Category: FYI


FYI June 27, 2019

On This Day

1927 – Prime Minister of Japan Tanaka Giichi convenes an eleven-day conference to discuss Japan’s strategy in China. The Tanaka Memorial, a forged plan for world domination, is later claimed to be a secret report leaked from this conference.

The Tanaka Memorial (田中上奏文 Tanaka Jōsōbun) is an alleged Japanese strategic planning document from 1927 in which Prime Minister Baron Tanaka Giichi laid out for Emperor Hirohito a strategy to take over the world. The authenticity of the document was long accepted and it is still quoted in some Chinese textbooks,[1] but historian John Dower states that “most scholars now agree that it was a masterful anti-Japanese hoax.”[2]



Born On This Day

1906 – Catherine Cookson, English author and philanthropist (d. 1998)
Dame Catherine Ann Cookson, DBE (née McMullen; 27 June 1906 – 11 June 1998) was a British author. She is in the top 20 of most widely read British novelists with sales topping 100 million, while retaining a relatively low profile in the world of celebrity writers. Her books were inspired by her deprived youth in South Tyneside, North East England, the setting for her novels. With more than 103 titles written in her own name or two other pen-names (see Bibliography below), she is one of the most prolific British novelists.




By Clark Collins: Billy Drago, star of The Untouchables and Charmed, dies at age 73

William Eugene Burrows Jr. (November 30, 1945 – June 24, 2019), known professionally by his stage name Billy Drago, was an American television and film actor.[1] Frequently cast in the role of villain, Drago’s films included Clint Eastwood’s western Pale Rider[2] and Brian De Palma’s The Untouchables.[2][3]

By Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY: Max Wright, who played Willie Tanner on TV’s ‘ALF’, dies at 75

George Edward Maxwell Wright (August 2, 1943 – June 26, 2019), credited professionally as Max Wright, was an American actor, best known for his role as Willie Tanner on the sitcom ALF.

By James Clear: If You Commit to Nothing, You’ll Be Distracted By Everything
oey Garrison, USA TODAY: How did he still have a license? Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles boss quits after crash kills 7
BOSTON — The head of the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles resigned Tuesday amid revelations that the truck driver accused of vehicular homicide in the death of seven motorcyclists in New Hampshire was able to keep his commercial driver’s license despite a drunken-driving arrest last month and a history of other serious traffic violations.

The resignation of Erin Deveney, registrar of the Massachusetts RMV, is effective immediately, Massachusetts Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollack said.

Deveney’s departure comes after Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, a 23-year-old truck driver from Springfield, Massachusetts, was charged with seven counts of vehicular homicide. A pickup truck and trailer that he was driving Friday crossed a double-yellow line on a highway and collided with a group of motorcycle riders in the rural town of Randolph en route to a nearby veterans fundraiser.
By Joey Grihalva: This is not a profile of the comedian Brandon Wardell
By Tyler Fingert: Pulling the Plug: Chatom Ford ends promotion giving free gun with every vehicle purchase
By Edward Baig, USA Today: Big birds: Giant, 1,000-pound birds once roamed around Europe

By Liz Seegert: Roadmap helps states address the public health crisis of Alzheimer’s disease
By Courtney Tanner: Lauren McCluskey’s parents are suing the University of Utah for $56 million. Here’s what their lawsuit says.
The Rural Blog: Census using more satellite imagery to find rural minorities of color, who are historically reluctant to respond to it; States try to get lawyers to fill ‘legal deserts’ in rural areas; Supreme Court rules that federal judges have no role in deciding whether partisan gerrymandering goes too far; Fact-checking Democratic presidential candidates’ claims about health issues in their first debate and more ->
Saveur | Gabe Ulla: A Living Larder: The Joys of Fermentation

American Anthem NPR Neda Ulaby: ‘You Don’t Own Me,’ A Feminist Anthem With Civil Rights Roots, Is All About Empathy


The Passive Voice: Amazon Gets Bulk of Complaint in AAP Filing with Us Trade Commission; Amazon, Youtube and the ‘Too Big to Police’ Platform and more ->





FYI June 26, 2019

On This Day

1936 – Initial flight of the Focke-Wulf Fw 61, the first practical helicopter.
The Focke-Wulf Fw 61 is often considered the first practical, functional helicopter, first flown in 1936.[1] It was also known as the Fa 61, as Focke began a new company—Focke-Achgelis—after development had begun.

Design and development
Professor Henrich Focke, through his development of the Fw 186, and through his work on the C.19 and licence-built C.30 autogyros,[2] came to the conclusion that the limitations of autogyros could be eliminated only by an aircraft capable of vertical flight, the helicopter. He and engineer Gerd Achgelis started the design for this helicopter in 1932. A free-flying model, built in 1934 and propelled by a small two-stroke engine, brought the promise of success. Today, the model can be seen in the Deutsches Museum in Munich.

On 9 February 1935, Focke received an order for the building of a prototype, which was designated the Fw 61; Focke referred to it as the F 61. Roluf Lucht of the technical office of the RLM extended the order for a second aircraft on 19 December 1935. The airframe was based on that of a well-tried training aircraft, the Focke-Wulf Fw 44 Stieglitz.

Using rotor technology licensed from the Cierva Autogiro Company, a single radial engine drove twin rotors, set on tubular steel outriggers to the left and right of the fuselage.[2] Each main rotor consisted of three articulated and tapered blades, driven by the engine through gears and shafts. Longitudinal and directional control was achieved using cyclic pitch and asymmetric rotor lift.[3] The counter-rotation of the two rotors solved the problem of torque-reaction as also shown by Louis Bréguet. The small horizontal-axis propeller directly driven by the engine was purely to provide the necessary airflow to cool the engine during low speed or hovering flight and provided negligible forward thrust.[4][2]

Only two aircraft were produced.[1] The first prototype, the V 1 D-EBVU, had its first free flight on 26 June 1936 with Ewald Rohlfs at the controls.[4] By early 1937, the second prototype, V 2 D-EKRA, was completed and flown for its first flight. On 10 May 1937, it accomplished its first autorotation landing with the engine turned off.

Focke-Achgelis began work on a two-seat sports version of the Fw 61, the Fa 224, which would have used an Argus As 10C engine and had greater performance. However, the Fa 224 never left the drawing board at the outbreak of WW2.[5]

Operational history
In February 1938, the Fw 61 was demonstrated by Hanna Reitsch indoors at the Deutschlandhalle sports stadium in Berlin, Germany.[6] It subsequently set several records for altitude, speed and flight duration culminating, in June 1938, with an altitude record of 3,427 m (11,243 ft),[2] breaking the unofficial 605 meter altitude record of the TsAGI 1-EA single lift-rotor helicopter from the Soviet Union set in August 1932, and a straight line flight record of 230 km (143 mi).

Neither of these machines appear to have survived World War II, although a replica is on display at the Hubschraubermuseum in Bückeburg, Germany.



Born On This Day

1893 – Dorothy Fuldheim, American journalist and author (d. 1989)
Dorothy Fuldheim (June 26, 1893 – November 3, 1989) was an American journalist and anchor, spending the majority of her career for The Cleveland Press and WEWS-TV, both based in Cleveland, Ohio.

Fuldheim has a role in United States television news history; she is credited with being the first woman in the United States to anchor a television news broadcast as well to host her own television show. She has been referred to as the “First Lady of Television News.” [1]




Maria Popova’s Brain Pickings: Wait: Galway Kinnell’s Beautiful and Life-Giving Poem for a Young Friend Contemplating Suicide


Wait, for now.
Distrust everything, if you have to.
But trust the hours. Haven’t they
carried you everywhere, up to now?
Personal events will become interesting again.
Hair will become interesting.
Pain will become interesting.
Buds that open out of season will become lovely again.
Second-hand gloves will become lovely again,
their memories are what give them
the need for other hands. And the desolation
of lovers is the same: that enormous emptiness
carved out of such tiny beings as we are
asks to be filled; the need
for the new love is faithfulness to the old.

Don’t go too early.
You’re tired. But everyone’s tired.
But no one is tired enough.
Only wait a while and listen.
Music of hair,
Music of pain,
music of looms weaving all our loves again.
Be there to hear it, it will be the only time,
most of all to hear,
the flute of your whole existence,
rehearsed by the sorrows, play itself into total exhaustion.

I am grateful to Rosanne Cash and the New York Public Library’s Paul Holdengräber for bringing this enormously enlivening poem to my attention. Complement it with Diane Ackerman on what working at a suicide prevention hotline taught her about the human spirit.
The Passive Voice: Spotify: We ‘Overpaid’ Songwriters and Their Publishers in 2018, and We Would like Our Money Back; The Time I Called out a Children’s Book Author for Letting Girls Down and more ->
GlacierHub—Newsletter—June 24, 2019





FYI June 25, 2019

On This Day

1678 – Venetian Elena Cornaro Piscopia is the first woman awarded a doctorate of philosophy when she graduates from the University of Padua.
Elena Lucrezia Cornaro Piscopia (US: /kɔːrˈnɑːroʊ pɪˈskoʊpiə/,[4] Italian: [ˈɛːlena luˈkrɛttsja korˈnaːro piˈskɔːpja]) or Elena Lucrezia Corner (Italian: [korˈnɛr]; 5 June 1646 – 26 July 1684), also known in English as Helen Cornaro, was a Venetian philosopher of noble descent who in 1678 became one of the first women to receive an academic degree from a university, and the first to receive a Doctor of Philosophy degree.



Born On This Day

1874 – Rose O’Neill, American cartoonist, illustrator, artist, and writer (d. 1944)
Rose Cecil O’Neill (June 25, 1874 – April 6, 1944) was an American cartoonist, illustrator, artist, and writer. She built a successful career as a magazine and book illustrator and, at a young age, became the best-known and highest- paid female commercial illustrator in the United States. O’ Neill earned a fortune and international fame by creating the Kewpie, the most widely known cartoon character until Mickey Mouse.[1]

The daughter of a book salesman and a homemaker, O’Neill was raised in rural Nebraska. She exhibited interest in the arts at an early age, and sought a career as an illustrator in New York City at age fifteen. Her Kewpie cartoons, which made their debut in a 1909 issue of Ladies’ Home Journal, were later manufactured as bisque dolls in 1912 by J. D. Kestner, a German toy company, followed by composition material and celluloid versions. The dolls were wildly popular in the early twentieth century, and are considered to be one of the first mass-marketed toys in the United States.

O’Neill also wrote several novels and books of poetry, and was active in the women’s suffrage movement. She was for a time the highest-paid female illustrator in the world upon the success of the Kewpie dolls.[2]




Glassdoor: Lillian Childress 13 Impressive Resume Templates to Download Now
Leon from Lifehack: Introducing The Lifehack Show, Our New Podcast

The Rural Blog: Farmers’ struggles starting to hurt fragile rural economy; Rural homelessness an increasing but often hidden problem and more ->
The Rural Assembly: SAVE THE DATE: The Rural Women’s Summit, October 27-29, 2019, Greenville, SC
The Rural Assembly invites you to save the dates for The Rural Women’s Summit in Greenville, South Carolina, October 27-29, 2019.

For the last decade, the Rural Assembly has convened a national network of leaders and advocates who represent the rich diversity of the rural experience. Together, we’ve created opportunities to work with funders, policy makers, and national public-interest groups, and we’ve brought attention to rural America’s challenges and strengths in ways that will encourage better policies and results.

The Rural Women’s Summit emphasizes the role rural women play in creating a more equitable and inclusive nation. We know rural women are often the primary organizers, leaders, creators, and implementers of more just and inclusive efforts in their communities. Yet they are also more likely to experience the trauma of inequities across all measures of health, economic security, connection, power, and safety.

This Summit is designed for rural practitioners, leaders, and advocates to articulate the broad civic, political, and cultural impact of women’s leadership in rural America, to name the ways rural women are agents of change, to call out the barriers rural women face every day, and to proclaim the powerful role rural women play in creating compassionate communities.

In this space, we will honor the diverse stories and experiences of rural women, particularly women of color, Native women, and immigrants by engaging them as speakers and framers at all levels of community building and empowerment. In line with our focus on building an inclusive nation, this summit will be open to all advocates are committed to building a more just and inclusive nation.

In the coming months our advisory team will be reaching out to you for your feedback and input as we plan this summit.

Stay tuned.
The Passive Voice: Revisiting Judith Krantz’s “Scruples,” a Novel with a Passion for Clothes; ‘Restoring the Promise’ Review: High Cost, Low Yield; Yesterday and more ->
Author Stephanie Clifford: He Cyberstalked Teen Girls for Years—Then They Fought Back






FYI June 23 & 24, 2019

On This Day

229 – Sun Quan proclaims himself emperor of Eastern Wu.
Sun Quan (About this soundpronunciation (help·info)) (5 July 182 – 21 May 252),[a][2] courtesy name Zhongmou, formally known as Emperor Da of Wu (literally “Great Emperor of Wu”), was the founder of the state of Eastern Wu during the Three Kingdoms period. He inherited control of the warlord regime established by his elder brother, Sun Ce, in 200. He declared formal independence and ruled from 222 to 229 as the King of Wu and from 229 to 252 as the Emperor of Wu. Unlike his rivals Cao Cao and Liu Bei, Sun Quan was much younger than they were and governed his state mostly separate of politics and ideology. He is sometimes portrayed as neutral considering he adopted a flexible foreign policy between his two rivals with the goal of pursuing the greatest interests for the country.

Sun Quan was born while his father Sun Jian served as the adjutant of Xiapi County. After Sun Jian’s death in the early 190s, he and his family lived at various cities on the lower Yangtze River, until Sun Ce carved out a warlord regime in the Jiangdong region, based on his own followers and a number of local clan allegiances. When Sun Ce was assassinated by the retainers of Xu Gong in 200, the 18-year-old Sun Quan inherited the lands southeast of the Yangtze River from his brother. His administration proved to be relatively stable in those early years as Sun Jian and Sun Ce’s most senior officers, such as Zhou Yu, Zhang Zhao, Zhang Hong, and Cheng Pu supported the succession. Thus throughout the 200s, Sun Quan, under the tutelage of his able advisers, continued to build up his strength along the Yangtze River. In early 207, his forces finally won complete victory over Huang Zu, a military leader under Liu Biao, who dominated the middle Yangtze.Huang Zu was killed in battle.

In winter of that year, the northern warlord Cao Cao led an army of approximately 220,000 to conquer the south to complete the reunification of China. Two distinct factions emerged at his court on how to handle the situation. One, led by Zhang Zhao, urged surrender whilst the other, led by Zhou Yu and Lu Su, opposed capitulation. Eventually, Sun Quan decided to oppose Cao Cao in the middle Yangtze with his superior riverine forces. Allied with Liu Bei and employing the combined strategies of Zhou Yu and Huang Gai, they defeated Cao Cao decisively at the Battle of Red Cliffs.

In 220, Cao Pi,King of Wei,Cao Cao’s son and successor, seized the throne and proclaimed himself to be the Emperor of China, ending and succeeding the nominal rule of the Han dynasty. At first Sun Quan nominally served as a Wei vassal with the Wei-created title of King of Wu, but after Cao Pi demanded that he send his son Sun Deng as a hostage to the Wei capital Luoyang and he refused, in 222, he declared himself independent by changing his era name. It was not until the year 229 that he formally declared himself emperor.

After the death of his original crown prince, Sun Deng, two opposing factions supporting different potential successors slowly emerged. When Sun He succeeded Sun Deng as the new crown prince, he was supported by Lu Xun and Zhuge Ke, while his rival Sun Ba was supported by Quan Cong and Bu Zhi and their clans. Over a prolonged internal power struggle, numerous officials were executed, and Sun Quan harshly settled the conflict between the two factions by exiling Sun He and forcing Sun Ba to commit suicide. Sun Quan died in 252 at the age of 70. He enjoyed the longest reign among all the founders of the Three Kingdoms and was succeeded by his son, Sun Liang.

The Records of the Three Kingdoms (Sanguozhi) describes Sun Quan as a tall man with bright eyes and oblong face. He was known as a wise and outgoing man who was fond of making jokes and playing tricks. Because of his skill in valuing the strength of his subordinates and avoiding their shortcomings, as well as treating them like his family, Sun Quan was able to delegate authority to capable figures. This primary strength served him well in gaining the support of the common people and surrounding himself with capable generals.


109 – Roman emperor Trajan inaugurates the Aqua Traiana, an aqueduct that channels water from Lake Bracciano, 40 kilometres (25 miles) north-west of Rome.
The Aqua Traiana (later rebuilt and named the Acqua Paola) was a 1st-century Roman aqueduct built by Emperor Trajan and inaugurated on 24 June 109 AD.[1] It channelled water from sources around Lake Bracciano, 40 kilometers (25 mi) north-west of Rome, to Rome in ancient Roman times but had fallen into disuse by the 17th century. It fed a number of water mills on the Janiculum, including a sophisticated mill complex revealed by excavations in the 1990s under the present American Academy in Rome. Some of the Janiculum mills were famously put out of action by the Ostrogoths when they cut the aqueduct in 537 during the first siege of Rome. Belisarius restored the supply of grain by using mills floating in the Tiber. The complex of mills bears parallels with a similar complex at Barbegal in southern Gaul.



Born On This Day

1889 – Verena Holmes, English engineer (d. 1964)
Verena Winifred Holmes (23 June 1889 – 20 February 1964)[1] was an English mechanical engineer and multi-field inventor, the first woman member elected to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (1924), and a strong supporter of women in engineering. She was one of the early members of the Women’s Engineering Society, and its president in 1931.[2][3] She was the first practising engineer to serve as president of the society.[4]

Early life
She was born at Highworth, Ashford, Kent to Florence Mary Holmes and Edmond Gore Alexander Holmes. Having wanted to be an engineer since childhood, Holmes gained employment building wooden propellers at the Integral Propeller Company, Hendon, after graduation from Oxford High School for Girls. She took night classes at the Shoreditch Technical Institute and attended a technical college in Lincoln; she served as an apprentice form-fitter and drafter before graduation from Loughborough Engineering College in 1922 with a BSc(Eng) degree.[5]

Professional career
Her technical specialities included marine and locomotive engines, diesel and internal combustion engines. She became an associate member of the Institution of Marine Engineers in 1924 and was admitted to the Institution of Locomotive Engineers in 1931.[6]

She was employed by Research Engineers Ltd. from 1932–39, during which time she developed and patented many inventions, including the Holmes and Wingfield pneumo-thorax apparatus for treating patients with tuberculosis, a surgeon’s headlamp, a poppet valve for steam locomotives, and rotary valves for internal combustion engines. She held patents for 12 inventions for medical devices as well as engine components.[7]

During World War II she worked on naval weaponry and in 1940 became adviser to Ernest Bevin, the minister of labour, on the training of munition workers.[4] She was appointed headquarters technical officer with the Ministry of Labour (1940-1944). She was heavily involved in encouraging and supporting women in engineering. Together with Caroline Haslett and Claudia Parsons, she was a founding member of the Women’s Engineering Society in 1919. She served the society in several capacities, including president in 1930 and 1931.[7]

Support for women’s engineering

Her work in support of women in engineering was based partly upon her own experiences; although she had been admitted to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers as an associate member in 1924, it took twenty years for her to be admitted as a full member. She founded the engineering firm of Holmes and Leather in 1946, which employed only women. Using a design created by Holmes, this firm created the first practical safety guillotine for paper, making it suitable for introduction into schools.[7] In 1958, she published a booklet, Training and Opportunities for Women in Engineering.[6]

From 1969, the Women’s Engineering Society supported a yearly Verena Holmes lecture,[8] given at various venues across Britain to children aged nine to eleven to encourage interest in engineering, [9][10] although now the programme is closed. Verena Holmes’ birthday of 23 June coincides with International Women in Engineering Day and she is commemorated as part of that celebration.

1867 – Ruth Randall Edström, American educator and activist (d. 1944)
Ruth Miriam Edström (née Randall; June 24, 1867 – October 5, 1944) was an American peace activist and fighter for women’s rights. She worked with the pre-work for the third peace conference in The Hague (after the first conferences in 1899 and 1907).[1][2] She participated in the international women’s congress in 1915. Ruth was the wife of the head of Asea, J. Sigfrid Edström.[3]

Early life
Ruth Randall was the eldest of seven siblings in Wilmington, Illinois, the daughter of Oscar Theodore Randall and Jane Mariah (née Lewis) Randall. The family moved to Chicago in 1870 and settled in a suburb a few miles from the city center.[4]

The year after their move the great Chicago fire happened with 250 people dead and 95.000 people homeless, however the Randall’s house survived the fires but their shop did not make it and was burnt to the ground. The Randall family belong to the Reformed Church. One day when Ruth was sixteen years old her father brought her and her oldest siblings to a new chapel were Jenkin Lloyd Jones preached. The priest talked about Jesus and his message of love, justice and peace. Jones had like Oscar participated in the American Civil War and experienced the horrors of war.[4]

The Randalls started to attend service at the Unity Chapel that belonged to All Souls Unitarian Church. They participated as well in Jones religious and philosophical education. The students were educated in the Unitarian belief system and became friends with the author Ralph Waldo Emerson and Robert Browning and many others. The year of studies ended with a historical party with dramas of Charles Dickens and Charles Kingsley. The latter wrote the book Hypatia, the female philosopher and mathematician. Ruth suggested the play about Hypatia and got to select the actors and direct the play.[5]

Education and later life
Randall educated herself to be a teacher, worked for the Unitarian Church and got herself big cultural and esoterian interests. She got a job at Forestville School in Chicago. In the summer of 1896 the teachers of the school went on a trip to Europe, they traveled by the new atlantic steam boat Etruria. Onboard was also the Swedish engineer Sigfrid Edström en route to work for an electric company in Cleveland, Ohio.[3]

Randall and Edström wed on her 32nd birthday, June 24, 1899, at her home in Chicago. The honeymoon was in Bremen and Gothenburg. They resided in Switzerland were Sigfrid work for a tramway company in Zürich. His wife liked to live in their first own home in the city, but already after one year the couple moved to Sweden where Edström was named the head of Gothenburg’s tramway system.[citation needed]

In the summer of 1903, she, her husband and their two children, Miriam and Björn, moved to Västerås, where Sigfrid got to work for the stock company Asea.[4] The company grow and with it came money, the Randalls started building a house in Stallhagen, they named the house Villa Asea. When the house was ready in 1908 the couple made a big opening for friends and the city major.[4]

After her death in 1944 in Stockholm a memory fund for Ruth Randall Edström was created.[6][7]



Fox News: Rock n’ roll pioneer Dave Bartholomew dead at 100

David Louis Bartholomew (December 24, 1918 – June 23, 2019) was an American musician, bandleader, composer, arranger and record producer. He was prominent in the music of New Orleans throughout the second half of the 20th century. Originally a trumpeter, he was active in many musical genres, including rhythm and blues, big band, swing music, rock and roll, New Orleans jazz and Dixieland. In his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, he was cited as a key figure in the transition from jump blues and swing to R&B and as “one of the Crescent City’s greatest musicians and a true pioneer in the rock and roll revolution.”[1]

Many musicians have recorded Bartholomew’s songs, but his partnership with Fats Domino produced some of his greatest successes. In the mid-1950s they wrote more than forty hits for Imperial Records, including the Billboard number one pop chart hit “Ain’t That a Shame”. Bartholomew’s other hit songs as a composer included “I Hear You Knocking”, “Blue Monday”, “I’m Walkin'”, “My Ding-A-Ling”, and “One Night”. He was a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame.[2]



By Leah Asmelash and Melissa Gray, CNN: Judith Krantz, romance novelist, dies at 91

Judith Krantz (née Tarcher; January 9, 1928 – June 22, 2019) was an American novelist who wrote in the romance genre. Her works included Scruples, Princess Daisy, and Till We Meet Again.


Fox News: Lettermen singer Jim Pike dead at 82

The Lettermen are an American male pop vocal trio. The Lettermen’s trademark is close-harmony pop songs with light arrangements. The group started in 1959. They have had two Top 10 singles (both #7), 16 Top 10 singles on the Adult Contemporary chart (including one #1), 32 consecutive Billboard chart albums, 11 gold records, and five Grammy nominations.

Vector’s World: California Dreamin’; Rumble seat; Quick release spare and more ->
By William J. Dowd: ‘Pickles in the Mist’ column is a labor of love for Marblehead pair
By A.G. Gancarski New law bans ‘sanctuary cities’ throughout Florida Clay County was in compliance long before bill was signed
By Stephanie Donovan: Blog Profiles: Lake Blogs
By Scott Myers: Dumb Little Writing Tricks That Work: “Get Off Your Ass”
By Mindy Weisberger, Senior Writer Live Science: ‘Phoenix’ Aurora Spreads Its ‘Wings’ Over Abandoned Military Power Station in Russia
By Aylin Woodward: An elusive giant squid that inspired the ‘kraken’ sea monster legend has been spotted in US waters for the first time
The Passive Voice: Google’s Enemies Gear up to Make Antitrust Case; The Economics of Writing a Technical Book; Remembering My Literary Landmarks in Livermore, California and more ->
The Rural Blog: Stout advocate for freedom of information wins top award from International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors; Many Alabama sheriffs undermine their successors after losing re-election bids; little oversight constrains them and more -> America’s Only Affordable Major City Has Lost Its Crown; Her ‘Removable Glue’ Could Transform Eye Care; The Delicious — and Healthy — Georgian Snack on a String and more ->

Open Culture: Elvis Costello’s List of 500 Albums That Will Improve Your Life; What Advice Would You Give Your Younger Self?: What Research Shows, and What You Have to Say and more ->
By MessyNessy 13 Things I Found on the Internet Today (Vol. CCCLVII): A Village in Provence, Abandoned over a century ago; Treespoting in Rocinha, Brazil; “Liondromes”, an extension of 1930s daredevil motordromes – but with lions in sidecars; WWII Army Surplus Protection Bags and more ->
Don’t get in a fight. Get away from the situation and be aware.





FYI June 22, 2019

On This Day

1969 – The Cuyahoga River catches fire in Cleveland, Ohio, drawing national attention to water pollution, and spurring the passing of the Clean Water Act and the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency.
The Cuyahoga River[7] (/ˌkaɪ.əˈhɒɡə/ KY-ə-HOG-ə, or /ˌkaɪ.əˈhoʊɡə/ KY-ə-HOH-gə[8][9][10][11]) is a river in the United States, located in Northeast Ohio, that feeds into Lake Erie. The river is famous for having been so polluted that it “caught fire” at least 13 times, most famously on June 22, 1969, helping to spur the environmental movement in the US.

Read more->


Born On This Day

1885 – Milan Vidmar, Slovenian engineer and chess player (d. 1962)

Milan Vidmar (22 June 1885 – 9 October 1962) was a Slovene electrical engineer, chess Grandmaster, chess theorist, chess arbiter, philosopher, and writer. He was among the top dozen chess players in the world from 1910 to 1930. He was a specialist in power transformers and transmission of electric current.

Early life, family, and education

He was born in a middle-class family in Ljubljana, Austria-Hungary (now in Slovenia). He began to study mechanical engineering in 1902, and he graduated in 1907 at the University of Vienna. He got his doctor’s degree in 1911 from the Technical faculty in Vienna. The study of electrical engineering at the Technical faculty did not begin until 1904, so Vidmar had to take special examinations in the field basics. He was a professor at the University of Ljubljana, a member of the Slovene Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the founder of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering. Between 1928 and 1929 he was the 10th Chancellor of the University of Ljubljana. In 1948 he established the Institute of Electrotechnics that now bears his name.[1]

Chess career
Vidmar was also a top-class chess player, probably one of the best dozen players in the world from 1910 to 1930, all the while remaining an amateur. He was awarded the Grandmaster title in 1950.

His successes include high places at some of the top chess tournaments of his time, e.g. sixth at Carlsbad 1907, third at Prague 1908, first at Gothenburg 1909 (the 7th Nordic Chess Championship), second at San Sebastián 1911 with Akiba Rubinstein behind José Raúl Capablanca, first at Budapest 1912, second at Mannheim 1914, first at Vienna and Berlin in 1918, second at Košice 1928, third at London 1922, shared first with Alexander Alekhine at Hastings 1925/26, third at Semmering 1926, fourth at New York 1927, fourth at London 1927, shared fifth at Carlsbad 1929, tied for 4–7th at Bled 1931, tied for 3–6th at Stuttgart 1939, second behind Max Euwe at Budapest 1940, first at Basel 1952.

Vidmar represented Yugoslavia in the Chess Olympiads of Prague 1931 (board one, 8.5/16) and Stockholm 1935 (board one, 8.5/14).[2]

Vidmar became an arbiter, earning the title of International Arbiter from FIDE, and was chief referee for the 1948 World Chess Championship in The Hague/Moscow.

Major writings
Books on chess:

Pol stoletja ob šahovnici (Half a century at the chessboard) (Ljubljana 1951)
Šah (Chess)
Razgovori o šahu z začetnikom (Conversations on chess with a beginner)
in German, Goldene Schachzeiten (The Golden Times of Chess)

Transformatorji (Transformers)
Problemi prenosa električne energije (Problems of electric energy transmission)
Pogovori o elektrotehniki (Talking about electrotechnics)
Med Evropo in Ameriko (Between Europe and America)
Moj pogled na svet (My view of the World)
Oslovski most (Pons asinorum) (Merkur, Ljubljana 1936)

His younger brother, Josip Vidmar, was an influential Slovenian literary critic and public intellectual; his son, Milan Vidmar, Jr. was an International Master of chess.

The Slovene Chess Federation organizes an international chess grandmaster tournament named the Milan Vidmar memorial. [1]



By Associated Press: Holocaust survivor, 91, killed in hit-and-run in Los Angeles Graphic security video shows a light-colored pickup with a camper shell striking a pedestrian at a crosswalk on June 17.

CBS This Morning: From fire to fishing: The 50-year transformation of the Cuyahoga River
NPR Nina Totenberg: Supreme Court Overturns Precedent In Property Rights Case. A Sign Of Things To Come?
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Singing starts at 2:40





Military June 22, 2019 He Went Missing in Korea Nearly 70 Years Ago. Now, a Soldier’s Body is Finally Home; US Navy to Dub Newest Rescue Ship ‘Cherokee Nation’; Online Program is Helping Military Members and Spouses Get Law Degrees; Court Decision Paves Way to Faster Appeal Decisions for Some Vets and more ->
Task & Purpose By Kevin Robinson-Avila, Albuquerque Journal: The Air Force has a new drone-killing microwave weapon named ‘Thor’

The Goodpaster Prize & Lecture was inaugurated twelve years ago in memory of one of the U.S. military’s great “soldier-scholars.” It honors and helps to perpetuate the work of fellow soldier-scholars in the mold of General Andrew J. Goodpaster. This year the award was presented to LTG H.R. McMaster, retired U.S. Army Lieutenant General and 26th National Security Advisor. He was decorated with the Silver Star for his actions in the Gulf War, has earned a Ph.D. in American History from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and authored the classic work on the Vietnam War, ‘Dereliction of Duty.’ Special thanks to the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation for their support of this event!

FYI June 21, 2019

On This Day

1582 – Sengoku period: Oda Nobunaga, the most powerful of the Japanese daimyōs, was forced to commit suicide by his own general Akechi Mitsuhide.
Oda Nobunaga (織田 信長 Oda Nobunaga, About this soundlisten; June 23, 1534 – June 21, 1582) was a powerful daimyō (feudal lord) of Japan in the late 16th century who attempted to unify Japan during the late Sengoku period, and successfully gained control over most of Honshu. Nobunaga is regarded as one of three unifiers of Japan along with his retainers Toyotomi Hideyoshi and Tokugawa Ieyasu. During his later life, Nobunaga was widely known for most brutal suppression of determined opponents, eliminating those who by principle refused to cooperate or yield to his demands. His reign was noted for innovative military tactics, fostering free trade, and encouraging the start of the Momoyama historical art period. He was killed when his retainer Akechi Mitsuhide rebelled against him at Honnō-ji.



Born On This Day

1912 – Mary McCarthy, American novelist and critic (d. 1989)
Mary Therese McCarthy (June 21, 1912 – October 25, 1989) was an American novelist, critic and political activist.



It’s Friday. Be kind — to you, to everyone you meet, to all of the broken and messed up places inside, to all of the busted people who stumble across your path. Be kind.
Claudia Hall Christian Everyday Kindness

David Sherry Creative Caffeine: Down the Rabbit Hole





FYI June 20, 2019

On This Day

1942 – The Holocaust: Kazimierz Piechowski and three others, dressed as members of the SS-Totenkopfverbände, steal an SS staff car and escape from the Auschwitz concentration camp.
Kazimierz Piechowski (pronounced [kaˈʑimjɛʂ pjɛˈxɔfskʲi]; 3 October 1919 – 15 December 2017)[1] was a Polish engineer, a Boy Scout during the Second Polish Republic, a political prisoner of the German Nazis at Auschwitz concentration camp, a soldier of the Polish Home Army (Armia Krajowa) then a prisoner for seven years of the post war communist government of Poland.

He was best known for his escape from Auschwitz I, along with three other prisoners, all dressed as members of the SS-Totenkopfverbände, fully armed in a stolen SS staff car, in which they drove out the main gate—”a universally acclaimed… [feat] of exceptional courage and gallantry”, in the words of Kazimierz Smoleń.[2]



Born On This Day

1884 – Mary R. Calvert, American astronomer and author (d. 1974)
Mary Ross Calvert (1884 – 1974) was an American astronomical computer and astrophotographer. She started as her uncle’s assistant and ended publishing his (and their) work that cataloged over 300 dark objects (Dark Nebula). She went on to publish other photographic works on astronomy.


Calvert was born in Nashville in 1884 to Alice Rosamond (Phillips) and Ebenezer Calvert. She was the eldest of their four daughters. Her father’s elder sister Rhoda had married the astronomer Edward Emerson Barnard and out of respect her parents had called her sister Alice Barnard Calvert.[1]

In 1905, she started work at Yerkes Observatory, as assistant and computer for her uncle[2] who was also professor of astronomy at the University of Chicago. She stayed at her uncle’s house whilst employed by him.[1] He was known for his discovery of the high proper motion of Barnard’s star.[3]

In 1923, when Barnard died, she became curator of the Yerkes photographic plate collection and a high-level assistant, until her retirement in 1946.

Barnard’s work A Photographic Atlas of Selected Regions of the Milky Way was completed after his death in 1923 by Edwin B. Frost, director of the Yerkes Observatory, and Calvert. The work was nominally his although Calvert had done the preliminary work under his supervision, but it was she who did the computations necessary to complete the tables, numbered and sketched in darker objects added annotation to the reference stars. Calvert and Frost decided that it should be published in two volumes.[4] The atlas contained 349 dark objects although later editions included 352 as three were not included in error. There were several more dark objects that were on the plates but that were not catalogued possibly due to Barnard’s death, as both Calvert and Barnard had been aware of them.[5]

Only 700 copies were printed in 1927, making the original edition a collector’s item. The Astronomy Compendium calls it a “seminal work”.[6]

In 1934 she and Frank Elmore Ross published another photographic study titled “Atlas of the Northern Milky Way” based on Ross’s photographs.[7]

She died in Nashville in 1974.

Atlas of the Northern Milky Way (with Frank Elmore Ross), University of Chicago Press (1934)



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FYI June 19, 2019

On This Day

1978 – Garfield, holder of the Guinness World Record for the world’s most widely syndicated comic strip, makes its debut.
Garfield is an American comic created by Jim Davis. Published since 1978, it chronicles the life of the title character, Garfield, the cat; Jon Arbuckle, the human; and Odie, the dog. As of 2013, it was syndicated in roughly 2,580 newspapers and journals, and held the Guinness World Record for being the world’s most widely syndicated comic strip.[1]

Though this is rarely mentioned in print, Garfield is set in Muncie, Indiana, the home of Jim Davis, according to the television special Happy Birthday, Garfield. Common themes in the strip include Garfield’s laziness, obsessive eating, coffee, and disdain of Mondays and diets. The strip’s focus is mostly on the interactions among Garfield, Jon, and Odie, but other recurring minor characters appear as well. Originally created with the intentions to “come up with a good, marketable character”,[2] Garfield has spawned merchandise earning $750 million to $1 billion annually. In addition to the various merchandise and commercial tie-ins, the strip has spawned several animated television specials, two animated television series, two theatrical feature-length live-action/CGI animated films, and three fully CGI animated direct-to-video movies.

Part of the strip’s broad pop cultural appeal is due to its lack of social or political commentary; though this was Davis’s original intention, he also admitted that his “grasp of politics isn’t strong,” joking that, for many years, he thought “OPEC was a denture adhesive”.[3][4]



Born On This Day

1926 – Erna Schneider Hoover, American mathematician and inventor
Dr. Erna Schneider Hoover (born June 19, 1926) is an American mathematician notable for inventing a computerized telephone switching method which “revolutionized modern communication” according to several reports.[1][4] It prevented system overloads by monitoring call center traffic and prioritizing tasks[4] on phone switching systems to enable more robust service during peak calling times.[1] At Bell Laboratories where she worked for over 32 years,[5] Hoover was described as an important pioneer for women in the field of computer technology.[2]




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As reporter Phyllis Hanlon explains in the tip sheet, the effort has resulted in numerous positive outcomes, including lower rates of rehospitalization, improved quality of life, and better overall health. It’s been implemented or is in development in 45 states and the District of Columbia.

This is an opportune time for journalists to report on the specific mental health needs of older adults. In addition to looking at the COAPS initiative, Hanlon’s tip sheet also offers plenty of ideas, experts and resources to get started.
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FYI June 18, 2019

On This Day

1940 – Appeal of 18 June by Charles de Gaulle.
The Appeal of 18 June (French: L’Appel du 18 juin) was a speech by Charles de Gaulle, the leader of the Free French Forces, in 1940. The appeal is often considered to be the origin of the French Resistance to the German occupation during World War II. De Gaulle spoke to the French people from London after the fall of France. He declared that the war for France was not yet over, and rallied the country in support of the Resistance. It is regarded as one of the most important speeches in French history.

In spite of its reputation as the beginning of the Resistance and Free French, historians have shown that the appeal was heard only by a minority of French people. De Gaulle’s 22 June 1940 speech on the BBC was more widely heard.[1]



Born On This Day

1900 – Vlasta Vraz, Czech-American relief worker, editor, and fundraiser (d. 1989)
Vlasta Adele Vraz (June 18, 1900 — August 22, 1989) was a Czech American relief worker, editor, and fundraiser. She was director of American Relief for Czechoslovakia, and president of the Czechoslovak National Council of America. In 1949 she was arrested by Czech authorities on espionage charges, but quickly released after pressure from the United States.

Early life

Vlasta Adele Vraz was born in Chicago and raised in Czech California, South Lawndale, Chicago. Her father was Enrique Stanko Vraz (1860-1932), a naturalist and explorer born in Bulgaria to Czech parents.[1] Her mother was also called Vlasta Vraz (1875-1961).[2] Her maternal grandfather August Geringer (1842-1930) published a Czech-language Daily, Svornost, in the United States, starting in 1875.[3]

She lived in Prague as a young woman, from 1919 to 1939, at first helping her father who was lecturing there before he died in 1932. During World War II she returned to the United States with her widowed mother, and was a secretary in Washington, D. C. for the Czech government in exile. In 1945, she was back in Prague, directing American Relief for Czechoslovakia.[4] She was responsible for distributing $4 million in food, medicine, clothing and other supports. She was inducted into the Order of the White Lion by Jan Masaryk in 1946, for her relief work. But in 1949, Vraz was arrested by the Communist authorities, on espionage charges, sparking protests from the United States.[5]

Upon release after a week in custody,[6] Vraz returned to the United States,[7] where she became president of the Czechoslovak National Council of America, and edited two national publications for the Czechoslovak-American community.[3] She was called upon for reactions during the 1968 Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia.[8]

Personal life
Vlasta Vraz died in 1989, aged 89 years.[3] Her remains were buried in the Bohemian National Cemetery in Chicago, near those of her mother and her brother, Victor E. Vraz, an economics professor at Northwestern University. Some of her papers are in the Geringer Family Papers, archived at the Chicago History Museum.[9] The rest of her papers was bequeathed to the Náprstek Museum in Prague, Czech Republic. The same institution owns extensive personal papers of her father Enrique Stanko Vráz.



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