Saturday, May 30, 2015

10 Incredibly Memorable Movie Quotes-- Part 2

Of course, being Listverse, they have photos and more information.  I'm just listing as usual.  Check out the site.

5.  "They call me Mr. Tibbs."  In the Heat of the Night 1967.  Sidney Poitier as Virgil Tibbs.

4.  "I love the smell of napalm in the morning."  Apocalypse Now 1979.  Robert Duvall as Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore.

3.  "What're you rebelling against Johnny?"  Reply: "Whaddya' got?"  The Wild One 1953.  Marlon Brando as Johnny Strabler.

2.  "Andy Dufresne-- who crawled through a river of shit and came out clean on the other side."  The Shawshank Redemprion 1994.  Morgan Freeman as Red Redding.

1.  "I coulda had class.  I coulda been a contender.  I could've been somebody instead of a bum, which is what I am."  On the Waterfront 1959.  Terry Malloy.

I've always especially liked #4.

"It Smells Like Victory."  --Cooter

Friday, May 29, 2015

10 Incredibly Memorable Movie Quotes-- Part 1

From Listverse.

10.  "I'm the king of the world!"  Titanic, 1997.  Leonardo Di Caprio as Jack Dawson.

9.  "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!"  Network, 1976.  Peter Finch as Howard Beale.

8.  "We'll always have Paris."  Casablanca 1942.  Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine.

7.  "You used to be big."  Sunset Boulevard, 1950.  Gloria Swanson as Norma Desmond.

6.  "Greed, for lack of a better word, is good."  Wall Street, 1987.  Michael Douglas as Gordon Gekko.

--More to Come.  --Cooter

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Frank Lloyd Wright's Homes on Delavan Lake, Wisconsin

From the March 25, 2015, Hi-Liter.  "Author digs for real story of Penwern" by Vicky Wedig.

There are five homes on the south shore of Delavan Lake (near Lake Geneva), Wisconsin.  Here's a list showing the homes' original owner, locations and years of construction:

HENRY H. WALLIS, 3407 South Shore Drive, 1900

FRED B. JONES, 3335 South Shore Drive, 1900 (Penwern was the name of their house)

CHARLES and MARY ROSS,  3211 South Shore Drive, 1902

CARRIE and GEORGE SPENCER,, the Ross' daughter and son-in-law, 3209 South Shore Drive

ARTHUR P. JOHNSON,  3455 South Shore Drive, 1905.

I had no idea there were that many FLW homes on Delavan Lake.  Perhaps I'll have to take a drive to check them out.

Build Me Up, Buttercup.  --Cooter

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Mates' White Front Bar-- Part 2: Piston Ash Trays

George and Violet Mates began their bar and restaurant shortly after the end of Prohibition and it soon became a favorite of race car drivers, crews and fans.  A.J. Foyt and the Unser brothers among others were regulars during the month of May.  A lot of Indy 500 winners would come into the place to celebrate their victories.

They had huge crowds all month long every May.  They were even closed down on occasion for having too many people.

Not only were the drinks reasonable, but the food was very good and fairly inexpensive, even for back then.  The interviewer mentioned a T-bone dinner for $3 and fillet-mignon for $2.75.  Bill Vuckovich, Sr, was from eastern Europe and they used to make up European food for him.

George ran the bar and Violet the kitchen.  George was also well aware of self promotion and would give the racers and their crews free tee shirts and if they wore them at the track, they'd also get a free dinner.  Those tee shirts are much sought after these days.

Another collectible George made was the ash trays he had on the bar.  He made them out of pistons, set them on the bar and had to keep a watchful eye so that no one walked out with them.  They sold for $30-$40 even back in the 1950s.

One famous guest at the grand opening of the second Mates' White Front was Groucho Marx.

The bar, however, was forced to close because of a misunderstanding over the books and later became the strip club located at the site today.


Bits O' History: "Four Eyes"-- Avocados, Anyone?--Chicago Food Prices 1914

BITS O' HISTORY--  Tidbits, you know.

1.  'FOUR EYES"--  You can calls him Ted, or youse can call him Fed.  Just don't call him "Four Eyes."  Before he was president, Theodore Roosevelt got into a bar fight after being called "four eyes."  Must have charged up the guy's forehead.

2.  AVOCADOS, ANYONE--  On their way to the New World, European sailors used avocados in place of butter.  Avocado it up.  Well, I just learned how to spell avocado.  I always thought it was avacado.  Never too old to learn something I suppose.


MILK:  9 cents a quart
EGGS:  35 cents a dozen
BACON:  28 cents per pound
POTATOES:  18 cents per pound
SIRLOIN STEAK:  26 cents per pound

Just a Touch.  --Cooter

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Mates' White Front Historic Bar Was Frequented By Indy 500 Drivers-- Part 1

I came across an interesting article in the May 23, 2015, Indianapolis Star newspaper "Indy 500 drivers loved Mates' White Front" about a historic place near the Speedway called Mates' White Front Bar and Restaurant.  Many times you could go there after a race and racing times and meet drivers.

It was established originally in 1935 by George and Violet Mates at another site which featured the entire front painted white and moved to 3535 W. 18th Street in September 1952 and was run by their sons Mike and Nick in the 1950s and 1960s.  It continued to be called White Front even though it was never painted white like the original.

The newspaper had pictures and one was of a menu showing the price of a cheeseburger and pork tenderloin at 45 cents.

The second building still stands, but is a strip club today called Club Venus.

I sure wish this bar was still there as I would definitely make sure I visited it.  Kind of like a racing Tootsie's Pink Orchid Lounge in Nashville.

Drink One for the Race.  --Cooter

Monday, May 25, 2015

Lots of History At That Old Track

I just got back from my fourth Indy 500 trip a few hours ago.  And there is a lot of history associated with the venue.

Carl Fisher was instrumental in its founding as he wanted a place to safely test the fairly new and growing American love affair with automobiles.  I am sure he could never have envisioned this past weekend in even his wildest dreams.

Of course, if there was ever a man of "No Small Dreams," that would be Carl Fisher.  Not only was the Speedway one of his things, but also the Lincoln Highway, Dixie Highway, Miami Beach and, I believe Montauk somewhere in the northeast.

If I recall, without looking it up, the first ran here in 1909, but the famed Indy 500 race did not begin until a few years later.  As a matter of fact, this next one will be a real biggie as it is the 100th Running of what they call the Greatest Spectacle in Racing.

That Is Going to Be SOME Party.  --Cooter

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Big Fan of "Mad Men"

I am sure going to miss this show.  For me it was also a trip back to the 60s, a favorite time of mine.  It showed how much things have changed.  back then, most adults smoked and many did so on TV,  It now looks quite strange to see as much smoking and drinking.  Those guys (and gals) almost always had a cigarette or drink in hand.

I liked the road trip Don Draper was on at the end of the show.  Just going from place to place back in the 60s.

Plus, I liked the scene in the American Legion with all those World War II veterans.  Sadly, you rarely ever see a World War II veteran in Legions anymore as they are getting too old.

A Real Trip Back.  --DaCoot

"Mad Men" Withdrawal-- Part 1: Roger Sterling's Martini

From the May 17, 2015, Parade Magazine "Staying Fab After Mad Men Ends edited by Erin Hill.

"From fedoras and mid-century modern to macrame and maxis, Mad Men has showcased 1960s style since it debuted in 2007.  Here's how you can enjoy the Mad Men look even after the Emmy-winning show ends tonight.

Go ahead and cry into your vintage martini glass as we say goodbye to Don Draper and friends on the AMC series' final episode.

DRINKS:  Martinis the way Roger Sterling Likes 'Em.

6 oz. premium vodka or gin
Splash dry vermouth
Olive skewer or twist of lemon peel for garnish

Fill a mixing glass 3/4 with ice.  Add vodka or gin and a splash of vermouth, and stir.  Strain into cilled martini glass
Serve and garnish with an olive, pickled onion or twist.

Recipe from AMC provided by the 21 Club in New York.

How Dry Rog and Don Were.  --Cooter

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Million-Dollar Penny

From the March 22, 2015, Parade Magazine.

A rare 1792 Birch Cent will be auctioned by Stack's Bowers during the Whitman Coin and Collectibles Spring Expo March 26-29 in Baltimore.

It's one of only a handful of the original coins still in existence that were produces just after the founding of the U.S. Mint.

One sold earlier this year for more than $2.5 million.

Follow Up:  It sold for $1.175 million.

Chump Change Indeed--  DaCoot

The '80s Live On

From the March 22, 2015, Parade Magazine.

Cruise down memory land with the special anniversary edition of "The Sure Thing" movie being released March 24th.  Actually, I've never heard of it before, but they say it was released thirty years ago and starred John Cusack and Daphne Zuniga and was described as the '80s road trip to end all road trips.

Here are some other notable '80s movies:

FOOTLOOSE--  "Everybody cut, everybody cut footloose."

THE BREAKFAST CLUB--  The flick that made detention cool.

SIXTEEN CANDLES--    Molly Ringwald at her sweetest.

FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF--  "Bueller?  Bueller?"

Two Words: Boom Box.  I Still have 'Em.  --Cooter

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Here Are Those Definitions From the Last Post

I didn't recognize some of the words from the last post, so looked them up.

From #4:

Starveling--  poor in quality, inadequate

elfskin--  probably a misprint for eelskin as it only appears in the Henry IV play.  Eelskin means slimy.

pizzle--  penis of an animal, especially a bull.

stockfish--  cod or haddock, cured by splitting and air dried.

From #1

rampallian--  a mean wretch

fustilarian--  a low fellow, stinkard, scoundrel

I probably wouldn't use these two as what good is it to inselt someone who doesn't know what you're talking about.

Now You Know,  --DaCoot

Top Ten Shakespearean Insults To Whip Out At Parties-- Part 2

5.  "[My] face is not worth sunburning."  Henry V.

4.  " starveling, you elfskin, you dried neat's tongue, you bull's pizzle, you stockfish!"  Henry IV

3.   "I do desire that we be better strangers."  As You Like It  (My own favorite of the list.)

2.  "..beatle headed, flap eared knave."  The Taming iof the Shrew.

1.  "You rampallian!  You fustilarian!"  Henry IV, Part 2.

Looks like I'll have to look up some words.


Top Ten Shakespearean Insults To Whip Out At parties-- Part 1

From the Nov. 21, 2012, Listverse by Alex Daugherty.

10.  "And thous unfit for any place but hell."  Richard III

9.  "Clod of wayward marl"--  Much Ado About Nothing

8.  "You should be women, and yet your beard forbid me to interpret that you are so."  MacBeth

7.  "By mine honor, if I were but two hours younger, I'd beat thee.  Methinkst thou are a general offence, and every man should beat thee."  All's Well That Ends Well.

6.  "Tis brief, my woman's love."  Hamlet

Take That You Knave!  --DaCoot

Famous Birthday Centennials Celebrated This Year-- Part 4: Arthur Miller

Expect a lot of Arthur Miller productions this year because the playwright would have turned 100 on October 17th.

His "Death of a Salesman" will be staged in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Madison, Wis., and others.


Monday, May 18, 2015

Famous Birthday Centennials Celebrated This Year-- Part 3: Frank Sinatra

The new "Sinatra: An American Icon" exhibit of family photos, mementos, correspondence and other artifacts remain open at the New York Public Library until September 4th.

Other centennial toasts to Frank Sinatra, born Dec. 12. 1915, include the new Sinatra Select whiskey blend by Jack Daniels, the Why Sinatra Matters course at UCLA in may and the "Sinatra" stage show opening in London this summer.

You've got to love his music, especially that 50s and 60s output.


Famous Birthday Centennials Celebrated This Year-- Part 2: Muddy Waters

Southwest of Chicago, in Westmont, residents are observing 2015 as McKinley Morganfield's centennial year.  better known as Muddy Waters, father of Chicago Blues, he was born April 4, 1915 in Mississippi and lived his last ten years in Westmont.  However, when he was born, birth records were not kept very well o there is some disagreement as to the exact year of birth, but his centennial will be celebrated anyway..

The Westmont Centre is home to his performance outfits, his 1972 Grammy Award, Grammy nomination plaques and more.

Taste of Westmont, July 9-12, traditionally ends with a Muddy Waters Blues Tribute.

Right now, I am listening to Fessa John Hooks' Beach Music Reunion for 1958 and he has been playing some Muddy Waters songs.  Hear it at

Two of Muddy Waters' sons still play the blues and will be featured playing together at the Chicago Blues Festival in June.

I should also mention that Tom Marker's Bluesbreakers Show on Chicago's WXRT 93.1 FM will be expanded to two hours tonight from 8-10 p.m. CDST to honor B.B. King who died last week.

Blues You Can Use.  --RoadDog

Famous Birthday Centennials Celebrated This Year-- Part 1: Les Paul

From the April 19, 2015, Chicago Tribune "Happy birthday, Orson Welles: Celebrations to mark famous centennials" by Mary Bergin.

I wrote about Orson Welles on Saturday and today in my RoadDog's RoadLog Blog.


Guitar wizard LES PAUL, born June 9, 1915, will be celebrated in his hometown of Waukesha, Wisconsin.  He created and refined the solid-body electric guitar and is buried in Waukesha at the Prairie Home Cemetery after his death in 2009.

Gibson Guitar Corporation named Waukesha as the  world's eighth guitar town in 2012 and it is on the way to repeat the distinction for there consecutive years.  As a result , you will see 10-foot-tall fiberglass guitars around town and live music performances are always around, especially for Friday Night Live, June to October.

There is is an exhibit at the Waukesha County Museum devoted to Lester William Polsfuss, his birth name, who lived there until the age 17.  In it, on loan, is one of his "Logs," his early solid-body electric guitars.

Play That Air Guitar, Boy.  --Cooter

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Beer Collectibles at Fox Lake Historical Society Today

I'm getting ready to leave for the meeting of the Fox Lake/Grant Township Historical Society meeting at the museum on Washington Street in Ingleside which starts at 9:30 a.m..

Today, Carl Flaks will be showing "Breweriana."  that would be his beer collectibles.  Kapella Distributors of Ingleside and Jack Olson's Bar in Big Hollow will also be topics of discussion.

Just the thing to do before starting the annual Chain Crawl of the Chain of Lakes later this afternoon.

Beer Me.  --Cooter

Friday, May 15, 2015

The Hotel Majestic in McHenry County

While at the McHenry County Historical Society in Union, Illinois, for the William Herndon presentation in April (Herndon was Lincoln's law partner in Springfield), I saw an interesting wooden sign up on the wall by the stage that read:
Modern Rooms Reasonable Rates

Hotel Majestic & Eat Shoppe

Chicken Dinner Every Saturday

J.L. Boze

I have been unable to find out any more information on this hotel, but would have to figure it was somewhere in McHenry County.


Fox Lake Historical Society Show and Tell-- Part 4: Big Hollow School

GRADUATION PORTRAIT, CLASS OF 1952--  Another person brought in a graduation class picture of their graduating class in 1952.  It was the largest graduating class up until that time with 14 students.  The site of Big Hollow  School, which was torn down a few years ago) was at the corner of Il-134 and US-12 south of Fox Lake.

CONFIRMATION CLASS PICTURE--  Another person brought in the Confirmation Class picture of the 1956 Ingleside Methodist Church Sunday School class (which met in a structure right next to the Fox lake/Grant Township Historical Society Hall and Museum which used to be the Grant Township Transportation Center).

Sunday School was held in the fire station across Washington Street from the church.  Bingo was played there Saturday nights and the boys had to come in early to air it out from all the cigarette smoke.  Plus, there would be a problem with spilled beer.

BEATLES-- I brought in several early albums by the Beatles as it was 50 years ago that Beatlemania was in full swing and the group was releasing albums as fast as they could.  Several people remarked of their early experiences with the group.


Fox Lake Historical Meeting March 21, 2015-- Part 3: The Mineola and Wrestling

Today's talk was Show and tell.  Takes you right back to your school days.  I always look forward to this as the folks bring in some real interesting stuff.

KEYS FROM THE MINEOLA HOTEL--  This is the grand old lady of the Chain of Lakes located in Fox Lake and, sadly, fast deteriorating.  A set of brass keys used on the bigger rooms was shown by Paul Jackstas, son of the owners and brother of current owner, Pete.  His parents took over the hotel in 1943.

They signed a three-year lease in 1943 and would close the place in the fall and reopen it in the spring.  They bought the place in 1948.  His family lived in rooms in back of the hotel.

He said they had skeleton keys which would open any door at the Mineola.

WRESTLING POSTER--  Wrestling was real big in the Fox Lake area in the 1960s and 1970s.  Wrestling posters would be stapled to area telephone poles.  The Chain of Lakes American Legion even today hosts POWW Wrestling events on an almost monthly basis and draws well.  Great entertainment for your $15.

--Full Nelson Boy.  --PinCooter

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Fox Lake Historical Society Meeting, March 21, 2015-- Part 2: Business

We are urged to have e-mails sent of announcements as it saves postage and printing.  Right now, some 140 e-mails are sent each month and 40 letters.

Visitor Count:
 January--  161
February--  72

Last year there were a total of 1,120 visitors.

Once a month, the Republican Club meets in the hall.

Attendance today for the meeting is 32.

Paul is looking for the names of famous and notable people from the area.  Someone who has accomplished something.  So far he has professional baseball and football players and former Illinois Governor William Stratton.

The building that houses the hall and museum is over 100 years old and needs exterior work, especially in relation to the upstairs windows.

Last Monday was the 38th anniversary of the Town Theatre blowing up in Fox Lake.

Fox Lake/Grant Township Historical Society Meeting March 21, 2015-- Part 1

History of the Chain of Lakes.

Sports Clubs of the late 1800s/early 1900s located in the Chain of Lakes in Illinois often became hotels as in the case of the Waltonian, Mineola, Last Resort and Columbia Hotel.

This last one began in 1887 as the Columbian Pleasure Club, but that had a different meaning from what we might expect a pleasure club to be today.  In 1896, the Columbian Pleasure Club had a big fire which burned down two large dorms where a concrete home now sits near the Gateway House near Electric harbor bar and motel. and the channel leading to petite Lake from Fox Lake.

I always love these little tidbits of lost history, especially since we do so much boating on the Chain of Lakes.


Top 10 Ways Disney Corrupts Children

From the November 22, 2012, Listverse.

10.  Historical inaccuracies
9.  Extreme thinness, especially with the gals
8.  Subliminal messaging

7.  Sexual harassment is accepted
6.  Importance of social status
5.  Ugliness is immoral
4.  Beauty is moral

3.  Satanic imagery
2.  Everything is fluffy
1.  Racial stereotyping

Agree with it or not, but it makes you think.  Read more at the site.

Walt Disney's Not Going to Like This.  --Cooter

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

TV and Movie Stars Lost in 2012-- Part 2

RICHARD DAWSON--  June 2--  79--  Hogan's Heroes, Family Feud, Match Game

GEORGE LINDSAY--  May 6--  83--  Goober on "Andy Griffith Show."  Also Mayberry RFD and Hee- Haw.

DICK CLARK--  April 18--  82--  American Bandstand

JONATHAN FREED--  April 13--  87--  Vampire Barnabas Collins on "Dark Shadows."

MICHAEL WALLACE--  April 7--  93--  60 Minutes

DAVY JONES--  Feb. 29--  66--  The Monkees

PHILIP BURNS--  Feb. 8--  80--  Played the father on "Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman."

DON CORNELIAS--  Feb. 1--  75--  Soul Train

ROBERT HEGYES--  Jan. 26--  60--  Juan Epstein on "Welcome Back Kotter."

Deaths of two "Andy Griffith Show" and two "Welcome Back Kotter" folks this year.

Signed, Epstein's Mother.  --DaCoot

TV and Movie Stars Lost in 2012-- Part 1

From the Yahoo! 2012 Year in Review.

LARRY HAGMAN--  Dallas, I Dream of Jeanne

ALEX KARRAS--  Oct. 10--  football, Webster.  Was Mongo in "Blazing Saddles."  Loved that Mongo.

MICHAEL CLARKE DUNCAN-- Sept. 3--  "Green Mile"  The big guy.


RON PALILLO--  Aug. 14--  63--  Horshack in "Welcome Back Cotter"

SHERMAN HEMSLEY--  July 24, 74--  All in the Family, The Jeffersons and Amen

ANDY GRIFFITH--  July 3--  86--  Andy Griffith Show, Matlock.  Pride of Mt. Airy, N.C., inspiration for Mayberry.

DON GRADY--  June 27--  68--  Robbie on "My Three Sons."

FRANK CADY-- June 8--  96--  Sam drucker on "Petticoat Junction" and "Green Acres."

"Ooh, Ooh, Ooh, Mr. Kotter!!"  .  --Cooter

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Ten Beloved, Banned and Recalled Products-- Part 2

6.  Hammocks--  faulty strands, brackets and poorly built.  Plus, no instructions as to how to get in without breaking your neck.

7.  Slip 'N Slide--   some kids slid off side onto concrete.

8.  Rockets--  bystander injuries and pain when hit in face.

9.  Bunk Beds--  almost two recalls a year since 1985.  Hurts when you fall off, especially top bunk.

Deep Fryers--  Obvious.  Don't put your hand in it.

--Ouch, My Hand.  --Cooter

Monday, May 11, 2015

Ten Beloved, Banned and Recalled Products-- Part 1

From the Nov. 11, 2012 Yahoo! Shopping, Popular Mechanics by Allison T. McCann.

LAWN DARTS--  The threat was obvious, especially where kids or drunken adults were concerned.

BUCKYBALLS-- (also Buckycubes)  The problem was swallowing them, especially if you were dumb enough to swallow more than one.  (I don't remember these.)

ELECTRIC BLANKETS-  Fall sleep (not surprising) and you might get a fiery wake up call.

FONDUE SETS--  plastic rings at the tip cracked.

BEANBAG CHAIRS--  a danger when small children would get into them, eat the contents.

Five More.  --DaCoot

The End of the Bounty Back in 2012

From the Oct. 30, 2012, Houston Chronicle.

The HMS Bounty was to have been a tourist attraction at Galveston's waterfront at Pier 21 for the winter.

It was used in the second and third "Pirates of the Caribbean" movies.

From the Dec. 3, 2012, Lookout  "New details of the ship's battle with Superstorm Sandy" by Claudine Zap.

The encounter resulted in the death of the captain, a crew member and loss of the ship.  Captain Robin Walbridge chose to ride the storm out instead of keeping it docked at New London, Ct., where it would have sustained major damage but no life loss.

The captain's risky decision surprised the ship's owner Robert Hansen who was trying to sell it for $4,6 million.

Robert Walbridge had been the Bounty's captain for 17 years.  The search for his body has been called off.  That was sure a sad picture of the shipwreck.

I was lucky enough to get to see the ship when it was at Kenosha, Wisconsin.


Death of Henry Coleman in 2012

HENRY COLEMAN, 89, died November 7, 2012.

I never heard of him, but he sure had a hand in many of my favorite TV shows.  He was the producer of "The Love Boat."  He was also involved with "Hawaii-Five-0" (the original), "Green Acres," "The Beverly Hillbillies," "Lucy," "The Odd Couple" (original), "Mannix," "Love American Style" and did the pilot for "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis."

Thanks for the TV.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Playing Second Banana on TV Not So Bad

From the April 2015 AARP Bulletin "Dissing Sinatra...and Other Bad Moves"  This was a humorous story about Brad Garrett getting Frank Sinatra mad at him.  Brad Garrett, of course, played the brother on Ray Romano's "Everybody Loves Raymond" TV show.  Second banana as you know.

Here are some other "Second Bananas With Appeal"

ART CARNEY--  Ed Norton teaching his pal how to do the Hucklebuck dance or how to address a golf ball always gave  Jackie Gleason the spotlight.

VIVIAN VANCE--  Ethel always strove to go along with Lucille Ball's crazy schemes.

DON KNOTTS--  Barney kept us laughing while being helped by Andy Griffith.  "Nip it in the bud!!"

DEMOND WILSON--  He was the son but actually the hard-working adult to his father, Fred Sanford, Redd Foxx.

JASON ALEXANDER--  Jerry Seinfeld's real good buddy.


Friday, May 8, 2015

Young Britons Don't Know the Date of the First World War

From the April 4, 2012, Telegraph (U.K.) by Jasper Copping.

A recent poll showed only 46% knew the war started in 1914 and just 40% knew it ended in 1918.

The poll was conducted by British Future, a group dedicated to exploring issues of national identity.  Their work was released ahead of Remembrance Sunday at the Cenotaph in Central London and smaller services around the country.

12% believed the Battle of Waterloo was a First World War Battle

11% said the Battle of Bosworth Field was part of the War of the Roses.  13% said the Battle of the Bulge was in World War I.  75% didn't know the Battle of Passchendaele was in World War I.  (I wouldn't have known about Bosworth Field and until recently, Passchendaele.)

Just 60% knew that Canada, Australia and India sent troops to the war.

Even worse, 10% believe that Britain suffered fewer than 10,000 deaths.

Well, I'm sure our kids wouldn't do much better on American history.  --


After 75 Years, Frankly, We Still Give a Damn

From the Dec. 2014/Jan. 2015 AARP Magazine by Bill Newcott.

The movie "Gone With the Wind" sits at the halfway mark between us and the Civil War at 75 years.  Atlanta went up in flames at its premier in Atlanta on December 15, 1939.  Most will say it is the most popular film of all time (even bigger than "Avatar") and in adjusted box office receipts has taken in as much at $5.4 billion.

Yet it remains the topic of discussion.  Some have nothing but breathless praise, others fiery condemnation.

Praise is easy.  David O. Selznick brought Margaret Mitchell's novel to life in a huge way, had Clark Gable at the peak of his suavity and Vivien Leigh able to break the hearts of young suitors and even middle aged men.

But, GWTW comes out just months after "12 Years a Slave," which pummels GWTW's fantasy of contented slaves.

Hollywood was a different place in 1939.

But, Miss Scarlett.  --Cooter

Thursday, May 7, 2015

The Sinking of the RMS Lusitania 100 Years Ago Today

The sinking of the Lusitania, and deaths of 123 American aboard it went a long way toward the United States siding with the Allies and entering World War I.  The arrival of the Americans helped turned the tide against the Germans.


Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Deaths: Geoffrey Lewis

Dead at 79.  veteran character actor and frequent collaborator of Clint Eastwood.  In "High Plains Drifter, "Every Which Way But loose" and "Any Which Way You Can" with Eastwood, the last two playing his brother.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Britain's Last WWI Veteran Lived in Australia-- Part 1: Served in Both Wars

From the, July 26, 2009.

Claude Choules, 108  (He has since died.)

Born Pershon, England in March 1901.  Served in the Royal Navy on the HMS Impregnible at age 15 in 1916.  In 1917 was on the battleship HMS Revenge and was at the surrender of the German fleet at the Firth of Forth near Scotland in 1918 which came ten days after the Armistice was signed.  He was also at the scuttling of the German fleet at Scapa Flow

In 1926, he went to Australia with the Royal Navy and transferred to the Royal  Australian Navy.

He served on the HMAS Canberra until 1931 when he was discharged from the service, but rejoined in 1932 as a torpedo and anti-submarine instructor in Freemantle.

In World War II, he disposed of the first German mine to wash ashore on Australia near Esperance on Western Australia's south coast.


The Vietnam War By the Numbers-- Part 4: Business

$170 million:  Vietnam's exports in 1976.

$132 billion:  Vietnam's exports in 2013.

Less than $500 million:  U.S.-Vietnamese trade in 1995, when the countries normalized relations.

$35 billion:  U.S.-Vietnamese trade last year.  The U.S. is Vietnam's biggest single-country export market.

7.6 million: Foreign tourists visited Vietnam in 2013.

Former Enemies.  --Cooter

Sunday, May 3, 2015

The Vietnam War By the Numbers-- Part 3: The Agent Orange Factor

12 million:  Gallons of the herbicide Agent Orange sprayed by the U.S. over about 10% of South Vietnam from 1961-1971.  It contained the toxic chemical dioxin and is blamed for cancer, birth defects and other serious health problems among Vietnam veterans and generations of Vietnamese.

2.1 million to 4.8 million:  Vietnamese exposed to Agent Orange.

2.4 million: Estimated U.S. service members exposed to Agent Orange.

$65 million:  Amount the U.S. has spent cleaning up dioxin in Vietnam so far.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

The Vietnam War By the Numbers-- Part 2: Cost of War, Bombs and More Bombs


About $250 billion:  U.S. spending on the war from 1965 to 1975 --  the equivalent of more than $1 trillion in today's dollars.

5 million to 7.8 million:  Tons of U.S. bombs dropped on Vietnam.

800,000: Estimated tonnage of unexploded bombs and land mines left at the war's end.

35,000 to 42,000:  People killed by that ordnance since the war's end.

$80 million:  Amount U.S. has spent on ordnance cleanup efforts so far.


Friday, May 1, 2015

The Vietnam War By the Numbers-- Part 1: Casualties and MIA

From the April 30, 2015, Panama City News Herald.


92.5 million: Vietnam's population in 2014.  More than two-thirds of the country was born after the war ended.

1.3 million+:  Americans of Vietnamese ethnic origin up from 231,000 in 1980.


58,000+: U.S. servicemen killed in Vietnam and neighboring Laos and Cambodia.

3 million:  Vietnamese communist fighters and civilians killed.  That does not include South Vietnameseces, whose losses are estimated by some American sources as up to 250,000.

1.971:  Americans missing in action and otherwise unaccounted for in Vietnam at war's end.

700+:  U.S. remains recovered and identified by joiny U.S.-Vietnamese teams since then.

Tough Life, But Someone's Got to Blog It

Sitting outside the room right now at Panama City Beach just a typin' away with my two little fingers with a view of the Gulf of Mexico about a hundred yards away with all that whiter than white sand and all the colors of blue.

I tell you, this sure beats typing in the basement.

Pretty noisy with all the motorcycles coming by.  The folks in the room next to us just checked in.  They are from Batesville, Indiana and are attending their ninth Thunder On the Beach rally.

Sittin' In the Sub.  YourFriedCooter