Monday, February 5, 2024

Everyone should suppport their local weatherperson

Today is National Weather Forecasters Day. It is observed on February 5 to commemorate the birthday of John Jeffries, one of the first people in America to begin observing the weather in a scientific way.

The day was created to celebrate meteorologists, the men and women who predict - Dark. Turning partly light by morning.

February 5, 1927 -
Buster Keaton's movie The General premiered on this date. Keaton's picture received both poor reviews by critics and weak box-office results when it first opened.

Buster Keaton wanted to use the real locomotive 'General', which was at the Nashville, Chattanooga, and St Louis Union Depot in Chattanooga, TN. The railroad initially permitted him to do so, even providing him with a branch line to film on. However, when it became known that the film was to be a comedy, the railroad withdrew permission, and Keaton had to look elsewhere.

February 5, 1936 -
Charlie Chaplin's Little Tramp makes his final silent-film appearance, Modern Times, which was released on this date.

The film originally ended with Charles Chaplin's character suffering a nervous breakdown and being visited in hospital by the gamin, who has now become a nun. This ending was filmed, though apparently only still photographs from the scene exist today.

February 5, 1944 -
The first appearance of a Marvel superhero outside a comic, Captain America serial film starring Dick Purcell, premiered on this date.

But how did you find out about my vibrator? (Just listen for it about 4:55 in)

Marvel Comics gave the rights to Captain America to Republic Pictures for free, in the hopes that the exposure would increase sales of the Captain America comic book.

February 5, 1953 -
Walt Disney's 14th animated feature, Peter Pan, opens at Roxy Theater, on this date. This was the last Disney film released through RKO, as Walt Disney established his own distribution company, Buena Vista Distribution, by the end of 1953.

Though the film was a modest success, Walt Disney himself was dissatisfied with the finished product, feeling that the character of Peter Pan was cold and unlikable. However, experts on J.M. Barrie praise this as a success, as they insist that Pan was originally written to be a heartless sociopath.

February 5, 1956 -
Don Siegel subversive take on 50's Communist paranoia, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, premiered on this date.

Kevin McCarthy
and author Jack Finney have always denied the rumor that the story is a statement against McCarthyism and Communism; they just saw it as a thriller. Director Don Siegel, however, believes that the political references to Sen. Joseph McCarthy and totalitarianism are inescapable, even though he tried not to emphasize them

February 5, 1967 -
The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour premiered on CBS-TV, on this date.

(Sorry, this is not from the first episode.)

Mom actually liked both of them equally.

February 5, 1969 -
ABC premiered a television pilot for a comedy series titled Turn-On, on this date. The cast included Teresa Graves, Hamilton Camp, Mel Stewart, Chuck McCann, and guest host Tim Conway. The show was cancelled while it was on the air, making it one of the shortest runs of any program.

The station manager of WEWS, Cleveland's ABC affiliate, pulled the show off the air after 15 minutes. The remainder of the time slot was a black screen with live organ music, an emergency procedure that hadn't been used in over 20 years.

February 5, 1983 -
The Toto single off their album Toto IV, Africa, went to No. 1 on the Billboard Charts on this date.

The video was directed by Steve Barron, who also did Rosanna and many other early MTV favorites. Toto was one of the few American bands that was making videos even before MTV, and after the network launched in 1981, their Barron-directed clips earned them lots of exposure.

Word of the Day

Today in History:
Today is Liberation Day in San Marino.

It's not only Liberation Day in San Marino, but, it's also the feast day of St. Agatha -

(patron saint of breast cancer survivors, but again, I digress ...)

About seventeen-hundred years ago, during an epic game of hide and seek, Marinus the Stonemason ran up Mount Titano in Italy to hide from the Roman Emperor Diocletian. It was a good hiding spot and he was never found. He started his own country to pass the time, and the Republic of San Marino survives to this day, an island of foreign nationals in the middle of Italy.

Citizens of are not San Mariners. They are Sammarinese.

The population of San Marino is about 25,000. The population of San Marino, California, is about 13,000.

The California town was named in 1878 by James de Barth Shorb, who had built his home there and didn't think people would go for Shorbtown. Instead, he named it after the Maryland town in which he'd been born.

That was reportedly San Marino, Maryland, which the California town's website claims to have been named "for the tiny European republic."

There is no Maryland town named San Marino. (If there is, they haven't yet made their presence felt on Google.) Foul play is obviously afoot.

Proceed with caution.

February 5, 1556 -
Henry II of France and Philip of Spain signed a truce at the Abbey of Vaucelles, calling a halt to this phase of the long-running Habsburg-Valois conflict

But you don't give a rat's ass.

February 5, 1783 -
A large earthquake in Calabria, Italy left 50,000 dead on this date.

Luckily none of my wife's or a friend of mine's forebearers were involved or they wouldn't be here.

February 5, 1816 -
Rossini's opera Barber of Seville premieres in Rome on this date.

It was one of the earliest Italian operas to be performed in America and premiered at the Park Theater in New York City on November 25 1825.

February 5, 1914 -
William Seward Burroughs II, junkie, novelist, murderer, painter, professional sodomist and performer was born on this date.

Except for a couple of blots on his CV, he is my hero (well him and Julia Child.)

February 5, 1919 -
Four of the leading figures in early Hollywood: Mary Pickford, Charles Chaplin, Douglas Fairbanks and D. W. Griffith, incorporated to form their own company to better control their own work as well as their futures. The company was United Artist.

MGM reacquired its 100% stake in United Artists in 2011.

February 5, 1940 -
Hans Ruedi Giger, Swiss painter, sculptor, and set designer best known for his design work on the film Alien, was spawned on this date.

He had a very happy childhood.

February 5, 1941 -
The SS Politician wrecked off the coast of the Isle of Eriskay in the Hebrides on this date. It carried some 20,000 cases of whiskey, which the natives hid from customs agents.

The story was told in the 1947 book Whisky Galore by Compton Mackenzie. The book was made into a film in 1949 (and remade in 2017.) According to official files recently released by the British Home Office, there was nearly 290,000 ten shilling notes on board as well (this would be the equivalent of several million pounds at today's prices), not all of which was ever recovered.

February 5, 1952 -
NYC's first modern day Walk/Don’t Walk pedestrian signal signs were installed at 44th St & Broadway in Times Square, on this date. Each sign flashed “Walk” for 22 seconds, then “Don’t Walk” for ten seconds, before the “Don’t Walk” illuminated red for 58 seconds more.

The installation of this sign was inspired by the growing number of deaths resulting from pedestrian accidents. The use of these pedestrian traffic signs are still used today in order to make streets safer.

February 5, 1958 -
A B-47 returning from a simulated combat mission suffered a midair collision with an F-86, on this date. A Mark 15 Mod 0 hydrogen bomb known as the Tybee Bomb was purposely jettisoned by the crippled B-47 bomber off the coast of Savannah, Georgia, and has yet to be recovered.

The bomb, whether or not it contains a plutonium detonator (the Air Force has been hazy on this fact), has not been found: to repeat - a large object with some enriched uranium surrounded by four hundred pounds of TNT has gone missing for 60 years. (This is essentially a dirty bomb - a dirty bomb resting just off the shore of a vibrant United States port.)

Recovering the bomb and the enriched uranium inside would be a coup for any nation looking to skip a few steps to becoming a nuclear power, so one could return the Tybee Bomb, definitely no questions asked.

February 5, 1971 -
Apollo 14 manned lunar module Antares lands near the Fra Mauro region of the Moon, on this date.

Apollo 14 commander Alan B. Shepard Jr. became the fifth human to walk on the Moon with astronaut Edgar D. Mitchell.

Before you go - We're going to preview some of the commercials ahead of the Superbowl, next weekend -

I guess we'll have to wait until 2-11-24 to find out what the change is.

And so it goes

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