1930 -
Michael Cullen was a grocer's grocer. He started working for The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company (A &P) at 18 and worked there for 17 years. He then went to work for Kroger Stores for 11 years but he had a dream.

Cullen leased a vacant garage at the corner of 171st Street and Jamaica Avenue in Queens, just a few blocks from a busy shopping district. On August 4, 1930, King Kullen Grocery Company opened the doors to the world's first supermarket.

I wonder how they're celebrating Founder's Day at the store?

August 4, 1964 -
Vietcong torpedo boats launched an unprovoked attack against the U.S.S. Maddox, while the destroyer was patrolling the Gulf of Tonkin. The only problem was - it may all have been a hoax.

Regardless, the Congress responded by passing the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, authorizing President Johnson "to take all necessary measures to repel any armed attack against the forces of the United States and to prevent further aggression."

And so it goes.


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