The Friday Irregular

Issue #671 - 1st July 2022

Edited by and copyright ©2022 Simon Lamont
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Unless otherwise indicated dollar values are in US dollars. Currency conversions are at current rates at time of writing and may be rounded.
The Friday Irregular uses Common Era year notation.






  A humorous self-evident truth, tautology or truism.


Friday 1st July   -   In the Year of Four Emperors, Roman legions in Alexandria were ordered to swear allegiance to Vespasian as Emperor, 69. Carpenter and builder Peter Street born, 1553. The nation of Canada came into being with the passing of the British North America Act, 1867. Author Harriet Beecher Stowe died, 1896. Singer-songwriter and actress Debbie Harry born, 1945. Humanitarian Nicholas Winton died, 2015. Canada Day in Canada.
Saturday 2nd July   -   Otto I became King of East Francia, 936. Astrologer and seer Nostradamus died, 1566. Elizabeth de Vere, Countess of Derby and the first female Lord of Mann, born, 1575. The last radio message from Amelia Earhart was received as she flew over the Pacific in an attempt at the first equatorial round-the-world flight, 1937. Nobel laureate biologist and neuroscientist Richard Axel born, 1946. Actor James Stewart died, 1997.
Sunday 3rd July   -   William the Conqueror became Duke of Normandy, 1035. Architect Robert Adam born, 1728. American tribal leader Little Crow was killed by settlers, 1863. The Mallard set the still-held world speed record for a steam locomotive of 125.88mph (202.58km/h), 1938. Singer-songwriter Laura Branigan born, 1952. Actress Diana Douglas died, 2015.
Monday 4th July   -   Chinese, Japanese, Arab and possibly Amerindian and European skywatchers recorded seeing the supernova SN 1054, which formed the Crab Nebula, 1054. Surveyor George Everest born, 1790. Thomas Jefferson, 3rd President of the United States, died, 1826. Lewis Carroll told Alice Liddell and her sisters the story that would become Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, 1862. Nobel laureate physicist and chemist Marie Curie died, 1934. Tennis player Pam Shriver born, 1962. Independence Day in the USA.
Tuesday 5th July   -   Joan of the Tower, Queen consort of King David II of Scotland, born, 1321. John Guy and 39 other colonists set sail from Bristol for Newfoundland, 1610. Showman P.T. Barnum born, 1810. Nicéphore Niépce, creator of the first known photograph, died, 1833. The Hormel Foods Corporation introduced the Spam luncheon meat, 1937. Actress Katy Jurado died, 2002. Tynwald Day on the Isle of Man.
Wednesday 6th July   -   Mathematician, writer and architect Antonio Manetti born, 1423. England and Scotland signed the Treaty of Edinburgh, 1560. Artist Frida Kahlo born, 1907. Social reformer and the first female graduate from Bombay University Cornelia Sorabji died, 1954. Teenagers John Lennon and Paul McCartney met for the first time at Woolton Fete, three years before The Beatles were formed, 1957. Composer Ennio Morricone died, 2020.
Thursday 7th July   -   The Scots routed the English at the Raid of the Redeswire, the last major battle between the two nations, 1575. Merchant Joseph Marie Jacquard, inventor of the Jacquard loom, born, 1752. Boarding house owner Mary Surratt and three others were hanged for conspiring in the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, 1865. The Chillicothe Baking Company sold the first sliced bread, 1928. Writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle died, 1930. Computer scientist Adele Goldberg born, 1945. World Chocolate Day.


This week, Elaine Sherman:
Chocolate causes certain endocrine glands to secrete hormones that affect your feelings and behavior by making you happy. Therefore, it counteracts depression, in turn reducing the stress of depression. Your stress-free life helps you maintain a youthful disposition, both physically and mentally. So, eat lots of chocolate!


A selection of quotations from films containing 'fish' in the title, either as a whole word or part of a word. Answers next issue or from the regular address. Last issue's quotations were from films released in 2013:


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

IN BRIEF: Within minutes of the Colorado Avalanche ice hockey team winning this year's Stanley Cup finals right wing Nicolaus Aube-Bukel lost his footing and dropped the 35.25" (89.54cm), 34.5lb (15.5kg) trophy on the ice, denting its base. ● Gwynnedd Council has revealed that nobody has applied for two vacancies to work as dog wardens on its (widely viewed as among the best in Britain) beaches. ● Skye islanders rallied to help an American couple who had flown there for their wedding, which they had spent two years planning, only for their luggage - including the wedding dress - to be lost by the airline, providing a dress, full kilt set for the groom and other items for the big day. ● A Japanese man who works for a company providing benefits to tax-exempt households got drunk on a night out with colleagues and woke up to discover that he had lost a USB stick containing the personal details - names, birth dates and addresses, as well as tax details, bank account numbers and social security information - of nearly half a million residents of Amagasaki, northwest of Osaka; city officials later said that the data was encrypted and there was no evidence of attempts to access it, but still offered a formal apology to residents. ● Veteran rock band Kiss ended their recent concert in Vienna by displaying the message "Kiss loves you, Vienna" on a screen behind them, the letters decorated with the flag of... Australia, not Austria. ● As reported in an earlier issue, this year's Dorset knob-throwing contest [it's a biscuit - Ed] was cancelled, but last weekend's World Nettle Eating Competition went ahead in Bridport. The idea is to eat as many raw stinging nettles as possible in an hour, with vomiting leading to disqualification... ● New York actress Bailey McCall has shared on TikTok how, while staying in an AirBnB in an undisclosed country [we presume Britain -Ed] she had put the kettle on a gas hob to boil water for a French pressed coffee only to find that it was an electric kettle and she had melted off its plastic base. [We have covered US v. UK hot drink making differences in earlier issues -Ed] ● A man who shared a video of his long service 'thank you' gifts from Burger King, where he has worked for 27 years - a movie ticket, a bag of candy, a coffee tumbler, lanyard and some pens - has been given more than $131,136 (£108,000) raised by 4,000 strangers who viewed the video and thought he deserved better [for the record, he had said he had no complaints about the original gifts]. ● Coach Andrea Fuentes is being praised for diving into the water to rescue artistic swimmer Anita Alvarez who fainted during her routine at the World Aquatics Championships in Budapest, sinking unconscious to the bottom of the pool. ● John Bream, a former paratrooper, has made a successful parachute jump from just 85' (26m) to claim the world record for the lowest parachute jump.

UPDATES: A couple of weeks ago we reported that a human had won the Man v Horse race at Llanwrtyd Wells, Wales, for the first time since 2007. What we did not report was his name. It was the nominally determinative Ricky Lightfoot...


Cancer campaigner Dame Deborah James (You, Me and the Big C podcast, her Bowelbabe fund raised more than £1.5m ($1.8m) in 24 hours for cancer research [at the time of writing it is nearing £7m ($8.5m)], 40), actress Mary Mara (ER, Ray Donovan, Star Trek: Enterprise, 61), journalist and broadcaster Harry Gration (BBC Look North, Match of the Day, Grandstand, 71), producer, unit production manager and assistant director Duncan Henderson (Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Space Jam: A New Legacy, Dead Poets Society, 72), anthropologist Yves Coppens (director of the expedition that discovered the "Lucy" Australopithicus afarensis skeleton in 1974, 87), voiceover artist Graham Skidmore (Blind Date's 'Our Graham', Vic & Bob's Shooting Stars, The Day the Earth Caught Fire, 90), actor Frank Williams (Dad's Army, You Rang, M'Lord?, The Worker, 90), artist Margaret Keane ('big eye' paintings, won a court-ordered 'paint-off' against her ex-husband to prove she was the artist behind the paintings, subject of Tim Burton's Big Eyes [2014], 94).


Dumbledore Bear, our in-house psychic predicts that the following numbers will be lucky:
17, 23, 25, 26, 33, 39
[UK National Lottery, number range 1-59]
You can get your very own prediction at


    Little Jennifer's mother walked into the kitchen to find her daughter sitting at the table with a teaspoon in her mouth and an open jar of peanut butter in front of her. "Little Jennifer!" she said, "What do you think you're doing with that teaspoon?"
    Little Jennifer took the teaspoon out of her mouth, licked it clean and smiled at her mother as only she could. "Well, Mummy," she said, "the bigger spoons wouldn't fit into the jar!"

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