BY JAMESK K. WHITE | NOVEMBER 3, 2010
Only men can wear trousers
It was 1978 when someone on earth first discovered that Pluto had a moon.
During the bubonic plague (a.k.a. Black Death) in the 1340s, it was a horrible time to be living in Europe. Ships would float by full of cargo and dead crews, but few dared to salvage any goods. Death estimates range from 20 million to 75 million which would have been from 25 to more than 50 percent of all humanity on the continent. Two effects on the history of the common person were that those workers who survived the ordeal were able to demand better pay and that the price of land dropped precipitously. Many laborers experienced an improved standard of living.
General Santa Anna (of Texas Revolution fame) lost his right leg at the Battle of Vera Cruz (against the French Army) in 1838. In 1846, during the Mexican-American War, the Illinois Volunteers surprised the Santa Anna camp and overran the place. The general absconded in such haste that he left his cork leg behind. This unusual war souvenir can be seen in the Illinois State Military Museum (Springfield).
Our word “sock” is derived from the Latin word “soccus” which described a shoe made of very thin leather.
I am told that only men can wear trousers. When women or children wear the same garments, the items are called slacks or pants.
It was not until the 1750s umbrellas for gentlemen became widely accepted in England. Prior to that year, it was deemed “unmanly” to use a parasol to shelter one’s self from the rain. Parasols were frequently carried by women, but were used primarily as protection from the sun. Merchant John Hanway popularized the collapsible canopy for men and was widely scorned by carriage and hackney (taxi) drivers. They perceived the trendy device as significantly reducing the number of passenger fares available during wet weather.
Hammurabi was a king of Babylon and set forth a famous code of laws. Some segments of the code seem a bit harsh by today’s standards. For instance, one was to be put to death for accusing a citizen of a crime without “convincing” proof or for receiving stolen property. A violator’s hands could be amputated for performing bad surgery or for striking one’s own father. There was very little recidivism.
Being mesmerized is synonymous with being hypnotized. The word is linked with Franz Anton Mesmer. What might be mildly surprising is that it is almost certain F.A. Mesmer never hypnotized anyone. Well, feel free to make use of umbrellas and have pleasant, dry week.
Little Tony started the day early
Having set his alarm clock (MADE IN JAPAN) for 6 am.
While his coffeepot (MADE IN CHINA) was perking,
he shaved with his electric razor (MADE IN HONG KONG).
He put on a dress shirt (MADE IN SRI LANKA),
designer jeans (MADE IN SINGAPORE)
and tennis shoes (MADE IN KOREA).
After cooking his breakfast in his new electric skillet (MADE IN INDIA)
he sat down with his calculator (MADE IN MEXICO)
to see how much he could spend today.
After setting his watch (MADE IN TAIWAN)
to the radio (MADE IN INDIA)
he got in his car (MADE IN GERMANY)
filled it with GAS (from SAUDI ARABIA)
and continued his search for a good paying AMERICAN JOB.
At the end of yet another discouraging and fruitless day checking his computer (Made in MALAYSIA),
Tony decided to relax for a while.
He put on his sandals (MADE IN BRAZIL),
poured himself a glass of Wine (MADE IN FRANCE)
and turned on his TV (MADE IN INDONESIA),
and then wondered why he can't find a good paying job in AMERICA.
And now he's hoping he can get help from his president (MADE IN KENYA).
From the approximately 38,600 Google search results it was impossible to identify the author. If that person should notify us, we shall publish attribution for this very creative practical joke.
Your Horoscope by Madame Bournard
ARIES (MAR. 21 - APRIL 19)
You may do a favor for someone, which can help create a new opportunity. Some minor issues may hold you up, but will balance themselves out in the end. A past acquaintance may be in touch with you.
TAURUS (APR. 20 – MAY 20)
It is frustrating to feel you are running around but not really getting anything done. Try not to allow things to get under your skin. Remember to use logic, not emotion.
GEMINI (MAY 21 –JUNE 20)
This week has to do with property. If you don’t own your home you may improving your current space. A family issue clears up as if by “magic.” Don’t knock it; enjoy the moment.
CANCER (JUN 21 – JULY 22)
This may be an amusing week for you; laughter is good for the soul, so go with the flow. Perk up your ears this week so you don’t miss out on some juicy tidbits. It’s a good weekend for entertaining.
LEO (JULY 23- SEPT. 22)
Your money issues may clear somewhat, allowing you to get back on track. It seems money is always around you one way or another. Saturday will be a marvelous day doing whatever you most enjoy.
VIRGO (AUG. 23 –AUG 22)
Make the most of yet another of your good ideas. Your creative and practical sides are in sync. Your personal life is most important to you; everything is usually centered in this area.
LIBRA (SEPT. 24- OCT.23)
Your home is important to you, but be aware of the finances related to your home not only how good it looks. If you’re invited out this weekend, accept the invitation. Go out and enjoy – it will be good for you.
SCORPIO (OCT. 23- NOV. 21)
Your efforts toward goals may come to logical conclusions this week. Money is always a key factor. Friday you may perform small miracles at work. The weekend will be quite enjoyable.
SAGITTARIUS (NOV. 22- DEC. 21)
Be careful what you wish for; you may receive it! Money seems to follow you – how lucky for you! Friday work hard and try to leave early to enjoy the weekend.
CAPRICORN (DEC. 22- JAN 19)
This week your communication sector is strong which will give you the ability to put ideas into play. Keep plugging away on your other life’s issues. Your consistent efforts are noteworthy and will be rewarded.
AQUARIUS (JAN. 20- FEB. 18)
Aquarians, clarify your dreams. You are entering a phase where you will have many lucid dreams, which may mean something in the future. Try to remember and write down all the symbols and check them out.
PISCES (FEB. 19- MAR. 20)
You may be finally coming to reconciliation with a significant other on issues that needed to be resolved. Focus on reaching common ground to bring closure to a petty past problem. Smile! Be yourself and change will happen.