This Day in Goofery
1191: 85-year old Giacinto Bobo became Pope Coelestinus III, in Papal terms called a âCoelestinectomy.â
The Mayor believes he should have been called Pope Bobo. One word: goofier.
1743: The birth of Thomas Jefferson
“The thirty-third year of a person, it is the perfect age, that of the full development, according to Mary Agreda. It is at this age that Jesus-Christ was crucified and that Krishna, the god with the 16000 wives and the 180000 sons, died to repurchase the Karma of the humanity. Saint Joseph was also 33 years old when he took for wife the Virgin Mary, according to visions of Mary Agreda. And according to some authors, it is the age that will have the Antichrist at the time of his advent.”
Source: Riding the Beast
It is also the age at which Thomas Jefferson drafted a little document called the Declaration of Independence for a little project known as the United States. He did a few things. He was a lawyer, an architect, an astronomer, a musician, a Congressman, a governor, a president, a “Founding Father” of a country–but he always waited to the last minute.
1961: Yuri Gagarin first man to enter space and orbit earth
…if you don’t count Swiss chemist Albert Hoffman, the first man to synthesize and ingest LSD, back in 1943. In the lab he accidentally absorbed some through his fingertips and later “lay down and sank into a not unpleasant intoxicated-like condition, characterized by an extremely stimulated imagination. In a dreamlike state, with eyes closed…[he] perceived an uninterrupted stream of fantastic pictures, extraordinary shapes with intense, kaleidoscopic play of colors.”
OK, so he didn’t have a space ship. No, he had a bicycle. (More on that on April 19, Bicycle Day.) Still, ya gotta give the guy credit.
1965: The Palm Sunday Tomatoes did not strike Indiana and surrounding states. Misunderstanding on my part. It was the Palm Sunday Tornadoes that hit Indiana.
We in Goof City know that goofiness comes many guises, and could be said to be in the eye of the goof, but the Mayor does not sanction “food fights” as goofy behavior, such as Tomatina tomato-throwing festivals. Perhaps someday they will rebel and launch a real-life “back atcha” attack of the Killer Tomatoes. We can only hope. In the meantime, congratulations on the square tomato.
1953: The first 3-D movie, “House of Wax” was released, opening the world up to all manner of goofiness.
This was a remake of a 1933 film, in which Fay Wray hones her screaming skill-set.
In 2005 an unrelated “House of Wax” was loosed on the public starring–gulp–Paris Hilton!
“What begins as a weekend getaway for six friends becomes a terrifying fight for their lives…A road trip to one of the biggest college football games of the year takes a turn for the worse for Carly, Paige and their friends when they decide to camp out for the night before heading to the game. A confrontation with a mysterious trucker at the camp site leaves everyone unsettled, and Carly has her hands full trying to keep the peace between her boyfriend Wade and her hot-headed brother Nick. They wake up the next morning to find that their car might have been deliberately tampered with. At the risk of being stranded, they accept a local’s invitation for a ride into Ambrose, the only town for miles. Once there, they are drawn to Ambrose’s main attraction â Trudy’s House of Wax, which is filled with remarkably life-like wax sculptures. But as they soon discover, there is a shocking reason the exhibits look so real…”
Source: House of Wax
Road trip + college football + mysterious trucker + hot-headed brother + tampered-with car + wax figures + terrifying flight for life AND Paris Hilton = Goof City Galore!
“You’re not going to go in there, are you?”
YouTube commenter bropey said: “The movie was decent… after seeing it once the only thing i’d likeďťż to see again is parisďťż hilton dying.”
And there you have it!
1924: A Hoof and Mouth epidemic worsens, with a 200+ cows reported with the disease each day in California alone.
1941: British designer Vivienne Westwood born in the goofily-named town of Tintwistle, Derbyshire, England
Let’s just skip all the way to the runway show “I am Expensive,” featuring the most treacherous pair of orange shoes in all history.
1805: The mighty Beethoven himself conducted the premiere of his own “Eroica” Symphony. Not all that goofy. But did you know he was an alien spy?
This is pretty damn goofy:
As is this:
So, you see, on April 7th or any other day, one can use Beethoven (or, the lesson being, anything else) to springboard into goofiness.
1989: The British government under Mrs Thatcher announced it wold abolish legislation guaranteeing jobs for life for more than 9,000 dockers.
Goofy? No. Hardly. But I had to stop and wonder if they were wearing Dockers, or just pants.
As YouTube commenter ccuster17 raved: “nothing sings ‘California soul’ like a white man crossing theďťż street in the business district, flying a kite with his [expletive] little son, attending a stuffy fund raiser on a downtown terrace, and, of course, golfing! hey Dockers, I fucking love you!”
Heck, ya can’t blame him!
2005: Death of author Saul Bellow
Best remembered, by Mayor Jones, for writing the line, “Lead me not into Penn Station.”
But did you know he was dolichocephalic?
This was clearly an autobiographical detail.
Source: Young Bellow
http://www.medfriendly.com tells us, “Technically, dolichocephaly is defined as a skull with a cephalic index of 75 or less. The cephalic index is a rating scale that is used to measure the size of the head. The rating on the cephalic index is obtained by multiplying the maximum width of the head by 100 and dividing that number by the maximum length of the head. A cephalic index between 76 and 80 is considered normal. The lower the number gets on the cephalic index, the longer the skull is.”
The Nobel Prize Committee remarked that Bellow’s writing displayed a “mixture of rich picaresque novel and subtle analysis of our culture, of entertaining adventure, drastic and tragic episodes in quick succession interspersed with philosophic conversation, all developed by a commentator with a witty tongue and penetrating insight into the outer and inner complications that drive us to act, or prevent us from acting, and that can be called the dilemma of our age.”
All well and good. I’m glad he found a way to compensate for his dolichocephaly.
1960: “Ben Hur” wins 11 Academy Awards
No, that’s not from “Ben Hur.” I was going to post a screen test of Leslie Nielsen as Massala, but it wasn’t goofy enough, despite lines like, “And the lion and the jackal–do you still hunt them, or have you become too dignified?” So instead I posted the above clip from “Police Squad,” which YouTuber tadleckman considers to be the “The Greatest Line in the History of Comedy.” Oh my God, whoo! My sides ache. Oh, mercy, mercy! I cannot. stop. laughing.
Before filming, Charlton Heston had never before been in a chariot. “Who had?” he quipped.
Heston, who won for Best Actor, had no idea that he would he would die the next day, April 5th, exactly 51 years later.
Goof: The shadow of the camera can be seen on Christ’s back as Ben Hur is leaving Nazareth to go to the galleys.
(Wait a minute. That didn’t happen? -Ed.)
1860: Pony Express debuted. It’s a good thing Jerry Seinfeld wasn’t there to pooh-pooh the whole thing!
Note: True story. Until her early 50′s, Mayor Jones thought a pony was a baby horse.
“The word ‘pony’ derives from the old French poulenet, meaning foal, a young, immature horse, but this is not the modern meaning; unlike a horse foal, a pony remains small when fully grown. However, on occasion, people who are unfamiliar with horses may confuse an adult pony with a foal.”
That was the case with Mayor Jones. She had confused adult ponies with foals. -Ed.
1805: Birth of Hans Christian Andersen
Was beloved fairy tale author Hans Christian Andersen autistic? Maybe, maybe not, but he made the top of this guy’s list, in what I’m willing to bet is the only slideshow of possibly autistic personalities accompanied by Scatman John, also arguably autistic. Mayor Jones has no stand on the topic.
1973: John Lennon and Yoko Ono form county of Nutopia
source: Imagine Peace!
1889: Eiffel Tower opens
“I ought to be jealous of the tower. She is more famous than I am,” said its designer, Gustave Eiffel. But to Mayor Jones, the Tower is most famous for being known, by her and her sister, as the “I Fell” Tower.
1909: The Queensboro Bridge, aka the 59th Street Bridge, linking Manhattan and Queens, opened. The bridge inspired, no surprise, Simon and Garfunkle’s “The 59th Street Bridge Songm” aka “Feelin’ Groovy.” For our purposes, however, the Bridge, and the song, just leave us feelin’ goofy. Heck, what doesn’t?!
1943: Birthday of Eric Idle
When it comes to goofing, Eric has hardly been idle. A great big goofy birthday to you, goofy!
Source: Idle goofing
Annual: Something on a Stick Day
Source: 59 Foods on a Stick
1916: Birthday of Sterling Hayden
1931: Birthday of Leonard Nimoy
Source: Where It’s At
Annual: International Waffle Day
I love Waffle Day! Wait, no I don’t. Yes I do. No I don’t.
Source: Oreos? Oreos? Yes, Oreos.
1919: Birthday of Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Honor him with clean underwear, goofs.
1923: Frank Silver and Irving Conn release “Yes, We Have No Bananas”
Source: Loving you has made me bananas
What haven’t they thought of that they haven’t made? This is a banana guard:
Source: No more nasty squashed bananas in your bag.
Annual: National Goof-Off Day
We who live here in Goof City, don’t normally observe National Goof-Off Day. I mean, one day a year? I don’t think so. But for those of you who don’t normally goof off, say, 364 days a years, the City is a good place to do it. We do have bunting, now that I think of it, but it says “Happy Birthday Granpa.” I’ll put it up now. We will be having a special Eerie Eyeball brunch around 11:00 with favors from Party411.com. Available for your use will be:
Eyeball Table Sprinkles
Eyeball Light Up Lawn Stakes
Spooky Eyeballs Window Clings
Spooky Flashing Eyeballs
5′ Eyeballs Party Fringe
Eye Slide Balls
Eyeball Door Knob
Animated Eyeballs in Lab Jar Favors
the Luminous Eyeball Bounce Ball
Eyeball tricks will also be performed.
Annual: National Poetry Day
1685: Birthday of Johann Sebastian Bach
âOde to JSB”â¨
On land, at sea, at home, abroad,â¨
You smoked your pipe and worshipped Godâ¨â¨
When your soaring chorales fill the airâ¨
There is no doubt that He is thereâ¨â¨
For the sleepless Goldberg, variations galoreâ¨
But only thirty leave me wanting moreâ¨â¨
Concertos, sonatas, cantatas by the hundredsâ¨
Answer every musical question that man has ever wonderedâ¨â¨
For your legacy you left us plenty
Including children numbering no less than twentyâ¨â¨
Cross my heart, I am more than your fanâ¨
You are ultimate proof of the divinity of man
1922: Birthday of Goof Carl Reiner
1894: Birthday of Jackie “Moms” Mabley
March 18 1886: Birthday of Edward Everett Horton
1845: The rubber band was patented in England by Stephen Perry.
Sine qua non:
Watch CBS News Videos Online
Annual: St. Urho Day
1937: Death of H. P. Lovecraft
But he was unmoved, and cried: “If I am mad, it is mercy! May the gods pity the man who in his callousness can remain sane to the hideous end!” HPL, “The Temple”
Annual: Pi (Ď) Day
If you’re in Portland, Oregon, have a piece at the Bipartisan Cafe, 7901 S.E. Stark. Best in town.
Source: The Pi Rap
“Today is Pi Day, in honor of the mathematical constant pi (Ď), an irrational number that begins 3.14 â like today’s date, March 14th or 3/14.
“Ď is a letter of the Greek alphabet, and it’s the symbol for the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. In other words, if a circle has a diameter of 10 inches, we could find out its circumference by multiplying 10 inches by Ď, and we’d find out that the circle with a 10-inch diameter has a circumference (or perimeter) of approximately 31.4159265. It can only ever be approximate â never exact â because Ď is an irrational number, meaning that it goes on forever without repeating or having patterns. Using powerful computers, Ď has been calculated in recent years into trillions of decimal places.
“Pi Day began in 1988, started by a physicist named Larry Shaw. And just last year, in 2009, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a non-binding resolution designating today as National Pi Day.
“Pi Day celebrations around the nation today involve eating dessert pies or pizza pies, throwing cream pies, and listening to lectures on the importance of the irrational number â sometimes all of these things occurring in unison.
“There are legions of people worldwide devoted to memorizing Ď to as far as they can memorize it. And today around the world, there are Ď recitation contests. The world record, according to the Guinness Book, is currently held by Lu Chao, a grad student from China, who over the course of 24 hours and 4 minutes recited pi to the 67,890th decimal place without error.
“To aid in the memorization of the never-ending, pattern-less number, people have written poetry and stories in a mnemonic called “Pilish,” which is a way of constrained writing “in which the number of letters in each successive word “spells out” the digits of Ď.” One of the earliest and best-known examples of it was a sentence by English physicist Sir James Jeans, who wrote: “How I need a drink, alcoholic in nature, after the heavy lectures involving quantum mechanics!” ‘How’ has three letters, ‘I’ has one, “need” has four â so it forms 3.14, the start of Ď â and each successive word’s letter count represents the next digit in Ď.
“Then, in 1996, a piphilologist (as these people are called), wrote a 3,834-digit Cadaeic Cadenza, which begins with a retelling of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven”; every single word adheres to the constraints that render letter counts into accurate successive Ď digits.”
Source: The Writer’s Almanac, produced by Prairie Home Productions, presented by American Public Media:
1798: Birthday of Abigail Powers Fillmore, First Lady and wife of Millard Fillmore
1874: Deathday of Millard Fillmore, 13th President (1850-53).
1922: Birthday of Jack Kerouac, Mayor Jones’s Main Man and intrepid, peripatetic chronicler of Dean Moriarty, “the holy goof,” Neal Cassady.
“It never occurs to you that life is serious and there are people trying to make something decent out of it instead of just goofing off all the time. That’s what Dean was, the HOLY GOOF.”
“I liked the name/phrase Holy Goof. It seemed to me like the pair of words created a nice contrast. Something between something sacred and lovable, but also bumbling and mistake prone.”
Source: Jack K.
Happy World Kidney Day!
1977: Astronomers discover rings around Uranus.
1892: Birthday of Vita Sackville-West, who grew up in a mansion with staircase (52) for every week of the year and a room (365) for every day of year. Goofy.
“It is necessary to write,” she wrote, “if the days are not to slip emptily by. How else, indeed, to clap the net over the butterfly of the moment?”
1978 The first radio episode of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams, is transmitted on BBC Radio 4. Mayor Jones, being a goof, once asked Mr. Adams to sign her copy of the Guide backwards. Mr. Adams, being a goof, obliged her.
Classic Adams Goofisms:
The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don’t.
I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.
Let us think the unthinkable, let us do the undoable. Let us prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not eff it after all.
There is an art, or, rather, a knack to flying. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.
Itâs not the fall that kills you; itâs the sudden stop at the end.
1925: For reasons of her own, Mayor Jones each year marks the anniversary of the death of Prince Georgy Yevgenyevich Lvov, first head of the provisional government after Tsar Nicholas II was deposed (and disposed of). He lasted less than six months before he was succeeded by Alexander Kerensky. Mayor Jones’s unsubstantiated theory is that Lvov was just too goofy to be head of anything. More power to him.
1912: Gelatin, sugar, shortening. Mix ‘em up, spread ‘em between two chocolate cookies, and you have one of America’s favorite treats. Oreo cookies on sale for the first time.
Oreo Dirt Graveyard: MatthwJ
1963: The Hula-Hoop, first marketed by Wham-O in 1958, is patented by the company’s co-founder, Arthur “Spud” Melin.
Whether of yellow brick or ideas and schemes
We all have a road to follow
March forth into this life of yours
Or in the past you’ll wallow
And that is not the place to be
If you want an authentic life
It’s reality that will bring you joy
March forth, despite all strife
Whatever direction you decide to take
Be it east, west, south or north
Follow your heart, for your soul’s sake
And march forth, march forth, march forth
-Mayor Jones, March 4th, 2002
1931: Cab Galloway records “Minnie the Moocher,” the first jazz album to sell a million copies.
Cab comes back at 4:21–as a singing walrus ghost (what else?)
1904: Birthday of Dr. Seuss
1810: Birthday of FrĂŠdĂŠric Chopin
This scene, in Roman Polanski’s “The Pianist,” is one of cinema’s most moving. The contrast of the stark, freezing, destroyed room and city with the life-affirming majesty of the Chopin and the compassionate humanity of the pianist’s German enemy, is deeply affecting. It reminds one that beauty still thrives among ugliness, that there are those who create and enrich instead of destroying, and that the fate of our tragic, triumphant race hangs in the poignant, dangerous balance of the forces of life and death.
I grew up with the Horowitz Ballades; in this composite video of scenes from the movie and a live Horowitz performance, the entire ballade is rendered, though it was edited for length in the film, a disappointment to me. I’d have found it even more powerful if the pianist and the officer and the audience had been allowed to succumb to this nine-minute spell of magnificence rising out of the ruins. The still of the real pianist, WĹadysĹaw Szpilman, with the pain shining in his eye, is heartbreaking. He died in 2000 before the film was completed in 2002. But in 1993, a main belt asteroid given the provisional designation 1993 NB2, was discovered by E.W. Elst at the European Southern Observatory. It orbits the Sun once every 4.03 years. It was later renamed “9973 Szpilman.” Perhaps he lived to find himself immortalized in space as well as time.
1820: Birthday of John Tenniel
Who did as much for Alice, arguably, as Lewis Carroll.
1910: Birthday of Peter de Vries, who said, “Pain is the question mark turned like a fishhook in the human heart.” Not the goofiest thing he ever wrote, but underlying gravitas is what makes goofiness all the goofier. He also wrote: “Everybody hates me because I’m so universally liked.” “I love being a writer. What I can’t stand is the paperwork.” “We must love one another, yes, yes, that’s all true enough, but nothing says we have to like each other.” “Celibacy is the worst form of self-abuse.” “It is the final proof of God’s omnipotence that he need not exist in order to save us.” “Life is a zoo in a jungle.”
2002: Death of actor Lawrence Tierney
Beneath this steely exterior, lay the heart of a goof.
1933: Death of Pat “Stalemate” O’ Sullivan, creator of Felix the Cat.
in which the prototype of the O’Sullivan Self-Spanker is introduced
1921: Birth of Abe Vigoda, who, as of this writing, is still not dead.
1965: Death of Stan Laurel
1992: Ed McMahon, 69, weds Pamela Hurn, 37
Source: Judy Eddy / WENN
1848: The Communist Manifesto was published. That led to a lot of things, none of which were goofy unless you count Karl Marx’s weird laser eyes.
1978: Bob Backland beats Billy Graham in NY, to become WWF wrestling champ
1859: NY Congressman Daniel E. Sickles is the first in the U.S. to be acquitted of murder on grounds of temporary insanity, after killing his wife’s lover, D.C. D.A. Phillip Barton Key (son of Francis Scott Key). Some local papers called him a hero “for saving all the ladies of Washington from this rogue named Key.” Sickles also took a known prostitute to England, leaving his pregnant wife at home, and presented her to Queen Victoria, using the surname of a political opponent as her alias.
Here’s a picture of his leg bone, which was fractured by a canon ball during the Civil War. He later received a Medal of Honor for the attempted capture of a stand of Confederate colors and detachment of nine Confederates, taking three members of the detachment prisoner, dispersing the remainder, and recapturing a Union officer who’d been a prisoner.
1930: Elm Farm Ollie became the first cow to fly in an airplane, and to be milked in an airplane, and the milk was sealed in paper containers and parachuted over St. Louis, MO. Ollie also inspired one Barry Levenson (as Giacomo Moocini and Ludwig Von Bovine) to write an opera, “Madame Butterfat,” featuring the Bovine Cantata in B flat–”She flies through the air with the greatest of ease/Dropping her ice cream, yogurt and cheese”–wherein Ollie tells the shifty opportunists who buy her from struggling Farmer Brown to make a hefty profit selling the milk, that if they didn’t give the milk to the needy she would “make the biggest cow pie that you have ever seen / So follow well my orders or I will be obscene.”
“Since 1981,” Bill Goodykoontz reports, “people have gathered every Feb. 18 at the Mustard Museum to eat cheeses, drink milk, sing Levenson’s song and talk about cows. On a good year, the holiday may draw 200 Ollie enthusiasts, all familiar with the tale. ‘People say, Is that really the truth?’ Levenson said, then answered: ‘Did George Washington really chop down the cherry tree? Do you really want to know? Is it important if he really did or didn’t? It’s the story, it’s the message.’
” ‘And you know, maybe that’s the best tie there is,’ Levenson said. ‘We can just celebrate the event, the joyousness of a cow helping little children, even if there’s little historical basis for it. Who cares? It’s an excuse to have fun. And sometimes you need that.’ True enough. So eat some cheese today. Lift a glass of milk and toast the first flying bovine. Or as Harry Caray might say, Holy Cow.”
1981: BIrthday of Paris Hilton
âEvery woman should have four pets in her life. A mink in her closet, a jaguar in her garage, a tiger in her bed, and a jackass who pays for everything.â
1868: The “Jolly Corks” became The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. The Elks had modest beginnings, established as a private club to elude New York City laws governing the opening hours of public taverns. After the death of a member left his wife and children without income, the club took up additional service roles, rituals and a new name. Desiring to adopt “a readily identifiable creature of stature, indigenous to America”, fifteen members voted 8-7 to favor the elk above the buffalo.”
1954: Birthday of Matt Groening of Simpsons Fame
1894: Birthday of Jack (Benny) Kupelsky
2000: Charles Schulz’s final “Peanuts” comic strip ran in Sunday newspapers, the day after his death at age 77.
Annual: Darwin Day, commemorating the birth of Chuck Darwin (video).
Chuck Darwin is famous as being the inspiration for the Darwin Awards, “A Chronicle of Enterprising Demises [sometimes posthumously] Honoring those who improve the species…by accidentally removing themselves from it!”
Goof City does not recommend this ill-conceived attempt at goofing off.
2006: Dick Cheney “accidentally” shoots friend in a hunting accident
Hoo, boy! In the annals of goofery, I need look no further for the highlight of February 11th. From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick_Cheney_hunting_incident:
“The incident has been the subject of jokes, satire and public ridicule. A number of these made reference to other controversies involving Cheney.
David Letterman began his Monday show on February 13 with “Good news, ladies and gentlemen, we have finally located weapons of mass destruction…. It’s Dick Cheney,” and adding that “We can’t get bin Laden, but we nailed a 78-year-old attorney.” His Top 10 list was devoted to “Dick Cheney’s excuses” and included “he thought the guy was trying to go gay cowboy on me.”
Jay Leno also had a piece on The Tonight Show in which he pretended to host a game show with footage of George W. Bush and Pervez Musharraf that was taken during Bush’s visit to Pakistan. Towards the end of that segment, the sound of loud bird calls were played, and Leno asked Cheney to take care of the problem, with footage of the Vice President shooting a gun then shown.
Texas Monthly won the 2007 Best Cover Line of the Year Award from the Magazine Publishers of America for its January 2007 cover mocking the Vice President.
Jon Stewart popularised the phrase “Cheney’s Got a Gun” (a play on the 1989 Aerosmith song “Janie’s Got a Gun”) on The Daily Show soon after the event. Stewart and the Daily Show ‘s correspondents repeatedly accentuated their disbelief of the absurdity of a sitting vice president shooting a 78-year-old man in the face while hunting quail which are raised in a pen and released mere seconds before they are shot. Stewart, for instance, pointed out that Whittington had been the first person to be shot by a sitting vice president since Alexander Hamilton, and that while Aaron Burr’s fatal shooting of Hamilton was during a duel over issues of honor and political maneuvering; Whittington “was mistaken for a bird.” Correspondent Ed Helms, reporting supposedly from Corpus Christi Hospital, said that Whittington’s condition had been upgraded from “stable” to “stable, but still shot in the face by Dick Cheney.” The show also used graphics from the video game Duck Hunt. After Whittington’s post-discharge press conference, Stewart noted that Cheney’s power was such that upon shooting someone, the victim would apologize.
On his first show after the incident, Stephen Colbert, host of The Colbert Report, confessed to having been involved in a hunting accident of his own over the weekend, then proceeded to show an edited version of Brit Hume’s interview with Dick Cheney, featuring Colbert in place of Cheney with far more humorous responses to Hume’s question. Colbert later mentioned the hunting incident in his now famous speech at the White House Correspondents Dinner.
The incident has been parodied twice in the comedy Family Guy:
In the season 4 episode “Petergeist”, Cheney shoots Peter at point-blank range several times while hunting, and after says “I’m sorry, I thought you were a deer.”
In the season 5 episode “Boys Do Cry”, Cheney guards the president’s house with a shotgun, and while sleeping says “18% approval ratings… I’ll give you 18% of my foot in your ass” in reference to the drop in approval ratings to 18% which followed the shooting.
In the Robot Chicken episode “I’m Trapped,” Cheney is captured by terrorists in Afghanistan but escapes after stealing a suit of armor (a parody of the movie Iron Man). The scene then changes to a forest, where Cheney, still wearing the armor, shoots a hunter in the face and declares, “Meh, thought he was a bird.”
During a Saturday Night Live skit, Kristen Wiig as Diane Sawyer mentions the incident during a mock interview regarding Cheney’s accomplishments as vice president in which he denies feeling any regrets for the situation.
In his stand-up show The Fifth Annual End of the World Tour, Christopher Titus observes that “…[the] president is in bad shape if the only way to take attention off of him is have the vice president shoot a buddy in the face.”
In Will Ferrell’s You’re Welcome America: A Final Night with George W. Bush, Ferrell (as Bush) describes Cheney as “a guy so charismatic he could shoot a man in the face with a shotgun…and then have that guy apologize to him.”
President Obama also joked about this subject. In his speech for the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner on May 9, 2009, he said Mr Cheney was ‘very busy working on his memoirs, tentatively titled, How to Shoot Friends and Interrogate People.’
There is a popular bumper sticker that states, “I’d rather hunt with Dick Cheney than ride with Ted Kennedy”
2008: Be wary, be very very wary
1909: Birthday of Carmen Miranda
1925: Birthday of Jack Lemmon
1993: Pebbles Flintstone & Bamm Bamm Rubble wed
1971: Alan Shepard became the first man to hit a golf ball on the Moon, using a ball and golf club head he had smuggled on board inside his space suit. Source: Golf on the Moon
Annual: World Nutella Day
Nutella is more than just a âchocolaty hazelnut spread,â my friends, it is a way of life. My friend John Beck and I first discovered Nutella on a trip to Germany, and when he later came to visit me in my then home of Portland, Oregon, I never heard an expression of excitement more delirious than when he spotted it on the supermarket shelf: “Nutella!”
Nutella VIrgin? I confess to being a Spooner.
1921: Birthday of Xadeh Lofti, developer of Fuzzy Logic, “in which a system applies a quantitative assessment to inherently ambiguous ideas, thus providing a new paradigm to improve artificial intelligence and automated control systems.”
1874: The day Gertrude Stein was separated at birth from Spencer Tracy.
“There ain’t no answer. There ain’t gonna be any answer. There never has been an answer. That’s the answer.” – Gertrude Stein
1882: Birthday of JJ – James Joyce
“It can’t be helped, it must be done, now down with your breeches and out with your bum!” -JJ
It’s February, named for an ancient Roman festival held annually in honor of Lupercus [aka Faunus], the god of fertility, woodlands, and pastures. Lupercalia is older than Rome itself. The festivities were run by the Luperci, or âBrotherhood of the Wolfâ. Two male goats and a dog were sacrificed, and the blood of the goats was smeared on the foreheads of two youths with a knife. The knife was then wiped on wool dipped in milk, and the youths were required to laugh. The Luperci, who administered the rites, were crowned, anointed, and wore only an apron of goatskin. Women would line up along the road to receive lashes from the whips [februa] to insure fertility. Source: Luperci
1979: Birthday of Daniel Paul Tammet, who holds the European record for reciting pi from memory (the number that begins 3.14) all the way to 22,514 digits, in five hours and nine minutes.
1798: A brawl broke out in the House of Representatives in Philadelphia, as Matthew Lyon of Vermont spat in the face of Roger Griswold of Connecticut. He had an ethics violation charge filed against him for “gross indecency” after an exchange of insults. Lyon was also the only person to be elected to Congress while in jail.
1860: My man Anton Chekhov’s birthday
“Russia’s most elusive literary bachelor” once said, “Give me a wife who, like the moon, won’t appear in my sky every day.”
Photo: Lucy and Anton
1754: The word “Serendipity” was coined by Horace Walpole in a letter he wrote to his friend Horace Mann.
“It was once when I read a silly fairy tale, called The Three Princes of Serendip: as their highnesses traveled, they were always making discoveries, by accidents and sagacity, of things which they were not in quest of: for instance, one of them discovered that a camel blind of the right eye had traveled the same road lately, because the grass was eaten only on the left side, where it was worse than on the rightânow do you understand serendipity? One of the most remarkable instances of this accidental sagacity (for you must observe that no discovery of a thing you are looking for, comes under this description) was of my Lord Shaftsbury, who happening to dine at Lord Chancellor Clarendon’s, found out the marriage of the Duke of York and Mrs. Hyde, by the respect with which her mother treated her at table.”
1832: Birthday of Lewis Carroll
“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.”
2010: Death of J.D. Salinger:
âI hope to hell that when I do die somebody has the sense to just dump me in the river or something. Anything except sticking me in a goddam cemetary. People coming and putting a bunch of flowers on your stomach on Sunday, and all that crap. Who wants flowers when youâre dead? Nobody,” – J.D. Salinger.
Source: Chris Hood, Things on Fire
1697: Isaac Newton received and solved Jean Bernoulli’s brachistochrone problem.
The swiss mathematician Bernouilli had challenged his colleagues to solve it within six months. Newton not only solved the problem before going to bed that same night, but in doing so, invented a new branch of mathematics called the calculus of variations. He had resolved the issue of specifying the curve connecting two points displayed from each other laterally, along which a body, acted upon only by gravity, would fall in the shortest time. Newton, age 55, sent the solution to be published, at his request, anonymously. But the brilliant originality of the work betrayed his identity, for when Bernoulli saw the solution he commented, “We recognize the lion by his claw.”
1882: Virginia Woolf’s birthday
Thought there was nothing goofy about the brilliant, suffering one?
“My own brain is to me the most unaccountable of machinery – always buzzing, humming, soaring roaring diving, and then buried in mud.” – Virginia Woolf
Source: goofy woolf
Worst Day of the Year?
Jennifer Carlile, on MSNBC.com, asks, “Is the midwinter weather wearing you down? Are you sinking in debt after the holidays? Angry with yourself for already breaking your New Year’s resolutions? Wish you could crawl back under the covers and not have to face another day of rain, sleet, snow and paperwork? Probably. After all, it’s Jan. 24, the ‘most depressing day of the year,’ according to a U.K. psychologist. Dr. Cliff Arnall’s calculations show that misery peaks Monday.” Source: MSNBC.com
1991: “Seinfeld” debuts on NBC-TV
George: “You could do your taxes in the time it takes me to have an orgasm.”
Elaine: “Naked? That’s not a good look for a man.”
Jerry: “I could read the sports section if my hair was on fire.”
Kramer: “Now if you’ll excuse me I have to go fill my freezer with my own blood.”
Newman: “You remember this: When you control the mail, you control information!”
George: “I happen to dress based on mood.”
Jerry: “But you essentially wear the same thing all the time.”
George: “Seemingly, but within that basic framework there are many subtle variations only discernible to an acute observer that reflect the many moods, the many shades, the many sides of George Costanza.”
Jerry: “And what mood is this?”
Annual: Answer Your Cat’s Question Day
If you will stop what you are doing and take a look at your cat, you will observe that the cat is looking at you with a serious question. Meditate upon the question, and then answer it!
Annual: Aw. It’s National Hugging Day
Annual: Brazil: Nosso Senhor Do Bonfim Festival
Jan 20â30. Salvador, Bahia. Our Lord of the Happy Ending Festival is one of Salvadorâs most colorful religious feasts. Climax comes with people carrying water to pour over church stairs and sidewalks to cleanse them of impurities. Source: Bonfim
1809: Birthday of Edgar Allen Poe
Poe, poor guy, during an 1849 election in Baltimore, fell in with a gang of wonks who got him drunk so he would vote for their man. He was found in a gutter on October 3rd and taken to Washington Hospital. Would a man on his deathbed really peacefully murmur, as his physician reported, âHe who arched the heavens and upholds the universe has his decree legibly written upon the frontlet of every human being and upon demons incarnate.â Who could even remember that to write it down? âWait a minute, Ed…’He who archedâŚ’ what was that again?âŚsomething, something, ‘universe,’ something, something, ‘frontlet’ (frontlet?), something ‘humans and demons’. Again, please? ‘He who arched’âŚâ
Poeâs last words, on October 7th, ten days before he was to be married, were, âLord, help my poor soul.â I sincerely hope the Lord did.
Source: The Ax Files
“I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity.”-E. A. Poe
1882: Birthday of Pooh-meister A. A. Milne
Reading of A.A. Milne’s classic poem (from the 1927 collection “Now We Are Six”)
with Alternapop musical accompaniment by Microsoft Songsmith.
(Never was so much ODE)
When I was One,
I had just begun.
When I was Two,
I was nearly new.
When I was Three,
I was hardly Me.
When I was Four,
I was not much more.
When I was Five,
I was just alive.
But now I am Six, I’m as clever as clever.
So I think I’ll be six now for ever and ever.
Source: “That Synch’ing Feeling,” Ewechewb’s Channel
1706: Benjie Franklin’s birthday
1977: Marx Brothers inducted into the Motion Picture Hall of Fame.
1990: Premiere of The Simpsons on Fox-TV
The evolution of one Homer Simpson
1931: Birthday of Charles Nelson Reilly, goof.
1967: Death of James Hiram Bedford, a UC psychology professor, the first human being to be cryonically preserved. In the cryonics community, the anniversary is celebrated as “Bedford Day.” In 1965, the Life Extension Society (LES) offered to preserve one person for free stating that “the Life Extension Society now has primitive facilities for emergency short term freezing and storing our friend the large homeotherm (man).” Bedford’s body was maintained in liquid nitrogen by his family in southern California until 1982, when it was then moved to Alcor Life Extension Foundation, where it has remained to the present day. Source: Bedford
1842: Birthday of psychologist William James, who coined the term “stream of consciousness” and said that “the art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook.” He was tone-deaf, got motion sickness easily, suffered from depression and was suicidal for long intervals, had chronic back pain, recurring digestive ailments, and problems with vision. He told people he had “soul-sickness.” Source: William James
Annual: “Improv Everywhere” stages large-scale acts of silliness and have kickstarted something that’s come to be known as “No Pants Day”. It’s time to get onboard with what Improv Everywhere’s members have known for years: everything’s better without pants. Source: No Pants Day
1926: Birthday of Soupy Sales, born Milton Supman.
His parents called his brothers “Hambone” and “Chicken Bone” and called him “Soup Bone,” shortened to Soupy. Sales once encouraged his young viewers to tiptoe into their still-sleeping parents’ bedrooms and remove those “funny green pieces of paper with pictures of U.S. Presidents” from their pants and pocketbooks. “Put them in an envelope and mail them to me”, Soupy instructed the children. “And I’ll send you a postcard from Puerto Rico!” He was then hit with a pie.
Source: Soupy Sales
1800: Birthday of Millard Fillmore, after whom San Francisco’s Fillmore St. was named. He also served as 13th President of the United States.
1973: The car that Hitler was said to have used in a parade, a Mercedes-Benz 770K Sedan, was sold at auction for $153,000,000. Source: Hitler’s car
1969: Marilyn Manson born in Canton, Ohio, as Brian Warner, and he changed his name to Marilyn Manson, from actress Marilyn Monroe and serial killer Charles Manson. Manson claimed that he did this to show “what show business is, fake.” Source: Marilyn Manson
I don’t care if your world is ending today
Because I wasn’t invited to it anyway
You said I tasted famous, so I drew you a heart
But now I’m not an artist I’m a fucking work of art
I’ve got an F and a C and I got a K too
And the only thing that’s missing…
1925: French psychologist Emil Coue brings his self-esteem therapy to U.S. “Every day in every way I am getting better and better.” Source: www.brainyhistory.com
1969: A new album by John Lennon called Two Virgins featuring John Lennon and Yoko Ono in the nude are confiscated at Newark Airport and are not allowed to be sold in the US, also vice squad officers closed down a record store in Chicago displaying the Album due to it being considered pornographic.
1941: The Andrews Sisters recorded “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy.”
1898: The City of Greater New York is born.
With great fanfare â and controversy â the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island merge with Manhattan to form what the Herald Tribune calls “the greatest experiment in municipal government â the enlarged city.”
1917: Bolsheviks seize power in Russian Revolution.
Vladimir Lenin seizes power from the Tsarist regime in a coup d’etat. Widespread starvation and catastrophic military failure in the First World War left Russia ripe for revolt. Tsar Nicholas II was forced to abdicate on 15th March 1917, and an ineffectual provincial government was established in his place [led by Mayor Jones's alleged ancestor, Prince Georgy Yevgenyevich Lvov]. Contemptuous of what the revolution had accomplished thus far, Lenin returned from exile in Switzerland to spark his Bolshevik revolutionaries culminating in the coup of 7th November. He led the Soviet Union until his death in 1924 and was succeeded by Joseph Stalin.