Friday, August 31, 2012

The rain, rain, rain came down, down, down.  All Wednesday night, and most of Thursday morning.  It was a drippy, drizzling rain, but the wind died down.  By noon, the sun was out, and it was indeed a welcome sight.

Our electricity blinked a few times, but held, which is a miracle.  We could hear a transformer blow down the street, and our neighbor's generator rumbling.

To let you know how amazing this really is, there were times, when we first moved into the neighborhood, where only two buildings in the neighborhood would lose power -- the school, and our house.  And if school was out, the electric company wouldn't even know if i didn't call.

At the grandparent's house, the generator guy finally was able to get to their place.  Their generator is fine, but water has leaked into the natural gas line.  So there is no way for them to get that taken care of until the water drains off, and the gas company will have to come out.

After waffling back and forth all morning, a "yes, we are coming up" one minute and "no, we won't" the next, Grandpa made an executive decision.  Grandma would go to my brother's house because a trip up here would take too long -- 6-8 hours, instead of the usual 1 1/2.  Then he will go get her on Saturday and bring her up to stay in the hotel.  Well, Saturday, or whenever they come up here, our freezers are cleared out some so they can bring their stuff, if it lasts that long.

Sweetie and all the people who work with him have finally been able to stand down from their high alert.  There were no leaks in the main buildings, their internet is back up, they never lost power, and he had sealed the museum so tight, even to taping the doors shut, that there was no damage at all.

While the actual storm has passed there is still rain expected.  Most of it is of the usual variety we get, the afternoon thunder storm that just moves in or pops up and is gone rather quickly.  We get those a lot in summer, but right now every tiny bit more water adds to the flooding down river, which is not good.

Our town is picking up the pieces and doing quite well, while some places are having to breach levees to drain off the water.  The storm was so slow moving that debris hasn't been picked up quickly enough to allow the water to drain.  Places that have never flooded before are under mandatory evacuation..

We haven't had regular garbage pick up, or mail delivery.  All of that has to await damage assessment, but is expected to resume today.  It won't help us much, as our next scheduled pick up day is Monday, which is Labor Day.  It's a lesson in how much we take it for granted that we will have to wait for next Thursday.

Other people have much bigger problems, so i'm not going to dwell on that.

Right now we are just thankful to the Almighty that we got through it all.

Today is:

Amitabha Buddha Day -- Tibetan and Mahayana Buddhist

Be Kind to Humankind Week:  Forgive Your Foe Friday

Blackpool Lighting -- The Promenade, Blackpool, Lancashire, England (five miles of spectacular lighting; through Nov. 4)

Day of Solidarity and Freedom -- Poland (Anniversary of the 1980 August Agreement)

Eat Outside Day -- as long as you won't pass out from the heat

Eleusinia Games -- Ancient Greek Calendar (date approximate; 3 days of games with grain as prizes)

Festal Day -- Order of the Eastern Star

Festival of Hungry Ghosts -- China (the day, during Ghost Month, that the realms of the deceased are opened and Taoists and Buddhists perform rituals to transmute the sufferings of the deceased)

Freddy Mercury's Montreaux Memorial -- Montreaux, Switzerland (annual tribute to the work of Freddie Mercury; through Sunday)

Full Moon (second full moon of August) related observances
     Adhi Nikini Full Moon Poya Day -- Sri Lanka
     Wahgaung Full Moon -- Myanmar

Invent A New Sandwich Day -- spread around the internet like good mayo; go ahead, have fun with this

Limba Noastra -- Moldova (Day of Our Language)

Independence Day -- Kyrgyzstan(1991); Malaysia (Hari Merdeka/Freedom Day, 1957); Trinidad & Tobago(1962)

International Day of Blogs and Bloggers --

Love Litigating Lawyers Day -- yes, G-d tells us to love everybody, even litigation attorneys, but He never said doing it would be easy; sponsored by Wellcat Holidays

National Trail Mix Day

Native Wild Rice Harvest -- Northern Cree, Ojibwa, and Algonkian Native Americans (celebrated during the August full moon; if there are two full moons, it is during the second)

St. Raymond Nonnatus' Day -- (Patron of babies, childbirth, children, expectant mothers, falsely accused people, infants, midwives, newborn babies, obstetricians, and pregnant women; Baltoa, Dominican Republic; against fever)

Wisconsin State Cow Chip Throw And Festival -- Prairie du Sac, WI, US (come try to break the state record of 248 feet; through tomorrow)

World Championship BBQ Goat Cook-Off -- Brady, TX, US (through tomorrow)

Birthdays Today:

Jeff Hardy, 1977
Richard Gere, 1949
Itzhak Perlman, 1945
Marva Collins, 1936
Frank Robinson, 1935
James Coburn, 1928
Buddy Hackett, 1924
Alan Jay Lerner, 1918
Arthur Godfrey, 1903
Maria Montessori, 1870

Today in History:

Traditional date upon which Ayonwentah (Haiwatha) and Deganawidah (The Great Peacemaker) assist the Iroquois tribes in establishing the Confederation of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois Confederacy, or League of Five Nations), 1142
Lewis and Clark begin their expedition, 1803
A nuts and bolts machine is patented by Micah Rugg, 1842
The first professional football game is played in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, 1895
Edison patents the Kinetograph, 1897
Mrs. Adolph Landenburg, a horse rider, debuts the split skirt, 1902
Debut of Foghorn Leghorn, 1946
Solidarity Labor Union forms in Poland, 1980
Diana, Princess of Wales, her companion Dodi Al-Fayed and driver Henri Paul die in a car crash in Paris, 1997
Stolen on August 22, 2004, Edvard Munch's famous painting The Scream is recovered in a raid by Norwegian police, 2006

Thursday, August 30, 2012

There was almost no rain here during the night, but we could see the wind picking up.

By 7:30am it was sprinkling rain, and the wind blew the front door open (#1 Son forgot to lock it, and if the bolt isn't thrown, a strong wind blows it open).  Since i hadn't been able to sleep much, i was downstairs to close it again.

This post is going to be updated through the day Wednesday, and if the updates stop, there will be a few reasons.  One is the loss of internet, and i can't get to someplace that has it.  Another would be no electricity and no generator.  Or we evacuated from the house to somewhere that i don't have a computer (very unlikely).

Since most of the trees that could actually fall on the house have come down in previous storms, we aren't too worried about that.  The more likely scene now is a tree taking out power lines.  This area was built back when they put the power lines on poles behind the houses, and there are trees all up among them.  The energy companies don't approve that sort of thing any more, so if we moved to a newer area, it would be transformers blowing instead of lines down.  Either way, these storms often leave people without power for weeks at a time.

Brother-In-Law, The Mouth, was already without power, but at least he no longer lives in a dump.  He rents a room from a long time single Christian friend who inherited his mom's 3 bedroom house and wants the extra money to help pay for upkeep.

My parents had their generator repaired on Monday, and their electricity is out and the generator refusing to come on.  It says "overcranked", whatever that means.  They now regret not coming, and if they can't get it on soon, will come up as soon as it is safe to travel.

The majority of the rain seemed to be being dumped right on the coast, as Isaac looked stuck churning up the shoreline.  That means less rain and damage here, probably, but it makes me sad.  What i hoped was that it would quickly move past us and into the areas of the country where there has been such a lack of rain.

They are the ones who need it, not those of us in the swamp.

Around mid morning, Brother-In-Law insisted Sweetie venture out and go get him and bring him here for a visit.  He came over to eat, mostly, then realized it's just as boring sitting around here as at his place, plus his power was back on.  When his power went out again, Sweetie told him if he wants to come back, he has to drive himself over, and we haven't seen him since.

Meanwhile, we were getting wind and rain, but not excessive amounts of either.  When i tried to nap, though, i couldn't sleep, as usual.  That's been the last few days, between being up at night with a kitten that needs every 3 hour feeding and unable to rest during the day.

As the afternoon wore on, "wore" was the word of the day.  The rain and wind came and went, and the radar images were stationary, it wore on the nerves.  Every sound was magnified, the kittens playing was grating, working around the house seemed pointless, and, as is usual for me, i was over the rain long before it was over.

Sweetie was, too.  He was bored, and kept trying to find "watch it now" movies on Netflix.  The problem was, he was looking in the wrong places.  After complaining that there was "nothing to watch," i got on there and looked under the kid movies.  Sure enough.  Santa Clause:  The Movie.  Labyrinth.  Five seasons of Rocky and Bullwinkle.  He was happy for the rest of the evening.

Meanwhile, i kept fielding calls from Grandma.  They couldn't get the generator going, she was getting sick from the heat, and there was no way for them to leave.  It was difficult to tell her, time after time, that the storm didn't look like it wanted to go anywhere.

Today is:

Be Kind to Humankind Week:  Thoughtful Thursday

Blue Hill Fair -- Blue Hill, ME, US (beautiful "down to earth" country fair; through Labor Day)

Chatter Champion Announced -- Fairy Calendar

Chung Yuan Festival -- China (Festival of Hungry Ghosts, the day souls of the dead are released from Purgatory to roam the Earth, with ceremonies held and offerings made to appease them; dates in some countries differ from China's)

Constitution Day -- Kazakhstan

Day of Satisfying the Hearts of the Ennead (Nine Major Gods) -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Festival of Charisteria -- Ancient Roman Calendar (a day to give thanks)

Frankenstein Day -- in honor of Mary Shelley (Interesting, when juxtaposed to the next entry.)

Huey P. Long Day -- Louisiana, US

International Day of the Disappeared -- Latin American Federation of Associations for Relatives of Detained-Disappeared

Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials -- Stamford, England (this year with a reappearance of some gates from the Olympic 3-Day event; through Sunday)

Louisiana Shrimp and Petroleum Festival and Fair -- Morgan City, LA, US (celebrating the importance of the shrimping and petroleum industries in Louisiana, it includes one of the most unique children's villages among such events and a Blessing of the Fleet; through Labor Day)

National Holistic Pet Day

National Toasted Marshmallow Day

Popular Consultation Day -- East Timor

Santa Rosa de Lima -- Peru

St. Fiacre's Day (Patron of box makers, cab drivers, costermongers, florists, gardeners, hosiers, pewterers, taxi drivers, tile makers; against barrenness, fistula, haemorrhoids, piles, sterility, syphilis, venereal disease)

Talk Intelligently Day -- holiday thought up by someone tired of non-intelligent conversations (maybe with co-workers?)

Turkey's Hellespont Swim -- over 300 participants swim the Hellespont from Europe to Asia

Victory Day -- North Cyprus; Turkey

Birthdays Today:

Cameron Diaz, 1972
Peggy Lipton, 1947
Frank "Tug" McGraw, 1944
Jean-Claude Killy, 1943
Warren Buffett, 1930
Ted Williams, 1918
Fred MacMurray, 1908
Shirley Booth, 1898
Huey P. Long, 1893
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, 1797

Today in History:

European leaders, in an attempt to end war "for all time", outlaw the crossbow, 1146
One of the largest naval battles in history, during the last decade of the ailing, Mongol-led Yuan Dynasty, begins between the forces of two Chinese rebel leaders, 1363
Capture of the entire Dutch fleet by British forces under the command of Sir Ralph Abercromby and Admiral Sir Charles Mitchell, 1799
Founding of Melbourne, Australian, 1835
Founding of Houston, Texas, 1836
Hubert Cecil Booth patents the vacuum cleaner, 1901
The Lake Pontchartrain Causeway in south Louisiana, the longest bridge over water (continuous, not aggregate) that is not also a viaduct, opens, 1956
The Hotline between the leaders of the U.S.A. and the Soviet Union goes into operation, 1963
Thurgood Marshall is confirmed as the first African American Justice of the United States Supreme Court, 1967
Guion Bluford becomes the first African American astronaut in space, 1983
NATO launches Operation Deliberate Force against Bosnian Serb forces, 1995
A commercial expedition to raise part of the sunken British luxury liner Titanic ended in failure, 1996
Harley-Davidson celebrates its 100th anniversary in Milwaukee with a parade of 10,000 motorcycles, 2003
India and Pakistan agree to release hundreds of fishermen and other civilians in each other's jails as part of their ongoing attempts to negotiate peace between their nations, 2005

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The grandparents decided not to evacuate.  We settled the kids into the hotel room, where we know they will be safe.  They were sent with cereal and milk and fruit and wheat bread and peanut butter and #2 Son's favorite, Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup.  Plus, breakfast and lunch are served daily, and there is a snack bar with some food available.  They will be comfortable and have fun playing with the game systems, and are now old enough that we can leave them there without having to worry about them playing rocket ship in the elevators and making people angry by hogging them.

As i ran to the shelter Tuesday morning to get more formula for the two babies still on the bottle, there was a sprinkling of rain.  Already? i thought, but it stopped quickly and was followed by a rainbow.

All day the sun played hide and seek; i would think the clouds had moved in to stay, and the sun would come out again.  Beyond that initial sprinkling, there was no more rain then.

By 8pm, it still wasn't even raining here.  The day had a strange feel to it, very unreal.  No panic of jammed streets as people try to flee, and the constant media coverage on the radio seemed hyped, forced, and contrived.

We were treated to a beautiful sunset, what we could see of it through the trees, as usual.  The breeze wasn't even particularly notable by then.

No, this isn't something to take lightly, but it's coming ashore as a Cat1.  Katrina was a Cat5, and was still Cat3 strength as far inland as New Orleans.

The memories are close, though.  The screams of the lady at the hotel, who was watching the first images with all of us, when she realized the home that was burning to the water line live on the national news was her own.  The images of people being found on roof tops, the Superdome roof in tatters, the call after call on the radio of people begging for information on loved ones.  Hardest were the calls from families of the first responders who weren't allowed to evacuate, when it had been two, three, or even four days without hearing anything.  My stomach still churns and i have to stop and pray when i think of it.

Fear wanted to grip me, but the sun kept peeking through, even to sunset.

We've prepared what we could, and now we wait.

Today is

According to Hoyle Day -- death anniversary of Edmond Hoyle

Be Kind to Humankind Week:  Willing to Lend a Hand Wednesday

Birthday of Hathor -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Chop Suey Day

Colombia County Fair -- Chatham, NY, US (be a kid again at the 172nd annual fair; through Sept. 3)

Day of Loose Talk -- Fairy Calendar

Feast of the Beheading of St. John the Baptist (Patron of baptism, bird dealers, converts, convulsive children, cutters, epileptics, farmers, French Canadians, lambs, monastic life, motorways, printers, tailors; over 70 cities and countries around the world; against convulsions, epilepsy, hail and hailstorms, spasms)
     Head Day -- Iceland (a weather omen day; whatever today's weather, it will stay the same for at least 3 weeks)

International Day Against Nuclear Testing -- UN

Judgment Day -- according to "The Terminator"

La Tomatina -- Buñol, Valencia, Spain (annual citywide food fight festival in which around 30,000 people take to the streets to pelt each other with tomatoes)

Lemon Juice Day

More Herbs, Less Salt Day

Runic Half-Month Rad begins (Motion)

Slovak National Uprising Anniversary -- Slovakia

Thiruvonam Festival -- KL, PY, India (ten day festival of Onam)

Birthdays Today

Michael Jackson, 1958
Elliot Gould, 1938
John McCain, 1936
Richard Attenborough, 1923
Charlie "Bird" Parker, 1920
Isabel Sanford, 1917
Ingrid Bergman, 1915
Preston Sturges, 1898
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., 1809
John Locke, 1632

Today in History

Era of Diocletian (Martyrs), the last major time of persecution for the early Christian churches, begins with Gen. Gaius Aurelius V Diocletianus Jovius becoming emperor of Rome, 284
Japan mints its first copper coins, 708
The last Incan King of Peru, Atahualpa, is executed by order of Francisco Pizarro, 1533
The first Indian "reservation" is formed by the New Jersey Legislature, 1758
Michael Faraday discovers electromagnetic induction, 1831
The United Kingdom legislates the abolition of slavery in its empire, 1833
Treaty of Nanking signing ends the First Opium War, 1842
The first motorcycle is patented in Germany by Gottlieb Daimler, 1885
The chef of a visiting Chinese Ambassador invents "chop suey" in NYC, 1896
The Goodyear tire company is founded, 1898
The Quebec Bridge collapses during construction, killing 75 workers, 1907
Ishi, considered the last Native American to make contact with European Americans, emerges from the wilderness of northeastern California, 1911
The Soviet Union tests its first atomic bomb, 1949
Speedy Gonzales makes his debut, 1953
The Beatles perform their last concert before paying fans at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, 1966
Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union suspends all activities of the Soviet Communist Party, 1991
Hurricane Katrina devastates much of the U.S. Gulf Coast, 2005

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

And Another Thing

Every time i think we have plans set, it's another thing.

Monday morning i woke up ready to run a few quick errands, pick up a few things, and get back in time for the arrival of the Sheba and her retinue.

Just as i was pulling out of the parking lot of the store, i got a call from one of my best friends.  Sherry is one brave lady, 5 years older than me, back in school for her master's degree.  She is majoring in things like disaster preparedness and responses to terrorism.  She is part of the Red Cross here, in charge of several things. and knows everyone who is in charge of emergency responses around here.

She was supposed to be in a meeting by 9am, and helping open a shelter later in the day, after her classes.  Instead, she called me at 7:30am to tell me she had just been rear ended, and could i come get her.

Her car was broken, she had just dropped her husband at work in his car, and he was trying to get a ride to her location.  Meanwhile, a serious neck injury several years ago is always compounded when she is pushed or knocked around in any way.  Her speech was already slurring.

Thanks to the traffic, it took me quite a while to get to her, but we were at the ER soon after, her husband taking care of the car, and the one of her eight children who was home and didn't have work that day ready to go get his license (he had lost his, and went to get it replaced) and then meet us.

The diagnosis was slight brain swelling with no hemorrhage, thank goodness.  She was given anti-inflammatory medication and sent home, with everyone to watch and make sure she didn't get a headache or more speech trouble.  They expect the slightly blurred vision and pressure to clear up.

When i got back home, many hours later than i expected, it was to a call from Grandpa.  Their generator has been fixed, the storm is not as bad as feared, he has consulted several experts he knows, they are not coming before today.

We still may end up with Sheba, but not for as long.

Meanwhile, schools are closing, people are battening down the hatches, and at Sweetie's work, all are on high alert.  They will be required to stay on site starting Wednesday for the duration.

#1 Son arrived home safely.  We've refilled prescriptions and had our generator do a successful test run.

Monday was a beautiful, sunny day, all the laundry got done that really desperately needed it and dried on the line.

Updates will be forthcoming as i can.

Oh, and if you want irony, look at the last item in today's History section.

Today is

Be Kind to Humankind Week:  Touch a Heart Tuesday

Birthday of Nephthys -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Crackers Over the Keyboard Day -- internet generated: are we supposed to go crackers over our keyboard, or tempt fate by eating crackers over our keyboard?

Festival for Luna -- Ancient Roman Calendar

Festival for Sol -- Ancient Roman Calendar

National Cheese Sacrifice Day (Now you know why you purchased the cheese for the sacrifice! To let it age properly before the actual sacrifice. Still doesn't answer why we sacrifice it, anyway, or to whom.)

National Cherry Turnover Day

Race Your Mouse Around the Icons Day -- Wellcat Holidays suggests this to pep yourself up as you wait for things to come up on the screen

St. Augustine of Hippo's Day (Patron of brewers, printers, theologians; Bridgeport, Connecticut; Cagayan de Oro, Philippines; Carpineto Romano, Italy; Ida, Philippines; Isleta Indian Pueblo; Kalamazoo, Michigan; Ponte Nizza, Italy; Saint Augustine, Florida; Superior, Wisconsin; Tucson, Arizona; Valletta, Malta; against sore eyes)

St. Hermes of Rome's Day (Patron of Acquapendente, Italy; Forte dei Marmi, Lucca, Italy)

Subway Day -- this date in 1965, 17-year-old Fred DeLuca opened what became the first Subway Sandwich Shop

Tvimanuor -- Old Icelandic Calendar (Double Month begins)

Birthdays Today

LeAnn Rimes, 1982
Jack Black, 1969
Jason Priestley, 1969
Shania Twain, 1965
Scott Hamilton, 1958
Ben Gazzara, 1930
Charles Boyer, 1899
Leo Tolstoy, 1828
Elizabeth Ann Seton, 1774
Johann von Goethe, 1749

Today in History

The Third Crusade begins with the siege of Acre, 1189
6,000 Jews are killed in Mainz, accused of being the cause of the plague, 1349
St. Augustine, FL, founded, making it the oldest continuously occupied European city and port in the US, 1565
Henry Hudson discovers Delaware Bay, 1609
William Herschel discovers a new moon of Saturn, 1789
The first steam locomotive in the US, the "Tom Thumb", runs from Baltimore to Ellicotts Mill, 1830
The first issue of Scientific American magazine is published, 1845
The United States takes possession of the, at this point unoccupied, Midway Atoll, 1867
Caleb Bradham renames his carbonated soft drink "Pepsi-Cola", 1898
James E. Casey begins the United Parcel Service in Seattle, WA, 1907
WEAF in NYC airs the very first radio commercial, for Queensboro Realty, at a cost of $100 for ten minutes, 1922
Toyota Motors becomes an independent company, 1937
Nippon Television broadcasts Japan's first tv show and ad, 1953
Motown releases what would be its first #1 hit, "Please Mr. Postman" by The Marvelettes, 1961
Martin Luther King, Jr. gives his I Have a Dream speech; Emily Hoffert and Janice Wylie are murdered in their Manhattan flat, prompting the events that would lead to the passing of the Miranda Rights, 1963
The National Centers for Disease Control announce a high incidence of pneumocystis and Kaposi's sarcoma in gay men; these will soon be recognized as symptoms of an immune disorder, which will be called AIDS, 1981
Iraq declares Kuwait to be its newest province, 1990
Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales divorce, 1996
An electric blackout leaves 500,000 + without power and shuts down 60% of London's Underground, 2003
Hurricane Katrina begins to make landfall on the Gulf of Mexico, 2005


Sunday, August 26, 2012


There are interlopers among us, as of today.

Dr. Born Organized Clean (a/k/a Grandpa or Doc) and Miss Prissy (a/k/a Grandma) have decided to evacuate from the New Orleans area, just to be safe, thanks to the interloper in the Gulf..

They wanted to do this well ahead of any evacuation orders.

So, being the hyperorganized person he is, Grandpa has his files in his file boxes, his one valise, his contact at the hotel saving "their" room for them, and he could restart his whole life from what he can carry in one half of an average car trunk and not even miss a beat.  

Grandma has everything but the kitchen sink.

And the dog.  Who will be here with us.

Imagine a huge, fat brown sausage with legs.  Sheba is a very overweight chocolate lab, the goofy kind that would gladly oblige you by showing you where the silver is hidden if you slip her a treat.  The kind who greets you as if she hasn't seen you in years, even if it was only 5 minutes ago.

The cats will be beside themselves.  The children are ecstatic.

Oh, and #1 Son has decided this is a good time to drive down here for a visit.

It's going to be a wild ride, and i will post as long as we have electricity or the generator holds and we continue to have online access.

Who am i fooling?  If i have to, i will camp out someplace that has internet access.

Let's be real, too; i am not calm about this.  No one wants this thing.  If it could just skip over all the Gulf states and take the rain straight to the heartland that has suffered so much from drought, it would be fine with all of us.

Today is

Araw ng mga Bayahi -- Philippines (National Heroes' Day)

Banana Lover's Day

Be Kind to Humankind Week:  Motorist Consideration Monday

Birthday of Isis -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Burning Man 2012 -- Black Rock Desert, NV, US (through Sept. 3; a radical way to celebrate the arts through desert survival and building a 50-foot statue to be burned)

Day Sacred to Consus -- Ancient Roman Calendar (god of graineries, horses, and mules)

Feast Day of Pan -- Ancient Greek Calendar (date approximate)

Feast of Incandescent Rebellion -- on lots of websites, and supposedly something celebrated in China, but no detail as to what it is really celebrating

Just Because Day -- internet generated, enjoy something ordinary you like to do, just because!

Liberation Day -- Hong Kong

Moldova National Day/Independence Day -- Moldova(1991)

National Heroes' Day -- Philippines

National Old-Time Country, Folk, and Bluegrass Music Festival -- LeMars, IA, US (largest and oldest festival devoted to rural music, arts, and crafts; through Sept. 2)

National Pots de Creme Day

Ould Lammas Fair -- Ballycastle, Co. Antrim, Ireland (claims to be Ireland's oldest festival; through tomorrow)

Petroleum Day -- on the anniversary of the opening of the first commercial oil well in Titusvilla, PA, US, in 1859, a day set aside to work on figuring out how to do without petroleum

St. Caesarius' Day (Patron against fire)

St. Monica's Day (Mother of St. Augustine; Patron of abuse victims, alcoholics, difficult marriages, disappointing children, homemakers, married women, mothers, victims of adultery and unfaithfulness, victims of verbal abuse, widows, wives; Bevilacqua, Italy; Mabini, Bohol, Philippines)

Summer Bank Holiday -- UK and much of the Commonwealth

"The Duchess" Who Wasn't Day -- birthday of Margaret Wolfe Hungerford, who wrote under the pseudonym "The Duchess" and first said, "Beaty is in the eye of the beholder" in her novel, Molly Bawn

Threethousandth Thnork of the Year -- Fairy Calendar

Umhlanga -- Swaziland (Reed Dance for the Zulu King; a fascinating week long ritual with beautiful costumes, dancing and singing, culminating as well as in a speech in which the King addresses the people, on Sept. 3)

Volturnalia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (god of water)

Birthdays Today

Paul "Pee-wee Herman" Reubens, 1952
Barbara Bach, 1947
Tuesday Weld, 1943
Martha Raye, 1916
Mother Teresa, 1910
Lyndon B. Johnson, 1908
C.S. Forester, 1899
Samuel Goldwyn, 1882

Today in History

The Persian invasion of Greece is halted with Greek victories in two separate battles, BC479
Koreans battle and prevent Japanese invasion, 663
The first unmanned hydrogen balloon flight reaching 900 m altitude, 1783
Petroleum is discovered in Titusville, Pennsylvania leading to the world's first commercially successful oil well, 1859
The shortest war in world history occurs from 09:00 to 09:45 between the United Kingdom and Zanzibar, 1896
Edgar Rice Burroughs' publishes Tarzan of the Apes, 1912
First flight of the turbojet-powered Heinkel He 178, the world's first jet aircraft, 1939
The Mariner 2 unmanned space mission is launched to Venus by NASA, 1962
Turkish military diplomat Colonel Atilla Altikat is shot and killed in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 1982
The Rainbow Bridge, connecting Tokyo's Shibaura and the island of Odaiba, is completed, 1993
Mars makes its closest approach to Earth in nearly 60,000 years, 2003

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Breaking news, i said.  Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, has just died.

"Oh, how sad," Little Girl noted, while Bigger Girl chimed in with "What did he die of?"

"I heard he had heart surgery a few weeks back," Sweetie said.

Yes, he did, and they don't note a cause of death; most likely either heart disease or complications from the surgery.

"How old was he?" Little Girl inquired.

He was 82.

"Oh, that's not old!" she said.

No, but average for men in this country is about 78, i think, so he did pretty well.

"Only 78?  How old is Grandpa?" Little Girl wanted to know.

"He's 75," Bigger Girl piped up before i could answer.

Yes, he will be 76 this November.

"Well, he better not go any time soon.  If he dies. I'll kill him!" Little Girl grinned at me.

They do love their Grandpa. 

Rest in Peace, Neil Armstrong.

Today is:

Be Kind to Humankind Week:  Sacrifice Our Wants for Other's Needs Sunday

Birthday of Set -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

First Thnork of the Year -- Fairy Calendar

Heroes Day -- Namibia

Ilmatar Day -- Finland (Water Mother, goddess of the heavens)

Make Your Own Luck Day -- for those who refuse to sit around and wait for it

National Cherry Popsicle Day

National Day of Repentance -- Papua New Guinea

National Dog Day -- sponsored by the Animal Miracle Foundation

Notting Hill Carnival -- Notting Hill, London, UK (through tomorrow, the 2nd largest street festival in the world)

Pony Express Festival -- Hollenberg Pony Express Station, Hanver, KS, US (reenacting life in the 1860's, including a real Pony Express ride)

St. Adrian of Nicodemia's Day (Patron of butchers, prison guards, soldiers; against plague)

Women's Equality Day -- US (commemorates Women's Suffrage)

Yoshida no Hi Matsuri -- Yoshida, Japan (fest to mark the end of Mt. Fuji climbing season; through tomorrow)

Birthdays Today:

Macaulay Culkin, 1980
Branford Marsalis, 1960
Ben Bradlee, 1921
Mother Teresa, 1910
Christopher Isherwood, 1904
Peggy Guggenheim, 1898
Albert "Bertie" von Saksen-Coburg-Gotha, husband of queen Victoria, 1819
Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, 1743

Today in History:

Michelangelo is commissioned to carve the Pieta, 1498
The Pennsylvania Ministerium, the first Lutheran denomination in North America, is founded in Philidelphia, 1748
John Fitch is granted a US patent for his working steamboat, 1791
Charles Thurber patents a typewriter, 1843
The first news dispatch by telegraph is made, 1858
Major eruption of Krakatoa, 36,000 dead, 1883
19th Amendment to the US Constitution, granting women the vote, takes effect, 1920
The first Major League Baseball game is telecast, 1939
The USSR announces the first successful test of an ICBM, 1957
The Charter of the French Language is adopted by the National Assembly of Quebec, 1977
John Paul I is elected Pope, 1978
The agreement on how to divide the Czech Republic and Slovakia is signed, 1992
Russia unilaterally recognizes the independence of the former Georgian breakaway republics Abkhazia and South Ossetia, 2008

Smile! It's Healthy

Sweetie walked into the room as Bigger Girl and i were discussing Cajun French.

"Would the people in Paris understand it if someone went there who speaks it?" he asked.

"Maybe some," Bigger Girl responded.

Cajun French, i explained, is what i've heard called "a delightful mixture of French and Spanish."

That comment led to a discussion about how syncretic some languages are, and how English so easily adopts words from other languages.

"There are no pure languages, and no one can find the original one, although they know some things about it.  I read about that online," Bigger Girl added.

"Did I ever tell you the story of my friend Pitre?  We went to high school together, and he spoke fluent Cajun French," Sweetie said.

"What about him, Dad?"

"Well, being  Cajun, he was Catholic, of course, but one day he was approached out on the beach by these Protestants who preach out there during spring break.  They were Pentecostals, so they believed in speaking in tongues.  Well, he was a real prankster, and knew they were Pentecostal, and got them to pray with him, and then he started spouting stuff in Cajun.  He said they started yelling, 'He's got it, he's been baptized by the Holy Spirit' and he just kept talking Cajun.  Finally he started speaking English again, and he left, and he said he never laughed so hard in his life once he got where they couldn't see him.  He really had them going."

Bigger Girl and i were grinning over the story, and then i added my bit of fun to the evening by sharing this website with them.

Have a smiley Saturday, everyone!

Today is

Bartletide -- West Witton, Yorkshire Dales, UK (a/k/a Burning Bartle, a ceremony in which a straw effigy of Owd Bartle, a sheep theif of yore, is paraded, then burned after sunset, as a warning to the light fingered)

Be Kind to Humankind Week: Speak Kind Words Saturday

Birthday of Horus -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

De Ducasse -- Ath, Belgium (Giants of Ath Festival, celebration in which "Goliath" marries, then goes to do battle with David; through tomorrow)

Discovery of the Runes/Odin's Ordeal ends -- Ancient Norse Calendar

Ferret Buckeye Bash -- Colombus, OH, US (ferret show)

Green Corn Pow Wow -- Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation (through tomorrow, Pow Wow and presentations of Native heritage to all)

Independence Day -- Uruguay(1825)

International Bat Night -- through tomorrow, go enjoy these wonderful creatures; or

Kiss and Make Up Day

Koenji Awa Odori Festival -- Suginami City, Tokyo, Japan (thousands dance in the streets, through tomorrow)

National Banana Split Day -- some sites have it as Aug. 10

National Second-Hand Wardrobe Day -- pull out the hand-me-downs or thrift store purchases and wear them with pride!

Opiconsivia -- Ancient Roman Calendar, Vestal Virgin Festival in honor of Ops

Rumpleskunkskin's Bride Escapes to Heewigoland Anniversary -- Fairy Calendar (Fairy celebration, Goblins get grumpy)

Saddleworth Rushcart -- Saddleworth, West Yorkshire, England (similar to rushbearing, a cart goes through the area with Morris men, the bounds of the area are checked for enemy breaches, rushes are gathered to line the church floor, and there is celebrating, gurning, wrestling, singing, and a final procession tomorrow to St. Chad's Church at Uppermill for the 11am service)

Sheep Market Fair -- Ho, Denmark (annual sheep market and family fair)

Sidewalk Art Festival -- Portland, ME, US

Soldier's Day -- Brazil

St. Genesius of Arles' Day (Patron of notaries, secretaries; against chilblains, scurf)

St. Genesius of Rome's Day (Patron of actors, attorneys, barristers, clowns, comedians, comediennes, comics, converts, dancers, epileptics, lawyers, musicians, printers, stenographers and torture victims)

St. Louis, King of France's Day (King Louis IX; Patron of barbers, bridegrooms, builders, button makers, construction workers, Crusaders, difficult marriages, distillers, embroiderers, French monarchs, grooms, haberdashers, hairdressers, hair stylists, kings, masons, needle workers, parenthood, parents of large families, passementiers, prisoners, sculptors, sick people, soldiers, stone masons, stonecutters, tertiaries, trimming makers; Québec, Québec; Saint Louis, Missouri; Blois, France; Carthage, Tunisia; La Rochelle, France; New Orleans, Louisiana; Oran, Algeria; Saint-Louis, Haut-Rhin, France; Saint Louis, Missouri;`Versailles, France; Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Louis; against the death of children)

Tara Puja -- Tibetan Buddhist fast

Usuki Stone Buddhas Fire Festival -- Usuki, Japan (torchlight at twilight lights the regions mysterious Buddha statues)

Whiskey Sour Day

Birthdays Today

Claudia Schiffer, 1970
Rachael Ray, 1968
Billy Ray Cyrus, 1961
Ann Archer, 1947
Regis Philbin, 1933
Sean Connery, 1930
Leonard Bernstein, 1918
Walt Kelly, 1913
Ruby Keeler, 1909
Clara Bow, 1905
Hans Adolf Krebs, 1900
Ludwig II, "Mad King" of Bavaria, 1845
Allan Pinkerton, 1819
Ivan the Terrible, 1530

Today in History

The Council of Nicaea ends with the adoption of the Nicene Creed, 325
The Children's Crusaders under Nicholas reach Genoa, 1212
The Honourable Artillery Company, the oldest surviving regiment in the British Army, and the second most senior, is formed, 1537
Galileo demonstrates his first telescope to Venetian lawmakers, 1609
Hundreds of French settlers arrive in New Orleans, which had been founded only a few months before, marking its true beginnings as a city, not just an outpost, 1718
James Cook begins his first voyage, 1768
Alice Meynell becomes the first female jockey, in England, 1804
British forces destroy the Library of Congress, which then contained about 3,000 books, 1814
The New York Times perpetrates the Great Moon Hoax, 1835
Kitasato Shibasaburo discovers the infectious agent of the bubonic plague and publishes his findings in The Lancet, 1894
The United States National Park Service is created, 1916
US Army officer and missionary John Birch is killed by the armed supporters of the Communist Party of China, considered by some as the first victim of the Cold War, 1945
Zimbabwe joins the United Nations, 1980
Voyager 2 spacecraft makes its closest approach to Saturn, 1981
Tadeusz Mazowiecki is chosen as the first non-communist Prime Minister in Central and Eastern Europe, 1989
Mayumi Moriyama becomes Japan's first female cabinet secretary, 1989
The Tli Cho land claims agreement is signed between the Dogrib First Nations and the Canadian federal government in Rae-Edzo (now called Behchoko), 2003

Friday, August 24, 2012

Photo-Finish Friday

Our 4-week-old kitten, the only one of his litter, and his stuffie, Wolf.  He loves his stuffie.

Photo-Finish Friday is the brainchild of Leah at The Goat's Lunch Pail.

Today is:

Birthday of Osiris -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Festival for Luna -- Ancient Roman Calendar

Festival of Mania -- Ancient Roman Calendar (to placate the Manes, a day when the Mundus, the portal to the afterlife, is open and the dead are free to roam)

Fiesta La Ballona -- Culver City, CA, US (a tradition since 1951; through Sunday)

Flag Day -- Liberia

Flitting Appreciation Day -- another "holiday" with no particular reason except that someone who enjoys flitting around wanted to celebrate it

Gangara Fire Festival -- Atago Shrine, Ikeda City, Japan

Independence Day -- Ukraine

International Day Against Intolerance, Discrimination and Violence Based on Musical Preference, Lifestyle, and Dress Code -- sponsored by the Romanian Humanist Association and the Sophie Lancaster Foundation

Knife Day -- internet generated, but how would we cook without them?  today remember how much you do each day with a good kitchen knife.

Mexican Fiesta International -- Milwaukee, WI, US (fun, food, mariachi, and a jalapeno eating contest for the strong of stomach; through Sunday)

Morden Corn and Apple Festival -- Morden, MB, Canada (fun for all, lots of corn and apple cider; through Sunday)

National Peach Pie Day

National Waffle Day

St. Bartholomew's Day (Patron of bookbinders, butchers, cobblers, Florentine cheese merchants, Florentine salt merchants, leather workers,plasterers, shoemakers, tanners, trappers, whiteners; Armenia; Borgo Tossignano, Italy; Boves, Italy; Carpineto dell Nora, Italy; Civitella in Val di Chiana, Italy; Frankfurt am Main, Germany; Gambatesa, Italy; Gharghur, Malta; Lipari, Sicily, Italy; Maastricht, Netherlands; Magalang, Philippines; Plzen, Czech Republic; Potosí, Bolivia; Salzano, Italy; Trino, Italy; against nervous diseases, neurological diseases, and twitching) related observance
     Schaferlauf -- Markgroeningen, Germany (Festival to honor St. Bartholomew, Patron of Herdsmen, on this day or the weekend after; includes traditional barefoot race by children of active shepherds and water carrying contests; also now has a music festival)

St. Owen of Rouen's Day (Patron of the deaf; against deafness)

Vesuvius Day

Waratambar -- New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea (a native thanksgiving)

William Wilberforce Day -- Wilberforce University, Wilberforce, OH, US (birth anniversary of founder, in 1759)

Birthday's Today:

Rupert Grint, 1988
Marlee Matlin, 1965
Cal Ripken, Jr., 1962
Steve Guttenberg, 1958
Yasser Arafat, 1929
Hal Smith, 1916
Duke Paoa Kahanamoku, 1890
Daniel Gooch, 1816
William Wilberforce, 1759

Today in History:

The eruption of Mt. Vesuvius buries Pompeii and Herculaneum, 15,000 die, 79
The Visigoths under Aleric begin to pillage Rome, 410
King John of England, a/k/a Humpty Dumpty for having to issue the first Magna Carta, marries Isabella of Angoileme, 1200
Six thousand Jews are killed in Mainz after being blamed for the bubonic plague, 1349
The printing of the Gutenberg Bible is completed, 1456
The first English convoy lands at Surat, India, 1608
Calcutta, India is founded, 1690
British troops invade Washington, D.C. and burn down the White House and several other buildings, 1814
Charles Darwin is asked to travel on HMS Beagle, 1831
The Panic of 1857 begins, touching off one of the most severe economic crises in US history (Which just goes to show you, the more things change, the more they stay the same), 1857
Cornelius Swarthout patents the waffle iron, 1869
The Wolseley Expedition reaches Manitoba to end the Red River
Rebellion, 1870
Captain Matthew Webb became first person to swim English Channel, 1875
Thomas Edison patents the motion picture camera, 1891
Workers start pouring concrete for the Panama Canal, 1909
Amelia Earhart becomes the first woman to fly non-stop across the North American continent, 1932
The treaty creating NATO goes into effect, 1949
France explodes its first hydrogen bomb, thus becoming the world's fifth nuclear power, 1968
Voyager 2 (launched 1977) reaches Neptune, 1989
Mikhail Gorbachev resigns as head of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, 1991
The first RFID human implantation is tested in the UK, 1998
Argon fluorohydride, the first Argon compound ever known, is discovered at the University of Helsinki, 2000
The International Astronomical Union (IAU) redefines the term "planet" such that Pluto is considered a Dwarf Planet, 2006

Thursday, August 23, 2012


It should have been obvious to me, after the lousy night's sleep i had, that the day was going to be trouble.

For some reason, it did not register.

Thus i went ahead with my plan to go get my oil changed before the flashing light telling me it was past time decided to morph into something more dangerous, like an inability to move the vehicle.

It was an error i would regret for the next few hours.

Getting where i wanted to go was very easy, and only took about the usual amount of time.

Going back home would be much trickier, due to the accident.  The accident on the interstate.  The accident i didn't know about when i left the house.

One tanker truck, carrying isobutane.  One car rear ends it in every early morning traffic, shearing off the valves that are used to get the inflammable liquid into and out of the tanker -- because it was built over 40 years ago, before a crash guard was required that protects the valves.  Thus there is no way to empty this thing, and it is a huge bomb sitting on the interstate.

That means the interstate is shut in both directions, for the entire day.

Thus, Carmageddon.  Traffic in proportions not seen since Hurricane Gustav.  Every side street bleeding off of that portion of the interstate stopped dead.

What would usually be a ten minute drive home turned into a two and a half hour ordeal, in which i had to circle around most of the city.

During my time out, i called the children's teacher and told her that they would not be coming back to school until the interstate was cleared.  She understood.  After all, it would only take me the normal time to get them out there, but i would probably not get back home before time to turn around and go get them.  She gave me their assignments over the phone, and knows they will be back when i can get them there.

Bigger Girl and i also discussed her getting to class.  It was very simple, i told her, she would have to take her lunch and dinner with her, and any snacks she might want, head down there to get her books, and then stay until her last evening class was over.  Complicating this was the fact that her phone up and quit working two days ago, but since i haven't been able to get her another, she would just have to do what we did before mobile phones and wing it on the way home.  Getting there wouldn't be a problem, it was early and that direction wasn't too crowded yet.  The return trip, since it's straight down that same one road,  would involve just sitting in traffic, depending on how the day went.

By the time i got home, i was so glad i didn't want to leave the house again, and kept fielding calls from Sweetie about how he would get home in the evening.  Turned out to be easy, he got off work early, because the State Police were asking people to get off the roads and home as fast as possible, and stay there.  His boss actually let them all get out early, which is a miracle when you consider that the last two hurricanes, he required them to go to work even though the State Police had shut down the University.

Unfortunately, about halfway through the afternoon, i remembered that i am assisting the shelter caretaker on Wednesdays until another assistant can be found.  Fortunately, they allowed me to go in very early, i took Little Girl and #2 Son, we worked so fast we were done in under 45 minutes, and i was able to access a part of the interstate that was flowing during that time but which would be awful later on.

We were gone about an hour, and i pray i don't have to leave until the ordeal is over.  As i like to tell people, i am a teetotaler, but bad traffic like this is the one thing that can turn me into a drinking woman.

After consultation with every expert around the country they could talk to, who all scratched their heads and had no clue what else to do since you can't offload the thing, it was decided to evacuate homes within a certain distance and try to do a controlled vent and burn.

All i know is, it's going to be a long night for a lot of people. 

Edited this morning to add:  the evacuation didn't extend quite to us.  They got people out who live within 500 yards of the accident, we are about 1,000 yards from there.  We had permission to take our bottle kittens to the cat shelter and spend the night there if we needed to.

The thing was blown just before midnight.  #2 Son has pictures of the flames, taller that the buildings on the other side of the creek and pond.  They expect the interstates to be open again later in the morning.

Today is

Black Ribbon Day -- Estonia; Latvia; Lithuania

European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism -- European Union

Flag Day -- Ukraine

Great Feast of the Netjeru (all gods and goddesses) -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Hotter 'n H*ll Hundred Bike Race -- Wichita Falls, TX, US (cyclists of all ages in the largest sanctioned century ride in the US, in the Texas summer heat; through Sunday)

International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and Its Abolition

National Spongecake Day

Nemeseia -- Ancient Greek Calendar (local festival to the goddess Nemesis, date approximate)

Prairie Village Jamboree -- Prairie Village, Madison, SD, US (keeping the old prairie life heritage alive for new generations; through Sunday)

Qi Xi -- China (Double Seven or Chinese Valentine's Day, the 7th day of the 7th moon, the day all the magpies in the world form a bridge so the cowherd and the weaver can meet across the Milky Way, which separates them.)

Ride the Wind Day -- internet generated, a day to get out and ride with the wind in your hair, in whatever transport you choose, or fly a kite

Sento Kuyo -- Nenbutsu-Ji Temple, Adashino, Kyoto, Japan (memorial service for graves that no longer have families to tend them; through tomorrow)

St. Eoghan's Day (Patron of Derry, Ireland)

St. Rose of Lima's Day (Patron of embroiderers, florists, gardeners, needle workers, people ridiculed for piety; The Americas/The New World, especially Central and South America, Latin America, Peru, and the West Indies; Lima, Peru; Philippines, Santa Rosa, CA, US; Villareal Samar, Philippines; against vanity)

Valentino Memorial Service -- Hollywood Cathedral Museum, Hollywood Forever Cemetary, Los Angeles, CA, US (annually since 1927, a memorial service celebrating Rudolph Valentino on the anniversary of his death)

Vertumnalia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (in honor of Vertumnus and Pomona)

Vulcanalia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (festival to the god of fire)

Watermelon Festival -- Winterville, NC, US (sticky fun; through Saturday)

Zucchini Festival -- Obetz, OH, US (family fun and zucchini; through Sunday)

Birthdays Today:

Kobe Bryant, 1978
River Phoenix, 1970
Queen Noor of Jordan, 1951
Shelley Long, 1949
Barbara Eden, 1934
Mark Russel, 1932
Vera Miles, 1930
Gene Kelly, 1912
Louis XVI, 1754

Today in History:

On the feast of Vulcan, Roman god of fire, Mt. Vesuvius begins to rumble, 79
Visigoths storm Rome, 410
Edward I executes William Wallace, Scottish patriot, for high treason, 1305
French explorer Jacques Cartier lands near Quebec City in his third voyage to Canada, 1541
Rabbi Joseph Caro completes his commentary of Tur Code, 1542
The St. Bartholomew's Day massacre of Huguenots in Paris begins, 1572
The first one-way streets open in London, 1617
Steamship service begins on the Great Lakes, 1818
Great Britain abolishes slavery in the colonies, 700,000 slaves are freed, 1833
Automobile tire chain is patented, 1904
The World Council of Churches is formed, 1948
Lunar Orbiter I takes the first picture of Earth from the Moon's orbit, 1966
Bryan Allan, in a Gossamer Condor, completes the first man-powered flight of one mile, 1977
Soviet dancer Alexander Godunov defects to the US, 1979
Hans Tiedge, top counter-spy of West Germany, defects to East Germany, 1985
Hungary opens the Iron Curtain and allows thousands of East Germans through to West Germany, 1989
West Germany and East Germany announce that they will unite on Oct. 3, 1990
The remains of Anastasia and Alexei, rumored to have survived the 1917 assassination of the Russian Czar and his family, are found, 2007
Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi is overthrown, 2011

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

"Mom, I really think I'm going to like college!"

Bigger Girl came in with a smile and dropped her books.

Glad to hear it, i told her.

"Yes, it's going to be interesting.  And I like all of my instructors, except maybe the theater teacher.  She spent ten minutes making sure we would all call her "Doctor" and that we could pronounce her name right."

There's one in every bunch, i told her.

"She wasn't happy.  She said she had only been assigned the class 45 minutes before it started.  The guy who was supposed to teach it got reassigned.  I mean, that's got to be a pain, but still.  I do like Mr. Nero and Mr. Tomas.  They're going to be great.  My math teacher though, wow!

What about your math teacher.

"She wants a schedule from us.  A schedule of when we will be going for private tutoring at the student center, and of what times we will be studying at home!  So I went to schedule it, and they said they don't schedule tutoring, it's come in and the next available tutor for that subject takes you.  When I said the teacher wanted me to schedule it, the lady asked, 'Was that Ms. Stokes?' and I said yes, and she said, 'Don't worry about it, just put the time you will be coming on her silly schedule you have to turn in and show up at that time, and someone will be able to take you during that hour.'"

She sounds like a science/math person, extremely precise.

"She is, but if she's a good teacher, I don't care.  I'll write it all up.  Oh, and the English teacher, Mr. Nero, wants me to get both English books, not just one or the other like the lady at textbook rental said.  So I'll go tomorrow and get them.  Then Mr. Tomas said they rented me the wrong history book!  I need the one that gives you a code for the internet site.  Or I can buy it used and just pay the $40 fee for the access."

There's always a catch, isn't there?

"Yes, a snafu somewhere, always.  Meanwhile, I'm glad school has started, because it's something to keep my mind off missing the Olympics."

That's good, i'm glad your education is paying off already, i noted drily.

"Only a year and a half, though, to the Winter Olympics.  I can't wait.  That's my once every four year fix of men in tights sliding around on ice!"

At least she knows what's important.

Today is:

American Quilter's Society Quilt Exposition -- Grand Rapids, MI, US (through the 25th)

America's Cup Day -- the first America's Cup was won this date in 1851 by the yacht America

Be an Angel Day -- Sponsored by Angel Heights Healing Center, encouraging people to be a blessing and perform an act of service for someone

Corn Palace Festival -- Mitchell, SD, US (harvest celebration and redecoration of the world's only Corn Palace; through the 26th)

Eat a Peach Day

Feast of the Queenship of Mary & Immaculate Heart of Mary -- Catholic Christians

Flag Day -- Russia

Hoodie Hoo Day, Southern Hemisphere -- Wellcat Holidays says to go outside at noon and call "Hoodie Hoo" to chase away winter and call spring

National Spumoni Day (I don't think I've had really great spumoni since I went to Italy all those years ago -- nothing like getting things at the source.)

Rumpleskunkskin's Wedding Anniversary -- Fairy Calendar (Goblin celebration)

St. Symphorian's Day (Patron of children, students; Autun, France; against eye problems, syphilis)

Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration -- Shelbyville, TN, US (an 11-day festival celebrating the world famous Tennessee Walking Horse and crowning this year's World Grand Champion)

Birthdays Today:

Cindy Williams, 1947
Valerie Harper, 1940
Carl Yastrzemski, 1939
Norman Schwarzkopf, 1934
Ray Bradbury, 1920
John Lee Hooker, 1917
George Herriman, 1880
Dorothy Parker, 1893
Claude Debussy, 1862
Samuel Pierpont Langley, 1834
Virginia Clemm Poe, 1822
St. Anthony of Padua, 1195

Today in History:

St. Columba reports seeing a monster in Loch Ness, 565
The Battle of Bosworth Field, in which King Richard III is killed and his forces defeated by Henry VII, 1485
Madras, India (now called Chennai) is founded by the British East India company on land purchased from the local Nayak rulers, 1639
Jacob Barsimon, the first Jewish immigrant to what would become US territory, arrives in New Amsterdam/Manhattan, 1654
The Newport, RI newspaper, Mercury, becomes the first in the US to hire a female editor, Ann Franklin, 1762
Austria launches pilotless balloons against the Italian city of Venice, thus staging the first air raid in history, 1849
Gold discovered in Australia, 1851
12 nations sign the First Geneva Convention and the Red Cross is formed, 1864
William Shepphard patents the first liquid soap, 1885
Founding of the Cadillac Motor Company, 1902
President Theodore Roosevelt becomes the first US chief executive to ride in an automobile, 1902
The first Victor Victrola is manufactured, 1906
The Mona Lisa is stolen, 1911 (recovered 2 years later)
Althea Gibson becomes the first black competitor in international tennis, 1950
Pope Paul VI arrives in Bogota, Colombia, becoming the first pope to visit Latin America, 1968
Rhodesia is expelled by the IOC for its racist policies, 1972
The first ring of Neptune is discovered, 1989
A version of The Scream and Madonna, two paintings by Edvard Munch, are stolen at gunpoint from a museum in Oslo, Norway, 2004
The Storm botnet, a botnet created by the Storm Worm, sends out a record 57 million e-mails in one day, 2007

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

We interrupt the regularly scheduled blog post... say farewell to Phyllis Diller.

Her housecleaning quotes were my favorites:

"Housework!  You make the beds, you do the dishes, and then 6 months later you have to do it over again "

 "Housework can't kill you, but why take a chance?"

"If your house is really a mess and a stranger comes to the door greet him with, "Who could have done this? we have no enemies."

"Best way to get rid of kitchen odors: Eat out."

"My cooking is so bad my kids thought Thanksgiving was to commemorate Pearl Harbor."

"I'm eighteen years behind in my ironing."

"I buried a lot of my ironing in the back yard."

"Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing is like shoveling the sidewalk before it
stops snowing."

"If your children write their names in the dust on the furniture, don't let them put the year."

"Keep at least one window pane clean to check the weather. Once when I didn't do this I sent the kids off with umbrellas for six weeks straight."

"No matter what time your guests arrive, pretend they're early, so naturally you're not ready."

My favorite, which i could not find in its entirety online is the one where she said something akin to:  if someone comes over to your home in the afternoon, and you are still in your house coat, keep a couple of get well cards handy and put them on the mantle and tell them "Sorry I'm not dressed, but as you can see, I've been sick!"

Rest in peace, Ms. Diller.

Today is:

Aquino Day -- Philippines

Buhe -- Ethiopian Orthodox Church (Christian remembrance of the Transfiguration.)

Cadillac Day -- the first Caddy was built this day in 1902

Consualia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (festival of Consus, god of grain and silos)

Crazy Day -- go crazy, in honor of Patsy Cline recording Willie Nelson's song Crazy on this date in 1961

Fete de la Jeunesse -- Morocco; Western Sahara (Birthday of HM Mohammed VI)

Gospel Day -- Kosrae, Micronesia

National Pecan Torte Day

National Senior Citizen's Day

Poet's Day

St. Pius X's Day (Patron of first communicants, pilgrims; Des Moines, Iowa, US; Great Falls-Billings, Montana, US; Kottoyam, India; Santa Lucija, Malta; Springfield-Cape Girardeau, MO, US; Zamboanga, Philippines)

Youth Day/King Mohammed VI's Birthday -- Morocco

Anniversaries Today

Seminole Tribe of Native Americans is legally established and recognized, 1957
Hawai'i becomes the 50th US state, 1959

Birthdays Today

Ozma, Queen of Oz, year unconfirmed
Jackie DeShannon, 1944
Clarence Williams III, 1939
Kenny Rogers, 1938
Wilt Chamberlain, 1936
Shimon Peres, 1923
Friz Freleng, 1906
Count Basie, 1904
William Murdoch, 1754
Francis de Sales, 1567

Today in History

Minamoto Yoritomo becomes Seii Tai Shogun and therefore de facto ruler of Japan, 1192
Pueblo Indians capture Santa Fe from Spanish during the Pueblo Revolt, 1680
James Cook formally claims eastern Australia for Great Britain, naming it New South Wales, 1770
The Nat Turner slave revolt in Virginia leaves 55 dead, 1831
Mighty Casey (Dan Casey) is struck out! In a game against the N.Y. Giants, 1887
William S Burroghs patents the adding machine, 1888
Oldsmobile is incorporated as a division of General Motors Corp., 1897
Arthur Rose Eldred becomes the first Boy Scout to earn the rank of Eagle Scout, 1912
Physicist Harry K. Daghlian, Jr. is fatally irradiated in a criticality incident during an experiment with the Demon core at Los Alamos National Laboratory, 1945
James Anderson, Jr., posthumously receives the first Medal of Honor to be awarded to an African American U.S. Marine, 1968
Philippine opposition leader Benigno Aquino, Jr. is assassinated at the Manila International Airport, 1983
Carbon dioxide gas erupts from volcanic Lake Nyos in Cameroon, killing up to 1,800 people within a 20-kilometer range, 1986
Coup attempt against Mikhail Gorbachev collapses, 1991
The Red Cross announces the famine in Tajikistan and calls for international aid there and in Uzbekistan, 2001
Hurricane Dean becomes the first storm to make landfall as a Catagory 5 since Hurricane Andrew, 2007

Monday, August 20, 2012

We Are Not Amused.

We, the Senior Ranking Cats is this household, are not amused.

While the human who distributes food has all of you thinking it is wonderful to be bottle raising little monsters, we know it is different.  We know the truth of the matter.

She calls them kittens, and has trained everyone in the house to cater to them.  This is not the wonderful thing she would have you think.

They are messy.  They are messy on the floor.  We will not go any further than to say that about the subject, as we find it beneath us to discuss what we have to avoid stepping in.

They are gluttons, yelling their fool heads off for food at all hours, instead of simply and quietly planning a sneak attack of tripping someone next to an empty food bowl.

They are, once they actually become partially civilized and somewhat better behaved, then gluttons for our food, emptying our bowls much more quickly than we would like.  This forces us to eat faster to keep up and get our share, which is not good for our waistlines.

They are also young, which we find insufferable.

We are not going to suffer it any more, or not for long.  Now that we have figured out how to type, albeit slowly (curse not having opposable thumbs), we will further figure out how to take over the whole house!

Right after our lunch, and a nap, of course.

Today is:

Birth of the White Buffalo -- Lakota Native American rituals honoring the birth of the White Buffalo in 1994, signaling the return of the White Buffalo Woman (manifestation of the Star Goddess Wohpe), who gave them the sacred peace pipe

Boil Over Thursday -- Fairy Calendar (sometimes on Thursday, most often not)

Feast of Asma -- Baha'i

Independence From USSR Day -- Estonia

Lemonade Day

Moon's Birthday -- Aztec Calendar (according to some websites, but i haven't confirmed it; if you want something to celebrate, this is as good as anything else)

National Chocolate Pecan Pie Day

National Radio Day -- internet generated toast to the power of radio

Revolution Day -- Western Sahara

Revolution of the King and People -- Morocco

St. Bernard of Clairvaux's Day (Patron of bees and beekeepers, candle makers, wax refiners; Burgundy, France; Cistercians; Gibralter; Queens College, Cambridge, England; Speyer Cathedral)

Stop and Smell Your Dog Day -- and, depending on the results, maybe even Give Your Dog a Bath Day

St. Stephen's Festival --  Budapest, Hungary (National Day)

Thoth orders the healing of the Eye of Horus -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Virtual Worlds Day -- internet generated, as well it should be

Yukon Territory Day -- YT, Canada

Birthdays Today:

Al Roker, 1954
Connie Chung, 1946
Jacqueline Susann, 1921
Edgar Guest, 1881
H.P. Lovecraft, 1880
Benjamin Harrison, 1833
Bernardo O'Higgins, 1776

Today in History:

Hungary is established as a kingdom by Stephen I, 1000
The Dutch bring the first African slaves to the colony of Jamestown, VA, 1619
The Spanish establish the presidio that will be the town of Tuscon, Arizona, 1775
The Lewis and Clark "Corps of Discovery", exploring the Louisiana Purchase, suffers its only death when sergeant Charles Floyd dies, apparently from acute appendicitis 1804
Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture" debuts in Moscow, 1882
Rotary Dial telephone is patented, 1896
The Big Blowup, a huge fire in the Northwestern US, burns 3 million acres, 1910
Adolphe Pegoud makes the first parachute jump from an airplane, 1913
Stainless steel is first cast, 1913
WJM,8Mk, Detroit, becomes the first commercial radio station to start daily broadcasting, 1920
UK becomes the first to use radar, 1940
Plutonium's weight determined, 1942
Launch of Voyager 2, 1977
George and Joy Adamson, the Born Free conservationists, are gunned down by poachers, 1989
The Oslo Peace Accords are signed in Norway, 1993
The Supreme Court of Canada rules that Quebec may not secede from Canada without federal government approval, 1998

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Hammer It Home

 "Hey, Mom, look what I bought!"  

Since it was #2 Son speaking, i feared the worst, and i was right.

"It's an 8lb sledgehammer!"

Yes, i noticed.  And what, pray tell, are you doing buying a sledgehammer?  Are you expecting trouble?  Or planning to cause some?

"Mom, you know that I don't cause trouble around here, I prevent it.  That's why I know all the deputies who patrol the neighborhood, so I can keep up with things and tell them if anyone is planning anything."

Wonderful.  So, the sledgehammer?

"For laughs!" he grinned.  "No, not really.  I'm going to use it and a wedge to split wood for fires in our fire pit this winter."

That's understandable.

"But meanwhile," he said as he wrapped a chain around the end of the handle, padlocked it on, and shouldered the contraption, "I'm ready for anything!"

Oh, to be 16 and believe you are ready for anything.

Today is:

Dog Day Road Race -- Harvey Cedars, NJ, US (sponsored by the High Point Volunteer Fire Company)

Hanawa Bayashi -- Kazuno City, Japan (parades and music in the merchant's quarter, through tomorrow)

Hot & Spicy Food Day

Manuel Luis Quezon Day -- Quezon City, Philippines

National Aviation Day -- US

Potato Day

Schuebermess Shepherd's Fair -- Luxembourg (a two week fair that dates from 1340)

St. John Eudes' Day (Patron of Baie-Comeau, Quebec, Canada)

St. Sebald's Day (a/k/a Sebaldus) (Patron of Bavaria, Germany; Nuremburg, Germany; against cold weather and freezing)

Vinalia Rustica -- Ancient Roman Calendar (Festival of Ripening Grapes)

Watch the Pot Wednesday -- Fairy Calendar (sometimes actually occurs on a Wednesday, more often not)

World Humanitarian Day -- UN

Birthdays Today:

Snuffleupagus (year unconfirmed)
LeAnn Womack, 1966
John Stamos, 1963
Adam Arkin, 1956
Mary Matlin, 1953
Jonathan Frakes, 1952
John Deacon, 1951
Tipper Gore, 1948
Bill Clinton, 1946
Jack Canfield, 1944
Jill St. John, 1940
Diana Muldaur, 1938
Willie Shoemaker, 1931
Don Ho, 1930
Gene Roddenberry, 1921
Malcolm Forbes, 1919
Jimmy Rowles, 1918
Ring Lardner, Jr., 1915
Philo T. Farnsworth, 1906 (forgotten inventor of television)
Ogden Nash, 1902
Coco Chanel, 1883
George Bellows, 1882
Orville Wright, 1881
John Dryden, 1631

Today in History:

The Roman Senate is compelled to elect Octavian, later Augustus Caesar, Consul, BC43
Augustus Caesar dies, 14
Crusaders defeat the Saracens in the Battle of Ascalon, 1099
Mary Queen of Scots arrives in Leith to assume the throne, 1561
Five people are executed for witchcraft in Salem, Mass., 1692
Presentation of Jacque Daguerre's new photographic process to the French Academy of Sciences, 1839
The New York Herald reports the discovery of gold in California, 1849
The first All-American Soap Box Derby is held in Dayton, Ohio, 1934
Hurricane Dianne kills 200 and does about $1 Billion in damage, 1955
Leonard Bernstein conducts his final concert, ending with Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, 1990
Several hundred East Germans cross the frontier between Hungary and Austria during the Pan-European Picnic, part of the events which began the process of the Fall of the Berlin Wall, 1989
A series of strong storms lashes Southern Ontario spawning several tornadoes as well as creating extreme flash flooding within the city of Toronto and its surrounding communities, 2005

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Just For Fun

Saw this, by Algie Petrere (a local, very clever person), and decided to steal borrow it.

To be sung to The Beatles' tune "Yesterday":

Yesterday, all those backups seemed a waste of pay,
Now my database has gone away.
Oh, I believe in yesterday.

Suddenly, there's not half the files there used to be,
There's a millstone hanging over me.
The system crashed so suddenly.

I pushed something wrong, what it was, I could not say.
Now all my data's gone and I long for yesterday.

Yesterday, the need for backups seemed so far away,
I knew my data was all here to stay.
Now I believe in yesterday.

Today is:

Antique Marine Engine Exposition -- Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT, US (annual exposition of pre-WWII marine engines and models; through tomorrow)

Bad Poetry Day -- Wellcat Holidays suggests you get back at your high school English teacher for making you read all that "good" poetry; get together with friends, write some truly awful stuff, and mail it to him/her!

Carnaval del Pueblo -- London Pleasure Gardens Royal Victoria Docks, London, England

Eid al Fitr -- Islam (End of Ramadan; begins at sunset, celebrated through the 21st)

India Independence Day Parade -- Devon Avenue, Rogers Park, Chicago, IL, US (yes, a Celebration of Indian and American Democracy; anything for a party, even another country's Independence Day, right?)

International Geocaching Day

International Homeless Animals Day

Jeshen -- Afghanistan (Independence Day, obs.)

Leadville Trail 100 Ultramarathon -- Leadville, CO, US (race 100 of the toughest miles in the country through the Rocky Mountains beginning at 4am; you have 30 hours to complete the course to the ghost town of Winfield and back)

Long Tan Day a/k/a Vietnam Veterans Day -- Australia

Mail Order Catalog Day -- the first one was published by Montgomery Ward this day in 1872, and was only one page (Do yourself a favor and opt out of the doggone things, save a few trees: )

Minnesota Renaissance Festival -- Shakopee, MN, US (one of the countries largest and finest; weekends through the end of September)

Sandcastle and Sculpture Day -- Nantucket, MA, US

National Honey Bee Day -- this year's theme:  Sustainable Agriculture Starts With Honey Bees!

National Ice Cream Pie Day

National Science Day -- Thailand

National Soft Ice Cream Day

Parsi New Year -- Shahenshahi, India

Serendipity Day

St. Agapitus' Day (Patron of Palestrina, Italy; against colic)

St. Helena's Day (Mother of Constantine the Great; Patron of archaeologists, converts, difficult marriages, divorced people, dyers, empresses, nail smiths, needle makers; Birkirkara, Malta; Helena, MT, US; against fire and thunder)

The World's Greatest Carrot Festival -- Bradford, Ontario, Canada (unleash your inner Bugs Bunny!)

Toge-Pogling Season begins -- Fairy Calendar (Toges are normally pogled in groups of five or six, depending upon the size and strength of the individual Poge)

Vuelta a Espana -- Spain (the third of cycling's prestigious Grand Tours; through Sept. 9)

Birthdays Today:

Malcolm-Jamal Warner, 1970
Patrick Swayze, 1952
Elayne Boosler, 1952
Martin Mull, 1943
Robert Redford, 1936
Roman Polanski, 1933
Rosalynn Carter, 1927
Shelley Winters, 1920
Greta Garbo, 1905
Max Factor, 1904
Meriwether Lewis, 1774
Virginia Dare, 1587 (first English child born in the Americas)

Today in History:

Founding of the oldest known Roman temple to Venus, BC293
Rome is occupied and plundered by Visigoths under King Alarik I, 410
Death of Genghis Khan (fell from his horse), 1227
A Portuguese ship drifts ashore in the Japanese province of Higo, 1541
The Boston, Massachusetts Evening Post begins publishing, 1735
Eruption of Mt. Vesuvius, 1834
Pierre Janssan discovers helium, 1868
German engineer Karl Jatho allegedly flies his self-made, motored gliding airplane four months before the first flight of the Wright Brothers, 1903.
Mayor of Tokyo Yukio Ozaki presents Washington, D.C. with 2,000 cherry trees, which President Taft decides to plant near the Potomac River, 1909
A Great Fire in Thessaloniki, Greece destroys 32% of the city leaving 70,000 individuals homeless, 1917
19th US Amendment ratified (gives women the vote), 1920
Premier of The Wizard of Oz, 1939
The first commercially produced oral contraceptives are marketed, 1960
James Meredith becomes the first black person to graduate from the University of Mississippi, 1963
Steve Biko is arrested at a police roadblock under the Terrorism Act No 83 of 1967 in King William's Town, South Africa. He would later die of the injuries sustained during this arrest bringing attention to South Africa's apartheid policies, 1977
Massive power blackout hits the Indonesian island of Java, affecting almost 100 million people, 2005

Friday, August 17, 2012

Photo-Finish Friday: So Big

One of the M&Ms, getting so big.  He's going to get that bit of paper if it's the last thing he does.

#1 Son is on his way to Kansas.  So big, the first fledgling has left the nest.

PFF is the brainchild of Leah at The Goat's Lunch Pail.

Today is:

#2 Pencil Day -- internet generated, but since a pencil can draw a line 35 miles long, write under water, in zero gravity, or upside down, what's not to celebrate!

Day of Rituals in the Temples of Ra, Horus, and Osiris -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Drink Coffee at the Office from A Sippy Cup Day -- begun by someone with a sense of humor, who wants you to see how long it takes people to notice

Elwood Glass Festival -- Elwood, IN, US (glass factory tours and so much more; through Sunday)

Festival of Diana -- Ancient Roman Calendar

Festival of the Little Hills -- St. Charles, MO, US (largest festival of the year, a great time for all; through Sunday)

Hartjesdagen -- Amsterdam and Haarlem, Holland ("Little Hearts Day; the folklore is that this was the day non-nobles could hunt deer in the woods around Haarlem, and became a cross dressing festival, all men dressed as women, and women as men, to see how the other half lived; revived in recent years on the 3rd weekend of August, but the 3rd Monday was the original celebration)

Helsinki Festival -- Helsinki, Finland (through Sept. 2; Finland's largest arts festival)

Independence Day -- Indonesia(1945)

Jumatul Bidah -- Bangladesh

Linwood National Pickle Festival -- Linwood, MI, US (tons of fun, tons of pickles;through Sunday)

Machias Wild Blueberry Festival -- Machias, ME, US (blueberries and fun, in the place that has lobster, too; through Sunday)

Meaning of "Is" Day -- thank you, Clinton!

Muddy Frogwater Country Classic Festival -- Yantis Park, Milton-Freewater, OR, US (lots of family fun, including the square dancing, firefighters' water fight, and lots of country cooking and BBQ; through Sunday)

National Hug Your Boss Day -- be careful with this one!

National Medical Dosimetrists' Day (medical radiation safety experts)

National Men's Grooming Day -- US (sponsored by American Crew, participating salons and barbershops host a day of grooming events for men)

National Thrift Shop/Thrift Store Day -- no history on it, probably started by a thrift store having a summer sale; still a good idea

National Vanilla Custard Day

Northeastern Wisconsin Antique Power and Machinery Show and Thresheree -- Sturgeon Bay, WI (continuous display of operating antique machinery and lots of fun; through Sunday)

Odin's Ordeal begins -- based on the Ancient Norse legend, Modern Odinists and some Asatru practice silence for nine days, through the 25th

Portunalia -- Roman Empire (honoring the god of locks, keys, ports, and harbors)

Prekmurje Union Day -- Slovenia (celebrates the Slovenes in Prekmurje being Incorporated into the Mother Nation)

San Martin Day -- Argentina (death anniversary of General Jose de San Martin, liberator of Argentina, chile, and Peru)

Statehood Day -- Hawai'i, US

St. Hyacinth's Day (Patron of Camalaniugan, Philippines; Ermita de Piedra de San Jacinto, Philippines; Kradow, Poland; Lithuania; Poland; against drowning)

Birthdays Today:

Sean Penn, 1960
Robert DeNiro, 1943
Maureen O'Hara, 1920
Mae West, 1892
charles I, last emperor of Austria-Hungary, 1887
Samuel Goldwyn, 1882
Davy Crockett, 1786

Today in History:

The Peace of Bergerac gives political rights to the Huguenots, 1577
John White returns to Roanoke, Virginia, to find no trace of the colonists he had left there 3 years earlier, 1590
Robert Fulton's steamboat Clermont begins its first trip up the Hudson River, 1807
Solymon Merrick patents the wrench, 1835
The first bank in Hawai'i opens, 1858
Patent granted for an electric self starter for automobiles, 1891
Pike Place Market, the longest continuously-running public farmers market in the US, opens in Seattle, 1907
Fantasmagorie by Émile Cohl, the first animated cartoon, is shown in Paris, 1908
First meeting of Narcotics Anonymous in Southern California, 1953
Quake Lake is formed by the magnitude 7.5 1959 Yellowstone earthquake near Hebgen Lake in Montana, 1958
East German border guards kill 18-year-old Peter Fechter as he attempts to cross the Berlin Wall into West Berlin becoming one of the first victims of the wall, 1962
Category 5 Hurricane Camille hits the Mississippi coast, killing 248 people and causing $1.5 billion in damage, 1969
Venera 7 launched. It will later become the first spacecraft to successfully transmit data from the surface of another planet (Venus), 1970
Double Eagle II becomes first balloon to cross the Atlantic Ocean when it lands in Miserey near Paris, 137 hours after leaving Presque Isle, Maine, 1978
The first Compact Discs are released to the public in Germany, 1982
The first forced evacuation of settlers, as part of the Israel unilateral disengagement plan, starts, 2005