"The mind is sharper and keener in seclusion and uninterrupted solitude." -Nikola Tesla-
Info by Andrew McMeel Publishing
Top of Their Game!
Looking Ahead not Behind!
25 Years Ago on This Date…August 18, 1992
Larry Bird, retires his high-tops. The Boston Celtics forward made it to the NBA in 1970. He was the NBA regular season MVP three years in a row, from 1984 to 1986, and a first-team NBA All-Star nine times. He wrapped up his career at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics as part of the U.S. “Dream Team.”
100 Years Ago on This Date…September 18, 1917
Aldous Huxley, future author of Brave New World, is hired as a schoolmaster at England’s prestigious Eton. One of his pupils was Eric Blair (better known as George Orwell) future author of 1974.
75 Years Ago on This Date…September 21, 1942
The U.S. B-29 Superfortress, the largest bomber used in World War II, makes its inaugural flight in Seattle, Washington. The brainchild of General Hap Arnold, the B-29 Superfortress was created by Boeing. Able to carry loads almost equal to its own weight at altitudes of up to 40,000 feet, the four-engine heavy homer included a pilot console in the rear of the plane in case the front pilot was taken of commission. It also contained the first radar bombing system of any U.S. bomber.
125 Years Ago on This Date…October 5, 1892
After terrorizing citizens of Oklahoma, the Dalton Gang rides to Coffeyville, Kansas, and attempts two simultaneous bank robberies. But townspeople recognized the outlaws and surrounded the banks. All gang members except Emmett Dalton were shot and killed. Four citizens also dies. Emmett Dalton was convicted and served fourteen years in prison before becoming a writer in Hollywood.
25 Years Ago on This Date…October 9, 1992
A meteorite streaks through the skies of the northeastern United States and is captured on video by at least sixteen people before it crashes into a Chevy Malibu parked in a driveway in Peekskill, New York. More than 4 billion years old, the meteorite is about the size of a bowling ball and weights approximately 28 pounds.
150 Years Ago on This Date…October 18, 1867
The United States purchases the territory of Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million, a bargain price of less than 2 cents per acre. The acquisition of the 586,412 square-mile territory is credited to Secretary of State William Henry Seward under President Andrew Johnson. Considered foolish by some at the time, the deal proved itself with Alaska’s rich natural resources—from gold to oil.
125 Years Ago on This Date…October 31, 1892
The book The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Scottish author and physician Arthur Conan Doyle is published. The book’s namesake detective with extreme mental prowess become a legend.
150 Years Ago on This Date…November 15, 1897
The first stock ticker debuts in New York City. Prior to this, information traveled by mail or messenger. The ticker was the brainchild of Edward Calahan, who configured a telegraph machine to print stock quotes on streams of paper tape. The ticker, which caught on quickly with investors, got its name from the sound made by its type wheel.
75 Years Ago on This Date…November 27, 1942
“Here’s looking at you, kid.” Casablanca, starring Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine and Ingrid Bergman as Ilsa Lund, premieres in New York City. The film was nominated for eight Academy Awards and took home three Oscars: Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay.
Bizarre Holiday: Uncle Sam Day on September 13
One of America’s most recognized symbols, Uncle Sam, is linked to the Samuel Wilson, a meat packer from Troy, New York, who supplied barrels of beef stamped “U.S.” to the Army during the War of 1812. Soldiers referred to it as “Uncle Sam.” The moniker spread and eventually caught on. In 1961, the U.S. Congress issued a resolution recognizing “Uncle Sam” Wilson, and authorization a monument in his hometown. Congress made Uncle same Day official in 1989.
Bizarre Holiday: World Smile Day on October 6
The first Friday of October is World Smile Day, a day to make someone smile with an act of kindness. The yellow smiley face is one of the most recognized symbols of cheer. Harvey Bell created the smiley face in 1963.
Fun Holiday: National Good Neighbor Day on September 28
In the words of Mr. Rogers, “It’s a beautiful day in this neighborhood, a beautiful day for a neighbor. Would you be mine?” And good neighbors are the best kind.
It was Only How Much?
100 Years Ago…
U.S Food Prices in November 1917
Milk: 13 cents per quart
Eggs: 58 cents per dozen
Bacon: 48 cents per pound
Butter: 53 cents per pound
Round Steak: 30 cents per pound
U.S Food Prices in June 2017
Milk: 2.39 per gallon average (Source: Numbeo)
3.29 to 4.25 per gallon range
Eggs: 2.59 per dozen average (Source: Numbeo)
1.74 to 3.99 per dozen average
Butter: 2.32 per pound (Source: USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service)
U.S Food Prices in April 2017
Bacon: 5.74 per pound average (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)
Round Steak: 5.57 per pound average (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)
Did You Know? Some of It!
Referred to as Lucy after the Beatles song “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,” the biggest known diamond in the universe is a white dwarf star. The star has a carbon interior that crystallized, forming the ten-billion-trillion-trillion-carat gem fifty light years from earth.
Celery can help produce a good night’s sleep because of the vitamins, minerals (especially magnesium) and nutrients it contains.
Fight the urge to open the oven door and take a peek at what’s cooking. Instead, turn on the oven light and look through the oven window. Opening the door lowers the temperature inside by as much as 25 degrees, which increases cooking time and wastes energy.
U.S. President John F. Kennedy often doodled words. In one example, he repeated the word “Vietnam” eight times in scrawled writing with boxes around the words. During the Cuban Missile Crisis, some of his doodles included a checkerboard and a sailboat along with the words “Castro,” “Blockade,” and “NATO.”
Technically a drupe, the almond is not a nut. It is the pit of a fruit related to peaches, plums, and apricots.
The average American eats more than three pounds of candy over the weeks before and after Halloween.
Before struggling to put on rubber gloves or latex gloves, sprinkle baby powder on your hands (or even flour if you don’t have baby powder). This will help you remove the gloves easily without having to take them off inside out.
Use the right grade of gas for your car; regular-grade fuel costs about 20 cents per gallon less than premium grade. Don’t top off when filling the gas tank, and make sure your gas cap is on tight.
“Jingle Bells” one of the best-known American Christmas songs, was originally written for Thanksgiving.
The average American gobbles up 4,500 calories and 229 grams of fat during a typical Thanksgiving feast with turkey and the trimmings.
Native Americans used cranberries in a variety of foods, including pemmican, a high-protein combination of crushed berries, dried deer meat, and melted fat. They also used it as a medicine to treat arrow punctures and other wounds as a dye for fabric.
The More You Know!
Everyone Likes Gifts, Right?
On This Day
25 Years Ago on This Date… July 25, 1992 The twenty-fifth Olympic Summer Games, the first in which professional athletes participated, opens in Barcelona, Spain. The U.S. men’s basketball team won the gold medal with ease. Comprised of eleven NBA stars, “The Dream Team” included Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, and Scottie Pippen.
50 Years Ago on This Date… July 29, 1067 The Doors top the Billboard chart with the bands’ first No.1 hit, “Light My Fire,” transforming the band from rock cult favorites to international stars of the 1960s counterculture.
125 Years Ago on This Date… August 4, 1892 The bodies of Abby and Andrew Borden are discovered in their home. A week later, Andrew’s daughter Lizzie was arrested for the murders. She becomes immortalized in the rhyme, “Lizzie Borden took an axe, and gave her mother forty whacks; when she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one.” With little evidence in the case, Lizzie Borden was found not guilty. The murders remain unsolved.
50 Years Ago on This Date… August 30, 1967 Thurgood Marshall becomes the first African American U.S. Supreme Court justice. He was nominated by President Lyndon Johnson and remained on the Supreme Court for twenty-four years. Random Information One-third of the world’s soap is used in the United States.
In 2013, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg received a $1 salary.
Most of the dust bunnies underneath your bed are comprised of your own dead skin.
One-third of the world’s soap is used in the United States.
Household Tip Line a planter with a sponge to help keep plants moist so you don’t have to water as often.
Kelly Clarkson was the first winner from the first season of American Idol: The Search for a Superstar, which premiered on June 11, 2002.
The only continent without reptiles is Antarctica, which features many penguins, whales, seals, krill (the main food for whales), and fish in its waters, but land mammals.
Nomophobia, short for “no mobile phone phobia,” is the fear of being without your cellphone or being out of mobile device contact.
M&Ms, the candy with the chocolate center that won’t melt in your hand, got its name from the last names of the founders. Forrest Mars. Sr. of the Mars candy company, struck a deal with Bruce Murrie, son of Hersey President William Murrie to develop the hard-shelled chocolate candy in 1941.
Volcanic rock known as pumice is the only rock that can float on water.
Holidays to Keep in Mind
Bizarre Holiday: Embrace your Geekness Day July 13th If you are a geek, today is the day to accept it. The connotation of geek has changed over time from odd or non-mainstream to someone focused on a particular hobby. So indulge in that hobby today-computers, engineering, language, art, music, sci-fi, comic heroes, crafts, video games, sports, pop culture, or whatever!
Interesting Holiday: International Museum Day May 18 Visit or learn about a local museum today. International Museum Day, established in 1977, was created to encourage museum curators to meet the public and make them aware of challenges faced by museums.
Bizarre Holiday: National Mustard Day August 5th The first Saturday in August, National Mustard Day is a great day for hot dogs! Or spread mustard on sandwiches, pair it with meats and cheeses, or create salad dressings and marinades with it. Made from the mustard seed and mixed with water, salt, lemons juice, and other spices, mustards can be bright yellow to dark brown and taste sweet to spicy. Mustard has been spicing up meals for thousands of years, so explore the unlimited flavors and colors of this unrivaled condiment.
Illuminating Holiday: National Lighthouse Day August 7th With today’s radar and GPS technology, lighthouses are no longer crucial to the safety of ships and boats finding their way to port during fog and storms, but they remain the symbol of safe harbors for communities relying on the sea for their economies.
It Happened This Day
175 Years Ago on this Date… May 25, 1842 Christian Doppler, and Austrian Physicist, presents his idea, now known as the Doppler Effect, to the science community. The Doppler Effect is the change in frequency of a wave (or other periodic event) for an observer moving relative to its source.
150 Years Ago on this Date… March 1, 1867 Nebraska becomes a state two years after the end of the Civil War. The territorial capital was Omaha, but the state capital was established at Lancaster, later renamed Lincoln, after President Abraham Lincoln, who had been assassinated two years earlier.
75 Years Ago on this Date… March 13, 1942 The U.S. Army launches the K-9 Corps and begins training dogs for the War Dog Program. World War II’s most famous canine hero was Chips, a shepherd-collie-husky mix, who served with the U.S. Army. He attacked an enemy machine gun nest in Italy, forcing the crew to surrender.
75 Years ago on this Date…May 15, 1942 The Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps is established by law, giving women official military status. In May 1941, Massachusetts Representative Edith Nourse Rogers introduced legislation that allowed women to serve in noncombat positions in the Army. Thousands of women enlisted, and in July 1943, “auxiliary” was dropped from the name and the Corps became regular Army.
50 Years Ago on This Date… April 21, 1967 General Motors, the world’s largest automaker at the time, celebrates the manufacture of its 100 millionth American-made car.
25 Years Ago on This Date… February 20, 1992 John Singleton is nominated for a Best Director Oscar his debut film, Boyz n the Hood, becoming the youngest person (at twenty-four), and the first African American, to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Director. The film depicted the gang-ruled neighborhood of South Central Los Angeles and became one of the first films with a largely black cast to break out as a mainstream hit, earning some $57 million at the box office.
25 Years Ago on this Date… May 6, 1992 Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev says that the end of the Cold War is a “victory for common sense, reason, democracy, and common human values” in a speech as Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri—the same site where British Prime Minister Winston Churchill gave his “Iron Curtain” speech in 1946.
The More You Know!
You know? But Do You Really Know?
Shellac, used as a wood finish or food glaze such as on jelly beans, comes from the secretions of a female lac bug found on trees in India and Thailand.
Sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda on icy patches on driveways and walkways to help melt ice. It’s much easier on cement than salt.
When the game Twister, by Milton Bradley, came out in 1966, it was described by some as “sex in a box.”
The odds for finding a four-leaf clover are 10,000 to 1.
Starbucks has more than 87,000 different drink combinations
Brussels (Belgian) waffles became world famous during New York’s World Fair in 1964. As many as 2,500 waffles with whipped cream and strawberries were served to visitors each day.
In 1508, Leonardo da Vinci produced the first known sketches that suggested the optics of the human eye could be altered by placing the cornea directly in contact with water. His idea eventually led to the development of contact lenses.
The Pentagon has an emergency plan for zombie apocalypse. To plan for real-life, large scale catastrophes, the Defense Department has strategies in place for an attack on the planet by the walking dead in its unclassified document “CONOP 8888.”
The idea of Netflix came to Reed Hastings when he had to pay $40 in overdue fines after returning Apollo 13 well past its due date. He founded Netflix with Marc Randolph in 1997 in Scotts Valley, California.
In 2006, Effa Manley was the first woman inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, honoring her commitment to baseball and civil rights. In 1946, the Newark Eagles, owned by Effa and her husband, won the Negro League World Series, defeating the Kansas City Monarchs.
May Day marks the halfway point between the first day of spring and the summer solstice.
Bacteria in a human body weight about four pounds or could fill a half gallon jug. The bacterial cells outnumber human cells 10 to 1, but because they are much smaller than human cells, they account for only 1 to 2 percent of our body mass—though they make up about half of our body waste.