Issue #501 - 9th November 2018
|^ WORD OF THE WEEK
^ ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
Friday 9th November - Korean king Gyeongjong of Goryeo born, 955. Byzantine emperor Constantine VII died, 959. The first Welsh war ended with the Treaty of Aberconwy, 1277. Composer Johann Speth born, 1664. William of Orange captured Exeter during the Glorious Revolution, 1688. Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton, co-founder of the first private orphanage in New York, died, 1854. Astronomer Carl Sagan born, 1934. The Northeast blackout of 1965 hit parts of eastern Canada and several U.S. states, 1965. Singer and civil rights activist Miriam Makeba died, 2008. Saturday 10th November - Soldiers on the Fourth Crusade defied Pope Innocent III and besieged Zara (present-day Zadar in Croatia), 1202. Henry Percy, 1st Earl of Northumberland, born, 1341. Explorer Richard Chancellor died returning to England from Russia, 1556. The French Convention proclaimed a Goddess of Reason, 1793. Musican & folklorist Maria Jane Williams died, 1873. Sculptor Jacob Epstein born, 1880. Sesame Street debuted on the National Education Television network in America, 1969. Actress Brittany Murphy born, 1977. Writer Ken Kesey died, 2001. Sunday 11th November - Caliph Yazid I died, 405. The marriage of King Henry I of England and Matilda of Scotland, 1100. Occultist & physician Paracelsus born, 1493. Gottfried Leibniz demonstrated integral calculus for the first time, 1675. Highwayman Joseph Blake hanged, 1724. Civil rights activist Daisy Bates born, 1914. Combat in World War I ended a few hours after an armistice was signed in a railway carriage in the Forest of Compiègne, France, 1918. Actress Calista Flockhart born, 1964. Rex Hunt, Governor of the Falkland Islands at the time of the Falklands War, died, 2012. Remembrance Day in the U.K. & Commonwealth. Armistice Day in New Zealand, France, Belgium & Serbia. Veterans Day in the U.S.A. Various events worldwide to mark the centenary of the end of World War I. Monday 12th November - Cnut the Great, King of Denmark, England & Norway, died, 1035. Plymouth became the first English town to be incorporated by Parliament, 1439. Nurse Jeanne Mance, founder of the Hôtel-Dieu de Montréal, born, 1606. Writer Elizabeth Gaskell died, 1865. William Heffelfinger became the first professional American Football player on record, 1892. Actress Kim Hunter born, 1922. The immigrant inspection station on Ellis Island in Upper New York Bay ceased operating, 1954. Journalist, presenter & writer Mariella Frostrup born, 1962. The Jimi Hendrix Experience drummer Mitch Mitchell died, 2008. Tuesday 13th November - King Malcolm III of Scotland killed in an ambush, 1093. King Edward III of England born, 1312. Royalist forces failed to capture London in the Battle of Turnham Green during the English Civil War, 1642. Dorothea Erxleben, the first female medical doctor in Germany, born, 1715. James Braid saw a demonstration of "animal magnetism" which would lead to his research into what he named hypnotism and hypnotherapy, 1841. Composer Gioachino Rossini died, 1868. Actress Whoopi Goldberg born, 1955. Historian Bernard DeVoto died, 1955. Ronald DeFeo, Jr, murdered his family in Amityville, Long Island, an incident that would inspire the book and film franchise of The Amityville Horror, 1974. Sadie Hawkins Day in the U.S. Wednesday 14th November - Elizabethan torturer Richard Topcliffe born, 1531. Nell Gwyn, mistress of King Charles II of England, died, 1687. Explorer James Bruce discovered what he thought was the source of the Nile, 1770. Artist Claude Monet born, 1840. Friedrich Soennecken invented the hole puncher, 1886. Actress Veronica Lake born, 1906. Writer Hector Hugh Munro ("Saki") died at the Battle of the Ancre, 1916. Physicist Theodore Maiman was granted a patent for the ruby laser, 1967. U.S. television writer & producer Glen A. Larson died, 2014. World Diabetes Day. Thursday 15th November - Otto V, Duke of Bavaria, died, 1379. Writer Johannes Secundus born, 1511. Spanish conquistadors under Hernando de Soto met Inca leader Atahualpa for the first time, 1532. Explorer Martin Frobisher died of an infection, having been shot at the Siege of Fort Crozon, 1594. William Pitt the Elder, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, born, 1708. Lieutenant Zebulon Pike first saw the mountain later named Pikes Peak, 1806. ABBA singer Anni-Frid Lyngstad born, 1945. Intel released the 4004, the first commercial single-chip microprocessor, 1971. Anthropologist Margaret Mead died, 1978. Beaujolais Day (International). Day of the Imprisoned Writer (International). The Great American Smokeout in the U.S.
^ THE WISDOM OF...
This week, Margaret Mead:Sooner or later I'm going to die, but I'm not going to retire.
^ FILM QUIZ
A mixed bag of quotations. Answers next issue or from the regular address.
Last issue's quotations were from films starring Jennifer Morrison:
- Myrtle Mae, you have a lot to learn, and I hope you never learn it.
- I been savin' this money for a divorce, if ever I got a husband.
- Hasn't this cat got anything better to do? Couldn't you give him something to read?
- Here at the Garden City Hotel, less than a mile from Roosevelt Field... less than three-quarters of a mile from Roosevelt Field... everyone is waiting, as they have been now for seven days and nights, waiting for the rain to stop...
- Here I was born, and there I died. It was only a moment for you; you took no notice.
- God gave up on us, sweetheart, so I gave up on God.
-- Amityville: The Awakening 
- You think you world is safe? It is an illusion. A comforting lie told to protect you. Enjoy these final moments of peace. For I have returned to have my vengeance. So, shall we begin?
-- Star Trek Into Darkness 
- It doesn't surprise me that there's another woman. Of course, the fact that she's dead gives one pause.
-- Stir of Echoes 
- Your aim's as bad as your cooking, sweetheart... and that's saying something!
-- Mr & Mrs Smith 
- Will you tell Michael to stay out of my room... he keeps leaving dirty hand prints everywhere.
-- The Darkness 
^ WEIRD WORLD NEWS
Strange stories from around the world, some of which might be true...
- HISTORY! A project to dredge 400,000 tonnes of silt from lakes at Blenheim Palace to protect the Grade I-listed Grand Bridge has revealed more than 30 rooms inside the bridge that were flooded when the lakes were created in the 1760s. The bridge was originally designed by Sir John Vanbrugh in 1708 to be a "habitable viaduct" and contains rooms with fireplaces, ovens and what appears to be a small theatre. As well as the rooms the dredging revealed graffiti dating to the 1760s and boats used for cutting reeds in the 1950s. There is no evidence the rooms were ever used, as the cost of the bridge led to a falling out between Vanbrugh and Sarah, 1st Duchess of Marlborough that resulted in him being banned from the estate. ● The landscape of southern England is known for its chalk figures on hillsides, from the Cerne Abbas giant to numerous horses, and during World War I soldiers of the Australian Imperial Force staying at Hurdcott Camp in Wiltshite added their own, carving a large chalk badge of Australia into a hill above the camp. To mark the centenary of the Armistice volunteers have been working to restore it in time for celebrations this week. ● The war poet Wilfrid Owen died in combat a week before the Armistice was declared. In 1917 he had looted a bugle from a dead German, and to mark the centenary of his death French locals, members of the Wilfred Owen Association and Elizabeth Owen, widow of his nephew Peter, gathered at his graveside in Ors, France, to hear a reading of some of his poetry and his last letter home, then musician Heather Madeira Ni played the Last Post on the Owen's bugle.
- NATURE! The Conrad hotel chain has opened the first underwater hotel in the Maldives. The Conrad Maldives Rangali Island is a two-story villa located 16' (4.88m) below the surface of the Indian Ocean, and includes a bar, a private gym, an infinity pool and quarters for a butler as well as ocean views from the bathroom and bedroom. Also on-site is Ithaa, a five-star restaurant. If you want to stay there it will cost $50,000 (£38,000) a night, but it is only available as a four-night package for $200,000 (£152,000) which includes a personal chef and the use of a private boat. ● Kristine Turner's Somerset farm has welcomed the birth of what is believed to be only the second donkey-zebra cross, or zonkey, in Britain. Zippy, as he is called, was born to his zebra mother Ziggy who shares the farm's fields with nine donkeys including Zippy's father, Rag. The birth came as complete surprise to Turner, who did not even known that Ziggy was pregnant, but opened her curtains one morning to see "this little foal sitting up staring my way". Zippy has predominant donkey colouring on his upper body with stripes on his legs and shoulders.● A team from the British Antarctic Survey has demonstrated a way to count whales from space. The team used high-resolution satellite images taken from 620km (385 miles) up, with the highest resolution available for non-military applications, of 31cm (just over 1'), enough for image analysis software to determine a count of whales and identify different species, although presumably it only works if whales are within a limited range of the surface.
- SCIENCE! Tractor beams, rays of concentrated energy that can trap and move objects at a distance, have been a staple of science fiction for years. A team from the University of Adelaide, Australia, and the Université de Limoges, France, have made it a reality, although so far it only works on groups of rubidium atoms in a near-vaccuum and needs a complicated set-up of lenses, lasers, mirrors, gratings and filters. ● Astronomers have confirmed the existance of two additional 'moons' orbiting the Earth, first suggested in the 1960s. Rather than solid bodies they are clouds of dust, each about nine times wider than the Earth, and located at the Lagrance points either side of the Moon - locations where the gravitational pull of the Sun and Earth cancel each other out, allowing for a stable position. The Kordylewski clouds, named after the astronomer who first proposed their existence, are too faint to be seen with anything other than high-powered telescopes with special polarising filters. Astronomers are now planning on checking the other Lagrange points, as the presence of the clouds could impact future space missions - the James Webb Space Telescope is due to be stationed at one such point in 2020. ● NASA has confirmed that both the Kepler space telescope, which has identified numerous extra-Solar planets, and the Dawn spacecraft, which explored two of the largest objects in the asteroid belt, including the dwarf planet Ceres, have stopped working having run out of fuel, and ended their missions.
- PEOPLE! An app to match parents with babysitters has been inundated after advertising for an all-expenses-paid two-week Christmas holiday posting in the Bahamas, including a "generous pay package", en-suite room, flights, free time during the day and some evenings. "Hundreds" of babysitters expressed interest in the ad, although the app, called Bubble, caps responses to 50 so that parents are not overwhelmed. ● The Girl Scouts of the United States of America organisation is suing the Boy Scouts of America over plans to change its name to BSA and admit girls as members. Papers filed in Manhattan state that "Only GSUSA has the right to use the Girl Scouts and Scouts trademarks with leadership development services for girls." [Is there a badge for litigation? -Ed.] ● On June 1 Ross Edgley, 33, set out from Margate, Kent, to swim the 1,780 miles (2,865km) around the coast Great Britain. Swimming for up to 12 hours a day, sometimes against currents so strong he went backwards (at other times the currents meant he was swimming at the same speed as a dolphin), living on the support boat, and eating more than 500 bananas as part of a 15,000 calorie/day diet he finally set foot back on dry land this week, along with 300 other swimmers who joined him for the final mile. The World Open Water Swimming Association confirmed that his time of 74 days is a new record for the longest staged swim. Edgley already holds another record after completing a rope climb the equivalent height of Mount Everest in 19 hours, in 2016.
- CRIME! Michael Wells-Rody, 24, was arrested after sneaking into "a restricted area" at Churchill Downs racecourse in Kentucky, climbing onto a horse and trying to get onto the course. He was stopped in the track entrance where he was obviously "under the influence of alcoholic beverages" and "loud and abusive". He was charged with alcohol intoxication in a public place and disorderly conduct. ● At Hallowe'en 29-year-old Lyndsey Harvey put her two-year-old daughter to bed and, to stop trick-or-treaters from ringing the doorbell left the only large clean salad bowl she had, full of sweets, outside her door with a note reading "Sorry, baby asleep. But please help yourself to a treat. Happy Halloween!" Somebody took the note too literally, and took the bowl, which had been a wedding present, and cost £80 ($105). Harvey tweeted a request for whoever took the bowl to return it, but got no response from the bowl-thief. She did, however, get a response from the social media manager at John Lewis, asking what type of bowl it was, and the store gave her a replacement a couple of days later. "I never thought John Lewis would get in touch, but it was so lovely that they did. It was such a lovely gesture [..]" she said. ● Japanese pilot Katsutoshi Jitsukawa, 42, admitted being almost 10 times over the alcohol limit after failing a breath test at Heathrow Airport 50 minutes before he was due to take off as first officer aboard a Japan Airlines (JAL) flight to Tokyo. The drink-driving limit in the U.K. is 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood for motorists, and just 20mg/100ml for pilots. Jitsukawa's alcohol level was 189mg. He was tested after a crew bus driver smelled alcohol on his breath and reported him. JAL issued an apology and the flight took off with a different first officer 69 minutes late.
IN BRIEF: Iran infiltrated CIA agents' communications network after suspecting a mole had been planted in its nuclear program, thanks to network admins failing to block servers from being indexed by webcrawlers, allowing Google searches of accidentally-public information. ● Imperial College London to use holographic projectors to allow lecturers in other locations worldwide to deliver lessons. ● Man paddles down River Ouse in 629kg (1,364lb) hollowed-out pumpkin; applies to have achievement recognised by Guinness World Records. ● Britain's National Health Service spends almost £3m ($3.95m) removing items from ears and noses, mostly from children. ● Swiss resident Beat Wampfler is experimenting to see whether playing music will affect how cheese ripens, with support from the University of Arts in Bern. ● Japan launches search mission after uninhabited island used to delineate territorial sea boundary seemingly sinks below water. ● Woman who claimed to have had sex with 15 ghosts now "settling down with poltergeist". ● Dublin pizza restaurant offering €500 (£436; $573) to anyone who can finish their 32" (81cm) pizza and two milkshakes in one sitting.
^ ENTERTAINMENT BRIEFS
Spice Girls confirm reunion world tour without Victoria Beckham, Adele celebrates by tweeting picture of herself as a girl cheering in front of wall of Spice Girls posters. ● Ant McPartlin castigated by judge after failing to show up for divorce settlement hearing. ● Avatar sequel names may have been revealed as Avatar: The Way of Water, Avatar: The Seed Bearer, Avatar: The Tulkun Rider & Avatar: The Quest for Eywa. ● Benedict Cumberbatch to voice the Grinch in Illuminated Entertainment's upcoming adaptation. ● Somebody won the final Channel 5 series of Big Brother. ● Ewan McGregor to play villain Black Mask in Warner Bros' Birds of Prey DC Universe film, costarring Margot Robbie reprising Harly Quinn. ● Channel 4 to move national headquarters to Leeds. ● Doctor Who Christmas special to move to New Year's Day. ● UK music revenues grew by 7% in 2017, record sales up 9% on 2016; mostly on the back of Ed Sheeran's ÷, Harry Styles, Dua Lipa. ● Adult Harry Potter fan finds unsent letter to J.K. Rowling written when they were 11, tweets it, Rowling responds with note to "Dear Past You". ● Royal Ballet's Francesca Hayward joins cast of Cats film as kitten Victoria. ● Neil Young, Daryl Hannah confirm marriage. ● Co-founder of Satanic Temple suing Netflix over The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina's use of copyrighted monument to Baphomet. ● UK Criminal Prosecution Service reaches payment settlement with D.J. Paul Gambaccini over unfounded historical sexual abuse allegations. ● Players slam Ubisoft over aesthetic changes to Rainbow Six Siege ahead of Asian release. ● There is a patch of road in Red Dead Redemption that sets non-player characters on fire without warning. ● Sir Ridley Scott developing Gladiator sequel centred on Commodus' (Joaquin Phenix in 2000 original) nephew Lucius, possibility of Russell Crowe's Maximus returning in flashbacks. ● Caroline Flack, Ann Widdecombe, Micheal Vaughan among former contestants returning for Christmas Strictly Come Dancing. ● Andy Bean, Derek Mears to play Alec Holland/Swamp Thing in DC Universe TV series. ● Netflix overcomes legal obstacles to secure rights to Orson Welles' unfinished last film The Other Side of the Wind. ● Twitter-based viral ghost story Dear David to be made into film. ● Will Smith, Martin Lawrence, confirm development of Bad Boys 3. ● Shrek reboot in the works. ● Esther Rantzen suggests BBC considering return of That's Life. ● Toby Whitehouse, Neil Gaiman, working on Gormenghast adaptation, broadcaster yet to be revealed. ● Series creator Vince Gilligan developing Breaking Bad movie for Sony. ● HBO refutes George R.R. Martin's claim that Game of Thrones prequel series will be called The Long Night. ● Already beset by problems with judges The X Factor's 'live' show revealed to be pre-recorded after sound issues lead to voting being suspended. ● Deadwood movie begins filming. ● Development started on Paddington 3. ● Controvery over apparent inclusion of Professor McGonegall in Fantastic Beasts 2 despite film being set before she was born (according to fan calculations).
MTV Europe Music Awards. Best Video: Camila Cabello ft Young Thug, "Havana"; Best Song: Camila Cabello ft Young Thug, "Havana"; Best Pop: Dua Lipa; Best New Artist: Cardi B; Best Look: Nicki Minaj; Best Hip Hop: Nicki Minaj; Best Live: Shawn Mendes; Best Rock: 5 Seconds of Summer; Best Alternative: Panic at the Disco; Best Electronic: Marshmello; Biggest Fans: BTS; Best World Stage: Alessia Cara MTV Spotlight @ Hyperplay, Singapore 2018; Best Push: Grace VanderWaal (December 2017); Best U.S. Act: Camila Cabello; Best UK & Ireland Act: Little Mix; Global Icon: Janet Jackson.
Jazz trumpeter Roy Hargrove (Erykah Badu, Directions in Music, two-time Grammy winner, 49), civil servant Jeremy Heywood (former Cabinet Secretary & head of UK civil service, 57), speed racer & stuntwoman Kitty O'Neill (Wonder Woman [1970s TV], The Blues Brothers, still-current women's land speed record holder, 72), property developer Mario Segale (the man after whom Ninteno's Super Mario was named, 84), actor Carlo Giuffrè (Robert Benigni's Pinocchio, The Girl With the Pistol, La Pelle, 89), film producer Raymond Chow (The Big Boss, Fist of Fury, Enter the Dragon, 91), former racing driver Ron Easton (the man rescued last week after being stuck on his roof for 3 days, 102).
^ DUMBLEDORE BEAR'S LOTTERY PREDICTOR!
Dumbledore Bear, our in-house psychic predicts that the following numbers will be lucky:10, 17, 26, 52, 55, 58[UK National Lottery, number range 1-59]
You can get your very own prediction at http://www.simonlamont.co.uk/tfir/dumbledore.htm.
^ AND FINALLY...
Little Jennifer had come home from school. "Hello, Little Jennifer," her mother said, "and what did you learn in school today."
Little Jennifer dropped her schoolbag and pouted as only Little Jennifer could. "Not enough, apparently, Mummy. Miss wants me to go back tomorrow!"
^ ...end of line