Friday, November 30, 2007

Evel Knievel died today - yes, today

U.S. motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel was born as Robert Craig Knievel, Jr. on October 17, 1938 in Butte, Montana. He said, "Unless we do things in this country to slow down our population, slow down our birth control, provide better water for people, provide power for people, we're gonna find out that the next wars are not going to be fought over diamonds, gold and political things." [Could it ever be about oil?]... Mr. Knievel died in 2007 in Clearwater, Florida.

Tiny Tim died today – 11 years ago

U.S. singer Tiny Tim was born as Herbert Buckingham Khaury on April 12, 1932 in New York City, New York. [Remember "Tiptoe Through the Tulips"? Of course, you do.] He said, “I remember calling up Variety and accusing the Beatles of stealing my look. The woman there said, 'Look, sir, let me tell you something. Their hair is like the Three Stooges, not yours!'" [And that’s not splitting hairs.]... Mr. Tim died in 1996 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Norman Cousins died today – 17 years ago

U.S. writer Norman Cousins was born on June 24, 1915 in Union City, New Jersey. He said, “No one really knows enough to be a pessimist." [Hmmmm.]... Mr. Cousins died in 1990 in Los Angeles, California.

Oscar Wilde died today – 107 years ago

Irish writer Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde was born on October 16, 1854 in Dublin, Ireland. He said, “There are only two kinds of people who are really fascinating - people who know absolutely everything, and people who know absolutely nothing." [Well, I guess I know where that places me!]... Mr. Wilde died in 1900 in Paris, France.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Ron Paul the Lesser?

In today's New York Times was an article entitled "Paging the Lesser of 8 Evils" by Gail Collins. I'm not sure who was the "lesser". Perhaps it could be determined by the number of times that a candidate's name was mentioned in the article. This is what I counted (with any variant thereof but not including the pronouns):

Rudy Giulani - 2
Mitt Romney - 8 (9 if you count "Mormon president")
John McCain - 5
Mke Huckabee - 7
Tom Tancredo - 1
Ron Paul - 1
Fred Thompson - 2
Duncan Hunter -1

Go figure.

George Harrison died today – 6 years ago

English musician, singer (“Beatles”), and songwriter George Harrison was born on February 24, 1943 in Liverpool, Merseyside, England. He said, “After all we did for Britain, selling that corduroy and making it swing, all we got was a bit of tin on a piece of leather." [Quit whining.]... Mr. Harrison died in 2001 in Beverly Hills, California.

Ralph Bellamy died today – 16 years ago

U.S. actor Ralph Bellamy was born on June 17, 1904 in Chicago, Illinois. He said, “One day in Hollywood I read a script in which the character was described as 'charming but dull - a typical Ralph Bellamy type'. I promptly headed for New York to find a part with guts." [Good move. I'm sure things were different there.]... Mr. Bellamy died in 1991 in Santa Monica, California.

Cary Grant died today – 21 years ago

U.S. actor Cary Grant was born on January 18, 1904 in Horfield, Bristol, England. He said, “My formula for living is quite simple. I get up in the morning and I go to bed at night. In between, I occupy myself as best I can." [I’m so like Cary Grant.]... Mr. Grant died in 1986 in Davenport, Iowa.

Natalie Wood died today – 26 years ago

U.S. actress Natalie Wood was born on July 20, 1938 in San Francisco, California. She said, “I've been terrified of the water, and yet it seems I'm forced to go into it on every movie that I make." [Hmmm. Check out where she died.]... Ms. Wood died in 1981 in Santa Catalina Island, California.

Giacomo Puccini died today – 83 years ago

Italian composer Giacomo Antonio Domenico Michele Secondo Maria Puccini was born on December 22, 1858 in Lucca, Tuscany, Italy. He said, “Cold calculation, random spots of color, mathematically exact construction (clearly shown or concealed), drawing that is now silent and now strident . . . . Is this not form?” [I guess.]... Mr. Puccini died in 1924 in Brussels, Belgium.

Horace Greeley died today – 135 years ago

U.S. writer Horace Greeley was born on February 3, 1811 in Amherst, New Hampshire. He said, “I am the inferior of any man whose rights I trample underfoot." [And don't forget it.]... Mr. Greeley died in 1872 in Pleasantville, New York.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Rosalind Russell died today – 31 years ago

U.S. actress Rosalind Russell was born on June 4, 1907 in Waterbury, Connecticut. She said, “Acting is standing up naked and turning around very slowly." [You may not want to picture it.]... Ms. Russell died in 1976 in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California.

Enrico Fermi died today – 53 years ago

Italian physicist Enrico Fermi was born on September 29, 1901 in Rome, Italy. He said, “If I could remember the names of all these particles, I'd be a botanist." [Excuses. Excuses.]... Mr. Fermi died in 1954 in Chicago, Illinois.

Washington Irving died today – 148 years ago

U.S. writer Washington Irving was born on April 3, 1783 in New York City, New York. He said, “A sharp tongue is the only edge tool that grows keener with constant use." [’Practice makes perfect.’]... Mr. Irving died in 1859 in Sunnyside, New York.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Eugene O’Neill died today – 54 years ago

U.S. playwright Eugene Gladstone O’Neill was born on October 16, 1888 in New York City, New York. He said, “Obsessed by a fairy tale, we spend our lives searching for a magic door and a lost kingdom of peace." [Gotta have a dream.]... Mr. O’Neill died in 1953 in Boston, Massachusetts.

Quintus Horatius Flaccus Horace died today – 2015 years ago

Italian writer Quintus Horatius Flaccus Horace was born on December 8, 65BC in Venosa, Italy. He said, “Whatever your advice, make it brief." [That was even too long.]... Mr. Horace died in 8BC in Rome, Italy.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Ashley Montagu died today – 8 years ago

English anthropologist Ashley Montagu was born as Israel Ehrenberg on June 28, 1905 in London, England. He said, “The principal contributor to loneliness in this country is television. What happens is that the family 'gets together' alone." [Can't talk during the shows: you might miss some of the trivial dialogue.]... Mr. Montagu died in 1999 in Princeton, New Jersey.

Sojourner Truth died today – 124 years ago

U.S. abolitionist Sojourner Truth was born as Isabella Baumfree on November 18, 1797 in Swartekill, New York. She said, “If women want any rights more than they's got, why don't they just take them, and not be talking about it." [The trouble is, other people keep taking them away.]... Ms. Truth died in 1883 in Battle Creek, Michigan.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Flip Wilson died today – 9 years ago

U.S. comedian Clerow "Flip" Wilson was born on December 8, 1933 in Jersey City, New Jersey. He said, “The devil made me do it." [Godda blame it on someone.]... Mr. Wilson died in 1998 in Malibu, California.

Upton Sinclair died today – 39 years ago

U.S. writer Upton Beall Sinclair, Jr. was born on September 20, 1878 in Baltimore, Maryland. He said, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it." [He who pays the writer...]... Mr. Sinclair died in 1968 in Bound Brook, New Jersey.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

The Luci wears Prada - Maybe Not

A large percentage – how large, I couldn’t decipher from Google searches - of the durable goods that we buy in the U.S. are made in China. Some of them - especially pet food, toothpaste, seafood, and toys - are dangerous. Now, according to this article, some European luxury goods are made there, too. What's next? Politicians?

Well, the "good" side of all of this is that it makes returning things-made-in-China a lot easier. If something doesn't work or it's too difficult to put together or you don't like the color or you simply don't want it anymore, just remind the store clerk of the fact that it came from China.

Dumpster Sumptuous

This morning CNN had a story about a young woman who retrieved food thrown away into dumpsters. It was said that she could afford to do otherwise, but she chose to do this to expose the amount of food discarded (and/or to be on television - CNN didn't say that). Of course, once again, CNN left out the most important part of the story: why is all of this food thrown into dirty dumpsters when there are hungry people? Well, the reasons are quite simple: the expiration dates have been exceeded and, ... the biggest one of all, … to avoid lawsuits... Think about it. If one person became ill – or even thought so – there would be a lawsuit for damages. So the “solution” is to throw it all away.

But is there a better solution? Well, it could be donated with signed statements of personal acknowledgement for the acceptance of risk. But who in his/her right mind would do this today? So the food becomes another victim of our litigious system… while hunger continues.

Freddy Mercury died today – 16 years ago

Tanzanian singer Freddy Mercury was born as Farrokh Bulsara on September 5, 1946 in Stone Town, Zanzibar. He said, “I have fun with my clothes onstage; it's not a concert you're seeing, it's a fashion show." [So that’s it.]... Mr. Mercury died in 1991 in Kensington, London, England.

Dodie Smith died today – 17 years ago

English writer Dorothy Gladys "Dodie" Smith was born on May 3, 1896 in Whitefield, Greater Manchester, England. She wrote “101 Dalmations”. She said, “I have noticed that when things happen in one's imaginings, they never happen in one's life." [So quit imagining and start doing?]... Ms. Smith died in 1990 in Manchester, England.

Diego Rivera died today – 50 years ago

Mexican artist Diego Rivera was born as Diego María de la Concepción Juan Nepomuceno Estanislao de la Rivera y Barrientos Acosta y Rodríguez (Wow!) on December 8, 1886 in Guanajuato, Guanajuato, Mexico. He said, “July 13, 1954 was the most tragic day of my life. I had lost my beloved Frida forever. To late now I realized that the most wonderful part of my life had been my love for Frida." [He ought to know... eventually.]... Mr. Rivera died in 1957 in Mexico, City, Mexico.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Louis Malle died today – 12 years ago

French film director Louis Malle was born on October 30, 1932 in Thumeries, Nord, France. He had been married to Candice Bergen (1980-1995). He said, “You must find the note, the correct key, for your story. If you find it, everything will work. If you do not, everything will stick out like elbows." [Or something.]... Mr. Malle died in 1995 in Beverly Hills, California.

Roald Dahl died today – 17 years ago

Welsh writer Roald Dahl was born on September 13, 1916 in Llandaff, Cardiff, Wales. He wrote “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”. He said, “Some children are spoiled and it is not their fault, it is their parents." [You think that they were left out on their own for too long?]... Mr. Dahl died in 1990 in Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire, England.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Mary Kay Ash died today – 6 years ago

U.S. entrepreneur Mary Kay Ash was born as Mary Kathlyn Wagner on May 12, 1918 or 1915 (Hmmm.) in Hot Wells, Harris County, Texas. She said, “A mediocre idea that generates enthusiasm will go further than a great idea that inspires no one." [What does that say about cosmetics?]... Ms. Ash died in 2001 in Dallas, Texas.

Mae West died today – 27 years ago

U.S. actress Mae West was born as Mary Jane West on August 17, 1893 in Brooklyn, New York. She said, “I used to be Snow White, but I drifted." [It’s that time of year.]... Ms. West died in 1980 in Hollywood, California.

John F. Kennedy died today – 44 years ago

U.S. President (35th) John Fitzgerald Kennedy was born on May 29, 1917 in Brookline, Massachusetts. He said, “The basic problems facing the world today are not susceptible to a military solution." [But they'll keep trying anyway.]... Mr. Kennedy died in 1963 in Dallas, Texas.

C. S. Lewis died today – 44 years ago

Irish writer Clive Staples "Jack" Lewis was born on November 29, 1898 in Belfast, Ireland. He said, “Don't use words too big for the subject. Don't say ‘infinitely’ when you mean ‘very’; otherwise you'll have no word left when you want to talk about something really infinite." [So, perpetually watch your immeasurable superlatives... Whoops!]... Mr. Lewis died in 1963 in Oxford, England.

Aldous Huxley died today – 44 years ago

English writer Aldous Leonard Huxley was born on July 26, 1894 in Surrey, England. He said, “The quality of moral behavior varies in inverse ratio to the number of human beings involved." [Did he mean that more people dilute it?]... Mr. Huxley died in 1963 in Los Angeles, California.

Jack London died today – 91 years ago

U.S. writer Jack London was born on January 12, 1876 in San Francisco, California. He said, “I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet." [Talk about burn-out.]... Mr. London died in 1916 in Glen Ellen, California.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Ellen Glasgow died today – 62 years ago

U.S. writer Ellen Glasgow was born on April 22, 1873 in Richmond, Virginia. She said, “A tragic irony of life is that we so often achieve success or financial independence after the chief reason for which we sought it has passed away." [What was that reason again?]... Ms. Glasgow died in 1945 in Richmond, Virginia.

Quentin Crisp died today – 8 years ago

Englishman Quentin Crisp was born as Denis Charles Pratt on December 25, 1908 in Sutton, Surrey, England. He said, “It's no good running a pig farm badly for 30 years while saying, 'Really, I was meant to be a ballet dancer.' By then, pigs will be your style." [Maybe you could teach ballet to the pigs... then be in a Disney feature.]... Mr. Crisp died in 1999 in Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester, England.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Robert Altman died today – 1 year ago

U.S. film director Robert Altman was born on February 20, 1925 in Kansas City, Missouri. He said, “What's a cult? It just means not enough people to make a minority." [Since each of us is unique, is each of us a cult?]... Mr. Altman died in 2006 in Los Angeles, California.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Goldman Sachs - Sacking* from Both Sides?

* from the Latin “saccus” (look it up)

The New York Times released a story today about how “Goldman Sachs Rakes in Profit in Credit Crisis.” But did it come from just good decisions? Could at least some of it have come from what Daniel Schulman and James Ridgeway say was “playing both sides of the fence”? “Goldman Sachs simultaneously urges governments to privatize highways, advises them as they structure the deals, and buys a piece of the action.”

Could some of it also have come (as this article says) from receiving “approximately $1.6 billion in taxpayer subsidies (mostly through Liberty Bonds) from New York City and state taxpayers to finance the Firm's new headquarters near the World Financial Center in Lower Manhattan in return for a commitment to keep at least 9000 employees and a major trading operation in Manhattan”?

Once again, let’s have ALL of the story, not just a part of it.

Christiana Onassis died today – 19 years ago

Christina Onassis, daughter of Aristotle Onassis, was born on December 11, 1950 in New York City, New York. She said, “Happiness is not based on money and the greatest proof of that is our family." [Oh, my!]... Ms. Onassis died in 1988 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Fight Fraud with Fraud

I recently received the following from the UNITED NATION at [Yeah, right!]:


29 Lincoln's Inn Fields,
United Kingdom

Attn: Sir,


We hereby inform you about the investigation that we have put in place now, to fight against fraud in the world. This is to inform you that we have setup a software-network database that is monitoring every email that you receive and send out not you alone but the worldwide.

After our general meeting, we the junior executive of the UN have join hands together to secure your funds from the so-called Internet fraudsters which we have arrested so many of them. But before we can release the funds you have to provide us the documents within two days. UNITED NATION ANTI-FRAUD COMMISSION CLAIM CERTIFICATE (UNAFCCC).

Which we are going to present to the British and American government. This will backup the success of your secured funds. Once again this is to inform you that we have all your information saved in our network database here in our office.

Mind you claim is going to last for just three business days so get back to us ASAP.

Yours Faithfully

Mrs. Helen Barry
UN Anti Fraud Unit Commission Department

Wow! Check out that grammar. Certainly someone from the UN could do better than this... What will they think of next?

Cab Calloway died today – 13 years ago

U.S. bandleader and singer Cabel “Cab” Calloway III was born on December 25, 1907 in Rochester, New York. He said, “A movie and a stage show are two entirely different things. A picture, you can do anything you want. Change it, cut out a scene, put in a scene, take a scene out. They don't do that on stage." [Well, why not?]... Mr. Calloway died in 1994 in Hockessin, Delaware.

Man Ray died today – 31 years ago

U.S. artist and photographer Man Ray was born as Emmanuel Radnitzky on August 27, 1890 in South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He said, “To me, a painter, if not the most useful, is the least harmful member of our society." [Did he see ALL paintings?]... Mr. Ray died in 1976 in Paris, France.

Niels Bohr died today – 45 years ago

Danish mathematician Niels Henrik David Bohr was born on October 7, 1885 in Copenhagen, Denmark. He said, “Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real." [And why not?]... Mr. Bohr died in 1962 in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Marcel Proust died today – 85 years ago

French writer Marcel Proust was born as Valentin Louis Georges Eugène Marcel Proust on July 10, 1871 in Auteuil, France. He said, “Happiness is beneficial for the body, but it is grief that develops the powers of the mind." [If we were always happy, would we ever create anything?]... Mr. Proust died in 1922 in Paris, France.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Don Gibson died today – 4 years ago

U.S. songwriter Donald Eugene Gibson was born on April 3, 1928 in Shelby, North Carolina. He wrote "I Can't Stop Loving You". (Can you hear Ray Charles singing it?) He also wrote the song "Sweet Dreams". (Can you hear Patsy Cline singing it?) He said, “Simple is the only way I can write." [We don't need complexity all of the time... and much less than we think.]... Mr. Gibson died in 2003 in Nashville, Tennessee.

Auguste Rodin died today – 90 years ago

French sculptor Auguste Rodin was born as François-Auguste-René Rodin on November 12, 1840 in Paris, France. He said, “To the artist there is never anything ugly in nature." [And don’t forget it.]... Mr. Rodin died in 1917 in Meudon, Île-de-France, France.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Milton Friedman died today – 1 year ago

U.S. economist Milton Friedman was born on July 31, 1912 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York. He said, “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand." [That long?]... Mr. Friedman died in 2006 in San Francisco, California.

William Holden died today – 26 years ago

U.S. actor William Holden was born on April 17, 1918 in O’Fallon, Illinois. He said, “Aging is an inevitable process. I surely wouldn't want to grow younger. The older you become, the more you know; your bank account of knowledge is much richer." [And the more face lifts you can have.]... Mr. Holden died in 1981 in Santa Monica, California.

Alan Watts died today – 34 years ago

English writer Alan Wilson Watts was born on January 6, 1915 in Chislehurst, Kent, England. He said, “How is it possible that a being with such sensitive jewels as the eyes, such enchanted musical instruments as the ears, and such fabulous arabesque of nerves as the brain can experience itself anything less than a god." [Perhaps it does.]... Mr. Watts died in 1973 in California.

Clark Gable died today – 47 years ago

U.S. actor Clark Gable was born on February 1, 1901 in Cadiz, Ohio. He said, “I'm just a lucky slob from Ohio who happened to be in the right place at the right time." [Ya’ gotta be somewhere all of the time.]... Mr. Gable died in 1960 in Los Angeles, California.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Margaret Mead died today – 29 years ago

U.S. anthropologist Margaret Mead was born on December 16, 1901 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She said, “Life in the twentieth century is like a parachute jump: you have to get it right the first time." [Oh, yeah!]... Ms. Mead died in 1978 in New York City, New York.

Tyrone Power died today – 49 years ago

U.S. actor Tyrone Edmund Power, Jr. was born on May 5, 1914 in Cincinnati, Ohio. He said, “I've done an awful lot of stuff that's a monument to public patience." [What exactly were the names of those films?]... Mr. Power died in 1958 in Madrid, Spain.

Emile Durkheim died today – 90 years ago

French sociologist Emile Durkheim was born on April 15, 1858 in Épinal, France. He said, “Too cheerful a morality is a loose morality; it is appropriate only to decadent peoples and is found only among them." [What!?]... Mr. Durkheim died in 1917 in Paris, France.

Johannes Kepler died today – 377 years ago

German astronomer Johannes Kepler was born on December 27, 1571 in Weil der Stadt near Stuttgart, Germany. He said, “Nature uses as little as possible of anything." [Talk about efficiency.]... Mr. Kepler died in 1630 in Regensburg, Bavaria, Germany.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Dear Bob Schieffer

In response to Bob Schieffer's interview of Ron Paul on this Sunday's "Face the Nation" (Nov. 11, 2007), I just had to write the following:

Dear Bob Schieffer,

Shame on you for asking Ron Paul if he really thought he had a chance to be elected U.S. President. Would you say the same thing to a child who said she/he wanted to be President or a Congressperson or a doctor or an astronaut? You know the chances for most children for those occupations are almost nil, but I'll bet you wouldn't tell them that. You wouldn't want to discourage them from trying. So don't try to discourage Mr. Paul and the rest of his supporters either.

OK. It's out of my system... for now.

Booker T. Washington died today – 92 years ago

U.S. writer Booker Taliaferro Washington was born on April 5, 1856 in Hale’s Ford, Virginia. He said, “You can't hold a man down without staying down with him." [But they keep trying.]... Mr. Washington died in 1915 in Tuskegee, Alabama.

Georg Hegel died today – 176 years ago

German philosopher Georg William Friedrich Hegel was born on August 27, 1770 in Stuttgart, Germany. He said, “Governments have never learned anything from history, or acted on principles deducted from it." [They are really just people, after all.]... Mr. Hegel died in 1831 in Berlin, Germany.

G. Wilhelm Leibniz died today – 291 years ago

German philosopher Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz was born on July 1, 1646 in Leipzig, Electorate of Saxony. He said, “Music is the pleasure the human mind experiences from counting without being aware that it is counting.” [Math in motion.]... Mr. Leibniz died in 1716 in Hanover, Germany.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Clementine Paddleford died today – 40 years ago

U.S. writer Clementine Paddleford was born on September 27, 1898 in Stockdale, Kansas. She said, “Never grow a wishbone, daughter, where a backbone ought to be." [Amen. Amen!]... Ms. Paddleford died in 1967 in New York City, New York.

Gioacchino Rossini died today – 139 years ago

Italian composer Gioacchino Antonio Rossini was born on February 29, 1792 in Pesaro, Italy. He said, “Give me a laundry-list and I'll set it to music." [Let me get started on my grocery list.]... Mr. Rossini died in 1868 in Passy, Paris, France.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Wilma Rudolph died today – 13 years ago

U.S. Olympic sprinter Wilma Glodean Rudolph was born on June 23, 1940 in St. Bethelem, Clarksville, Tennessee. She said, “Sometimes it takes years to really grasp what has happened to your life." [Oh, yeah.]... Ms. Rudolph died in 1994 in Brentwood, Tennessee.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Yasser Arafat died today – 3 years ago

Palestinian president Yasser Arafat was born as Mohammed Abdel Rahman Abdel Raouf Arafat al-Qudwa al-Husseini on August 24, 1929 in Cairo, Egypt. Mr. Arafat died in 2004 in Paris, France.

Søren Kierkegaard died today – 152 years ago

Danish philosopher Søren Aabye Kierkegaard was born on May 5, 1813 in Copenhagen, Denmark. He said, “Life can only be understood backward, but it must be lived forward." [Rewind occasionally, please.]... Mr. Kierkegaard died in 1855 in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Norman Mailer died today - 0 years ago

U.S. writer Norman Kingsley Mailer was born on January 31, 1923 in Long Branch, New Jersey. He said, "Patterned after an Italian Renaissance palace, it is 88 times as large and one millionth as valuable to the continuation of man. that Pentagon of traveling salesmen." {Hmmm.}... Mr. Mailer died in 2007 in New York City, New York.

Jack Palance died today – 1 year ago

U.S. actor Jack Palance was born on February 18, 1919 in Lattimer Mines, Pennsylvania. He said, “One of the most important reasons for living is to do something - live outside of yourself and put together an idea, an idea that you want to explore and then complete... Awaken your creative sensitivities!” [Oh, yeah!]... Mr. Palance died in 2006 in Montecito, California.

Arthur Rimbaud died today – 116 years ago

French poet Arthur Rimbaud was born as Jean Nicolas Arthur Rimbaud on October 20, 1854 in Charleville, France. He said, “I invented the colors of the vowels!—A black, E white, I red, O blue, U green—I made rules for the form and movement of each consonant, and, and with instinctive rhythms..." [Wow!]... Mr. Rimbaud died in 1891 in Marseille, France.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Art Carney died today – 4 years ago

U.S. actor Art William Matthew Carney was born on November 4, 1918 in Mount Vernon, New York. He said, “You're looking at an actor whose price has just doubled." [That's all?]... Mr. Carney died in 2003 in Chester, Connecticut.

Charles de Gaulle died today – 37 years ago

French president Charles de Gaulle was born as Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle on November 22, 1890 in Lille, France. He said, “You may be sure that the Americans will commit all the stupidities they can think of, plus some that are beyond imagination." [Hmmmm.]... Mr. de Gaulle died in 1970 in Colombey-les-Deux-Églises, France.

Dorothy Canfield Fisher died today – 49 years ago

U.S. writer Dorothy Canfield Fisher was born as Dorothea Frances Canfield on February 17, 1879 in Lawrence, Kansas. She said, “Some people think that doctors and nurses can put scrambled eggs back into the shell." [What!? Oh, no!]... Ms. Fisher died in 1958 in Arlington, Vermont.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

John Milton died today – 333 years ago

English writer John Milton was born on December 9, 1608 in London, England. He said, “When complaints are freely heard, deeply considered and speedily reformed, then is the utmost bound of civil liberty attained that wise men look for. " [Amen.]... Mr. Milton died in 1674 in London, England.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Be Mooned or Not Be Mooned

I recently read an interesting article about what our Earth and life on it would be like if we had had no moon. (Try accessing it here.) I think that the author, Bernard Foing, goes too far in his theories. But, then, here are some of mine:

1. The moon is responsible for marriage consummation: without the moon, how would honeymoons have originated?

2. The moon is responsible for extra income: without the moon, how would moonlighting have originated?

3. The moon is responsible for alcoholic drinking: without the moon, how would moonshine have originated?

4. The moon is responsible for public indecency: without the moon, how would "mooning" have originated?

5. The moon is responsible for obesity: without the moon, how would "moon pies" have originated?

6. The moon is responsible for Michael Jackson's success: without the moon, how would the moonwalk have originated?

So there we have it... Bless the moon.

One Person, One Vote - One Politician, Many Votes

Texas, Oh, Texas, Oh, My!

Do you know someone for whom you'd like to vote?

Howard Keel died today – 3 years ago

U.S. actor Howard Keel was born as Harold Clifford Keel on April 13, 1919 in Gillespie, Illinois. He said, “You know, people say 'Wait and go to heaven.' Well, if heaven's like they claim it is, I don't want to go. I'd get bored." [Hmmm.]... Mr. Keel died in 2004 in Palm Desert, California.

Will Durant died today – 26 years ago

U.S. historian Will Durant was born on November 5, 1885 in North Adams, Massachusetts. He was the husband of historian Ariel Durant. He said, “Every form of government tends to perish by excess of its basic principle." [No. It’s by abandoning it.]... Mr. Durant died in 1981 in Los Angeles, California.

Steve McQueen died today – 27 years ago

U.S. actor Steve McQueen was born on March 24, 1930 in Beech Grove, Indiana. He said, “I would rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on earth.” [Your choice.]... Mr. McQueen died in 1980 in Juárez, Mexico.

Eleanor Roosevelt died today – 45 years ago

Eleanor Roosevelt was born on October 11, 1884 in New York City, New York. She said, “It is better to light one small candle than to curse the darkness." [Gotta start somewhere.]... Ms. Roosevelt died in 1962 in New York City, New York.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Gene Tierney died today – 16 years ago

U.S. actress Gene Tierney was born as Gene Eliza Tierney on November 19, 1920 in Brooklyn, New York. She said, “Trying to make order out of my life was like trying to pick up a jellyfish." [Oh, my!]... Ms. Tierney died in 1991 in Houston, Texas.

Garet Garrett died today – 53 years ago

U.S. journalist and author Garet Garrett was born as Peter Garrett on February 19, 1878 in Pana, Illinois. An interesting article about him can be found here. He said, “If the great Government of the United States were a private corporation, no bank would take its name on a piece of paper, because it has cynically repudiated the words engraved upon its bonds." [Hmmmm.]... Mr. Garrett died in 1954 in New Jersey.

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky died today – 114 years ago

Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, better known as Peter Tchaikovsky, was born on May 7, 1840 in Votkinsk in the Republic of Udmurtia, Russia. He said, “Inspiration is a guest that does not willingly visit the lazy." [Probably.]... Mr. Tchaikovsky died in 1893 in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Fred MacMurray died today – 16 years ago

U.S. actor Fred Martin MacMurray was born on August 30, 1908 in Kankakee, Illinois. He said, “A cowboy actor needs two changes of expression—hat on and hat off." [Hmmm.]... Mr. MacMurray died in 1991 in Santa Monica, California.

Vladimir Horowitz died today – 18 years ago

Russian pianist Vladimir Samoylovich Horowitz was born on October 1, 1903 in Kiev, Russian Empire. He said, “If you want me to play only the notes without any specific dynamics, I will never make one mistake. " [Oh, go ahead... Put a little feeling in it.]... Mr. Horowitz died in 1989 in New York City, New York.

Al Capp died today – 28 years ago

U.S. cartoonist Al Capp was born as Alfred Gerald Caplin on September 28, 1909 in New Haven, Connecticut. He said, “Abstract art is a product of the untalented, sold by the unprincipled to the utterly bewildered." [Hmmm.]... Mr. Capp died in 1979 in South Hampton, New Hampshire.

Alexis Carrel died today – 63 years ago

French surgeon Alexis Carrel was born on June 28, 1873 in Sainte-Foy-lès-Lyon, France. He said, “Man cannot remake himself without suffering, for he is both the marble and the sculptor.” [Guess so.]... Mr. Carrel died in 1944 in Paris, France.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Yitzhak Rabin died today – 12 years ago

Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was born on March 1, 1922 in Jerusalem, British Mandate of Palestine (now Israel). He said, “You don't make peace with friends. You make it with very unsavory enemies." [Yeap.]... Mr. Rabin was killed in 1995 in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Mary Martin died today – 17 years ago

U.S. actress Mary Virginia Martin was born on December 1, 1913 in Weatherford, Texas. She was the mother of Larry Hagman. She said, “After 60, it's just patch, patch, patch." [Was she talking about clothes? Relationships? Scripts?]... Ms. Martin died in 1990 in Rancho Mirage, California.

Henri Matisse died today – 53 years ago

French artist Henri Matisse was born as Henri-Émile-Benoît Matisse on December 31, 1869 in Le Cateau-Cambrésis, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France. He said, “I don't paint things. I only paint the difference between things." [Hmmm.]... Mr. Matisse died in 1954 in Nice, France.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Eva Cassidy died today – 11 years ago

U.S. singer and guitarist Eva Cassidy was born on February 2, 1963 in Washington, D.C... You can enjoy her playing the guitar and singing "Over the Rainbow" here. [Beautiful.]... Ms. Cassidy died in 1996 in Bowie, Maryland.

James Thurber died today – 46 years ago

U.S. humorist and cartoonist James Grover Thurber was born on December 8, 1894 in Columbus, Ohio. He said, “Nowadays men lead lives of noisy desperation." [How it's changed since he said that.]... Mr. Thurber died in 1961 in New York City, New York.

George Bernard Shaw died today – 57 years ago

English writer George Bernard Shaw was born on July 26, 1856 in Dublin, Ireland. He said, “A government that robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul." [Just don’t call it robbery... So let's think about it. What can we call it then?]... Mr. Shaw died in 1950 in Ayot St Lawrence, England.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Ezra Pound died today – 35 years ago

U.S. poet Ezra Weston Loomis Pound was born on October 30, 1885 in Hailey, Idaho. He said, “Music begins to atrophy when it departs too far from the dance... poetry begins to atrophy when it gets too far from music." [Hmmm.]... Mr. Pound died in 1972 in Venice, Italy.

Else Maxwell died today – 44 years ago

U.S. writer, songwriter, and hostess Elsa Maxwell was born on May 24, 1883 in Keokuk, Iowa. She said, “Serve the dinner backward, do anything but for goodness sake, do something weird." [All right!]... Ms. Maxwell died in 1963 in New York City, New York.

Dale Carnegie died today – 52 years ago

U.S. writer Dale Breckenridge Carnegie was born on November 24, 1888 in Maryville, Missouri. He said, “It isn't what you have, or who you are, or where you are, or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about." [Ain’t that the truth, I think.]... Mr. Carnegie died in 1955 in Forest Hills, New York.