Friday, April 15, 2011

The Beatles, Lincoln & Jackie Robinson

Good morning my fellow Rotarians! This week in history had some big things happen that are worth noting…

April 10, 1970… The legendary rock band the Beatles spent the better part of three years talking about breaking up in the late 1960s, and even longer than that hashing out who did what and why. And by the spring of 1970, each of the Beatles was pursuing their own musical interests with solo album projects with no plans to record together as a group. The public thought it was a temporary thing, but Paul McCartney’s "self-interview" immediately attracted media from around the world as he made the official announcement of the Beatles breakup on April 10, 1970.

April 14, 1865… John Wilkes Booth, an actor and Confederate sympathizer, fatally shoots President Abraham Lincoln at a play at Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C. The attack came only five days after Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered, effectively ending the American Civil War. The president was mortally wounded and died at 7:22 a.m. the next morning. Lincoln was 56, our 16th president and the first to be assassinated. Booth was eventually found and committed suicide when troops set fire to the barn he was trapped in. Eight others were charged with the conspiracy, four were hanged and four were jailed. Lincoln was buried on May 4, 1865, in Springfield, Illinois.

April 15, 1947… Jackie Robinson, age 28, becomes the first African-American major league baseball player playing for the Brooklyn Dodgers. The sport had been segregated for more than 50 years and then exactly 50 years later, on April 15, 1997, Robinson's ground breaking career was honored when his uniform #42 was retired in a ceremony attended by over 50,000 fans at New York City's Shea Stadium. Robinson's #42 was the first-ever number retired by all teams in the league to honor Robinson for his accomplishments. Pretty cool.

And that is this week in history as our Bottom of the News on this April 8th 2011! ###

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Dumb & Dumber People!

Good morning my fellow Rotarians!  You know there is no shortage of people who do dumb things and today I have three examples…

Palm City, FL – Breaking Up is Hard to Do:  Derick Culberson, 22, told sheriff's deputies in Palm City, FA, he had been robbed at gunpoint. They found him with his hands and feet tied up, but his story didn’t make sense.  The deputies noticed that "zip ties" he was bound with were the same ones they found in his car.  After further questioning, Culberson finally admitted to tying his own hands and feet, and further, he invented the suspects' vehicle and weapon descriptions that he gave to sheriff's deputies. He admitted he made up the robbery "in an attempt to make his girlfriend feel bad for leaving him." He was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of making a false report.  And yes, his former girlfriend does feel bad; she regrets not leaving him sooner!

York PA – Grading Parents of Athletes:  The parent of a student athlete from York PA complained at a local school meeting that it was overzealous that students have to carry ‘very high’ scores through every class.  High School parents are lobbying the school to relax its requirements that student athletes maintain a minimum grade to be eligible for athletics.  York's ‘very high’ standard requires a 70 percent or "C-" for athletes to be able to participate. Parents want to drop the minimum to the state’s requirement, which is 60 percent, or a "D-" grade.  So, let’s grade the parents…  how about an "F"?

Houston, TX – I Played a Lawyer on TV:  A man in Houston, TX has been arrested on felony charges of practicing law without a license. The Harris County District Attorney's office says there's no record that the 43-year-old man has been admitted to the Texas Bar, but has allegedly been working as an attorney.  His real name… Perry Mason and he faces some big trouble.  The character "Perry Mason" began in a series of novels that were published from 1933 to 1973.  They were adapted to several movies for 30 years, a radio series for 12 years and finally the very popular TV series (1957-1966).  The Perry Mason who was arrested said he should be commended for his accurate portrayal of Perry Mason as a scrupulously honest and ethical attorney.  Right, well as he spends the next 10 years in prison he can think about how both he and the character Perry Mason were fiction.    

And no, these stories are not fiction, but are real stories as our Bottom of the News on this April 8th 2011!  ###

Friday, April 01, 2011

It’s April 1st…  Don’t be Fooled!

Good morning my fellow Rotarians!  Today is ‘All Fools Day’ the official day for practical jokes and fun at the expense of the innocent and gullible.  April 1st and foolishness can be found as far back as 1392 in a play called ‘Canterbury Tales.’  It became a recognized holiday in the mid 16th century.  Ya wanna here some good April fools jokes that went public over the past few decades?  Well, here you go…

Smell-o-vision: In 1965, the BBC announced they were conducting a new technology trial called “smell-o-vision” allowing the transmission of odor over the airwaves through TV’s. Many viewers called in to report the trial's success.

Iceberg in Australia:  In 1983, Australian millionaire Dick Smith claimed to have towed an iceberg from Antarctica to Sydney Harbor. He used a barge covered with white plastic and fire extinguisher foam to convince witnesses.

Space Shuttle lands in San Diego: In 1993, KGB-FM radio told listeners in San Diego the Space Shuttle Discovery was being diverted from Edwards AFB to Montgomery Field, a small municipal airport. Thousands went to watch causing major traffic jams.  And guess what, no shuttle was in orbit that day.

Taco Liberty Bell: In 1996, Taco Bell ran a full-page ad in The New York Times announcing they had purchased the Liberty Bell to "reduce the country's debt."   They renamed it the "Taco Liberty Bell". At that day’s White House briefing, press secretary Mike McCurry replied tongue-in-cheek that the Lincoln Memorial had also been sold and would henceforth be known as the Lincoln Mercury Memorial.

Lefty Whoppers: In 1998, Burger King ran an ad in USA Today, saying that people could get a left-handed Whopper with condiments designed to drip out of the right side.  Not only did customers order the new ‘lefty’ burgers, but many specifically requested the "old" right-handed burger.

Diet Tap Water:  In 2004, a British morning show host announced that the Yorkshire Water Co. had a new 'diet water' that had helped one customer lose 15 pounds in two months. Yorkshire was rolling this new water and customers could request a third faucet be added to kitchen sinks.  The water company received over 10,000 requests from viewers within the first 24 hours.

Tiger Woods Name Change:  Last year, ESPN reported that Tiger Woods announced at the Masters that he wanted to be referred to by his given name of ‘Eldrick’ in an attempt to distance himself  from his recent troubles.  The hosts debated the pros and cons of that move before finally revealing that the story was a joke.  Tiger didn’t see the humor in it.

Clean Phone Lines:  And finally, one of my all time favorites, which was a nationwide radio stunt (and here on KRNA) I believe.  The phone company was appealing to all customers to help them clean out their phone lines.  It had been years & they needed a good cleaning.  Customers simply had to call the station and then blow into their phone until a station person confirmed their line was clean.  And guess what, tens of thousands of people called in only to learn that the joke was on them! 

Can you spell gullible?  And that is our Bottom of the News… Happy April 1st, 2011!  ###