Saturday, May 22, 2010

On this day in 1908, the Wright Brothers patented their flying machine. Life would be different without it… They say even Hari Krishnas would be hanging out at train stations, instead.

On this day in 1868, the Reno gang stole $98,000 in the “Great Train Robbery”… Not to be confused with campaign whistle stops, where politicians grab money.

On this day in 1972, President Nixon visited Moscow to discuss arms limitations with Soviet President Brezhnev… The same year, Canada did its part by defeating the Soviets in hockey at the 1972 Summit Series.

Friday, May 21, 2010

On this day in 1979, Elton John became the 1st western rock star to play in the USSR… It would have been embarrassing if the lineup for concert tickets wasn’t as long as the lineup for toilet paper.

On this day in 1904, jazz pianist Fats Waller was born. He’s famous for the song I’m Gonna Sit Right Down And Write Myself A LetterThese days a more likely title may be I’m Gonna Keep Walking And Text Myself A Message.

On this day in 1979, Joe Clark became Canada’s youngest Prime Minister… Some say he wasn’t charismatic, but of all the Canadian Prime Ministers, Joe Clark was one of them.

Monday, May 17, 2010

On this day in 1945, boxing champ sugar Ray Leonard was born… Chances are, someone who grew up with “sugar” in his name didn’t have to look far for sparring partners.

On this day in 1969, a Dublin man rowed from Newfoundland to Ireland, becoming the 1st to cross the Atlantic in a rowboat… Talk about being homesick.

On this day in 1936, Dennis Hopper was born. His character in Easy Rider was inclined to substance abuse… He seems to have remained in character for several years.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

On this day in 1919, the flamboyant pianist Liberace was born… They say he was the only baby in the nursery with sequins on his diapers.

On this day in 1990, Jim Henson died. His creations include the animation of famous characters such as Kermit, Miss Piggy, Bert & Ernie, Cookie Monster and Big Bird… Although he had nothing to do with Al Gore.

On this day in 1990, a Van Gogh painting sold for a record $82.5 million… There were no wallet-sized images included – If you can afford that much for a painting, the canvas itself will probably fit in your wallet.

Friday, May 14, 2010

On this day in 1878, the trademark for Vaseline was registered… Who knows? – Without it, Jerry Lewis may have looked like Lyle Lovett.

On this day in 1686, Gabriel Fahrenheit, inventor of the mercury thermometer was born… By the way, the Surgeon General recommends that stirring your tea with your thermometer may result in inaccurate readings.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

On this day in 1950 singer/songwriter superstar Stevie Wonder was born Steveland Judkins Morris. At 13 he became a recording artist and changed his name… Some say he had to, because it wouldn’t fit on a 45 RPM record.

On this day in 1914, boxer Joe Louis was born. A sports arena in Detroit bears his name, and fittingly… The National Hockey League plays there.

On this day in 1955, Sun Records of Memphis signed Johnny Cash. He had a big hit with A Boy Named SueIn the 80s, Culture Club had a big hit with a boy named “George.”

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

On this day in 1937, George Carlin was born. He starred in Bill And Ted’s Excellent AdventureThe movie, not the Clinton/Kennedy meeting at Hooter’s.

On this day in 1971, Mick Jagger married Bianca… They say Rolling Stones fans were just delighted that he wasn’t marrying Yoko.

On this day in 1925, baseball great Yogi Berra was born. He said things like “It ain’t over till it’s over” and “You can observe a lot just by watching”… He could have been one of George W’s speech writers.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

On this day in 1981, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical Cats opened… They say the cast’s opening night anxiety was so bad, they were coughing up hairballs.

On this day in 1904, artist Salvador Dali was born. Some of his paintings depict melting watches… Which usually never happens unless they’re bought from shady street vendors.

On this day in 1957, Buddy Holly and the Crickets auditioned for Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts and were rejected… The good news for Buddy was that Simon Cowell hadn’t been born yet.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

On this day in 1856, Sigmund Freud was born. He claimed that adult problems were the result of difficult childhoods… And he was probably familiar with a difficult childhood, being named Sigmund.

On this day in 1895, the film star Rudolph Valentino was born... He was so attractive, ushers had to tell female movie-goers to take their lips off the screen.

On this day in 1994, The Chunnel officially opened, referring to the tunnel under the English Channel linking England and France... Many English folks were surprised when France didn’t surrender.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

On this day in 1904, Cy Young pitched modern baseball’s 1st perfect game. A perfect MLB game means no hits, no walks… And lately, no arrests.

On this day in 1976, Sage Moonblood Stallone, son of Sylvester was born… If they were musical, they could be Sly & The Family Stallone.

On this day in 1961, Alan Shepherd became the 1st U.S. astronaut to enter space… They say the 1st time he woke up in space, he scared himself with “zero-gravity pillow hair.”