Friday, June 29, 2012

Dead Page: TV and Ginsu


Actress who played a neighbor of Lucy and Ricky Ricardo on "I Love Lucy."  She also appaered on "My Three Sons," "All in the Family" and "Hogan's Heroes."  I can't say that I remember her, but,  I did like these shows a lot.


Played son Robbie on "My Three Sons" from 1960 to 1972, one of TV's longest-running family sitcoms.  he had also been a mouseketeer before that.  Born Don Agrati in 1944.  He belonged to a 60s group called Yellow Balloon which had a #25 Top 40 hit in 1967 with a song called "Yellow Balloon."

I sure liked that "My Three Sons" with that Fred MacMurray smoking that pipe and never getting flustered.  But, especially there was Uncle Charlie.

Quite a coincidence that two people frm the same show would die within a day of each other.


The marketing master-mind and infomercial pioneer for those ginsu knoves that could slice through tin cans and cut wood.  Paved the way for Billy Mays.  This guy drove me nuts.  But wait, if you order now, he'll.... .


Going, Going, Gone: Things We'll Be Losing in the Next Half-Century-- Part 3

CURSIVE--  Hawaii, Indiana, Illinois and Ohio have officially dropped handwriting as an educational requirement and many states considering doing the same.  One day, extra instruction might be required for scholars wanting to read original documents.

When I retired in 2006, I already had one student who couldn't write cursive.  I made him write a note on everything he turned in saying he couldn't write cursive so he wouldn't lose points.  It was still a requirement in my school district at the time.

How are folks going to sign their name, perhaps a big old "X?"  It was funny when I read a "Baby Blues" comic strip and the children's teacher had written an e-mail to all parents asking for any contact be made with an e-mail as well.  It turns out that the teacher couldn't read cursive.  Sad, though.

PIGGY BANKS--  By 2020, only 10% of all monetary transactions will be done with cash.  We already have electronic payment systems for parking in Chicago (well, who carries that much cash on them.)  Then, there is the debit card.  I use one, but only because it pays two-and-a-half percent interest.  Try to get that from any bank.

Not Finished Yet.  --Cooter

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Going, Going, Gone: Things We'll Be Losing in the Next Half-Century-- Part 2

TOILET PAPER--  Bidets will wash and dry at the touch of a button, eliminating paper waste.  Hey, it's a "Green Thing" and will add a splash to your life.  But...Yuck!!  Anyway.  Green or not, the spray's not for me!!

ANALOG CLOCKS--  The cell phones are synched to satellites and spring forward or back on their own and are always set even if your power goes out.  And, speaking of clocks, goodbye wrist watches.  But, I will always look really funny glancing at my empty left wrist when that happens. 

If you want to see something funny, get a young person under the age of 25 to look at a clock with the numbers and tell time.  However, I must admit to having a wrist watch with digital numbers so am bad myself.

DESKTOP COMPUTERS--  Some tech companies already have desktop-free offices.  However, I am going to miss my desktop with the big old TV monitor when it happens. 

GLOVE BOX ROADMAPS--  Hey, what with GPS and apps with traffic conditions, drive times and directions to the nearest Starbucks (like I can afford to drink my coffee there).  Actually, this is alright as those things were way TOO hard to fold back up.

LANGUAGE BARRIERS--  Portable translation software available.  This will make life easier.

More to Come.  --Cooter

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Going, Going, Gone:Things We'll Be Losing in the Next Half-Century-- Part 1

From the June AARP Bulletin "Vanishing" by Betsy Towner.

These are fixtures of everyday life due to go the way of the gramaphone according to futurists. 

SNAIL MAIL--  Done in by electronic correspondence, but what do you expect when they keep raising the price of stamps, even with those wonderful "Forever" stamps.

HOME PHONES-- Land-lines being dropped for cell phones.  Eventually cell phones will go too as people talk on mini-computers the size of cell phones.  Don't you just hate seeing folks who always have that cell phone plastered to their ears and then there are the really silly looking ear phones.

PHYSICAL MEDIA--  That would be CDs, DVDs, Blu-Rays, thumb drives (whatever that is), newspapers and magazines and many others.  Everything will be brought directly from the internet.

GASOLINE PUMPS--  Your car will drive itself to a recharge station to charge the battery or fill up with hydrogen.  Of course, do expect the GRBs to price it out real high.

BUSINESS CARDS--  Electronic cards will be sent

More to Come.  --Cooter

Monday, June 25, 2012

Dead Page: Moment's Singer

Al Goodman, 67, soul singer.  Died July 2010.

The member of the soul group Moments who had the baritone voice on their hit, "Love on a Two Way Street."  He also later was with Ray, Goodman and Brown on their hit "Special Lady."

Love that soul music.

Maybe Robert Ballard Has That Perfect Job

From American Profile "Ocean Exolorer: Robert Ballard surveys Earth's final frontier"  by Varyn Davis.

Robert balard finds it strange that we went to the Moon before fully investigating the seas that cover 71% of the Earth.  He has great respect for early explorers like Lewis and Cklark and James Cook.

He is founder and president of the Institute for Exploration in Mystic, Ct., and has conducted more than 120 deep-sea diving expeditions., most famous of which was the finding of the RMS Titanic.  But, he also has found the World War II aircraft carrier Yorktown and German battleship Bismarck.

He was born in Wichita, Kansas, but moved early to San Diego where he developed his love of the sea.  he consideres his most significant find to be the natural hydrothermal vents in 1977 in the Galapagos Rift.

Growing up, I always dreamed of looking for sunken things.  Had I not gone into teaching, this may very well have been my career.  I even learned how to scuba dive.

Maybe Ballard Has the Perfect Job?  --Cooter

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Eight Historic Handshakes

From the June 21st History Channel's History in the News " 8 Historic Handshakes" by Christopher Klein.

June 21st was World Handshake Day so this is appropriate.  Photos and text are with the article.

1.  U.S. Grant and Robert E. Lee (April 9, 1865)
2.  Richard Nixon and Elvis Presley (Dec. 21, 1970)
3.  William McKinley and Leon Czolgoz (Sept. 6, 1901)
4.  Adolph Hitler and Neville Chamberlain (Sept 23, 1938)

5.  Harry Truman, Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin (July 25, 1945)
6.  Anwar Sadat and Menachem Begin  (March 26, 1979)
7.  Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat (Sept. 13, 1993)
8.  Bill Clinton and John F. Kennedy (July 24, 1963)

See if you can figure out why each is important.

Go Figger.  --Cooter

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Ten Battles That Turned the Tide of a War

From the March 12, 2010, Listverse.  Of course, go to the site and read about the battle and see a picture of it.  I'm just listing the battles and dates.

10.  BATTLE OF STIRLING BRIDGE-- Sept. 11, 1297.  Scottish War of Independence from Britain.
9.  BATTLE OF GIBRALTAR--  April 25, 1607.  The Dutch destroyed the Spanish fleet.
8.  BATTLE OF LEYTE GULF--  Oct. 23-26, 1944

7.  LUDENDORF OFFENSIVE--  World War I, final attempt by Germany to break the stalemate on the Western Front.
6.  BATTLE OF SALAMIS--  Persians vc. the Greeks
5.  BATTLE OF GETTYSBURG-- July 1-3, 1863
4.  BATTLE OF BRITAIN--  July 10-October 31, 1940.

3.  BATTLE OF TRAFALGAR--  Oct. 21, 1805
2.  BATTLE OF MIDWAY--  June 4-7, 1942
1.  BATTLE OF STALINGRAD-- July 17, 1942 to February 2, 1943

Win or Lose On One Battle.  --DaCoot

Hitler's Goddaughter's Christening Gown

From the May 20, 2010, Telegraph UK.

It's embroidered with swastikas and was worn by Herman Goering's daughter Edda at the ecermony in 1938 and blieved to be a present from Hitler himself.  In a photo from it, Hitler is seen holding the child as Reich Bishop Ludwig Muller conducted the ceremony.

The dress was kept by one of Goering's maids, Frieda Zychski, and now owned by a collector who was selling it at Mulloch's Auction House in Ludlow, Shorpshire and expected to fetch around 7,000 pounds.

Goering was the head of the German air force, the Luftwaffe.

Edda is still alive and thought to be living in South Africa.

Just a Bit of Oddball World War II History.  --Cooter

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Dead Page: That FM Progressive Rock

PETE FORNATALE (1945- APRIL 26, 2012)

Pioneer in the great 60s-70s FM progressive rock movement.  Ah, those early days of FM radio when anything went and new artists had a great place to launch their careers.  This was before formatting took hold on the FM side.

He had a show at WFUV, a college radion station at Fordham University and later was on WNEW and K-Rock.  He gave exposure to country rock groups like Buffalo Springfield and Poco.

I sure listened to as much of those great stations as I could.  This format was one of the things that got me into deejaying.  I liked to mix all sorts of songs into my sets, like follow "Born to Be Wild" with some Hank Williams.

Dead Page: Sure Made My Life Easier

EUGENE POLLEY (1915-2012)

Invented first TV remote control.

You channel surfers take a moment to raise that remote and thank Mr. Polley who died at age 96 May 20th.  He worked at Zenith Electronics from1935 to 1982.  His Flash-Matic debuted in 1955 as a luxury option.

Even so, Mr. Polley always felt he did not get proper credit for the remore control.  His used a beam of light.  A year later, Robert Adler, a fellow Zenith researcher developed the Space Command remote that relied on high frequency chimes and it was this one that Zenith went with.

Of course, with today's cable selection, I sure wouldn't want to keep getting up to change channels, but I guess it would be good exercise.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Dead Page: Rocket Man

RAY BRADBURY (1920-2012)

June 7th Chicago Tribune "Rocket Man" by Julia Keller.

"The history books say that Yuri Gagarin was the first man in space, but the history books are wrong.  It was Ray Bradbury.  And unlike Gagarin, he took the rest of us along for the ride."  He died June 5th in Los Angeles, but never forgot his Waukegan, Illinois, roots.

Actually, I was under the idea that he had already died and have to admit that I have never read anything by him, but I sure know of him.

And, he never forgot Waukegan, a town I've lived near since 1975.  He helped save the Carnegie library and Waukegan was the basis of his "Green Town."  Also, I just read that a digital copy of his "Martian Chronicles" is on the planet Mars.  Wonder if that lil' Disney guy has read it?

Famous for his science fiction like "The Martian Chronicles" and "Fahrenheit 451," he also wrote a lot of other books and short articles in other genres.

Monday, June 18, 2012

It Was 200 Years Ago Today

Suffice to mention that this date in 1812, the United States declared war on Britain, starting what is known as the War of 1812.


British World War I Sub Found

From the Telegraph "Firsrt World War British submarine found  94 years after being abandoned."

The HMS E14 executed a daring raid, slipping past the Dardanelles during the Gallipoli campaign and sinking Turkish warships and a transport.  It was found intact on the ocean bed of the Dardanelles by a Turkish documentary group.

In 1915, Lt. Cmdr. Edward Courtney Boyle received the Victoria Cross after steering the E14 throughthe heavily fortified Dardanelle Straits, under monefields and later avoiding Turkish searchlights and guns at the Narrows and then reaching open waters of the Sea of Marmura April 27, 1915. 

During the next three weeks it sank two Turkish warships and a former White Star cruise liner carrying 6,000 Turkish troops heading for Gallipoli before escaping back through the strait.

Along with the commander's Victoria Cross, the entire crew of thirty received Distinguished Service medals.  Boyle was 27 at the time and much later died in 1967 when he was run over by a lorry.

Later, Lt.-Cmdr. Geoffrey Saxon White also won a VictoriaCross posthumously in the E14 in an operation in which the submarine was abandoned and sank in January 1918.

The E14 was discovered earlier this month, the first British "E" Class submarine discovered intact.  The vessel is 20 meters deep near Kum Kayle.

A Little-Known Story.  --Cooter