FAREWELL 2014

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

.

Hi folks,

Last day of this year and time for my recollections of 2014’s main events.

As always this is by no means meant to be a complete coverage of all the events that happened during 2014, just a personal blog post about some of the things I remember, and a few that I had forgotten until I started to compile this list.

I hope you enjoy.

.

farewell 2014

.

The Weather

We will start off with the weather since so many of us seem to be obsessed with it.

  • In the United States there were weather extremes. In California, for example, January was the warmest and driest on record in San Francisco, San Jose and Los Angeles. Only four other Januaries since 1878 had been completely dry in Los Angeles until January 2014. Alaskans experienced their third warmest January in 96 years of record, according to NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center.

California drought 2014

  • In many parts of the Midwest, on the other hand, 2014 was the coldest winter since the late 1970s or early 1980s. And some southern states of the US became the victims of, firstly, winter storm Kronos which brought a rare blanket of snow as far south as Louisiana, and sleet as far south as Harlingen, Texas and Pensacola, Fla. in late January, and then, just days later, a second winter storm, Leon, hit many of the same areas causing commuter chaos in both Birmingham, Ala. and Atlanta. Leon also spread ice and sleet to the Gulf Coast, including the Florida Panhandle, and the Low country of South Carolina.
  • And worse was on the way. Winter Storm Pax deposited an inch or more of ice in a swath from east-central Georgia into South Carolina, including Augusta, Ga. and Aiken, S.C. Pax was the second heaviest ice storm dating to 1947 in Wilmington, N.C. The accumulation of ice from Pax claimed the famed “Eisenhower tree” at the Augusta National Golf Club. Pax marked the first time since January 1940 that Columbia, S.C. saw snowfall for three straight days.

Winter Storm Pax Washington

  • In complete contrast, the week after Pax, Columbia, S.C. tied its all-time February high of 84 degrees. Augusta, Ga. warmed into the 80s two straight days on Feb. 19-20.
  • Elsewhere in the world, severe Atlantic winter storms took their toll on many parts of England which in 2014 experienced storms and rain not seen since the late 19th century.

Atlantic winter storms Cornwall England

  • In Tokyo, Japan, which usually averages only about 4 inches of snow each year, there were also severe snow storms. In February, snow blanketed the city with 11 inches of snow in less than a week, the heaviest snowfall in 45 years for Tokyo and in 60 years for the city of Kumagaya, northwest of Tokyo. The following weekend, parts of eastern Japan, including parts of the Tokyo metro area, received another round of snow. Some smaller communities were isolated by more than 3 feet of snow.
  • And in the southern hemisphere, Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology reported that more than 10 percent of Queensland and almost 15 percent of New South Wales experienced their record hottest day on Jan. 3. A second heat wave hit parts of southern Australia in mid-January, with temperatures peaking above 41 degrees Celsius (just under 106 degrees Fahrenheit) for four straight days from Jan. 14-17, and reaching a sizzling 43.9 degrees C (111 degrees F) on both Jan. 16 and 17.

australia heat wave 2014

.

Business and Technology

  • In the world of business and technology 2014 was the year the Obama administration decided to stop inversion deals, where US companies bought foreign domiciled businesses and moved their profit centers to a much more tax friendly location.
  • In technology buys, one of the largest was Facebook’s purchase of smartphone application WhatsApp for $19 Billion.

14.02.19-Facebook-WhatsApp

  • In other sectors 2014 saw world oil price plunge to around $50 per barrel, good news for consumers, not so good for producers.
  • Under pressure from the fall in oil and gas prices, along with the economic sanctions imposed by the west because of the ongoing situation in the Ukraine, the Russian Ruble went into free fall in December.

APphoto_Russia Economy

  • Also in 2014, in March, the United Nations International Court of Justice ruled that Japan’s Antarctic whaling program was not scientific but commercial and refused to grant further permits.
  • With Quantitative Easing having been ended in the US (for the moment anyway) Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced plans for a new $29 billion fresh stimulus, including subsidies and job-creating programs, to help pull the world’s third-largest economy out of recession.

Quantitative Easing cartoon

  • After their embarrassing foul up last Christmas, this year both FedEx and UPS managed to deliver more than 99 percent of express packages as promised on Dec. 22 and Dec. 23, according to shipment tracker ShipMatrix.
  • South Korean prosecutors arrested a government official who allegedly leaked information about an investigation into former Korean Air Lines executive Cho Hyun-ah, who forced a flight to return over a bag of macadamia nuts. Most of the rest of the world tends to think that the idiot executive should suffer the consequences of her stupidity, not the whistleblower.

korean-air-lines-macademia-nut-scandal Cho Hyun-ah

  • And finally, after their embarrassing hack attack and cringe-worthy capitulation to what amounted to a terrorist cyber attack which was rightly criticized publicly by President Obama, Sony finally decided to release its movie ‘The Interview’.

Rogan Franco The-Interview

.

.

Conflicts, Wars & Terrorism

Unfortunately 2014 saw many conflicts and acts of terrorism.

  • In April an estimated 276 girls and women were abducted and held hostage from a school in Nigeria. The following month, Boko Haram militants killed approximately 300 people in a night attack on Gamboru Ngala and terrorists in Nigeria detonated bombs at Jos, killing 118 people.

Boko Haram militants killed approximately 300 people Gamboru Ngala

  • June saw the emergence of a Sunni militant group called the ‘Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant’ (also known as the ‘ISIS’ or ‘ISIL’). It began an offensive throughout northern Iraq, with the aim of eventually capturing the Iraqi capital city of Baghdad and overthrowing the Shiite government led by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. The group has been responsible for beheading of hundreds of people including several from the United States.

Sunni militant group called the ‘Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant’

  • In July and August tensions between Israel and Hamas grew following the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers in June and the revenge killing of a Palestinian teenager in July. Israel launched ‘Operation Protective Edge’ on the Palestinian Gaza Strip starting with numerous missile strikes, followed by a ground invasion a week later. In 7 weeks of fighting, 2,100 Palestinians and 71 Israelis were killed.
  • Also in July, Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, a Boeing 777, crashed in eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 souls on board. There are conflicting claims as to who was responsible, some blaming pro Russian forces for a missile strike and others blaming Ukrainian forces.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17

  • In August and September the United States military began an air campaign in northern Iraq to stem the influx of ISIS militants and the following month the United States and several Arab partners began an airstrike campaign in Syria.

Expect more on these stories during 2015.

Departures

During 2014 we said farewell to many well know people from various walks of life. Here is just my selection of those I remember.

From Literature

Sue Townsend

British novelist and playwright (b. 1946)

SueTownsend

.

P. D. James

British writer and life peer

(b. 1920)

P. D. James

.

From Movies & TV

Roger Lloyd-Pack

British actor

(b. 1944)

Roger Lloyd-Pack

.

Maximilian Schell

Austrian-Swiss actor

(b. 1930)

Maximilian Schell

.

Philip Seymour Hoffman

American actor

(b. 1967)

Philip Seymour Hoffman

.

Shirley Temple

American actress and diplomat

(b. 1928)

shirley_temple

.

Sid Caesar

American actor

(b. 1922)

Sid Caesar

.

Harold Ramis

American film director,

writer, and actor

(b. 1944)

Harold Ramis

.

Mickey Rooney

American actor

(b. 1920)

Mickey Rooney

.

Bob Hoskins

British actor

(b. 1942)

Bob Hoskins

.

Efrem Zimbalist, Jr.

American actor

(b. 1918)

Efrem Zimbalist, Jr

.

Rik Mayall

British comedian,

writer and actor

(b. 1958)

Rik Mayall

.

Casey Kasem

American radio host

and voice actor

(b. 1932)

Casey Kasem

.

Eli Wallach

American actor

(b. 1915)

Eli Wallach

.

Elaine Stritch

American actress and singer

(b. 1925)

Elaine Stritch

.

James Garner

American actor

(b. 1928)

James Garner

.

Menahem Golan

Israeli filmmaker

(b. 1929)

Menahem Golan

.

Robin Williams

American actor and comedian

(b. 1951)

Robin Williams

.

Lauren Bacall

American actress

(b. 1924)

Lauren Bacall

.

Richard Attenborough

British actor and film director

(b. 1923)

Richard Attenborough

.

Joan Rivers

American comedian, actress,

and television host

(b. 1933)

Joan Rivers

.

Richard Kiel

American actor (b. 1939)

Richard Kiel

.

Polly Bergen

American actress

(b. 1930)

Polly Bergen

.

Ken Takakura

Japanese actor

(b. 1931)

Ken Takakura

.

Warren Clarke

English actor

(b. 1947)

Warren-Clarke

.

Glen A. Larson

American television producer

and writer

(b. 1937)

Glen A. Larson

.

Virna Lisi

Italian actress

(b. 1936)

Virna Lisi

.

Billie Whitelaw

English actress

(b. 1932)

Billie Whitelaw

.

Luise Rainer

Golden Age actress

“The Great Ziegfeld”

(b. 1910)

Luise Rainer with oscars

.

.

From Music

Pete Seeger

American singer, songwriter,

musician, and activist

(b. 1919)

Pete Seeger

.

Johnny Winter

American singer and guitarist

(b. 1944)

Johnny Winter

.

Glenn Cornick

British bass guitarist

(b. 1947)

Glenn Cornick

.

Jack Bruce

British rock bassist

(b. 1943)

Jack Bruce

.

Acker Bilk

British jazz clarinetist

(b. 1929)

Acker Bilk

.

Joe Cocker

English singer

(b. 1944)

Joe Cocker

.

From Politics

Zbigniew Messner

9th Prime Minister of the

People’s Republic of Poland

(b. 1929)

Zbigniew Messner

.

Ariel Sharon

11th Prime Minister of Israel

(b. 1928)

Ariel Sharon

.

Tony Benn

British politician and diarist

(b. 1925)

Tony Benn

.

Adolfo Suárez

138th Prime Minister of Spain

(b. 1932)

Adolfo Suárez

.

James R. Schlesinger

American economist and politician

(b. 1929)

James R. Schlesinger

.

A. N. R. Robinson

3rd President of Trinidad and Tobago

(b. 1926)

A. N. R. Robinson

.

Howard Baker

American politician and diplomat

(b. 1925)

Howard Baker

.

Eduard Shevardnadze

2nd President of Georgia

(b. 1928)

Eduard Shevardnadze

.

Albert Reynolds

Irish Taoiseach (prime minister)

(b. 1932)

Albert Reynolds

.

Ian Paisley

British politician and

First Minister of Northern Ireland

(b. 1926)

Ian Paisley

.

Nicholas Romanov

Prince of Russia

(b. 1922)

Nicholas Romanov

.

Jean-Claude Duvalier

41st President of Haiti

(b. 1951)

Jean-Claude Duvalier

.

John Spencer-Churchill

11th Duke of Marlborough,

British peer and educator

(b. 1926)

John Spencer-Churchill, 11th Duke of Marlborough

.

Gough Whitlam

21st Prime Minister of Australia

(b. 1916)

Gough Whitlam

.

From Space Exploration

Valeri Kubasov

Soviet cosmonaut

(b. 1935)

Valeri Kubasov

.

Wubbo Ockels

Dutch astronaut and physicist

(b. 1946)

Wubbo Ockels

.

Henry Hartsfield

American colonel and astronaut

(b. 1933)

Henry Hartsfield

.

Anatoly Berezovoy

Soviet cosmonaut

(b. 1942)

Anatoly Berezovoy

.

From Sport

Eusébio

Portuguese footballer

(b. 1942)

Eusébio

.

Mae Young

American professional wrestler

(b. 1923)

Mae Young

.

Louise Brough

American tennis player

(b. 1923)

Louise Brough

.

Tom Finney

English footballer

(b. 1922)

Tom Finney

.

Nelson Frazier, Jr.

American professional wrestler

(b. 1971)

Nelson Frazier, Jr

.

Jimmy Ellis

American boxer

(b. 1940)

Jimmy_Ellis

.

Jack Brabham

Australian race car driver

(b. 1926)

Jack Brabham

.

Malcolm Glazer

American businessman,

owner of Manchester United

(b. 1928)

Malcolm Glazer

.

Valentin Mankin

Ukrainian sailor, Olympic triple champion

and silver medalist

(b. 1938)

Valentin Mankin

.

Fernandão

Brazilian footballer and manager

(b. 1978)

Fernandão

.

Alfredo Di Stéfano

Argentine-Spanish footballer

(b. 1926)

Alfredo-Di-Stefano-Dies-at-Age-88

.

Andriy Bal

Ukrainian football player and coach

(b. 1958)

Andriy Bal

.

Björn Waldegård

Swedish rally driver

(b. 1943)

Björn Waldegård

.

Andrea de Cesaris

Italian race car driver

(b. 1959)

Andrea de Cesaris

.

Health

  • The big health scare of 2014 that dominated the headlines was the of the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa in February, that initially infected over 19,000 people and killing at least 7,000, the most severe both in terms of numbers of infections and casualties.

ebola_map Africa

  • In other news, also in February, Belgium became the first country in the world to legalize euthanasia for terminally ill patients of any age.

Politics

  • On January 1, Latvia officially adopted the Euro as its currency and became the 18th member of the Eurozone.
  • In February, the Ukrainian parliament voted to remove President Viktor Yanukovych from office, replacing him with Oleksandr Turchynov, after days of civil unrest that left around 100 people dead in Kiev. The pro-Russian unrest lead to the annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation and an insurgency in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

President Viktor Yanukovych

  • In March, Nicolás Maduro, the President of Venezuela, severed diplomatic and political ties with Panama, accusing it of being involved in a conspiracy against the Venezuelan government.
  • Also in March, an emergency meeting, involving the United Kingdom, the United States, Italy, Germany, France, Japan, and Canada temporarily suspended Russia from the G8.
  • In April, also in response to the Crimean crisis, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) passed a resolution temporarily stripping Russia of its voting rights; its rights to be represented in the Bureau of the Assembly, the PACE Presidential Committee, and the PACE Standing Committee; and its right to participate in election-observation missions.
  • The same month, United States President Barack Obama began new economic sanctions against Russia, targeting companies and individuals close to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Putin Obama

  • In May the Royal Thai Army overthrew the caretaker government of Niwatthamrong Boonsongpaisan after a failure to resolve the political unrest in Thailand.
  • Back in Europe, in June, King Juan Carlos I of Spain abdicated in favor of his son, who ascended the Spanish throne as King Felipe VI.
  • And the political year ended on a positive note, with U.S. President Barack Obama announcing the resumption of normal relations between the U.S. and Cuba after more than half a century.

normal relations between the U.S. and Cuba

.

Space

  • The major space event of 2014 happened in November when the European Space Agency’s Rosetta Philae probe successfully landed on Comet 67P, the first time in history that a spacecraft has landed on such an object.

Rosetta Philae

Sport

  • The two major world sporting events of 2014 were the XXII Olympic Winter Games, held in Sochi, Russia in February, and the 2014 FIFA World Cup held in Brazil, and won by Germany, during June and July.

world-cup-2014-champions-germany-trophy

  • In American sport the Super Bowl was won by the Seattle Seahawks, the MLB World Series  winners were the San Francisco Giants and in basketball the San Antonio Spurs came out on top.
  • Ice Hockey had three champions in 2014, Canada becoming Olympic champions, Russia world champions and in the NHL the Los Angeles Kings were the victors.
  • In tennis at the world famous Wimbledon Tournament in England Novak Djokovic became Men’s Singles Champion and Petra Kvitova Ladies Singles Champion, while the men’s and women’s winners of the US Open were Marin Čilić  and Serena Williams respectively.

novak-djokovic-with-wimbledon-crown

  • In Soccer, as noted above, Germany won the 2014 World Cup. The European Champions League winners were Real Madrid and the English Premiership was won by Manchester City.
  • The Formula 1 motor racing champion for 2014 was British driver Lewis Hamilton, who also picked up the award of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year.
  • In golf’s major championships, the Masters Tournament, held in April, was won by Bubba Watson by three strokes. It was his second Masters championship.
  • May saw the BMW PGA Championship where young Northern Ireland man Rory McIlroy birdied the 18th hole to win by one stroke over Irishman Shane Lowry, who also birdied the 18th hole.
  • In June, U.S. Open winner was Martin Kaymer who won by eight strokes to become the first German player to win the U.S. Open, and the first player to win the Players Championship and the U.S. Open in the same year.
  • In July, the Open Championship Northern Ireland man Rory McIlroy, was on top again winning by two strokes over Rickie Fowler and Sergio García. It was his third career major championship, and his first Open Championship. With the win, he became the fourth player ever of 25 years old or under to have won at least three majors.
  • In August, McIlroy was back, winning the PGA Championship by one stroke over Phil Mickelson. He was having quite a year, it was his fourth career major and his second PGA Championship.PGA Champion Rory McIlroy
  • Then in September, in the Ryder Cup, Team Europe (also including McIlroy) defeated Team USA by a score of 16½ – 11½. It was the third consecutive Ryder Cup victory for Europe, and also Europe’s fifth consecutive home victory in the Ryder Cup.

Tragedies

  • In March Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, a Boeing 777 airliner en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur, disappears over the Gulf of Thailand with 239 people on board. The aircraft is presumed to have crashed into the Indian Ocean.
  • In April Korean ferry MV Sewol capsized and sunk after an unmanageable cargo shift. More than 290 people were killed, mostly high school students.

south-korea-ferry MV Sewol

  • In May hundreds of workers were killed in mining accident in Turkey.
  • In July, Air Algérie Flight 5017 crashed in Mali, killing all 116 people on board.
  • And just a few days ago AirAsia flight QZ8501 crashed, wreckage has been found off the coast of Indonesia’s Kalimantan coast.

indonesia-airplane AirAsia flight flight QZ8501 airport notice board

 

Did You Know? – Another Factoid Feast.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

.

Indeed, it’s time for another factoid feast.

I would say that this is an unusual selection, but the truth is they are usually unusual, if you see what I mean.

I try to make the whole thing as random as possible so there is at least one or two things that you find interesting.

So here goes this week’s offering.

.

did you know5

.

Many Japanese golfers carry “hole-in-one” insurance,

because it is traditional in Japan to share one’s good luck

by sending gifts to all your friends when you get an “ace.”

The price for what the Japanese term an “albatross”

can often reach $10,000.

hole in one

.

.

Those sunbeams that you see shining down

through the clouds are called ‘crespucular rays’.

Crepuscular rays

.

.

A-1 Steak Sauce contains

both orange peel and raisins.

A-1 Steak Sauce

.

.

The Chinese ideogram for ‘trouble’ symbolizes

‘two women living under one roof’.

trouble2

.

.

Clans of long ago that wanted to get rid of

their unwanted people without killing them

use to burn their houses down

– hence the expression “to get fired.”

burning houses

.

.

The naval rank of “Admiral” is derived from

the Arabic phrase “amir al bahr”,

which means “lord of the sea”.

Admiral Mike Mullen

.

.

Mt. Vernon Washington grows more tulips

than the entire country of Holland.

Mt. Vernon Washington tulip fields

.

.

Jamie Farr (who played Klinger on M*A*S*H)

was the only member of the cast who

actually served as a soldier in the Korean war.

Jamie Farr as Klinger in MASH

.

.

Little known Cathedral Caverns near Grant, Alabama

has the world’s largest cave opening, the largest stalagmite (Goliath),

and the largest stalagmite forest in the World.

Cathedral Caverns Alabama

.

.

The word ‘pixel’ is a contraction of

either ‘picture cell’ or ‘picture element.’

pixels

.

.

Back in the mid to late 80’s, an IBM compatible computer

wasn’t considered a hundred percent compatible

unless it could run Microsoft’s Flight Simulator.

Microsoft's Flight Simulator

.

.

If you were born in Los Alamos, New Mexico

during the Manhattan project (where they made the atomic bomb),

your birthplace was listed as a post office box in Albequerque.

Manhattan project sign

.

.

Ralph Lauren’s original name was Ralph Lifshitz.

(I can’t say I’m surprised he changed a crappy name like that.)

Ralph Lifshitz

.

.

The word “samba” means “to rub navels together.”

.

.

=============================================

.

Jeremiah Denton.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

.

Jeremiah Denton died today.

He was 89 years old.

He was also a Senator for Alabama, but that’s not why he is the subject of this post, after all we don’t hold politicians in very high regard here.

Jeremiah Denton

No, Jeremiah Denton is being remembered for his time in service in the Navy, and mostly because of the period he spent as a Prisoner Of War courtesy of the North Vietnamese.

In all he spent almost eight years as a POW in North Vietnam (four of them in solitary confinement). He later wrote a book about his experiences, which in turn became a movie.

At the time Denton was US Naval Aviator and was the Commanding Officer of Attack Squadron Seventy-Five aboard the aircraft carrier USS Independence.

On 18 July 1965, while he and Lieutenant Bill Tschudy, his navigator/bombardier, were leading twenty-eight planes on a bombing mission, their jet was hit by enemy fire and the two men ejected over the city of Thanh Hoa in North Vietnam, where they were captured and taken prisoner by the North Vietnamese.

Denton is best known for a 1966 televised press conference in which he was forced to participate as an American POW by his North Vietnamese captors.

During the press conference Denton had the presence of mind to use the opportunity to send a coded message confirming for the first time to the U.S. Office of Naval Intelligence and Americans that American POWs were being tortured in North Vietnam.

To send his message Denton repeatedly blinked his eyes in Morse code during the interview, spelling out the word, “T-O-R-T-U-R-E”.

He was also questioned about his support for the U.S. war in Vietnam, to which he replied: “I don’t know what is happening, but whatever the position of my government is, I support it fully. Whatever the position of my government, I believe in it, yes sir. I am a member of that government, and it is my job to support it, and I will as long as I live.”

jeremiah-denton-captive

While a prisoner, he was promoted to the rank of Captain. Denton was later awarded the Navy Cross and several other decorations, mostly for heroism while a prisoner of war.

These days loyalty and initiative are not as valued as they once were, or as they should be. Anyone who had such values during their lifetime is worth remembering.

.

For those interested you can read more on Wikipedia or do a search on Google.

.

====================================

.

Did You Know – More Facts For Fun.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

.

Welcome to another selection of fasab’s facts for fun.

A more than random list of unusual facts that may come in handy some day. I wouldn’t count on it, but you never know. It has happened believe it or not!

So read on and enjoy.

.

did you know4

.

The only U.S. president to have been the head of a union

was Ronald Reagan,

a former president of the Screen Actors Guild.

Ronald Reagan at his desk

.

.

Just proving that not everybody is all bad,

“Pretty Boy” Floyd, one of America’s most notorious bank robbers,

was known for destroying mortgage papers,

consequently freeing hundreds of people from property debt.

gangster-pretty-boy-floyd-tote-bag

.

.

A man in China has kept himself alive with

a homemade dialysis machine for 13 years.

Home made dialysis machine

.

.

Divorce is legal in every nation in the world

except in the Philippines and in Vatican City.

divorce_pic1

.

.

In 1755 Benjamin Franklin organized the first

regular monthly mail packet service

between Falmouth, England, and New York,

and opened the first official post office in Canada

(in Halifax, Nova Scotia), to link Halifax with

the Atlantic colonies and the packet service to England.

Benjamin Franklin

.

.

About half the geysers on Earth

are located in Yellowstone National Park.

Old_Faithful_13

.

.

Your brain makes imaginary monsters when you stare in a mirror.

(Either that or you don’t look as good as you thought!)

cat and mirror

.

.

While most of it lies in Africa,

a small part of Egypt is located in Asia, as well.

Egypt_map

.

.

The White House has a variety of recreational facilities

available to its residents, including a tennis court, a jogging track,

swimming pool, movie theater, billiard room, and a bowling lane.

white-house

Click here to take an interactive tour

.

.

The Australian $5 to $100 notes are made of plastic.

aussie-money

.

.

A skunk’s smell can be detected by a human a mile away.

Skunk-in-Grass

.

.

The poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s wife died

when a dropped match ignited her enormous hoop skirt.

fanny-wadsworth

.

.

Alabama was the first state to

recognize Christmas as an official holiday.

Alabama Christmas

.

.

If your eyes are six feet above the surface of the ocean,

the horizon will be about three statute miles away.

hopes_on_the_horizon

.

.

The longest freshwater shoreline in the world

is located in the state of Michigan.

Michigan shoreline

.

.

Carbon monoxide is deadly.

It can kill a person in less than 15 minutes

carbon-monoxide-gas-safety

.

.

In 1876, the first microphone was invented by Emile Berliner.

emile_berliner

.

.

When Nadia Comaneci became the first gymnast

to score a perfect 10, the scoreboard wasn’t prepared.

Her score was reported as “1.00.”

Comaneci-1976

.

.

The accent that Mike Myers used for the character Shrek

came from the accent that his mother would use

when she was telling him bedtime stories when he was a child.

Shrek_fierce

.

.

Johnny Cash’s “A Boy Named Sue” was written by Shel Silverstein.

.

.

=======================================

.

Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today The Number Is Twenty-One 21

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

.

Today a number that many people like and hold to be ‘lucky’.

The Number 21

21

.

In religion

  • Number of the perfection by excellence, 3 x 7, according to the Bible.
  • 21 represents the harmony of the creation.
  • Mary, mother of Jesus, lived 21 years after the death Jesus
  • There were 21 years between the presentation of Jesus to the Temple at 12 years old and his death at 33 years old.
  • In the same day, Jesus appears in 21 different places in Palestine to confirm in His Resurrection.
  • The word angel is pronounced 21 times by Jesus, always to the plural.
  • The words Flood and star are used 21 times in the Bible.
  • In the Revelation, the word “capacity” (capacity of decision or to act, by opposition to “power”) is used 21 times.

.

In mathematics

21 is a Triangular, Octagonal, Fibonacci, and Motzkin Number.

.

In science & technology

  • The Chemical Element Scandium has an atomic number of 21.
  • There are 21 amino-acids.
  • 21 is the standard TCP/IP port number for FTP connections

.

In space and aviation

  • Messier 21 or M21
  • Messier 21 or M21 (also designated NGC 6531) is an open cluster of stars in the constellation of Sagittarius. It was discovered and catalogued by Charles Messier on June 5, 1764.
  •  It is tightly packed but contains about 57 stars. A few blue giant stars have been identified in the cluster, but Messier 21 is composed mainly of small dim stars. With a magnitude of 6.5, M21 is not visible to the naked eye; however, with the smallest binoculars it can be easily spotted on a dark night.

 trifid nebula messier 21

.

  • Expedition 21
  • Expedition 21 was the 21st long-duration mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The expedition began on 30 September 2009, with Frank de Winne becoming the first ESA astronaut to command a space mission.

expedition 21 insignia

  • The handover between Expedition 20 and Expedition 21 required three Soyuz vehicles being docked to the station at the same time, the first time this has occurred.
  • Soyuz TMA-16 brought the final members of Expedition 21 to the ISS, along with space tourist Guy Laliberté. Laliberté returned to Earth on Soyuz TMA-14 with two members of Expedition 20 on 11 October 2009.
  • Nicole P. Stott was the last ISS expedition crew member to fly on the Space Shuttle. She returned to Earth aboard STS-129 in November 2009.
Expedition 21
Expedition 21 crew portrait (from the left) are Flight Engineers Nicole Stott, Frank De Winne and Roman Romanenko. Pictured on the back row (from the left) are Flight Engineer Maxim Suraev, Commander Jeffrey Williams and Flight Engineer Robert Thirsk. Image credit: NASA

.

  • Luna 21
  • Luna 21 (Ye-8 series) was an unmanned space mission of the Luna program, also called Lunik 21. The spacecraft landed on the Moon and deployed the second Soviet lunar rover (Lunokhod 2). The primary objectives of the mission were to collect images of the lunar surface, examine ambient light levels to determine the feasibility of astronomical observations from the Moon, perform laser ranging experiments from Earth, observe solar X-rays, measure local magnetic fields, and study mechanical properties of the lunar surface material.

V Pennant Luna 21

.

  • Number 21
  • Number 21 is the name of the plane alleged flown by Gustave Whitehead two years before the Wright brothers’ flight

 

 

In politics

  • 21st President of the United States
  • Chester Alan Arthur (October 5, 1829 – November 18, 1886) was the 21st President of the United States (1881–85). He became President after the assassination of President James A. Garfield.
  • Born in Fairfield, Vermont, Arthur grew up in upstate New York and practiced law in New York City. He devoted much of his time to Republican politics and quickly rose in the political machine run by New York Senator Roscoe Conkling.
  • Appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant to the lucrative and politically powerful post of Collector of the Port of New York in 1871, Arthur was an important supporter of Conkling and the Stalwart faction of the Republican Party.
  • In 1878 the new president, Rutherford B. Hayes, fired Arthur as part of a plan to reform the federal patronage system in New York. When James Garfield won the Republican nomination for President in 1880, Arthur was nominated for Vice President to balance the ticket by adding an eastern Stalwart to it.
  • After just half a year as vice president, Garfield was assassinated and Arthur unexpectedly became the 21st President of the united states.
  • To the surprise of reformers, Arthur took up the reform cause that had once led to his expulsion from office. He signed the Pendleton Act into law, and enforced its provisions vigorously.
  • Suffering from poor health, Arthur made only a limited effort to secure renomination in 1884; he retired at the close of his term. As journalist Alexander McClure would later write, “No man ever entered the Presidency so profoundly and widely distrusted as Chester Alan Arthur, and no one ever retired … more generally respected, alike by political friend and foe.”
Chester A Arthur
Chester A Arthur, 21st President of the United States of America

.

  • 21st Amendment
  • The Twenty-first Amendment to the United States Constitution repealed the Eighteenth Amendment, thereby ending Prohibition.

.

  • 21st State
  • Illinois – the ‘Land of Lincoln’ – was the 21st state to join the United States.
  • Abraham Lincoln moved to Illinois when he was 21 and he met his future wife – Mary Todd – in Springfield when she was 21.
  • Illinois currently has 21 electoral votes in the US Presidential Election.

.

  • Canada – Pier 21
  • Pier 21 was, from 1928 to 1971, was the place where immigrants entered Canada. It was called the “Gateway to Canada.”

.

  • France – King Louis XVI
  • 21 was a significant number in the life of French King Louis XVI
  • On January 21, 1770, Louis XVI became engaged;
  • On June 21, 1770, he got married;
  • On January 21, 1782, he promulgated the suspension of a tax;
  • On January 21, 1784 an enormous obelisk of snow was raised for him on the place Louis XV;
  • On June 21, 1791,  Louis XVI was arrested;  and,
  • On January 21, 1793, he goes up to the scaffold.
  • Finally, the 5 letters of his first name added to XVI gives 21.

.

  • Japan-China
  • The Twenty-One Demands were a set of demands which were sent to the Chinese government by the Japanese government of Okuma Shigenobu in 1915.

. 

  • Poland
  • The 21 Demands of MKS led to the foundation of Solidarity in Poland.

solidarity-logo

.

.

In folklore, legends and mythology

  • The Mayan Calendar
  • December 21st 2012, according to some interpretations of the Mayan calendar was the predicted date of an apocalyptic event: ‘The planets are aligned the sun will activate, let the deluge come’.
  • It turned out to be bollocks though (see also this post)

.

  • Ghost Ship 21
  • A ghost ship, also known as a phantom ship, is a ship with no living crew aboard. It may be a ghostly vessel in folklore or fiction, such as the Flying Dutchman, or a real derelict found adrift with its crew missing or dead, like the Mary Celeste. The term is sometimes also used for ships that have been decommissioned but not yet scrapped.
  • There have been many examples throughout history, for example,
  • Undated: The Caleuche is a mythical ghost ship which, according to local folklore and Chilota mythology, sails the seas around Chiloé Island, Chile, at night.
  • 1738 onwards: The Palatine Light, a ship who lost half her crew running aground off Rhode Island, possibly being lured there and pillaged by the locals. Said to appear every December.
  • 1748 onwards: The Lady Lovibond is said to have been deliberately wrecked on Goodwin Sands on 13 February and to reappear off the Kent coast every fifty years.
  • 1786 onwards: The Ghost Ship of Northumberland Strait, a burning ship seen regularly between Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.
  • 1795 onwards: The Flying Dutchman, a ship manned by a captain condemned to eternally sail the seas, has long been the principal ghost ship legend among mariners and has inspired several works.
  • 1813 onwards: After the American schooner Young Teazer was sunk in an explosion during the War of 1812, a burning apparition known as the “Teazer Light” has been reported off Maine.
  • 1858 onwards: The Eliza Battle, a paddle steamer that burned in 1858 on the Tombigbee River in Alabama, is purported to reappear, fully aflame, on cold and windy winter nights to foretell of impending disaster.
  • 1878 onwards: An apparition has been reported where the HMS Eurydice sank off the Isle of Wight. Witnesses include a Royal Navy submarine in the 1930s and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, in 1998.
  • 1872 or 1882: The Iron Mountain riverboat, according to legend, mysteriously disappeared while travelling the Mississippi River and left the barges it was towing adrift. In reality, the ship sank in 1882 near Vicksburg after running aground, and its fate was never mysterious.
  • 1928: The København was last heard from on December 28, 1928. For two years following its disappearance sightings of a mysterious five-masted ship fitting its description were reported in the Pacific Ocean.
  • Historically attested
  • 1855: HMS Resolute was discovered drifting off the coast of Baffin Island. It had been one of four vessels from Edward Belcher’s search expedition for John Franklin that had been abandoned the previous year when it was trapped in pack ice in Viscount Melville Sound. The ship drifted some 1,200 miles (1,900 km) before it was found, freed from the ice.
  • 1872: Amazon (later renamed Mary Celeste). In 1872 the Mary Celeste, perhaps the most historically famous derelict, was found abandoned between mainland Portugal and the Azores archipelago. It was devoid of all crew, but largely intact and under sail, heading toward the Strait of Gibraltar. While Arthur Conan Doyle’s story “J. Habakuk Jephson’s Statement” based on this ship added some strange phenomena to the tale (such as that the tea found in the mess hall was still hot), the fact remained that the last log entry was 11 days prior to the discovery of the ship.
  • 1884: In 1884 the Resolven was found abandoned between Baccalieu Island and Catalina, Newfoundland and Labrador, with its lifeboat missing. Other than a broken yard, it had suffered minimal damage. A large iceberg was sighted nearby. It has been claimed that none of the seven crew members or four passengers were accustomed to northern waters and it was suggested that they panicked when the ship was damaged by ice,[9] launched the lifeboat, and swamped, though no bodies were found. Three years later, Resolven was wrecked while returning to Newfoundland from Nova Scotia with a load of lumber.
  • 1917: Zebrina, a sailing barge, departed Falmouth, England, with a cargo of Swansea coal bound for Saint-Brieuc, France. Two days later she was discovered aground on Rozel Point, south of Cherbourg, without damage except for some disarrangement of her rigging, but with her crew missing.
  • 1921: The Carroll A. Deering, a five-masted cargo schooner, was found stranded on a beach on Diamond Shoals, North Carolina. The ship’s final voyage had been the subject of much debate and controversy, and was investigated by six departments of the US government, largely because it was one of dozens of ships that sank or went missing within a relatively short period of time. While paranormal explanations have been advanced, the theories of mutiny or piracy are considered more likely.
  • 1931: The Baychimo was abandoned in the Arctic Ocean when it became trapped in pack ice and was thought doomed to sink, but remained afloat and was sighted numerous times over the next 38 years without ever being salvaged.
  • 1933: A lifeboat from the 1906 wreck of the passenger steamship SS Valencia off the southwest coast of Vancouver Island was found floating in the area in remarkably good condition 27 years after the sinking. Sailors have also reported seeing the ship itself in the area in the years following the sinking, often as an apparition that followed down the coast.
  • 1955: The MV Joyita was discovered abandoned in the Pacific. A subsequent inquiry found the vessel was in a poor state of repair, but determined the fate of passengers and crew to be “inexplicable on the evidence submitted at the inquiry”.
  • 1959: A ghost submarine was found floating without a crew in the Bay of Biscay off northern Spain. It was later discovered that the empty sub was being towed by another vessel and the chain had snapped.
  • 1969: The Teignmouth Electron was found adrift and unoccupied in the Atlantic Ocean. Investigation led to the conclusion that its sole crewmember, Donald Crowhurst, had suffered a psychiatric breakdown while competing in a solo around-the-world race and committed suicide by jumping overboard.
  • 2003: The High Aim 6 was found drifting in Australian waters, 80 nautical miles (150 km; 92 mi) east of Rowley Shoals, with its crew missing. The derelict was subsequently scuttled.
  • 2006: The tanker Jian Seng was found off the coast of Weipa, Queensland Australia in March. Its origin or owner could not be determined, and its engines had been inoperable for some time.
  • 2006: In August the “Bel Amica” was discovered off the coast of Sardinia. The Coast Guard crew that discovered the ship found half eaten Egyptian meals, French maps of North African seas, and a flag of Luxembourg on board.
  • 2007: A 12-metre catamaran, the Kaz II, was discovered unmanned off the coast of Queensland, northeast Australia in April.[18] The yacht, which had left Airlie Beach on Sunday 15 April, was spotted about 80 nautical miles (150 km) off Townsville, near the outer Great Barrier Reef on the following Wednesday. When boarded on Friday, the engine was running, a laptop was running, the radio and GPS were working and a meal was set to eat, but the three-man crew were not on board. All the sails were up but one was badly shredded, while three life jackets and survival equipment, including an emergency beacon, were found on board. A search for the crew was abandoned on Sunday 22nd as it was considered unlikely that anyone could have survived for that period of time.
  • 2008: The abandoned 50 ton Taiwanese fishing vessel Tai Ching 21 was found drifting near Kiribati on 9 November. The ship had suffered a fire several days previously, and its lifeboat and three life rafts were missing. No mayday call was received, and the ship had last been heard from on 28 October. A search of 21,000 square miles (54,000 square km) of the Pacific Ocean north of Fiji by a US Air Force C-130 Hercules and a New Zealand Air Force P-3 Orion found no trace of the Taiwanese captain or crew (18 Chinese, 6 Indonesians, and 4 Filipinos).
  • 2012: The Ryou-Un Maru, a Japanese fishing vessel swept away by the March 2011 tsunami, was found floating adrift towards Canada after nearly a year at sea, no crew believed to be on board. The vessel was sunk on April 5, 2012 by the United States Coast Guard.

ghost ship 21

.

.

In sports

  • The jersey number 21 has been retired by several North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other key figures:
  • In Major League Baseball: the Cleveland Indians, for Hall of Famer Bob Lemon, the Milwaukee Braves, for Hall of Famer Warren Spahn (the number continues to be honored by the team in its current home of Atlanta);  the Pittsburgh Pirates, for Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente (following his death in a plane crash while attempting to deliver humanitarian aid to victims of an earthquake in Nicaragua);

bob lemon

.

  • In the NBA: the Atlanta Hawks, for Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins; the Boston Celtics, for Hall of Famer Bill Sharman; the Detroit Pistons, for Hall of Famer Dave Bing; the Sacramento Kings, for Vlade Divac; the Minnesota Timberwolves have not retired the number, but have not issued it since Kevin Garnett was traded from the team in 2007.

mayor dave bing detroit pistons 21

.

  • In the NHL: the Chicago Blackhawks, for Hall of Famer Stan Mikita; the Colorado Avalanche, for likely future Hall of Famer Peter Forsberg; the Pittsburgh Penguins, for Michel Brière; the Toronto Maple Leafs have a policy of not retiring numbers unless the player honored either died or suffered a career-ending incident while a member of the team. Other players whose numbers would otherwise be retired instead have their numbers enshrined by the team as “Honored Numbers”, which remain in circulation for future players. The number 21 is currently honored for Hall of Famer Börje Salming.

stan mikita

.

  • No NFL team has retired the number 21.

.

  • In basketball: 21 is a variation of street basketball, in which each player, of which there can be any number, plays for himself only (i.e. not part of a team); the name comes from the requisite number of baskets.
  • In 3×3, a formalized version of three-on-three half-court basketball, the game ends by rule once either team has scored 21 points in regulation. Scoring is significantly different from traditional basketball rules, with free throws and baskets made from inside the three-point arc worth 1 point, and baskets made from outside the arc worth 2 points.
  • In badminton, and table tennis (before 2001), 21 points are required to win a game.
  • Eyeshield 21 is a Japanese anime about football.
  • In the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series the number 21 has long been the car number for Wood Brothers Racing

Wood Brothers car 21

.

.

In books, music, tv and movies

  • 21 is the sophomore album from British singer-songwriter Adele, recently acclaimed for her title song for the Bond movie Skyfall.
  • Century 21 Television (producers of Sylvia and Gerry Anderson Supermarionation shows like Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons).
  • Cinema 21 is an independently-owned movie theatre in Portland, Oregon featuring art house films. Cinema 21, 616 NW 21st Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97209 USA
  • Cinema 21, is also the name of the largest cinema chain in Indonesia, established in the entertainment industry in 1987.
  • “21” is the fact-based story about six MIT students who were trained to become experts in card counting and subsequently took Vegas casinos for millions in winnings.
  • Wedding In Las Vegas is a docu-drama about a group of students who, using a wedding as a cover story, also defeat the casino’s Blackjack tables using card counting techniques.

.

.

In militaria

  • Mig-21
  • The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 is a supersonic jet fighter aircraft, designed by the Mikoyan-Gurevich Design Bureau in the Soviet Union. It was popularly nicknamed “balalaika”, from the aircraft’s planform-view resemblance to the Russian stringed musical instrument or olówek (English: pencil) by Polish pilots due to the shape of its fuselage.
  • Early versions are considered second-generation jet fighters, while later versions are considered to be third-generation jet fighters.
  • Some 50 countries over four continents have flown the MiG-21, and it still serves many nations a half-century after its maiden flight. The fighter made aviation records. At least by name, it is the most-produced supersonic jet aircraft in aviation history and the most-produced combat aircraft since the Korean War, and it had the longest production run of a combat aircraft (1959 to 1985 over all variants).

Mig_21_MF_b

.

  • IAI Kfir F-21
  • The Israel Aircraft Industries Kfir F-21 is an Israeli-built all-weather, multirole combat aircraft based on a modified French Dassault Mirage 5 airframe, with Israeli avionics and an Israeli-made version of the General Electric J79 turbojet engine.
  • The Kfir entered service with the IAF in 1975, the first units being assigned to the 101st “First Fighter” Squadron. Over the following years, several other squadrons were also equipped with the new aircraft. The role of the Kfir as the IAF’s primary air superiority asset was short-lived, as the first F-15 Eagle fighters from the United States were delivered to Israel in 1976.
  • The Kfir’s first recorded combat action took place on November 9, 1977, during an Israeli air strike on a training camp at Tel Azia, in Lebanon. The only air victory claimed by a Kfir during its service with the IAF occurred on June 27, 1979 when a Kfir C.2 shot down a Syrian MiG-21.
  • Twenty-five modified Kfir C.1s were leased to the US Navy and the US Marine Corps from 1985 to 1989, to act as adversary aircraft in dissimilar air combat training (DACT). These aircraft, designated F-21A Kfir, had narrow-span canard foreplanes and a single small rectangular strake on either side of the nose which considerably improved the aircraft’s maneuverability and handling at low speeds.

Kfir F-21

.

  • Blücher 21 cm/45 (8.27″) SK L/45
  • Used afloat only on the Armored Cruiser Blücher which was sunk at the World War I battle of Dogger Bank.  After her sinking, four reserve guns were given to the German Army.
  • During World War II these guns were used as coastal artillery.  They were then supplied with a better ballistically shaped shell and with a larger propellant charge for increased range.
  • Constructed of a tube, two layers of hoops and a jacket.  Used the Krupp horizontal sliding wedge breech block.  About 16 guns were made.

Blucher

.

  • 21-K
  • The 45 mm anti-aircraft gun (21-K) was a Soviet design adapted from the 45 mm anti-tank gun M1937 (53-K). This was a copy of a 3.7 cm (1.5 in) German weapon designed by Rheinmetall that was sold to the Soviets before Hitler came to power in 1933 that had been enlarged to 45 mm (1.8 in) in increase its penetrating power.
  • It was used by the Soviet Navy to equip almost all of their ships from 1934 as its primary light anti-aircraft gun until replaced by the fully automatic 37 mm 70-K gun from 1942 to 1943.
  • It was used in World War II and during the Cold War as the Soviets exported their World War II-era ships to their friends and allies.
  • However it was not very effective as its slow rate of fire and lack of a time fuze required a direct hit to damage targets.

21-K-KrasnyyKavkaz1

.

  • GAU-21 (M3M)
  • The M3M was designated by the U.S. Navy as the GAU-21 in 2004 and is currently used by all services within the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD).
  • An evolution of the M3 .50-caliber heavy machine gun, it produces a blistering 1,100 rounds per minute cyclic rate of fire through the use of open-bolt operation and a dual recoil buffer system. Operating independent of either electrical or hydraulic power sources, the M3M/GAU-21’s unique soft mount system enhances weapon accuracy and minimizes the firing vibration transmitted to the airframe.
  • FN Herstal has been awarded a solesource U.S. Navy contract to produce the M3M .50 caliber machine guns under the Gun, Aircraft, Unit-21 (GAU-21) designation for Navy and Marine Corps rotary-wing assault aircraft.
  • The FN GAU-21 (M3M) is a .50 caliber (12.7x99mm) single barrel rapid-fire machine gun suitable for rotary-wing aircraft applications providing defensive firepower ranging out to nearly 2000 meters.

gau_21_main

.

  • BRNO 21
  • BRNO is neither German nor Austrian (although it was once located in the Austro-Hungarian Empire), but they produced the BRNO model designation 21 and 22 as post-War sporting rifles.

BRNO Model 21

.

  • GLOCK 21
  • Almpst an American icon, the Glock 21 is a .45 caliber pistol. Countless law enforcement units swear by this superior pistol for more than just its above-average magazine capacity of 13 rounds.

Glock-21

.

  • SIG SAUER® P210®
  • The SIG SAUER® P210®, the timeless pistol of the Swiss Army, is once again in production by SIG SAUER GmbH in Germany. This historic gun features the same precision and reliability as its ancestors, but also offers a number of modern improvements.
  • The return of the SIG SAUER P210 Legend will now ensure that many more shooters will be able to enjoy one of the world’s most accurate and legendary firearms.

sig_p210_b

.

  • 21st Century Commander
  • Internally, the 21st Century Commander is classic Colt. The stainless 4.25-inch barrel is rifled in the standard 1:16-inch left-hand twist. Each 21st Century Commander is serialized with a unique number that contains the letters “WC” for Wiley Clapp.

Colt 21st Century Commander

.

  • 21 Series Beretta
  • The 21 Series Beretta pocket pistol (Bobcat) has the same dedication to advanced design, uncompromising quality and strict quality control that make the 92F, Cougar and Cheetah such international standouts.
  • It has a user-friendly design, exclusive tip-up barrel allowing the user to easily load a round directly into the chamber or assisting in the safe clearing of the pistol by allowing a live round to be easily removed from the chamber and the bore quickly checked. Jamming and stovepiping problems are virtually eliminated by the open slide design shared by all small frame Berettas.
  • Chambered for .22LR or .25ACP (6.35 mm), this compact, rugged small frame measures just 4.9 inches (125 mm) overall and weighs only 11.5 ounces (325 grams). It features a lightweight, alloy frame, blued steel slide, tip-up barrel, and double/single action. The Bobcat comes with a 7-round magazine for .22LR ammunition, or an 8 round magazine for .25 (6.35 mm)caliber cartridges.

Beretta Mod 21A

.

  • Twenty-one Gun Salute
  • Legend has it that Twenty-one guns are fired in U.S. national military salutes because the digits in 1776 add up to 21. However, despite the fact that the year 1776 is deeply significant to Americans and the total of its digits does add up to 21, the legend is untrue because the custom of the 21-gun salute antedates the American Revolution by at least several decades.
  • Also interesting is the fact that, although we now view weaponry salutes as honors proudly bestowed by fighting men upon those of high rank or great achievement, saluting in days long ago was an act of submission; a tangible way of demonstrating that the one performing the action was voluntarily placing himself in the power of the one being saluted. Guns would be emptied a ritual number of times, or sails would be lowered, or spears would be pointed towards the ground, the significance being that those carrying out the act were saying “I yield to your authority, and as proof I’ve just rendered my weapon incapable of being used against you.”
  • Over time the practice evolved into a custom honorary and ceremonial as well as practical. Today’s salute is far more a mark of respect than an act of submission.
  • Cannons became part of weaponry salutes in the 14th century.  A just-emptied cannon was a useless piece of ordnance and so made a fine visible display of the lack of hostile intent. Warships took to firing honorary seven-gun salutes, with that number likely chosen for its astrological and biblical significance. Because those crewing cannons on land had access to far greater supplies of powder, they were able to fire three guns (a number chosen for its mystical significance) for every shot fired afloat, making the honorary salute by shore batteries 21 guns.
  • Eventually, an understanding was reached that the international salute should be established as 21 guns.
  • Today, the national salute of 21 guns is fired in honor of a national flag, the sovereign or chief of state of a foreign nation, a member of a reigning royal family, and the President, ex-President, and President-elect of the United States. It is also fired at noon of the day of the funeral of a President, ex-President, or President-elect; Washington’s Birthday; Presidents’ Day; and the Fourth of July. On Memorial Day, a salute of 21 minute guns (i.e., guns discharged at one-minute intervals) is fired at noon while the flag is flown at half staff.

21-gun-salute

.

.

In other stuff

  • We are currently living in the 21st Century, which spans the years from 2001 to 2100;
  • There are 21 letters in the Italian alphabet;
  • 21 is the number representing the maturity and the responsibility for an individual;
  • In most USA states 21 is the drinking age;
  • In some countries 21 is the voting age;
  • Cities on latitude 21 North include:  Aguascalientes, Cancún, and León, in Mexico; Jeddah, and Mecca in Saudi Arabia; Honolulu, Hawaii; Nagpur, Maharashtra, India; and Hanoi, Vietnam.
  • Cities on latitude 21 South include: Francistown, Botswana; and Nuku’Alofa, Tonga.
  • Cities on longitude 21 West include: Reykjavík, Iceland.
  • Cities on longitude 21 East include: Warsaw, Poland; Pristina, Kosovo; and Skopje, Macedonia.21 is a card game, also called vingt-et-un (French for “twenty-one”), pontoon, or blackjack;
  • Twenty One, was the name of a TV quiz show that ran from 1956 to 1958, most remembered for the scandal that the wins were fixed – it was remade in 2000;
  • There are 21 spots on a standard cubical (six-sided) die (1+2+3+4+5+6);
  • There are 21 trump cards of the tarot deck if one does not consider The Fool to be a proper trump card;
  • In Israel, the number is associated with the profile 21 (the military profile designation granting an exemption from the military service);
  • 21 grams is the weight of the soul, according to research by Duncan MacDougall;
  • 21 is the designation of a US Highway connecting Wytheville, Virginia and Beaufort, South Carolina, a truncation of a route that once connected Cleveland, Ohio and Jacksonville, Florida, among other highways past and present;
  • 21 is the number of the French department Côte-d’Or;
  • In France XXI is a journal devoted to long-form journalism;
  • ’21’ is a landmark New York restaurant perfectly positioned in midtown Manhattan;
  • Forever 21 is an American chain of clothing retailers with branches in major cities in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East that offers trendy clothing and accessories for young women, men, and girls at low, affordable prices.

=======================================

Expect The Worst, It’s Quiz Show Answers Monday!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

.

Another foray into the hidden shallows of the human mind as shown by the answers some hapless contestants have given on television and radio quiz shows.

Marvel at the stupidity.

And enjoy!

.

.

Q: Name something you might buy that could turn out to be phony        

A: A Horse

panto horse

.

.

Q: Name something that dries up as it gets old  

A: Water

dry water.

.

Q: The one thing that the people living near you have that you want        

A: A beautiful wife

neighborhood watch.

.

Q: Name something most women wouldn’t be caught leaving the house without  

A: A Tampon

tampons-cartoon.

.

Q: Name a body part that gets bigger as people get older         

A: Penis

BeavisButtheadWashington.

.

Q: Name a foreign country people vacation in where it would be easy to pack on 10 pounds.      

A: Paris

french fries.

.

Q: Which one of the seven dwarfs you most often feel like        

A: Weepy

A: Drowsy

A: Grouchy

The Seven Dwarfs.

.

Q: Name a question you hate when people ask it to you 

A: “Are those real?”

Are Those Real?.

.

Q: The hardest position to play on a baseball team        

A: Quarterback

baseball-face-cartoon-ball.

.

Q: Name a city in the state of Georgia   

A: Alabama

georgia_alabama.

.

Q: An excuse you use when stopped for speeding        

A: “I was drinking”

speeding.

.

Q: Name something newlyweds share    

A: Underwear    

his n hers underwear.

.

Q: Name something you would buy in a stationery store 

A: Water

stationery store1111

Q: Name a question that a gentleman would never ask a lady on a first date       

A: “What color underwear do you wear?”

first date.

.

Q: Name a fruit beginning with the letter A         

A: Orange

cartoon-orange.

================================

.

The Brain-To-Mouth-Bypass Mishaps Of Joe Public And Friends – Yes, Another Quiz Show Monday Folks!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

Yesterday you were in the hot seat trying to answer some questions. But I’m sure you did better than this lot and your questions were much trickier than these.

Feel superior and enjoy the brain-to-mouth-bypass mishaps of Joe Public and friends.

 .

 .

Q: In literature, Arthur C. Clarke’s “2010: Odyssey Two” was primarily set in what century?

A: Third

 .

 .

Q: What is 2 times 5?   

A: 7     

 .

 .

Q: What name is given to the field of medicine that concerns the health of women?        

A: Womenology

 .

 .

Q: The law of what organization states that its members are “brave, clean and reverent”

A: Alcoholics Anonymous   (Answer: Boy Scouts)          

 .

 .

Q: The name of which Caribbean island literally means “rich port” in Spanish?      

A: Port Richmond

 .

 .

Q: What is half of 1,000

A: 100  

 .

 .

Q: According to Hallmark, what type of gift should be given on the 50th wedding anniversary?    

A: Greeting card

 .

 .

Q: What animal builds dams and lodges?          

A: Sheep

 .

 .

Q: Who is the only Marx brother that remained silent throughout all their films?    

A: Karl 

 .

 .

Q: What Tennessee congressman fought at the Battle of the Alamo?      

A: Al Gore

 .

 .

Q: What ‘S’ is one of the seven deadly sins in Christianity?        

A: Science

 .

 .

Q: What part of the human body is closest to the floor when we are walking?      

A: Head           

 .

 .

Q: What 20 year old Russian tennis star released a fitness video called “Basic Elements?”          

A: Arnold Schwarzenegger

 .

 .

Q: In 1973, President Nixon issued a statement saying “I am not a…” what?        

A: Canadian

 .

 .

Q: What is the largest planet visible from Earth?

A: The moon    

 .

 .

Q: On TV’s “Cheers,” which actress played bar manager Rebecca Howe?

A: Ted Dansen 

 .

 .

Q: The Governor’s mansion in the state of Georgia is located in which city?        

A: Alabama

 .

 .

Q: What does the “U” stand for in the name of the dissolved country U.S.S.R.?  

A: Russia

 .

 .

Q: What is the capital of New Jersey?   

A: Delaware

 .

 .

Q: What computer company’s name is abbreviated IBM?

A: Apple

.

======================================