The Friday Irregular

Issue #606 - 19th March 2021

Edited by and copyright ©2021 Simon Lamont
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Unless otherwise indicated dollar values are in US dollars and currency conversions are at current rates at time of writing.





  adj. suitable; appropriate


Friday 19th March   -   Elizabeth Seymour, Baroness Cromwell, died, 1568. The English House of Commons passed an act to abolish the House of Lords, 1649. Explorer and missionary David Livingstone born, 1813. The Sydney Harbour Bridge was opened, 1932. Actress Glenn Close born, 1947. Writer Arthur C. Clarke died, 2008.
Saturday 20th March   -   Poet Ovid born, 43 BCE. King Henry IV of England died, 1413. Sir Walter Raleigh was freed from the Tower of London after 13 years, 1616. Artist Amelie Sara Colquhoun born, 1894. Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity was published, 1915. Singer Kenny Rogers died, 2020. World Sparrow Day. The vernal (Northern Hemisphere) or autumnal (Southern Hemisphere) equinox.
Sunday 21st March   -   Poet and conspirator Anne Howard, Countess of Arundel, born, 1557. Algonquin princess Pocahontas died, 1617. Most of New Orleans was destroyed in a fire, 1788. Composer Modest Mussorgsky born, 1839. Short-form social media site Twitter was founded, 2006. Writer Colin Dexter died, 2017. World Puppetry Day. World Poetry Day. World Down Syndrome Day. International Day of Forests. International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
Monday 22nd March   -   Danish invaders defeated Æthelred of Wessex at the Battle of Marton, 871. Astronomer and methematician Ulugh Beg born, 1394. Composer Jean-Baptiste Lully died, 1687. The United Kingdom, France and Russia established the borders of Greece with the signing of the London Protocol, 1829. Ballerina Deborah Bull born, 1963. Cricketer Peta Taylor died, 1989. World Water Day.
Tuesday 23rd March   -   French politician Nicolas Fouquet died, 1680. Botanist and explorer John Bartram born, 1699. James Stewart, the Old Pretender, landed at the Firth of Forth as part of a planned French invasion of Britain, 1708. Bette Nesmith Graham, inventor of correction fluid, born, 1924. David Frost recorded the first of his Nixon Interviews, 1977. Actress and humanitarian Elizabeth Taylor died, 2011. World Meteorological Day.
Wednesday 24th March   -   Queen Elizabeth I of England died, 1603. Clock-maker John Harrison, inventor of the marine chronometer, born, 1693. Johann Sebastian Bach dedicated six concertos to Margrave Christian Ludwig of Brandenburg-Schwedt, 1721. Elvis Presley was drafted into the US Army, 1958. Actress Alyson Hannigan born, 1974. Comic book artist and co-creator of Astérix the Gaul Albert Uderzo died, 2020. World Tuberculosis Day.
Thursday 25th March   -   Robert the Bruce became King of Scots, 1306. Linguist, cosmographer and cartographer Guillaume Postel born, 1510. French noblewoman Isabelle de Limeuil died, 1609. Copies of Allan Ginsberg's poem "Howl" were seized by US Customs on obscenity grounds, 1957. American civil rights activist Viola Liuzzo died, 1965. Racing driver Danica Patrick born, 1982. Tolkien Reading Day. International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade. The Lady Day Quarter Day in Britain and Ireland.


This week, Murray Walker, on his famous 'Murrayism' commentating gaffes:
In my defence... it depends how you define the word 'mistake'. What people call Murrayisms are malapropisms or getting the words in the wrong order. You're standing there in front of a TV set and getting live pictures. The words are pouring out of you. You have to say what comes into your head, and sometimes the wrong words come, in the wrong order or I'd make prophecies which immediately turned out to be wrong.


A selection of quotations from films released in the same year. Answers next issue or from the regular address. Last issue's quotations were from films released in 1965:


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

IN BRIEF: Google's new Nest Hub smart device will track users' body activity in bed, ostensibly to generate sleep-tracking reports... ● A girl in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, had to be rescued after climbing into a claw machine in an arcade game centre to get a doll and being unable to get out again. ● A Russian soldier was left hanging some 6,500' (2,000m) up after jumping out of a helicopter during a training exercise only for his parachute to snag on the aircraft. He was safely returned to the ground. ● The University of Manchester has been widely mocked for "wokery gone mad" after advising staff to avoid using the words 'mother' and 'father' and to instead use 'guardian' or 'partner'. ● A West Sacramento, California, woman, fed up with neighbours complaining about her children riding skateboards in front of her house, put up a sign reading "This neighborhood is full of Karens!" [A 'Karen' being the derogatory name for "any person, especially female, exhibiting an exaggerated sense of entitlement" according to Wiktionary]. ● American researchers are developing an aircraft fuel from recycled food waste that could significantly cut emissions of methane and carbon costs from current fossil fuels. ● Scientists, also in the US, have created fabrics from recycled polythene that are both more environmentally-friendly and can be further recycled. ● If you have ever looked at a US school bus (1980s example, on Wikimedia [CCA2.0 license]) and wondered why they have those black stripes down the sides, school bus driver 'Clawboss' revealed the reason on his YouTube channel recently. The stripes are to aid firefighters and rescuers who may need to cut into the bus in the event of an accident - they mark (moving up) the level of the floor of the bus, the bottom of the seats and the top of the seats.

CORONAVIRUS ROUND-UP: The Preston gym owner who was fined three times for refusing to close his gym in breach of COVID-19 restrictions has been arrested and charged with breaching a closure order, and ten people fined £200 ($278.05) each after police raided it again. An application to close the gym for three months was granted to Preston City Council in February. ● The Kate and Luc Cafe Restaurant in Manchester has been stripped of its licence after police who had previously visited five times during the lockdown and found it operating pre-lockdown services with a few people inside each time, found at least 60 people eating inside it on a sixth visit, when it should have been offering only take-away services.

UPDATES: Weeks after an Oklahoma state bill to offer a $25,000 (£18,000) bounty for a captured Bigfoot was proposed the bounty now stands at more than $2m (£1.44m) with tourism officials set to launch a campaign including licence plates, a commemorative tracking licence and tracking permits for stores along State Highway 259A to sell. There is one condition for anyone claiming the bounty - Bigfoot must be captured unharmed, and its capture involve no harm to anyone else or the breaking of any laws.


Videogame developer Gordon Hall (Rockstar Leeds, Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown, Red Dead Redemption, 51), racing driver Sabine Schmidtz (Top Gear, "Queen of the Nüburgring", two-time Nüburgring 24hr Race winner, 51), actor and dancer Cliff Simon (The Moulin Rouge, NCIS Los Angeles, Stargate SG-1, 58), boxer Marvelous Marvin Hagler (undisputed middleweight world champion [1980-1987], US Boxing Hall of Fame, 66), mass murderer Ronald DeFeo, Jr (the 1974 murder of his family later inspired The Amityville Horror book, film and spin-offs, 69), King Goodwill Zwelithini of the Zulu nation (72), film director Norman J. Warren (Satan's Slave, Inseminoid, First Man Into Space, 78), actor Yaphet Kotto (Live and Let Die, Alien, The Running Man, 81), architect Bill Harkin (British Leyland, designed the original Pyramid Stage for the second Glastonbury Festival, 83), actor Henry Darrow (The High Chaparral, Zorro, Star Trek: The Next Generation, 87), engineer Lou Ottens (invented the audio cassette tape, helped develop the CD, 94), businessman Jean Frydman (member of the French Resistance in WW2, Europe 1, Oslo Peace Accords negotiations, 95), motor racing commentator Murray Walker (Formula 1, BBC, ITV Sport, 97).


Dumbledore Bear, our in-house psychic predicts that the following numbers will be lucky:
2, 8, 17, 36, 37, 55
[UK National Lottery, number range 1-59]
You can get your very own prediction at


    Little Jennifer's teacher was trying to instill in her class a sense that physical differences and disabilities were perfectly normal and should not be mocked. "For example," she said, "my sister is deaf, so she wears a hearing aid and my father needs to use a walking stick to get around. My eyesight is bad, so I need to wear glasses, and my ears stick out much more than my sister's."
    They class thought for a moment and then Little Jennifer piped up. "Your nose is big too, Miss!"

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