Sep 22, 2018
September 22. In 1692, the last hanging of convicted "witches" occurred in the Salem witchcraft absurdities. In 1862, President LIncoln issued the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, stating all slaves would be free 1/1/63. In 1888, the first issue of National Geographic was published. In 1903, Italo Marchiony patented the ice cream cone. In 1941 on Rosh Hashona, 6000 Jews in Vinnytsia, Ukraine, were murdered by the German SS a few days after 24,000 Jews were executed in the same place. In 1949, the Soviet Union exploded its first atomic bomb. In 1961, JFK established the Peace Corps. In 1962, Bob Dylan made his first appearance at Carnegie Hall. In 1969, Willie Mays hit his 600th home run. In 1972, David Bowie began his first US tour. Happy Birthday, Lillian Chestney, Rosamunde Pilcher, Fay Weldon, Joan Jett, Tai Babilonia. It's Resistance Fighting Day in Estonia. Mission: Hang GOP zombies, not witches. Resist this patriarchical bullshit.
Sep 15, 2018
September 15. In 1776, the British occupied New York City. In 1821, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador proclaimed independence. In 1858, the first mail service to the Pacific Coast began. In 1923, Oklahoma was placed under martial law due to terrorist activity by the KKK. In 1928, Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin in mold. In 1935, the Nuremberg Laws were enacted, stripping German Jews of their civil rights and making the swastika the official symbol of Germany. In 1955, Betty Robbins became the first woman cantor. In 1963, the 16th Street Baptist Church was bombed in Birmingham, killing four children. In 1967, LBJ wrote Congress urging gun control legislation after the University of Texas sniper attack. In 1982, Sandra Day O'Connor became the first female Supreme Court Justice. In 1997, google.com was registered. Happy Birthday, Agatha Christie, Jean Renoir, Cannonball Adderly, Jessye Norman, Prince Harry. It's International Day of Democracy. Mission: Resist the destruction of democracy in America by a demagogue and his wusses.
Sep 8, 2018
September 8. In 1664, the Dutch surrendered New Amsterdam to the British, who then renamed it New York. In 1866, the first recorded birth of sextuplets took place in Chicago. In 1945, Bess Myerson became the first Jewish woman crowned Miss America. In 1966, the first "Star Trek" was broadcast. In 1974, President Ford pardoned President Nixon. Happy Birthday, Antonin Dvorak, Sid Caesar, Patsy Cline, Ann Beattie, Aimee Mann. It's World Physical Therapy Day. Mission: Ummmm. Don't even think about it (see fact #5).
Sep 1, 2018
In 1878, Emma M. Nutt became the first female telephone operator in America. In 1887, Emile Berliner patented the device that became the record player, perfected later by Thomas Edison. In 1939, Germany invaded Poland, thereby starting World War II in Europe. The same day, Hitler signed an order beginning the systematic euthanasia of the mentally ill and disabled. In 1945, Japan surrendered, ending World War II. In 1956, Elvis bought his mother a pink Cadillac. In 1985, the wreckage of the Titanic was found 453 miles off the Newfoundland coast. In 1995, Louis Armstrong was honored on a US postage stamp. In 1997, prosecutors announced the driver of Princess Diana's fatal car was legally drunk. In 1998, the first Harry Potter book was released in America. Happy Birthday, Liz Carpenter, Soshana Afroyim, Ann Richards, Lily Tomlin, Gloria Estefan. It's Knowledge Day in Russia and Random Acts of Kindness Day across the globe. Mission: Think and act kindly.
August 4. In 1693, Dom Perignon perfected sparkling wine and is considered the inventor of champagne. In 1735, freedom of the press was established with the acquittal of John Zenger, a writer for the New York Weekly Journal, who had been charged with seditious libel. The jury said "Truth is not libelous." In 1922, Alexander Graham Bell died and AT&T and Bell Systems shut down their switchboards and all 13 million phones to honor him. In 1944, the Frank family was discovered by the Nazis and sent off to Auschwitz. A month later, Anne and her sister were sent to Bergen-Belsen, where they both died of typhus. Soon after, Bergen-Belsen was liberated. In 1957, Florence Chadwick set a world record, swimming the English Channel in 6 hours and 7 minutes. In 1966, most US radio stations banned all Beatles records in response to John saying they were more popular than Jesus. In 1987, the William Faulkner stamp went on sale in Oxford, MS, where Faulkner had been fired as postmaster in 1924. Happy Birthday, Percy Shelley, the Queen Mother (Elizabeth), Louis Armstrong, Mary Decker, Barack Obama. It's Revolution Day in Burkina Faso. Mission: Act Burkinabe.
Aug 25, 2018
August 25. In 1609, Galileo Galilei demonstrated his first telescope. In 1814, the US Library of Congress was destroyed by the British. In 1875, Captain Matthew Webb became the first person to swim the English Channel. In 1920, Ethelda Bleibtrey became the first woman to win an Olympic medal (100m freestyle). In 1921, US signed a peace treaty w/Germany. In 1939, the "Wizard of Oz" opened across America. In 1944, Paris was liberated by the Allies. In 1967, George Lincoln Rockwell, founder of the American Nazi Party, was assassinated by a former member of the group. In 1970, Elton John made his first live performance in the US. In 2001, Aaliyah was killed when her plane crashed in the Bahamas. Happy Birthday, Bret Harte, Ruby Keeler, Dorothea Tanning, Leonard Bernstein, Althea Gibson. It's Liberation Day in France and Independence Day in Uruguay. MIssion: Liberate America from this ostentatious corruption.
Aug 18, 2018
August 18. In 1840, the American Society of Dental Surgeons was founded. In 1868, helium was discovered. In 1919, the Anti-Cigarette League of America was founded. In 1920, the 19th amendment was ratified, guaranteeing women the right to vote. In 1962, Ringo Starr first appeared with the Beatles. In 1963, James Meredith became the first Black man to graduate from the University of Mississippi. In 1977, Elvis Presley was buried.Happy Birthday, Virginia Dare, Merriwether Lewis, Nettie Palmer (Australian poet), Rosalynn Carter, Rafer Johnson. It's National Science Day in Thailand. Mission: Believe scientists, not spineless, unethical, thick-brained imbeciles who are shamelessly and ostentatiously greedy and corrupt.
Jul 28, 2018
July 28. In 1750, J.S. Bach died after an unsuccessful eye operation. In 1866, 18-year-old Vinnie Ream became the first and youngest female artist to receive a commission by the US government for a statue of Abe Lincoln. In 1868, the 14th Amendment was ratified establishing African-American citizenship and guaranteeing due process of law. In 1917, the Silent Parade took place in NYC protesting murders, lynchings and other violence directed towards African-Americans. In 1939, Judy Garland recorded "Over the Rainbow." In 1945, a US Army bomber crashed into the Empire State Building, killing 14. In 1982, San Francisco banned handguns. In 1987, the Beatles sued Nike for using "Revolution" in its shoe commercials. In 1996, the remains of a prehistoric man were discovered in Kennewick, WA. . In 1998, Monica Lewinsky received immunity to testify before a grand jury about her relationship with President Clinton. (Remember when the legislature actually took action when Presidents committed crimes?) Happy Birthday, Beatrix Potter, Lucy Burns, Jacqueline Kennedy, Natalie Babbitt, Fahmida Riaz. It's Liberation Day in San Marino. Mission: Shout at the parade. Silence is complicity.
Jul 21, 2018
July 21. In 1865, in the first western showdown, Wild Bill Hickok shot Davis Tutt in Missouri. In 1873, Jesse James and the James-Younger Gang pulled off the first successful train robbery in Iowa. In 1925, John Scopes was found guilty of teaching evolution in Tennessee and fined $100 (Ah, that pesky science). Happy Birthday, Hart Crane, Ernest Hemingway, Isaac Stern, Garry Trudeau, Robin Williams. It's Liberation Day in Guam and Racial Harmony Day in Singapore. Mission: Do what you have to do. P.S. A reminder: Science NOT a liberal conspiracy.
Jul 14, 2018
July 14. In 1789, the citizens of Paris stormed the Bastille sparking the French Revolution and the overturning of the French monarchy. (Quelle bonne idee!) In 1868, the tape measure was patented. In 1881, Pat Garrett shot and killed Billy the Kid. In 1933, all German political parties except the Nazi Party were outlawed. In 1943, the George Washington Carver National Monument in Diamond, Missouri, opened, becoming the first national monument honoring an African American. In 1960, Jane Goodall arrived in Tanzania to begin her legendary chimpanzee study. Happy Birthday, Kate Gordon, Gustav Klimt, Woody Guthrie, Ingmar Bergman, Polly Bergen. It's Bastille Day! Mission: This land is OUR land--not his. Storm the failing White House.
Jul 7, 2018
July 7. In 1456, Joan of Arc was acquitted of heresy 25 years after her death. In 1863, the US began its first military draft--exemptions cost $300. In 1911, the US, Great Britain, Japan and Russia banned open-water seal hunting (no doubt, the current administration has reversed this). In 1928, sliced bread was sold for the first time in Missouri. In 1946, Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini was canonized as the first American saint. In 1954, Memphis DJ Dewey Phillips became the first DJ to play Elvis ("That's All Right"). In 1967, the Monkees started a national tour with Jimi Hendrix as their opening act. In 1981, President Reagan nominated the first female Supreme Court Justice, Sandra Day O'Connor. In 1985, Boris Becker won Wimbledon at 17. In 1992, the New York Court of Appeals ruled women had the same right as men to go topless in public. In 1994, Amazon.com, Inc. was founded as "Cadabra." Happy Birthday, Nettie Stevens, Marc Chagall, Satchel Paige, Ringo Starr, Lisa Leslie. It's World Chocolate Day. Mission: Take it off. Then eat chocolate. Then smash the patriarchy.
Jun 30, 2018
June 30. In 1859, Charles Blondin became the first person to cross Niagara Falls on a tightrope. In 1908, a meteor explosion in Siberia struck people unconscious 40 miles away. In 1934, during "The Night of the Long Knives," Hitler violently purged Germany of his political rivals. In 1935, Fascists caused an uproar at the League of Nations when Haile Selassie spoke. In 1950, President Truman ordered US troops into Korea. In 1953, the first Corvette rolled off the Chevy assembly line in Flint. It sold for $3,250. In 1966, NOW (National Organization of Women) was founded. In 1971, the US Supreme Court ruled the government could not prevent the Washington Post or the New York Times from publishing the Pentagon Papers. In 1974, Mikhail Baryshnikov defected in Toronto. In 1994, Tonya Harding was stripped of her championship and banned from the US Figure Skating Association for life. Happy Birthday, Eleanor Ross Taylor, Shirley Fry Irvin, Lena Horne, Joan Murrell Owens, Vincent D'Onofrio. Mission: Purge the zombie, I mean, GOP infestation. Cause an uproar against fascists.
Jun 23, 2018
June 23. In 1829, the typographer, a precursor to the typewriter, was patented. In 1840, the province of Canada was created. In 1903, Ford sold its first car. In 1926, the first lip reading tournament was held in Philadelphia. In 1929, the Fascist government in Italy banned the use of foreign words. In 1942, Treblinka opened. In 1972, Nixon and Haldeman started discussing plans to use the CIA to obstruct the FBI's Watergate investigation. In 1980, Pham Tuan became the first Vietnamese citizen (and first Asian) in space. Happy Birthday, Vera Rubin, Rene Ricard, Janis Siegel, Slash, Joel Stein. It's Revolution Day in Egypt. Mission: Act Egyptian. And say as many foreign words as you can: Mensch, tamale, babka, schmuck, etc.
Jun 16, 2018
June 16. In 455, Rome was sacked by the Vandals. In 1884, the first roller coaster in America opened at Coney Island. Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl was published in America. In 1961, Rudolf Nureyev defected. In 1963, Valentina Tereshkova became the first female space traveler. In 1985, Willie Banks broke the world record for the triple jump. In 1993, the USPS released stamps depicting Bill Haley, Buddy Holly, Clyde McPhatter, Otis Redding, Ritchie Valens, Dinah Washington and Elvis Presley. In 2008, California began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. In 1967, the legendary Monterey Pop Festival began at which Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin rocked the freakin' house. Happy Birthday, Geronimo, Katharine Graham, Joyce Carol Oates, Laurie Metcalf, Tupac Shakur. Mission: Picture me rollin'. Then leap.
Jun 9, 2018
June 9. In 68, Nero committed suicide after quoting the Iliad, starting the civil war known as the Year of the Four Emperors. In 1915, William Jennings Bryan resigned as Woodrow Wilson's Secretary of State over the sinking of the Lusitania. (Bryan opposed American imperialism and entering WW 1.) In 1934, Donald Duck made his debut in the cartoon "The Wise Little Hen." In 1968, President Johnson declared a national day of mourning following the assassination of Bobby Kennedy on June 5. In 1973, Secretariat won the Triple Crown. In 1980, Richard Pryor was severely burned in a free-basing accident. In 1998, the Ronettes sued Phil Spector for not paying royalties for 35 years. Happy Birthday, Cole Porter, Jackie Wilson, Letty Pogrebin, Patricia Cornwell, Natalie Portman. It's Coral Triangle Day. Mission: Sink Swampy Scott Pruitt before he sinks us.
Jun 2, 2018
June 2. In 1537, Pope Paul III banned the enslavement of Indians. In 1692, Bridget Bishop became the first person tried for witchcraft in Salem, MA. She was found guilty & hanged. In 1851, Maine became the first state to enact a law prohibiting alcohol. In 1886, Grover Cleveland had the first wedding in the White House. In 1924, all American Indians were granted US citizenship. In 1953, Elizabeth was crowned queen of England. In 1997, Timothy McVeigh was convicted on 15 counts of murder & conspiracy for the Oklahoma City bombing, which killed 168 people. Happy Birthday, Karl Gjellerup, Thomas Hardy, Barbara Pym, Jerry Mathers, Cornel West. It's International Sex Workers Day. Mission: Resist the destruction of democracy in America.
May 26, 2018
May 26. In 1647, a new law banned Catholic priests from the colony of Massachusetts because the Puritans believed them to be idolatrous blasphemers destined for eternal damnation. The penalty was banishment or death for a second offense. In 1812, a political cartoon in the Boston Gazette coined the term "gerrymander" to describe oddly shaped electoral districts designed to help incumbents win re-election. In 1913, Actors' Equity Association was organized in New York. In 1942, the first female prisoners arrived at Auschwitz. In 1946, the H Bomb was patented. In 1959, the frisbee was trademarked. In 1969, John and Yoko began their second Bed-In for Peace in Montreal. In 1974, 1000 people needed medical treatment and one girl died when a crowd lost control at a David Cassidy concert in London. In 1998, the Supreme Court ruled Ellis Island was mainly in New Jersey, not New York. Happy Birthday, Tennessee Williams, Sandra Day O'Connor, Peggy Lee, Miles Davis, Sally Ride. Mission: Resist mightily the destruction of democracy in America by corrupt thugs with small brains.
May 19, 2018
May 19. In 1536, Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII’s second wife, was beheaded for adultery, treason & incest. In 1926, Mussolini announced democracy was dead and Rome became a fascist state. In 1935, Lawrence of Arabia died in a motorcycle crash. In 1962, Marilyn Monroe sang her legendary version of “Happy Birthday” to JFK. In 1974, Erno Rubik invented the Rubik’s Cube. Happy Birthday, Ho Chi Minh, Tina Strobos, Malcolm X, Nora Ephron, Grace Jones. It’s Hepatitis Testing Day. Mission: Learn from history. Resist. #fakechristians #zombieapocalypse #NRAwhores [Royal wedding fun fact: I stayed & dropped acid at the Cliveden estate (now hotel). It was Stanford’s campus in England in the early 70s.]
May 12, 2018
May 12. In 1846, the ill-fated Donner Party left Missouri for California. In 1847, William Clayton invented the odometer. In 1940, the Nazis entered France. In 1950, the American Bowling Congress abolished its white males-only restriction. In 1963, Bob Dylan walked out of dress rehearsals for “The Ed Sullivan Show” when censors told him he could not Perform “Talkin’ John Birch Paranoid Blues.” In 1965, West Germany & Israel established diplomatic relations. In 2002, President Carter went to Cuba for the first American visit in 53 years. Happy Birthday, Florence Nightingale, Dante Rossetti, Katherine Hepburn, George Carlin, Stevie Winwood. It’s Day of the Finnish Identity and International Nurses Day. Mission: Act Finnish. And take care.
May 5, 2018
May 5. In 1809, Mary Kies became the first woman awarded a patent for her technique for weaving straw with silk and thread. In 1865, the 13th Amendment was ratified, abolishing slavery in America (sort of). In 1891, Carnegie Hall had its grand opening with Tchaikovsky as guest conductor. In 1925, John Scopes, a biology teacher in Tennessee, was arrested for teaching Darwin’s theory of evolution. In 1936, Edward Ravenscroft received a patent for the screw-on bottle cap with a pour lip. In 1945, a Japanese balloon bomb exploded on Gearhart Mountain in Oregon, killing a pregnant woman and five children—the only Americans killed in the continental US during WW 2. In 1956, Jim Bailey became the first American runner to break the 4-minute mile. In 1961, Alan Shepard became the first American in space. In 1968, Buffalo Springfield performed their final concert. Happy Birthday, Nellie Bly, Helen Maud Merrill, James Beard, Stan Goldberg, Annette Bening. It’s International Midwives’ Day. Mission: Don’t fear knowledge. Science Is not a liberal conspiracy.