The Friday Irregular

12 November 2010

Edited by and copyright ©2010 Simon Lamont

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Friday 12 November   -   Canute the Great died, 1035. Sculptor Auguste Rodin born, 1840. Chloroform was first used as an anaesthetic, 1847. Novelist Elizabeth Gaskell died, 1865. Actress Kim Hunter born, 1922. The first known photographs of the Loch Ness Monster were taken, 1933. Actress Anne Hathaway born, 1982. Tim Berners-Lee published the formal proposal for the World Wide Web, 1990. Actor Jonathan Brandis died, 2003. Constitution Day in Azerbaijan.
Saturday 13 November   -   Artist Ludovico Carracci died, 1619. Poet William Shenstone born, 1714. Writer Robert Louis Stevenson born, 1850. The Denny Party landed at Alki Point to establish a settlement which would later become Seattle, WA, 1851. Composer Gioachino Rossini died, 1868. The Caister Lifeboat Disaster, 1901. Talk show host Jimmy Kimmel born, 1969. Dedication of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., 1982. Actress Kellie Waymire died, 2003. World Kindness Day.
Sunday 14 November   -   Nell Gwynne, mistress of Charles II of England, died, 1687. Inventor Robert Fulton born, 1765. Nellie Bly set off on an attempt to circumnavigate the globe in less than 80 days, 1869. Composer Aaron Copland born, 1900. Educator Booker T. Washington died, 1915. The BBC radio service started broadcasting, 1922. Actress Laura San Giacomo born, 1962. Marriage of Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips, 1973. Actress Charlotte Coleman died, 2001. World Diabetes Day.
Monday 15 November   -   Conquistadors led by Francisco Pizarro arrived in Cuzco, the Inca capital, 1533. Astronomer Johannes Kepler died, 1630. British Prime Minister William Pitt (the Elder) born, 1708. The burning of Atlanta, GA, 1864. Composer Mantovani born, 1905. Actor Tyrone Power died, 1958. Actress Gemma Atkinson born, 1984. Unmanned launch of the Soviet Shuttle Buran on its first and only space flight, 1988. Murderess Myra Hindley died, 2002. Republic Proclamation Day in Brazil.
Tuesday 16 November   -   Roman emperor Tiberius born, 42 BC. Publication of the final revision of the Codex Justinianus, 534. King Henry III of England died, 1272. Burglar Jack Sheppard hanged, 1724. Trader William Becknell made the first recorded journey over the Santa Fe Trail, 1821. Composer Paul Hindemith born, 1895. Maiden voyage of the RMS Mauritania ocean liner, 1907. Jockey Willie Carson born, 1942. Actor Clark Gable died, 1960. International Day for Tolerance.
Wednesday 17 November   -   Roman emperor Vespasian born, 9. Queen Elizabeth I acceded to the English throne, 1558. Catherine II of Russia died, 1796. Modified Julian Day zero, 1858. Director and "father of method acting" Lee Strasberg born, 1901. Actress Fenella Fielding born, 1934. Sculptor Eric Gill died, 1940. Writer Mervyn Peake died, 1968. Douglas Engelbart was granted the patent for the computer mouse, 1970. International Students' Day.
Thursday 18 November   -   William Tell shot an arrow off his son's head with a crossbow, 1307. William Caxton produced the first book printed on a press in England, Dictes or Sayengis of the Philosophres, 1477. Writer Clarence Day born, 1874. Car designer Alec Issigonis born, 1906. Novelist Marcel Proust died, 1922. Actress Peta Wilson born, 1970. Artist Man Ray died, 1976. The King's Cross Underground fire, 1987. Actor James Coburn died, 2002. Independence Day in Latvia and Morocco.


This week, Tenzin Gyatso, the Dalai Lama:
This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.


A mixed bag of quotations. Answers next week or from the regular address. Last issue's quotations were:


Strange stories from around the world, some of which might be true...

BEARDIE NOMS! Harvey Westmoreland and his brother got into a fight with two men Westmoreland was trying to sell a tractor to when they accused him of ripping them off. During the fight "[..] they cut my beard and forced me to eat it." The two pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing.

BALLS! Scientists have announced that male of the Platycleis affinis species of bushcricket has the proportionately largest testicles of any creature on Earth, accounting for up to 14% of body weight; this surpasses the previous record holder, Drosophilia bifurca fruit flies with a mere 10.6% of body weight. For the record, if human testicles were the same relative size as the bushcricket's they would weight up to 11lbs (5kg)...

PETROL HEADS! A French court has ruled that Renault can name its new all-eletric car the Renault Zoe after the parents of two girls, both called Zoe Renault, sought an injunction, claiming that their children could face a lifetime of ridicule for sharing the name. The Zoe (greek for 'life') is due to be launched in 2012.

UP UP AND, ER, BACK DOWN TO EARTH! The British space effort achieved a first this week, with a group of amateurs, backed by advice from readers of The Register tech website and scientists from the Qinetiq defence R&D firm, who launched the first paper plane into space. The 3ft-wingspan (1m) plane was attached to a helium baloon and equipped with two cameras and a radio tracker. At 90,000 feet (27,400m) the plane detached from the balloon and parachuted back to Earth, the cameras protected from the cold by electric pocket-warmers. It landed about 100 miles west of the Madrid launch site and was recovered intact, suffering only one small hole to a wing. It had successfully recorded images of the curvature of the Earth, and all at a budget cost of £8000.

PETROLS HEADS 2! German judge Helmut Knoener is taking a stand against speed controls on roads. Believing that such controls serve only to boost state funds and not to help road safety, has dismissed the charges against 42 drivers who were photographed speeding by cameras. He claims to see no legal justification for using photographs in such cases and has called for clearer regulations on traffic camera usage. Germany's Public Prosecution Service has yet to decide whether it will appeal the cases.


Rihanna tops UK singles chart, Cheryl Cole tops UK album chart. 11m watch UK soap Coronation Street's Jack Duckworth's final show. Queen sign deal with Universal to remaster/rerelease all their albums. UK govt to review copyright laws for digital age. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1 premieres in London. Placido Domingo named Person of the Year at Latin Grammies. Deborah Harry, The Who, Jeff Beck among artists to play cancer charity concert in London, January. UK I'm a NonentityCelebrity, Get Me Out of Here announces latest lineup. Lichtenstein's Ohhh...Alright... painting auctions for US$42.6m (£26.4) in New York. National Union of Journalists calls off second strike at BBC. Robert De Niro to receive Cecil B DeMille lifetime achievement award at next year's Golden Globes. Teri Hatcher, who made her name as Lois Lane on The New Adventures of Superman to play Lois' mother in Smallville cameo. Jim Davis apologises for alleged slur in Garfield cartoon published on Veterans' Day (November 11). Jim Carrey quit Stooges film over health concerns at weight gain. Chef Gordon Ramsey hit by unfair dismissal lawsuit from fired father-in-law, also fires nephew and brother-in-law. Cher planning on touring after Vegas residency. Britney Spears' comeback album almost lost in studio fire. Obits: crime author Philip Carlo (61), actress Jill Clayburgh (66), musician Tony West (72),anime producer Yoshinobu Nishizaki (75), composer Henryk Górecki (76), poet Carlos Edumdo de Ory (87), film producer Dino De Laurentiis (91).


As they mark their 40th anniversary, this week's website celebrates the trio who brought a giant kitten, rampaging Dougals, carrot underpants, the OK Tea Rooms (scene of a famous bunfight) and a trandem to TV, amongst other wonders. Yes, it's The Official Goodies Rule - OK! fan site.


Madame Jennifer, our in-house psychic predicts the following numbers will be lucky:
9, 10, 16, 21, 29, 44


   Late at night a traffic policeman stopped a car that was speeding and veering across the road. The driver got out, and staggered up to the officer. "Sir, you were driving erratically at 20 miles per hour over the speed limit," the cop told him.

   "I know, officer, sorry, but I'm late for a lecture on sobriety and clean living."

   "And where is that, sir?"

   "From my wife when I get home... *hic*!"

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