Joe Info

(top row l to r) Believe it or not, today is National Crush a Can Day. Tomorrow is National Ask a Stupid Question Day. (row two) And Sunday is National Coffee Day, one of my all-time favorites! (row three) Coffee gets me going! They used to call it the think drink. It really is that…and more. (row four l to r) The ripe coffee fruit waiting to be picked. And the fruit of the roasted coffee bean waiting to be drunk. (row five) The anatomy of the coffee fruit. (row six l to r) Some things to shop for like this really cute “Good to the Last Drop” cup, $16.60 HERE. And God’s nectar of the coffee fruit. (This one ounce bottle goes for $38 on Amazon) It’s derived from the thin, juicy coating on the outside of the bean and is packed with antioxidants. More than any other source on earth. “Coffee fruit has the power to boost the immune system, protect against free radicals and act as an anti-inflammatory.” Read more HERE. And HERE’s an interesting interview with superfood hunter, Darin Olien. (row seven) Love these coffee lover cups. Probably on Amazon, too. (bottom) Ahhhh, coffee. A simple pleasure with super benefits. Cheers!!

 

Checking my “What National Day Falls on Today’s Calendar”, while drinking my morning cup of coffee, (I’m on my first, fourth cup), I noticed that this Sunday is National Coffee Day (today is National Crush A Can Day, Saturday is National Ask A Stupid Question Day for those who just had to know).  It’s a fun day, where across the country many retailers are giving away free coffee (or discounted coffee) to those of us who crave the morning, or afternoon, sweetness of a cup of Joe.  I scoured the internet to find some fun and random trivia – so when you are sitting across the table from your significant other, you can say, “honey, did you know…” a lot this weekend (if you were to ask Jackie or my girls, that is something that I say all the time!)  Enjoy, and thanks to Buzz Feed, Good Housekeeping and Express.co in the UK.  Enjoy, and go easy on the sugar.

 

  1. Coffee was originally chewed – Sipping may be your preferred method of java consumption, but coffee has not always been a liquid treat. According to a number of historians, the first African tribes to consume coffee did so by grinding the berries together, adding in some animal fat, and rolling these caffeinated treats into tiny edible energy balls.
  2. Legend has it a 9th-century Ethiopian goat herder discovered coffee by accident when he noticed how crazy the beans were making his goats.
  3. New Yorkers drink almost 7 times more coffee than other cities in the US. – which as we all know is why they are crazier than goats.
  4. Drinking decaf fuels the soda industry – After coffee beans are decaffeinated, several coffee manufacturers sell the caffeine to soda and pharmaceutical companies. (click here to learn how decaffeinated coffee is made – thanks Scientific American!)
  5. Instant coffee has been around for nearly 250 years – Instant coffee has been around for a while, making its first appearance in England in 1771. But it would take another 139 years for the first mass-produced instant coffee to be introduced (and patented) in the U.S. in 1910. (see further down for more instant coffee info)
  6. The average American spends more than $1000 on coffee each year – You’d think that spending an average of $1,092 on coffee each year would be enough to make America the world’s most caffeinated nation. You would be wrong.
  7. Finland is the world’s coffee capital – Though Finland does not produce any beans of its own, its citizens drink a lot of the brown stuff—the most of any country in the world.
  8. Beethoven was a barista’s worst nightmare – Beethoven enjoyed a cup of coffee, and was extremely particular about its preparation; he insisted that each cup he consumed be made with exactly 60 beans. Da da da dumb!
  9. Coffee beans sent Brazilian athletes to the Olympics – In 1932, Brazil couldn’t afford to send its athletes to the Olympics in Los Angeles. So they loaded their ship with coffee and sold it along the way. Imagine how Starbucks could help the US teams.
  10. There have been several attempts to ban the beverage entirely – As recently as the 18th century, governments were trying to eradicate coffee. Among the many reasons for outlawing the beverage were its tendency to stimulate “radical thinking.” In 1746 Sweden took things to an extreme when it banned both coffee and coffee paraphernalia (i.e. cups and saucers).
  11. Drinking coffee could extend your cat’s life – Maybe it’s a coincidence, but the Guinness World Record holder for “Oldest Cat Ever”—a 38-year-old kitty named Creme Puff—drank coffee every morning of her furry little life (plus enjoying bacon, eggs, and broccoli). Before you dismiss that outright, consider this: The cat that Creme Puff beat out for the record (a 34-year-old cat, appropriately named Grandpa Rex Allen) had the same owner, and was fed the exact same diet.
  12. 7th-century women thought it was turning their men into “useless corpses.” In 1674, the Women’s Petition Against Coffee claimed the beverage was turning British men into “useless corpses” and proposed a ban on it for anyone under the age of 60. I’ve been called lazy, but …
  13. Chock full O’Nuts coffee contains no nuts – It’s named for a chain of nut stores the founder converted into coffee shops.
  14. The world’s most expensive coffee comes from animal poop – Kopi Luwak, the world’s most expensive coffee, earns its pricey distinction thanks to a surprising step in its production: digestion. In Indonesia, a wild animal known as the Asian palm civet (a small critter similar to the weasel) cannot resist the bright red coffee cherries that abound, even though they can’t digest the actual coffee beans. The beans pass through the civets’ systems without being fully digested. At which point, some brave coffee farmer collects the beans from the civets’ droppings, (hopefully) thoroughly washes them, and sells them for up to $600 per pound. (I have some if you’d like to try it)
  15. The first webcam watched a coffee pot – Though it was hardly what one might described as “action-packed,” it allowed researchers at Cambridge to monitor the coffee pot volume situation in the Trojan Room without ever leaving their desks. After the webcam portion of the coffee pot experiment was pulled, the pot itself—a non-working Krups proaroma pot that would normally retail for about $50—was put up for auction on ebay, where it sold for just under $5000. (I have one in the garage you can have for $20 bucks).
  16. There’s a Starbucks at CIA headquarters – Some officers at the Central Intelligence Agency call it “Stealthy Starbucks,” but employees at the Langley, Virginia location definitely aren’t your typical Starbucks employees. For one, they must undergo extensive background checks and they cannot leave their post without a CIA escort. On the positive side: They don’t have to write down or shout out their customers’ names!
  17. Coffee could one day fuel your car – Researchers have had great success in converting coffee into biodiesel. Best of all, used grounds work just as well.  Better yet, just sit back in your electric car, brew a cup or two inside and let the car drive you.
  18. Coffee is a psychoactive. And at high doses it can make you see things… It can also kill you… And, the lethal dose of caffeine is roughly 100 cups of coffee. – what an odd way to go.
  19. A French doctor in the 1600s suggested Cafe Au Laits for patients, inspiring people to begin adding milk to coffee – very wise man.
  20. The French philosopher Voltaire is said to have drunk 50 cups of coffee a day – Because he ruled and had others to do his dishes.
  21. Espresso is regulated by the Italian government because it is considered an essential part of their daily life. – this makes perfect sense to me – good to have the government behind such an important ritual.
  22. Hawaii is the only state that commercially grows coffee. – and if you’ve had it – yum!
  23. In the ancient Arab culture, there was only one way a woman could legally divorce: If her husband didn’t provide enough coffee. – again, makes perfect sense to me.
  24. Coffee beans are actually the pit of a berry, which makes them a fruit. 
  25. Brewed espresso has 2.5% fat, while filtered coffee contains 0.6% fat. –and I thought fruits are good for you.
  26. Johan Sebastian Bach wrote an opera about a woman who was addicted to coffee. – when she sang, you could hear her five blocks away.
  27. Unlike the hip 20-something Baristas in the US, in Italy the average Barista age is 48, and it is a very respected profession.
  28. Want to know the history of the word “coffee”? Well here it is: Arabic: qahhwat al-bun (or “wine of the bean”), shortened to qahwa, borrowed by Turkish: kahve, borrowed by Dutch: koffie, then English: coffee
  29. In the 1600s there was a controversy over whether or not Catholics could drink coffee, luckily Pope Clement VIII said it was okay. (nice call – likely saved the world too!)
  30. No matter what people tell you, caffeine cannot help you sober up. – but for some reason, it’s in every movie made in the 50’s.
  31. There is a spa in Japan that lets you bathe in coffee, tea, or wine.EEEWWW – I wouldn’t drink it though…
  32. Before coffee caught on in the US in the 1700s, beer was breakfast drink of choice – Which is only slightly less awesome.
  33. Irish coffee was actually invented to warm up cold American plane passengers leaving from Ireland now it’s served at restaurants to get you to leave a bigger tip.
  34. Teddy Roosevelt is and was the greatest American coffee drinker,consuming a gallon a day. – But you probably shouldn’t attempt to do that.
  35. Instant coffee accounts for 13 per cent of all coffee drunk worldwide,more than $30billion on instant coffee last year.
  36. A form of instant coffee had been developed in England in 1771 but it had the problem of going rancid after a relatively short time.
  37. The first mass-produced instant coffee, called Red E Coffee, (get it??) was produced in 1909 by Belgian-American George Constant Louis Washington.
  38. During the First World War, US soldiers called their coffee “a cup of George”, but US military adopted the phrase cup of Joe for GI Joe.
  39. Nescafe, the first truly successful instant coffee, was launched by Nestlé in 1938.  Today, Most instant coffee is made from Robusta beans grown in Vietnam.
  40. In 2012, Canadian Masen Kankula claimed a world record by eating a tablespoon of Maxwell House granules in 8.61 seconds.  There is no information on how much powered creamer he ate that day.

 


 

Da Da Da Dahhhhhhh

(top) This Jan. 1972, photo provided by ABC, shows, from left, Don Meredith, Howard Cosell and Frank Gifford, the broadcast team of “Monday Night Football.” (the next nine photos) The very first Monday Night football game in Cleveland! Look at that hulk of a video camera!  The Browns kept scoring, the fans loved it and Joe Namath left depressed.  (the last three photos) This year’s MNF game saw the new Browns beating the Jets again!!!  So, crank-up the sound and  click here   for what is probably the most iconic theme song for a show in American television history, “Heavy Action” written by British composer, Johnny Pearson. If you want a Monday Night Football music history lesson click HERE. You’ll hear the very first MNF theme music.

 

I think it’s imbedded in my brain – forever.  The opening theme music to Monday Night Football.  This past Monday, Cleveland fans enjoyed a real treat – seeing their beloved Brownies play …. and ready for it …. WIN – on Monday Night Football. They actually scored touchdowns that were not called back, made some nice running plays, threw a couple long passes and even sacked the opposing quarterback. (it’s been about 20 years since I’ve witnessed this).  Some Steve trivia – did you know, the first Monday Night Football game was between Cleveland and the Jets … and Cleveland won, beating the famous Broadway Joe Namath – remember Homer Jones and Billy Andrews?  As I reflect back, I don’t remember a time when MNF wasn’t a part of my Fall ritual. So, I jumped online and dug up some fun information and trivia for you on how it got started (talk about solving a PIA (Pain In The @%$) Job! Can you believe it – it’s been on TV for almost 50 years – Wow.  Special thanks to Wikipedia for the “early days” insights.  (see how many guys from the shows you remember).  My Browns will be on MNF and SNF a few times this Fall – go Baker and OBJ – IT’S ABOUT @$%$&%^%$@^%$ TIME!!!!!!!!!!!  GO BROWNS!

 

  1. During the early 1960s, NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle envisioned the possibility of playing at least one game weekly during prime time that could be viewed by a greater television audience. An early bid by the league in 1964 to play on Friday nights was soundly defeated, with critics charging that such telecasts would damage the attendance at high school footballgames. Undaunted, Rozelle decided to experiment with the concept of playing on Monday night, scheduling the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions for a game on September 28, 1964. While the game was not televised, it drew a sellout crowd of 59,203 spectators to Tiger Stadium, the largest crowd ever to watch a professional football game in Detroit up to that point.
  2. Two years later, Rozelle would build on this success as the NFL began a four-year experiment of playing on Monday night, scheduling one game in prime time on CBS during the 1966 and 1967seasons, and two contests during each of the next two years. NBC followed suit in 1968 and 1969 with games involving American Football League teams.
  3. During subsequent negotiations on a new television contract that would begin in 1970 (coinciding with a merger between the NFL and AFL), Rozelle concentrated on signing a weekly Monday night deal with one of the three major networks. After sensing reluctance from both NBC and CBS in disturbing their regular programming schedules, Rozelle spoke with ABC.
  4. Despite the network’s status at the time as the lowest-rated of the three major broadcast networks, ABC was also reluctant to enter the risky venture. It was only after Rozelle used the threat of signing a deal with the independent Hughes Sports Network, an entity bankrolled by reclusive businessman Howard Hughes, did ABC sign a contract for the scheduled games. Speculation was that had Rozelle signed with Hughes, many ABC affiliates would have pre-empted the network’s Monday lineup in favor of the games, severely damaging potential ratings.
  5. After the final contract for Monday Night Football was signed, ABC Sports producer Roone Arledge immediately saw possibilities for the new program. Setting out to create an entertainment “spectacle” as much as a simple sports broadcast, Arledge hired Chet Forte, who would serve as director of the program for over 22 years. Arledge also ordered twice the usual number of cameras to cover the game, expanded the regular two-man broadcasting booth to three, and used extensive graphic design within the show as well as instant replay.
  6. Looking for a lightning rod to garner attention, Arledge hired controversial New York City sportscaster Howard Cosell as a commentator, along with veteran football play-by-play announcer Keith Jackson. Arledge had tried to lure Curt Gowdy and then Vin Scully to ABC for the MNF play-by-play role, but settled for Jackson after they proved unable to break their respective existing contracts with NBC Sports and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Jack Buck was also considered, but when Arledge assistant Chuck Howard telephoned Buck with the job offer, Buck refused to respond due to anger at his treatment by ABC during an earlier stint with the network. Arledge’s original choice for the third member of the trio, Frank Gifford, was unavailable since he was still under contract to CBS Sports. However, Gifford suggested former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Don Meredith, setting the stage for years of fireworks between the often-pompous Cosell and the laid-back Meredith.
  7. Monday Night Football first aired on ABC on September 21, 1970, with a game between the New York Jets and the Browns in Cleveland. Advertisers were charged US$65,000 per minute by ABC during the clash, a cost that proved to be a bargain when the contest collected 33% of the viewing audience. The Browns defeated the Jets, 31-21 in a game which featured a 94-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by the Browns’ Homer Jones to open the second half, and was punctuated when Billy Andrewsintercepted Joe Namath late in the fourth quarter and returned it 25 yards for the clinching touchdown. However, Cleveland viewers saw different programming on WEWS-TV, because of the NFL’s blackout rules of the time (this would apply for all games through the end of the 1972 season; beginning in 1973, home games could be televised if tickets were sold out 72 hours before kickoff).
  8. One of the trademarks of Monday Night Football is a music cue used during the opening teasers of each program, a Johnny Pearson-composition titled “Heavy Action”, originally a KPM production library cue (and also used as the theme music for the BBC program Superstars), which MNF began using in 1975.
  9. That success would continue over the course of the season, helping establish a phenomenon on Monday nights in the fall: movie attendance dropped, bowling leagues shifted to Tuesday nights and a Seattle hospital established an unwritten rule of no births during games.
  10. Cosell’s presence initially caused Henry Ford II, chairman of the Ford Motor Company, the program’s main sponsor, to ask for his removal. ABC refused, and Ford had a change of heart once the show’s ratings were made public.
  11. In 1971, Frank Gifford became available after his contract with CBS Sports concluded; Arledge brought him to ABC to serve as play-by-play announcer, replacing Jackson (who returned to broadcasting college football for the network, which he continued to do for the next 35 seasons). The former New York Giant had been an NFL analyst for CBS during the 1960s but had never called play-by-play prior to joining Monday Night Football. In that capacity for Monday Night Football from 1971 to 1985, Gifford was often criticized for his see-no-evil approach in regard to discussing the NFL, earning him the dubious nickname “Faultless Frank.” Regardless, Gifford would have the longest tenure of any broadcaster on the show, lasting until 1998.
  12. Cosell’s abrasive personality gave him enough recognition to host a live variety show on ABC in the fall of 1975. That show is remembered today only as a trivia question, as its title, Saturday Night Live, prevented a new late-night sketch comedy program on NBC from using that title until the ABC show was canceled. That seeming popularity was in contrast to the repeated criticisms in the media, as well as bar room contests in which winners were allowed to throw a brick through a television image of Cosell.
  13. ABC Broadcast teams: Play-by-play announcersKeith Jackson (1970),Frank Gifford (1971–1985),Al Michaels (1986–2005,Gary Bender (1987),Mike Patrick (1997 and 2005)  Color commentatorsHoward Cosell (1970–1983),Don Meredith (1970–1973, 1977–1984), Fred Williamson (1974), Alex Karras (1974–1976),Fran Tarkenton (1979–1982), O. J. Simpson (1983–1985),Joe Namath (1985),Frank Gifford (1986–1997),Dan Dierdorf (1987–1998),Lynn Swann (1987),Joe Theismann (1997 and 2005), Dan Fouts (2000–2001),Boomer Esiason (1998–1999), Dennis Miller (2000–2001),John Madden (2002–2005), Paul Maguire (2005)
  14. Monday Night Football moved to ESPN in 2006 – for its debut on ESPN, (see trailer link:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01hLEJ7sn44) Hank Williams, Jr. re-recorded the MNF opening theme with an all-star jam band that included among others Brian Setzer, Little Richard, Questlove, Joe Perry, Clarence Clemons, Rick Nielsen, Bootsy Collins, Charlie Daniels and Steven Van Zandt.

 

 


 

Let me try the…

Mmmm, Beer…

“Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. That’s good. Thanks!” For those of us who enjoy “a cold one” after a long work week, (or taking a break after cutting the grass, or after writing an especially spectacular blog, or as a reward for a run well done or sometimes just because you can) …  the list is endless – but we can all agree, there’s not much to compare to that first taste!  Given the meteoric rise in craft beer making and specialty breweries in Cleveland, I thought I’d share some beer history, insights into the industry and provide a list of some of my favorite stops.  Talk about a PIA (Pain in the @%$) Job! – trying to pare the list down, but… that is what I am here for! Enjoy, and thanks to craftbeer.com for the insights.

  • Native Americans made a corn beer long before Europeans found their way to America, bringing with them their own version of beer. Although most of that was brewed in the home during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, a fledgling industry began to develop from 1612, when the first known New World brewery opened in New Amsterdam (now Manhattan).
  • The “modern era” of American beer began in the nineteenth century. In 1810 only 132 breweries operated, and per capita consumption of commercially brewed beer amounted to less than a gallon. By 1873 the country had 4,131 breweries, a high-water mark only surpassed again in 2015. In 1914, per capita consumption had grown to 20 gallons (compared to about 21.5 today). Then came national Prohibition.
  • American beer was already changing before Prohibition. When German immigrants began arriving in the middle of the nineteenth century, they brought with them a thirst for all-malt lagers and the knowledge to brew them. But by the end of the century, drinkers showed a preference for lighter-tasting lagers — ones that included corn or rice in the recipe — and consolidation began to eliminate many small, independently operated breweries. In 1918, the country had only one quarter the number of brewers that operated 45 years before.
  • National Prohibition (individual states had Prohibition as early as 1848) began January 16, 1920, when the 18th Amendment, also known as the Volstead Act, went into effect. (watch video HERE. It effectively ended in April of 1933 with the return of 3.2% beer (for those of us old enough to remember those days when at 18 you could legally drink 3.2 beer!), and in December the 21st Amendment officially repealed the 18th Amendment.
  • Within a year, 756 breweries were making beer, but the biggest companies remained intent on expansion, using production efficiencies and marketing to squeeze out smaller breweries.
  • The number of breweries shrunk quickly, to 407 in 1950 and 230 in 1961. By 1983 one source counted only 80 breweries, run by only 51 independent companies, making beer. As British beer writer Michael Jackson observed at the time, most produced the same style: “They are pale lager beers vaguely of the pilsner style but lighter in body, notably lacking hop character, and generally bland in palate. They do not all taste exactly the same but the differences between them are often of minor consequence.”
  • As regional breweries closed, small breweries popped up – but people didn’t know what to call them. When Fritz Maytag bought Anchor Brewing in 1965 in San Francisco and Jack McAuliffe opened the short-lived New Albion Brewing Company in 1976, an entrepreneurial spirit began, and was repeated a thousand times over and in every state in the country.
  • A democratization of beer began in earnest during the late 1970s by homebrewers. It was then that better beer began its journey, championed by individuals and not corporate strategies. Homebrewers began learning how to make the beer styles they could no longer buy. A few homebrewers started their own small breweries, the first new breweries to open since prohibition began in 1923. A revival had begun. Beer drinkers learned to appreciate these new “microbrews.” The term microbrews has since evolved to “craft beer;” particularly from small and independent brewers.
  • Breweries popped up in every state. Soon beer lovers would covet new and different brewed beer.  In 1982, the Hilton Harvest House in Boulder, Colorado hosts a modest 20 breweries serving only 35 beers for the first Great American Beer Festival. The annual event now features approximately 8-10,000 beers.
  • By the end of the century, more breweries operated in the United States than any country in the world, the number climbing past 7,000 in 2018. Taking inspiration from brewing cultures around the world, Americans also started to brew a wider variety of beer than anywhere.
  • The revival of American beer of the past 30 years is a phenomenon attributable to one of the first (if not the first) “open-source” collaborative experiences in modern history. The community of homebrewers, beer enthusiasts and craft brewers made the pioneers of the democratization of process. The fact is, homebrewers were already fashioning their own revolution before a communication technology emerged that would later enhance the means by which revolutionary ideas and the process of democratizing innovation would be accelerated.
  • The professional craft brewing, homebrewing and beer enthusiast community continues to be on the unequivocal cutting edge of beer’s creative destiny. If you look back at the last 30-year history of better beer, beer economics, beer enthusiasm and the beer marketplace, it is a mirror image of how the rest of the world has embraced, reacted and adjusted to the pace of all that it is involved in. Choice, diversity, information, education, grassroots activism, quality, personality, passion, flavor (both in the real and metamorphic sense), etc.
  • Craft brewers and craft beer enthusiasts have been and continue to be pioneers in developing a world that contributes to the pleasure of our everyday life, in more ways than beer. CraftBeer.com is a reflection of those who seek the world of better beer.
  • The unique beer history of the Brewers Association combines a large brew-cauldron of activities and heritage. The result is a legacy that has helped change the world of beer both in the United States and abroad.
  • The Brewers Association, the trade association representing small and independentAmerican craft brewers, released annual growth figures for the U.S. craft brewing industry. In 2018, small and independent brewers collectively produced 25.9 million barrels and realized 4 percent total growth, increasing craft’s overall beer market share by volume to 13.2 percent.
  • Retail dollar value was estimated at $27.6 billion, representing 24.1 percent market share and 7 percent growth over 2017. Growth for small and independent brewers occurred in an overall down beer market, which dropped 1 percent by volume in 2018.
  • The 50 fastest growing breweries delivered 10 percent of craft brewer growth. Craft brewers provided more than 150,000 jobs, an increase of 11 percent over 2017.  These brewers are vital small businesses in communities across the country, typically employing 10 to 50 employees.
  • As American beer enthusiasts are fond of saying, there may never have been a better time to be a beer drinker, at least until tomorrow.

Here’s a list of some of my favorite breweries in NE Ohio – go exploring and find the new ones, opening up almost monthly here on the north coast.
Platform Beer Co
4125 Lorain Ave, Cleveland, OH
Butcher and the Brewer
2043 E 4th St, Cleveland, OH
Noble Beast Brewing
1470 Lakeside Ave E (E. 13th St.), Cleveland, OH
Nano Brew Cleveland
1859 W 25th St (at Bridge Ave), Cleveland, OH
Market Garden Brewery & Restaurant
1947 W 25th St (at Market Ave), Cleveland, OH
TownHall
1909 W 25th St, Cleveland, OH
Masthead Brewing Co
1261 Superior Ave E, Cleveland, OH
The Tremont Tap House
2572 Scranton Rd (at Starkweather Ave), Cleveland, OH
Great Lakes Brewing Company
2516 Market Ave, Cleveland, OH
Terrestrial Brewing Company
7524 Father Frascati Dr, Cleveland, OH
Working Class Brewery
17448 Lorain Ave (Rocky River DR.), Cleveland, OH
Brick & Barrel
1844 Columbus Rd, Cleveland, OH

AND A LITTLE MUSIC TO END YOUR WEEK ON A HIGH NOTE…
Luke Combs – Beer Never Broke My Heart (Official Video)

 

 

 

 


 

“16, 24, 9 – Ready, Set….”

(top) Cleveland Brown Stadium; (row two) The Ancient Greek’s version of football called Episkyros. Hmmm, not much padding on THAT uniform; An 1878 photo of Walter Camp, the “Father of American Football” was the captain of the Yale University football team; And a 1930s Spalding Leather Football Helmet. Not much padding there either. (row three) The great quarterback Otto Graham signed this football. And the great Jim Brown signed this helmet. (row four) This 1893 Harper’s Weekly illustration by Frederic Remington shows the early idea of blocking for the runner. What a concept! (row five) The 1904 Vanderbilt football team suited-up and ready to play. I wonder how many head injuries there were that year? (row six) Otto Graham took Browns to league championships every year between 1946 and 1955, winning seven of them; Bernie Kosar was with the Browns from 1985 to 1993 finishing his career with Dallas and Miami. He won Super Bowl XXVIII with Dallas (DARN, DARN, DARN!!!), beating the Buffalo Bills, on January 30, 1994 (DARN!!!); And Baker Mayfield waiting his turn. (row seven) Here’s a couple ideas I had to spruce-up the ball and the Browns helmets. What do you think? (bottom) Go Get ‘Em, Baker!!!!!!!

Yep, it’s that time of the year when we put away the sunscreen and trunks and pull out the face paint and jerseys.  Football season.  Kids are running around fields all over Northeast Ohio – (love the little ones with the giant helmets and shoulder pads).  Two-a-days, Friday night fever, tailgating, marching bands and get-togethers on Saturdays for our favorite pastime.  I saw on television that this year marks the 100thanniversary of professional football, which started not long from here in Canton Ohio.  Going back in history, I wanted to see what’s been captured on the early days of the game since we  all know the current status of the game. Here’s some fun trivia and knowledge about this great game – enjoy, and of course, Go Browns,(it has been decades since we can say that!  Go, Bucs, and Go Rockets!

  1. In Ancient Greece, men played a similar sport called Episkyros where they tried to throw a ball over a scrimmage while avoiding tackles. Forms of traditional football have been played throughout Europe and beyond since antiquity. Many of these involved handling of the ball and scrummage-like formations.
  2. These archaic forms of football, typically classified as mob football, would be played between neighboring towns and villages, involving an unlimited number of players on opposing teams, who would clash in a heaving mass of people struggling to drag an inflated pig’s bladder by any means possible to markers at each end of a town. By some accounts, in some such events any means could be used to move the ball towards the goal, as long as it did not lead to manslaughter or murder. These antiquated games went into sharp decline in the 19th century when the Highway Act 1835 was passed banning the playing of football on public highways -penalty was forty shillings.
  3. Each school played its own variety of football. Princeton University students played a game called “ballown” as early as 1820. A Harvard tradition known as “Bloody Monday” began in 1827, which consisted of a mass ballgame between the freshman and sophomore classes, played at The Delta, the space where Memorial Hall now stands. (A poem, “The Battle of the Delta,” was written about the first match: “The Freshmen’s wrath, to Sophs the direful spring / Of shins unnumbered bruised, great goddess sing!” In 1860, both the town police and the college authorities agreed that Bloody Monday had to go. The Harvard students responded by going into mourning for a mock figure called “Football Fightum”, for whom they conducted funeral rites. The authorities held firm and it was a dozen years before football was once again played at Harvard.
  4.  Dartmouthplayed its own version called “Old division football“, the rules of which were first published in 1871, though the game dates to at least the 1830s. All of these games, and others, shared certain commonalities. They remained largely “mob” style games, with huge numbers of players attempting to advance the ball into a goal area, often by any means necessary. Rules were simple, and violence and injury were common. The violence of these mob-style games led to widespread protests and a decision to abandon them. Yale, under pressure from the city of New Haven, banned the play of all forms of football in 1860.
  5. The game began to return to college campuses by the late 1860s. Yale, Princeton, Rutgers University, and Brown Universitybegan playing the popular “kicking” game during this time. In 1867, Princeton used rules based on those of the London Football Association. A “running game”, resembling rugby football, was taken up by the Montreal Football Club in Canada in 1868.
  6. Walter Camp is widely considered to be the most important figure in the development of American football.
  7. Following the introduction of rugby-style rules to American football, Camp became a fixture at the Massasoit House conventions where rules were debated and changed. Dissatisfied with what seemed to him to be a disorganized mob, he proposed his first rule change at the first meeting he attended in 1878: a reduction from fifteen players to eleven. The motion was rejected at that time but passed in 1880. The effect was to open up the game and emphasize speed over strength. Camp’s most famous change, the establishment of the line of scrimmage and the snap from center to quarterback, was also passed in 1880. Originally, the snap was executed with the foot of the center. Later changes made it possible to snap the ball with the hands, either through the air or by a direct hand-to-hand pass.
  8. Camp was central to several more significant rule changes that came to define American football. In 1881, the field was reduced in size to its modern dimensions of 120 by 53​ 1/3 yards (109.7 by 48.8 meters). Several times in 1883, Camp tinkered with the scoring rules, finally arriving at four points for a touchdown, two points for kicks after touchdowns, two points for safeties, and five for field goals. Camp’s innovations in the area of point scoring influenced rugby union’s move to point scoring in 1890. In 1887, game time was set at two halves of 45 minutes each. Also in 1887, two paid officials—a referee and an umpire—were mandated for each game. A year later, the rules were changed to allow tackling below the waist, and in 1889, the officials were given whistles and stopwatches.
  9. The last, and arguably most important innovation, which would at last make American football uniquely “American”, was the legalization of interference, or blocking, a tactic which was highly illegal under the rugby-style rules. Interference remains strictly illegal in both rugby codes. The prohibition of interference in the rugby game stems from the game’s strict enforcement of its offside rule, which prohibited any player on the team with possession of the ball to loiter between the ball and the goal.
  10. At first, American players would find creative ways of aiding the runner by pretending to accidentally knock into defenders trying to tackle the runner. When Walter Camp witnessed this tactic being employed against his Yale team, he was at first appalled, but the next year had adopted the blocking tactics for his own team. During the 1880s and 1890s, teams developed increasingly complex blocking tactics including the interlocking interference technique known as the Flying wedge or “V-trick formation”, which was developed by Lorin F. Deland and first introduced by Harvard in a collegiate gameagainst Yale in 1892. Despite its effectiveness, it was outlawed two seasons later in 1894 through the efforts of the rule committee led by Parke H. Davis, because of its contribution to serious injury.
  11. From its earliest days as a mob game, football was a very violent sport. The 1894 Harvard-Yale game, known as the “Hampden Park Blood Bath”, resulted in crippling injuries for four players; the contest was suspended until 1897. The annual Army-Navy game was suspended from 1894 to 1898 for similar reasons. One of the major problems was the popularity of mass-formations like the flying wedge, in which a large number of offensive players charged as a unit against a similarly arranged defense. The resultant collisions often led to serious injuries and sometimes even death.
  12. Meanwhile, John H. Outland held an experimental game in Wichita, Kansas that reduced the number of scrimmage plays to earn a first down from four to three in an attempt to reduce injuries. The Los Angeles Times reported an increase in punts and considered the game much safer than regular play but that the new rule was not “conducive to the sport.  Finally, on December 28, 1905, 62 schools met in New York City to discuss rule changes to make the game safer. As a result of this meeting, the Intercollegiate Athletic Association of the United States, later named the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), was formed. One rule change introduced in 1906, devised to open up the game and reduce injury, was the introduction of the legal forward pass. Though it was underutilized for years, this proved to be one of the most important rule changes in the establishment of the modern game.
  13. As a result of the 1905–1906 reforms, mass formation plays became illegal and forward passes legal. Bradbury Robinson, playing for visionary coach Eddie Cochems at St. Louis University, threw the first legal pass in a September 5, 1906, game against Several coaches emerged who took advantage of these sweeping changes. Amos Alonzo Stagg introduced such innovations as the huddle, the tackling dummy, and the pre-snap shift. The division III championship game si called the “Stagg Bowl” today.  Other coaches, such as Pop Warner and Knute Rockne, introduced new strategies that still remain part of the game.
  14. Besides these coaching innovations, several rules changes during the first third of the 20th century had a profound impact on the game, mostly in opening up the passing game. In 1914, the first roughing-the-passer penalty was implemented. In 1918, the rules on eligible receivers were loosened to allow eligible players to catch the ball anywhere on the field—previously strict rules were in place only allowing passes to certain areas of the field. Scoring rules also changed during this time: field goals were lowered to three points in 1909and touchdowns raised to six points in 1912.

 

 


 

Aquarian Exposition

(Top two photos) Nick Ercoline and Bobbi Kelly were boyfriend and girlfriend wrapped in a muddy blanket at Woodstock and wound up on the Woodstock album cover. Two years later they were married. And now, 50 years later, we’re still having fun together,” says Nick. Bobbi is a retired school nurse and Nick a carpenter. Their married life contrasts with the sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll of that era. “In 1969, it was all about free love, living in communes; people weren’t monogamous. At the end of the day we are the opposite of that. (row three) An original poster and ticket; (rows four, five and six) The feel of the crowd; (row seven) Jimmy Hendrix and Richie Havens; (row eight) Country Joe McDonald and Janis Joplin; (row nine) The crowd on Max Yasgur’s farm.  Wow!!

Peace and love.  Doesn’t get much simpler.  It’s been 50 years since one of the most recognized rock concerts in history – Woodstock took place this weekend.  What started as a small fundraising event to build a remote recording studio turned into over 400,000 peaceful and loving youngsters singing and dancing on muddy hillsides.  Looking back, I love to read the unique behind the scenes history that led up to the event and relive the artists who became world renowned from their live performances (and those who said “no”). And talk about your PIA (Pain in the #%$) Jobs – food, water, bathrooms, first aid, parking, traffic, stage logistics, lighting, sound and more – all got figured out … and THEN the rains came … wow! Hats off to all of those involved. Here is some really fun trivia on the events leading up to the festival, the performers who took the stage, and those who had other plans (and regret it).  Enjoy, and be sure to click on the links to hear some of your favorite songs and see some great video footage.

Woodstock was a music festival held August 15–18, 1969, which attracted an audience of more than 400,000. Billed as “an Aquarian Exposition: 3 Days of Peace & Music”, it was held at Max Yasgur‘s 600-acre dairy farm in Bethel, New York, 43 miles southwest of the small town of  Woodstock.

Thirty-two acts performed outdoors despite sporadic rain. It has become widely regarded as a pivotal moment in popular music history, as well as the definitive nexus for the larger counterculture generation of the late 60’s.

Woodstock was initiated through the efforts of Michael LangArtie KornfeldJoel Rosenman, and John P. Roberts. Roberts and Rosenman financed the project. Lang had some experience as a promoter, having co-organized the Miami Pop Festival on the East Coast the prior year, where an estimated 25,000 people attended the two-day event.

Early in 1969, Roberts and Rosenman were New York City entrepreneurs, in the process of building Media Sound, a large audio recording studio complex in Manhattan. Lang and Kornfeld’s lawyer, Miles Lourie, who had done legal work on the Media Sound project, suggested that they contact Roberts and Rosenman about financing a similar, but much smaller, studio Kornfeld and Lang hoped to build in WoodstockNew York. Unpersuaded by this Studio-in-the-Woods proposal, Roberts and Rosenman counter-proposed a concert featuring the kind of artists known to frequent the Woodstock area (such as Bob Dylan and The Band).

Kornfeld and Lang agreed to the new plan, and Woodstock Ventures was formed in January 1969. From the start, there were differences in approach among the four: Roberts was disciplined and knew what was needed for the venture to succeed, while the laid-back Lang saw Woodstock as a new, “relaxed” way of bringing entrepreneurs together. When Lang was unable to find a site for the concert, Roberts and Rosenman, growing increasingly concerned, took to the road and eventually came up with a venue – a small dairy farm in upstate New York.

In April 1969, Creedence Clearwater Revival became the first act to sign a contract for the event, agreeing to play for $10,000 (equivalent to about $75,000 today). The promoters had experienced difficulty landing big-name groups prior to Creedence committing to play, as many popular groups were already committed to other concerts and projects. Creedence drummer Doug Cliffordlater commented, “Once Creedence signed, everyone who could jumped in line and all the other big acts came on.”

Woodstock was designed as a profit-making venture (it became a “free concert” only after the event drew hundreds of thousands more people than the organizers had prepared for). Tickets for the three-day event cost $18 in advance and $24 at the gate (equivalent to about $120 and $160 today). Ticket sales were limited to record stores in the greater New York City area, or by mail via a post office box at the Radio City Station Post Office located in Midtown Manhattan. Around 186,000 advance tickets were sold, and the organizers anticipated approximately 200,000 festival-goers would turn up.

Town officials were assured by the promoters that no more than 50,000 would attend. Town residents immediately opposed the project, and passed a law requiring a permit for any gathering over 5,000 people. On July 15, 1969, the Wallkill Zoning Board of Appeals officially banned the concert on the basis that the planned portable toilets would not meet town code. Reports of the ban, however, turned out to be a publicity bonanza for the festival.

The organizers once again told Bethel authorities they expected no more than 50,000 people.

Despite resident opposition and signs proclaiming, “Buy No Milk. Stop Max’s Hippy Music Festival”,Bethel Town Attorney Frederick W. V. Schadt, building inspector Donald Clark and Town Supervisor Daniel Amatucci approved the festival permits, but the Bethel Town Board refused to issue the permits formally. Clark was ordered to post stop-work orders.

Subsequently, on August 2, 1969, the Building Inspector informed Woodstock Ventures, Inc. that the Stop Work Order was lifted, and the festival could proceed pending backing by the Department of Health and Agriculture, and removal of all structures by September 1, 1969.

The late change in venue did not give the festival organizers enough time to prepare. At a meeting three days before the event, organizers felt they had two options: one was to complete the fencing and ticket booths, without which the promoters would lose any profit or go into debt; the other option involved putting their remaining available resources into building the stage, without which the promoters feared they would have a disappointed and disgruntled audience.

When the audience began arriving by the tens of thousands the next day, the Wednesday before the weekend, the decision was made for them. Those without tickets simply walked through gaps in the fences, and the organizers were forced to make the event free of charge. Though the festival left its promoters nearly bankrupt, their ownership of the film and recording rights more than compensated for the losses after the release of the hit documentary film Woodstock in March 1970.

The influx of attendees to the rural concert site in Bethel created a massive traffic jam. Fearing chaos as thousands began descending on the community, Bethel did not enforce its codes. Eventually, announcements on radio stations as far away as WNEW-FM in Manhattan and descriptions of the traffic jams on television news discouraged people from setting off to the festival.The facilities were not equipped to provide sanitation or first aid for the number of people attending; hundreds of thousands found themselves in a struggle against bad weather, food shortages, and poor sanitation.

On the morning of Sunday, August 17, New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller called festival organizers and told them he was thinking of ordering 10,000 New York State National Guard troops to the festival. Roberts was successful in persuading Rockefeller not to do this. Sullivan County declared a state of emergency. During the festival, personnel from nearby Stewart Air Force Base assisted in helping to ensure order and airlifting the performers in and out of the concert venue.

Although the festival was remarkably peaceful given the number of people and the conditions involved, there were two recorded fatalities: one from insulin usage, and another caused in an accident when a tractor ran over an attendee sleeping in a nearby hayfield.

There were two births recorded at the event (one in a car caught in traffic and another in a hospital after an airlift by helicopter) and four miscarriages.

Yet, in tune with the idealistic hopes of the 1960s, Woodstock satisfied most attendees. There was a sense of social harmony, which, with the quality of music, and the overwhelming mass of people, many sporting bohemian dress, behavior, and attitudes, helped to make it one of the enduring events of the century.

After the concert, Max Yasgur, who owned the site of the event, saw it as a victory of peace and love. He spoke of how nearly half a million people filled with potential for disaster, riot, looting, and catastrophe spent the three days with music and peace on their minds. He stated, “If we join them, we can turn those adversities that are the problems of America today into a hope for a brighter and more peaceful future…”

Order of the Performers and some trivia:

Declined invitations or missed connections:

  • Bob Dylan– a resident of the town of Woodstock, was never in serious negotiation. Instead, Dylan signed in mid-July to play the Isle of Wight Festival of Music, on August 31. Dylan had been unhappy about the number of hippies piling up outside his house in the nearby town of Woodstock.
  • Simon & Garfunkel declined the invitation, as they were working on their new album.
  • The Jeff Beck GroupJeff Beck disbanded the group prior to Woodstock. “I deliberately broke the group up before Woodstock,” Beck said. “I didn’t want it to be preserved
  • Led Zeppelin was asked to perform. Their manager Peter Grant stated: “We were asked to do Woodstock and Atlantic were very keen, and so was our U.S. promoter, Frank Barsalona. I said no because at Woodstock we’d have just been another band on the bill.”
  • The Byrds were invited, but chose not to participate, believing that Woodstock would be no different from any of the other music festivals that summer.
  • Chicago,at the time still known as the Chicago Transit Authority, had initially been signed on to play at Woodstock. However, they had a contract with concert promoter Bill Graham, which allowed him to move Chicago’s concerts at the Fillmore West, to let Santana play at Woodstock.
  • Tommy James and the Shondells declined an invitation. Lead singer Tommy James stated later: “We could have just kicked ourselves. We were in Hawaii, and my secretary called and said, ‘Yeah, listen, there’s this pig farmer in upstate New York that wants you to play in his field.’ That’s how it was put to me. So we passed, and we realized what we’d missed a couple of days later.”
  • The Moody Blues were included on the original Wallkill poster as performers, but decided to back out after being booked in Paris the same weekend.
  • Frank Zappa,then with The Mothers of Invention, according to the Class of the 20th Century U.S. television special, said “A lot of mud at Woodstock … We were invited to play there, we turned it down.”
  • Arthur Lee and Love declined the invitation, but Mojo Magazine later described inner turmoil within the band which caused their absence at the Woodstock festival.
  • Free was asked to perform and declined. They did however play at the Isle of Wight Festival, a week later.
  • Mind Garage declined because they thought the festival would be a minor event, and they had a higher paying gig elsewhere.
  • The Doors were considered as a potential performing band but canceled at the last moment. According to guitarist Robby Krieger, they turned it down because they thought it would be a “second class repeat of Monterey Pop Festival” and later regretted that decision.
  • Spirit also declined an invitation to play, as they already had shows planned and wanted to play those instead, not knowing how big Woodstock would be.
  • Joni Mitchell was originally slated to perform, but cancelled at the urging of her manager to avoid missing a scheduled appearance on The Dick Cavett Show. She later described the event as “a spark of beauty” where half-a-million kids “saw that they were part of a greater organism”.
  • Lighthouse declined to perform at Woodstock.
  • Roy Rogers was asked by Lang to close the festival with “Happy Trails” but he declined.
  • Procol Harum was invited but refused because Woodstock fell at the end of a long tour and also coincided with the due date of guitarist Robin Trower’s baby.
  • Jethro Tull also declined. According to frontman Ian Anderson, he knew it would be a big event but he did not want to go because he did not like hippies and other concerns including inappropriate nudity, heavy drinking and drug use.
  • Raven – turned down his offer based on the fact that the year before the band played at one of the Woodstock Sound-Outs and the gig didn’t go well. Lang assured them that his concert was going to be different. The band respectfully turned down.[69]
  • Blues Image,according to a 2011 interview with percussionist Joe Lala, agreed to appear at the Woodstock festival. Their manager did not want them to go and said, “There’s only one road in and it’s going to be raining, you don’t want to be there”.
  • Iron Butterfly was booked to appear, and is listed on the Woodstock poster for a Sunday performance, but could not perform because they were stuck at LaGuardia Airport.
  • The Rascals were invited to play the festival but declined because they were in the middle of recording a new album.
  • When enquiries were made about The Beatles possibly appearing, it was also suggested that a recent signee to their label Apple Records should also get an invite. That artist was James Taylor.When the group declined their invitation Taylor’s invite was withdrawn as well.
  • Allegedly, The Rolling Stones were also sent an invitation, but declined because Mick Jagger was in Australia filming Ned Kelly, and Keith Richards‘ girlfriend Anita Pallenberg had just given birth to their son Marlon.

Okay. A couple more links. About an hour each:
Woodstock Day One – Friday
Woodstock Day Two – Saturday

 


 

What Floats Yours?

Ahhh…the dog days of summer. When cold refreshing drinks are calling your name. Made from fruits, ice creams and sodas. Fancy and plain. Adult versions for, well, adults. It’s all a great part of summer. Read on for some really tasty recipes.

 

Summer.  August. Hot days. Beautiful nights.  Time for sitting on the back porch and sipping on a tasty float. Yep – big glasses, lots of ice cream, goodies, and bubbly beverages.  Open the windows, and let the breeze blow in, while enjoying yours.  As you know, I pretty much eat, and like, everything. (I am blessed this way!)  Ice cream floats – oh yea, bring ‘em on especially with freshly made popcorn or pretzels or crackers – see my dilemma!  My favorite is (Good ole vanilla ice cream and coke!) Jackie and the girls on the other hand love trying all sorts of different concoctions. They are not ice cream purists like myself – I love ice cream the way it was intended – Vanilla! Here’s some fun trivia, great variations, and a link to wonderful recipes. Thanks to tasteofhome.com, Wikipedia and the inventor of ice cream, King Tang – according to Google, an ice-cream-like food was first eaten in China in 618-97AD. King Tang of Shang, had 94 ice men who helped to make a dish of buffalo milk, flour and camphor – way easier now just going to the grocery store … or was it a kind of ice-cream said to be invented in China about 200 BC when a milk and rice mixture was frozen by packing it into snow… so where did the cherries and strawberries come from??

The ice cream float was invented by Robert McCay Green in Philadelphia, PA in 1874during the Franklin Institute‘s semicentennial celebration. The traditional story is that, on a particularly hot day, Mr. Green ran out of ice for the flavored drinks he was selling and used vanilla ice cream from a neighboring vendor, thus inventing a new drink.
His own account, published in Soda Fountain magazine in 1910, states that while operating a soda fountain at the celebration, he wanted to create a new treat to attract customers away from another vendor who had a fancier, bigger soda fountain. After some experimenting, he decided to combine ice cream and soda water. During the celebration, he sold vanilla ice cream with soda water and a choice of 16 flavored syrups. The new treat was a sensation and soon other soda fountains began selling ice cream floats.
Green’s lastwill and testament instructed that “Originator of the Ice Cream Soda” was to be engraved on his tombstone.
There are at least three other claimants for the invention of ice cream float: Fred Sanders, Philip Mohr, and George Guy, one of Robert Green’s own employees. Guy is said to have absent-mindedly mixed ice cream and soda in 1872, much to his customer’s delight.
In Australia and New Zealand, an ice cream float is known as a “spider”, because once the carbonation hits the ice cream, it forms a spider web-like creation.  In Mexico, it is known as “Helado flotante” (floating ice cream) and in Puerto Rico it’s referred to as a “black out”.
Root beer and Coke are typical carbonating beverages, but many variations exist (see recipes below).  Here are some fun variations – Although Root Beer and Coke are my favorites!

  1. Chocolate ice cream soda – this ice cream soda starts with approximately 1 oz of chocolate syrup, then several scoops of chocolate ice cream in a tall glass. Unflavored carbonated water is added until the glass is filled and the resulting foam rises above the top of the glass. The final touch is a topping of whipped cream and usually, a maraschino cherry. This variation of ice cream soda was available at local soda fountains and nationally, at Dairy Queen stores for many years.  A similar soda made with chocolate syrup but vanilla ice cream is sometimes called a “black and white” ice cream soda.
  2. Root beer float – Also known as a “black cow” or “brown cow”,the root beer float is traditionally made with vanilla ice cream and root beer, but it can also be made with other ice cream flavors. The similarly flavored soft drink birch beer may also be used instead of root beer.
  3. Coke float – A coke float can be made with any cola, such as Coca-Cola or Pepsi, and vanilla ice-cream.
  4. Boston cooler – A Boston cooler is typically composed of Vernors ginger ale and vanilla ice cream.
  5. Snow White – Snow White is made with 7 Up or Sprite and vanilla ice cream. The origin of this variation is unknown, but it is found in some Asian eateries.
  6. Purple cow – In the context of ice cream soda, a purple cow is vanilla ice cream in purple grape soda. In a more general context, a purple cow may refer to a non-carbonated grape juice and vanilla ice cream combination.
  7. Sherbet cooler – The American Friendly’s chain also had a variation known as a “sherbet cooler,” which was a combination of orange or watermelon sherbet, vanilla syrup and seltzer water. (At present, it is billed as a “slammer”.)
  8. Vaca-preta – At least in Brazil and Portugal, a non-alcoholic ice cream soda made by combining vanilla ice cream and coca-cola is known as vaca-preta (“black cow”).
  9. Helado flotante – In Mexico the most popular version is made with cola and lemon sherbet.
  10. Orange float – An orange float or orange whip consists of vanilla ice cream and orange soft drinks.
  11. Beer float – adult version is Guinness stout, Chocolate ice cream, and espresso. Although the Shakin’ Jesse versionis blended into more of a milkshake consistency, most restaurant bars can make the beer float version. When making at home, the beer and espresso should be very cold so as to not melt the ice cream.
  12. Nectar soda  A flavor popular in New Orleans and parts of Ohio, made with a syrup consisting of equal parts almond and vanilla syrups mixed with sweetened condensed milk and a touch of red food coloring to produce a pink, opalescent syrup base for the soda.
  13. Melon cream soda – Cream soda with melon flavor is a common drink in Japan. Melon soda is served with ice and a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.

 

THREE VERY COOL VIDEOS:

Homemade Ice Cream in 5 Minutes – no ice cream maker is needed.17,376,100 views

Fred the bartender details his Top 5 Alcoholic Ice Cream Drinks: Barnamint Baileys, Mudslide, Creamsicle, Chocolate Monkey, Razzbaretto. 90,488 views

TYDUS – ICE CREAM (Official Music Video) 6,886,079 views

 


 

Just Sign Here

(top and row two) Maybe the most famous signature ever, John Hancock. That’s a painting of him next to a clean look at his wonderful sig; (row three) Debating the declaration of Independence and getting the signing process underway; (row four) depictions of the good guys getting ready to battle the British; (the rest of the images) Paintings depicting colonial life. I especially like the portrait on the right with the baby on mom’s lap playing with her favorite toy. (presidential signatures from top to bottom) Our very first president, George Washington. His signature on his personal copy of the Acts of Congress is currently worth $9.8 Million; Next is my friend’s granddaughter Mina’s signature. She will be eligible to run for president in 2050. She’s four. But she will be president. At this point her running platform rests on free ice cream and unlimited views of Frozen for all. That may evolve over time; Next is the current resident of the white house, President Donald Trump; Then Barack Obama; George W. Bush; Bill Clinton; George H. W. Bush; Ronald Reagan (nice sig); Jimmy Carter (another nice sig); Richard Nixon; John F. Kennedy; And the president of Kowalski Heat Treating Company, me; And that last one is Miley Cyrus’ sig. She’s not a president and isn’t planning to run as far as I know but Mina likes her and how she dots her “i” with a heart and tucks in that smiley face by the “y.”

 

Working at the desk early this morning, I was reviewing some letters that had to go out (yes, you remember, those typed pages of 8 ½ x 11 paper, with dates on the top, customer names, body text and a formal signature) – unlike the e communications we zip around day and night – and I took pause as I applied my signature Not sure why, but I thought back to when I was a wee tot reviewing my penmanship grades with my parents. Unfortunately, I always received the dreaded U-. Back then we all still were taught to write in cursive, the wonderful Nuns kept telling my parents that I was hopeless! If you were to ask Jackie or my girls, they simply will tell you I am “unique”! Our signatures are a real statement of approval, confirmation and credence to documents. Once you “sign” something it becomes permanent, meaningful and often a binding obligation (think credit card agreements).  “If it is not in writing it doesn’t happen” – this adage is something I live by both professionally and personally – just ask my kids! I’ve always been a big fan of American history and the famous John Hancock signature (that dude had seriously good penmanship, as many did back then) on our Declaration. Turns out, today, August 2, is the official recognized day that the remaining signers of the Declaration completed the document (56 signatures) – it was only partially signed when it became official on July 4th. I jumped on the internet and dug up some cool info on how this amazing document came to be and the history about our brave declaration to the King of England. Enjoy, and thanks Wikipedia and history.com for the info and history lesson. I am continually amazed at what these folks created all those years ago!

 

  1. The United States Declaration of Independence is the statement adopted by the Second Continental Congress meeting at the Pennsylvania State House (now known as Independence Hall) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on July 4, 1776. The Declaration announced that the Thirteen Colonies at war with the Kingdom of Great Britain would regard themselves as thirteen independent sovereign states, no longer under British rule. With the Declaration, these new states took a collective first step toward forming the United States of America.
  2. The colonies were not directly represented in Parliament, and colonists argued that Parliament had no right to levy taxes upon them. This tax dispute was part of a larger divergence between British and American interpretations of the British Constitution and the extent of Parliament’s authority in the colonies. The orthodox British view, dating from the Glorious Revolution of 1688, was that Parliament was the supreme authority throughout the empire, and so, by definition, anything that Parliament did was constitutional. In the colonies, however, the idea had developed that the British Constitution recognized certain fundamental rights that no government could violate, not even Parliament.
  3. The issue of Parliament’s authority in the colonies became a crisis after Parliament passed the Coercive Acts (known as the Intolerable Acts in the colonies) in 1774 to punish the colonists for the Gaspee Affair of 1772 and the Boston Tea Party of 1773. Many colonists saw the Coercive Acts as a violation of the British Constitution and thus a threat to the liberties of all of British America, so the First Continental Congress convened in Philadelphia in September 1774 to coordinate a response. Congress organized a boycott of British goods and petitioned the king for repeal of the acts. These measures were unsuccessful because King George and the ministry of Prime Minister Lord North were determined to enforce parliamentary supremacy in America. As the king wrote to North in November 1774, “blows must decide whether they are to be subject to this country or independent”.
  4. Most colonists still hoped for reconciliation with Great Britain, even after fighting began in the American Revolutionary War at Lexington and Concord in April 1775. The Second Continental Congress convened in Philadelphia in May 1775, and some delegates hoped for eventual independence, but no one yet advocated declaring it. Many colonists no longer believed that Parliament had any sovereignty over them, yet they still professed loyalty to King George, who they hoped would intercede on their behalf. They were disappointed in late 1775 when the king rejected Congress’s second petition, issued a Proclamation of Rebellion, and announced before Parliament on October 26 that he was considering “friendly offers of foreign assistance” to suppress the rebellion.
  5. Despite this growing popular support for independence, Congress lacked the clear authority to declare it. Delegates had been elected to Congress by 13 different governments, and they were bound by the instructions given to them. Regardless of their personal opinions, delegates could not vote to declare independence unless their instructions permitted such an action.
  6. While many of the colonies were split on independence, as was the custom, Congress appointed a committee to draft a preamble to explain the purpose of the resolution. John Adams wrote the preamble, which stated that because King George had rejected reconciliation and was hiring foreign mercenaries to use against the colonies, “it is necessary that the exercise of every kind of authority under the said crown should be totally suppressed”.  Adams’s preamble was meant to encourage the overthrow of the governments of Pennsylvania and Maryland, which were still under proprietary governance. Congress passed the preamble on May 15 after several days of debate, but four of the middle colonies voted against it, and the Maryland delegation walked out in protest.Adams regarded his May 15 preamble effectively as an American declaration of independence, although a formal declaration would still have to be made.
  7. On the same day that Congress passed Adams’s radical preamble, the Virginia Convention set the stage for a formal Congressional declaration of independence. On May 15, the Convention instructed Virginia’s congressional delegation “to propose to that respectable body to declare the United Colonies free and independent States, absolved from all allegiance to, or dependence upon, the Crown or Parliament of Great Britain”.  In accordance with those instructions, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia presented a three-part resolution to Congress on June 7. The motion was seconded by John Adams, calling on Congress to declare independence, form foreign alliances, and prepare a plan of colonial confederation. The part of the resolution relating to declaring independence read:
    Resolved, that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.
  8. Total support for a Congressional declaration of independence was consolidated in the final weeks of June 1776. Connecticut, New Hampshire and Delaware authorized their delegates to declare independence. In Pennsylvania, political struggles ended with the dissolution of the colonial assembly, and a new Conference of Committees under Thomas McKean authorized Pennsylvania’s delegates to declare independence on June 18. The Provincial Congress of New Jersey had been governing the province since January 1776; they resolved on June 15 that Royal Governor William Franklin was “an enemy to the liberties of this country” and had him arrested. On June 21, they chose new delegates to Congress and empowered them to join in a declaration of independence.
  9. Only Maryland and New York had yet to authorize independence towards the end of June. Previously, Maryland’s delegates had walked out when the Continental Congress adopted Adams’s radical May 15 preamble, and had sent to the Annapolis Convention for instructions, rejecting Adams’s preamble, instructing its delegates to remain against independence. But Samuel Chase went to Maryland and, thanks to local resolutions in favor of independence, was able to get the Annapolis Convention to change its mind on June 28.
  10. Only the New York delegates were unable to get revised instructions. When Congress had been considering the resolution of independence on June 8, the New York Provincial Congress told the delegates to wait.But on June 30, the Provincial Congress evacuated New York as British forces approached, and would not convene again until July 10. This meant that New York’s delegates would not be authorized to declare independence until after Congress had made its decision.
  11. Political maneuvering was setting the stage for an official declaration of independence even while a document was being written to explain the decision. On June 11, 1776, Congress appointed a “Committee of Five” to draft a declaration, consisting of John Adams of Massachusetts, Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania, Thomas Jefferson of Virginia, Robert R. Livingston of New York, and Roger Sherman of Connecticut. The committee took no minutes, so there is some uncertainty about how the drafting process proceeded.  What is certain is that the committee discussed the general outline which the document should follow and decided that Jefferson would write the first draft.
  12. Congress ordered that the draft “lie on the table”and then methodically edited Jefferson’s primary document for the next two days, shortening it by a fourth, removing unnecessary wording, and improving sentence structure. They removed Jefferson’s assertion that Great Britain had forced slavery on the colonies in order to moderate the document and appease persons in Great Britain who supported the Revolution. Jefferson wrote that Congress had “mangled” his draft version, but the Declaration that was finally produced was “the majestic document that inspired both contemporaries and posterity,” in the words of his biographer John Ferling.
  13. A vote was taken after a long day of speeches, each colony casting a single vote, as always. The delegation for each colony numbered from two to seven members, and each delegation voted amongst themselves to determine the colony’s vote. Pennsylvania and South Carolina voted against declaring independence. The New York delegation abstained, lacking permission to vote for independence. Delaware cast no vote because the delegation was split between Thomas McKean, who voted yes, and George Read, who voted no. The remaining nine delegations voted in favor of independence, which meant that the resolution had been approved by the committee of the whole. The next step was for the resolution to be voted upon by Congress itself. Edward Rutledge of South Carolina was opposed to Lee’s resolution but desirous of unanimity, and he moved that the vote be postponed until the following day.
  14. On July 2, South Carolina reversed its position and voted for independence. In the Pennsylvania delegation, Dickinson and Robert Morris abstained, allowing the delegation to vote three-to-two in favor of independence. The tie in the Delaware delegation was broken by the timely arrival of Caesar Rodney, who voted for independence. The New York delegation abstained once again since they were still not authorized to vote for independence, although they were allowed to do so a week later by the New York Provincial Congress.
  15. The resolution of independence was adopted with twelve affirmative votes and one abstention, and the colonies officially severed political ties with Great Britain. John Adams wrote to his wife on the following day, writing:
    I am apt to believe that [Independence Day] will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.
  16. The Declaration was transposed on paper and signed by John Hancock, President of the Congress, on July 4, 1776, according to the 1911 record of events by the U.S. State Department.   About thirty-four delegates signed the Declaration on July 4, and the others signed on or after August 2.Some historians maintain that most delegates signed on August 2, and that those eventual signers who were not present added their names at a later date.

EXTRAS…
Video of a talented guy making John Hancock’s calligraphy signature
All the President’s Pens: Video of White House Staff Secretary Lisa Brown explains why presidents use so many pens to sign legislation.
An historical event: President Kennedy Signs Test Ban Treaty (1963)

 

 

 


 

 

Pretzel

(top left & center) An early Twister box lid and the spinner; (top right) Finger Twister! (row two, l to r) A giant Twister matt; And a giant inflatable, bouncy Twister; (row three l to r) Make your own Twister board with washable paints and chalks on grass, asphalt or concrete; (row four l to r) Twister game board costume; Twister morph-suit; Twister leggings; Twister sox—gotta get me some of them; (row five l to r) Twister duvet cover; Twister spinner key chain; (row six l to r) A really bad and scary twister; A tongue twister; A really bad and not so scary 1996 movie called Twister staring Helen Hunt and some guy; (row seven) Twister fun can be had anywhere you have enough space; (row eight l to r) Johnny Carson shows the world how to play Twister with guest Eva Gabor in 1966. See below for what the current Tonight Show host did with Twister; A Monsanto trade ad featuring a crowded twister game to promote their new additive for deodorant soaps. (bottom) The hot new Kowalski Heat Treating version of the Twister game board!

Driving home the other day I saw a bunch of kids playing on their front lawn, and it took me back to my kid days again.  We had so much fun growing up – Mom would say – “get outside and get some fresh air – just be home before the street lights come on” … what freedom we had.  On rainy days I’d have my buddies over to play inside. One of our favorite games was Twister – getting all tied up and laughing all the while. Then fast forward a “few” years and my own girls would be playing the same game, having a great time figuring things out!  Little did I know back then, I’d be the chief “twister fixer” for my customers, taking products and projects that are all tied up, working out the kinks and enjoying myself along the way.  We call this solving your PIA (pain in the @%$) Jobs!  Most of the time I watch my teams “on the colored dot mat”, working together, testing and retesting, until things are just right. Now, occasionally we fall down, but the beauty of my team and life in general is not falling down because that’s going to happen, rather it’s getting back up that makes my folks so great!  I found out Twister was based on a project that inventor Reyn Guyer was working on originally as a promotion for Johnson’s shoe polish company. Guyer created a polka dot paper mat and then thought it would be better as a game. He tested this with a group of office workers, which were divided into two teams, and called it ‘Pretzel’.   50 years later, we’re still enjoying his genius.  Enjoy!

  • In 1964, Reyn Guyer owned and managed a design company which made in-store displays for Fortune 500 companies. While working on designing a promotion for his client, the S.C. Johnson Company, his son, Reyn Jr., developed the idea that a game could utilize people as playing pieces on a life-sized game board. His first attempt he called “Kings Footsie”, but when he showed it to the 3M Company, who had a line of up-scale board games, they rejected the idea.
  • Charles Foley, was a respected and successful toy designer for Lakeside Industries in Minneapolis and answered an ad for an experienced toy designer by Reynolds Guyer Sr. of Guyer Company. After interviewing Foley, Guyer and his son discussed the possibility of starting a small division of the company in product development. His father agreed, for a short term, to support his son’s idea for product development, and hired Foley, who negotiated a royalty agreement with Guyer Company for all games and toy items designed by Foley. Guyer Company agreed, and officially hired Foley. Foley hired Neil Rabens, an accomplished product design artist with an art degree from the Minneapolis School of Art and Design.
  • The game ideas ranged from small kids’ games to word games for adults. Foley had an idea for utilizing people as a part of the game idea, “a party game”. Rabens had the idea to utilize a colored mat, allowing people to interact with each other, in a game idea he had developed while a student in design school. Foley saw the idea and developed the concept for having the colored dots line up in rows, and, with a spinner, created the idea for calling out players’ hands and feet to the colored dots called out from the spinner. This would create a tangled-up situation between two people, and the one that falls first would lose.
  • Foley and Neil Rabens submitted for patents (US Pat# 3,454,279) and trademark rights for what was originally called “Pretzel”. Foley, with his extensive experience in the toy industry, called on his good friend, Mel Taft, Sr. V.P. for Milton Bradley in 1966, for a product idea presentation.
  • In the fall of 1965, Foley and Guyer Jr. took the game to the Milton Bradley Company in Springfield, MA where Mel Taft, the senior vice-president of R & D, chose Pretzel as the best of the eight game ideas. Mel found there was a trademark problem, so he changed the game’s name to Twister, and Milton Bradley began to market it in 1966. It was the first game on store shelves that used players as the playing pieces.
  • When the Milton Bradley Company found that several major retailers refused to stock the game, Taft called Foley to tell him that they were cancelling their television advertising and pulling the product from the store shelves. What executives at Milton Bradley did not know was the public relations company Mel had hired had already been paid. So, he let the plan to have Twister played on the Tonight Show go forward.
  • On May 3, 1966 Johnny Carson, the host of the Tonight Show, was enticed by the Twister mat and demonstrated the game along with actress Eva Gabor. The next morning there were 50 people standing in line to buy the game at Abercrombie & Fitch where a few games had not been returned. Three million Twister games were sold in the following year. Several spin-off games have followed over the years such as: Twister Moves, Twister Dance, Twister Hoopla, and many others.
  • In 1967 Twister was named the “Game of the Year”. With this success, Reynolds Guyer Sr. offered Foley and Rabens a chance to run their new toy and game development division. Mr. Foley agreed to run the Toy design company with the current royalty agreement be included in the new agreement. Reynolds Guyer Sr. wanted to dismiss any and all royalty agreements going forward. Mr. Foley did not agree with the newly proposed agreement (dismissing any and all royalty rights).
  • In 1985, Hasbro acquired the Milton Bradley Company, becoming Twister’s parent company. The Reyn Guyer Creative Group continues to work closely with Hasbro to develop and market new additions to the line of Twister products, including CD’s, dancing, hopscotch, holla hoops.
  • The World’s Largest Twister Mat was put together on June 18, 2010 in Bell where town, MA on the Bell where town High School football field. It consisted of 1008 Twister mats donated by Hasbro and measured 24,156 square feet. The previous record, as cited by the Guinness Book of World Records, the largest game of Twister included 4,699 square feet of mats that were combined together.
  • Co-inventor Charles Foley died on July 1, 2013 at the age of 82.
  • Twister tournaments are used as a source of philanthropic events put on by college fraternities and sororities to raise money for a charitable cause. Many of these Greek tournaments are held annually, and are a good way to get involved with the community
  • There are publicly available instructions on how to alter a Twister game to make it accessible to color-blind individuals and to completely blind individuals.
  • On May 3, 2016, the Hasbro Company began the celebration of Twister’s 50th anniversary following Reyn Guyer’s introduction of his book, “Right Brain Red”, which tells the whole tale of its beginnings.
  • To learn more, visit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twister_(game)

 

(left) See the Tonight Show’s Jimmy Fallon with guest Kristen Stewart face off in a game of “Jell-O shot” Twister. (right) Watch this quaint 1966 commercial promoting the new game Twister.

 

 


 

On July 20

(top) Earth sweet earth; (row two) You know that image that everyone has seen again and again of the footprint on the moon? Well, this is what it looked like before he got his foot out of the way; (row three) Astronaut Edwin E. Aldrin Jr., lunar module pilot, prepares to deploy the Early Apollo Scientific Experiments Package; (row four left) The gold replica of an olive branch, the traditional symbol of peace, which was left on the moon’s surface by Apollo 11 crewmembers. It is less than half a foot in length. The gesture represents a fresh wish for peace for all mankind; (row four, top right) Astronaut Edwin E. Aldrin Jr. moves to deploy two components of the Scientific Experiments. The Passive Seismic Experiments Package is in his left hand and in his right hand is the Laser Ranging Retro-Reflector. Neil Armstrong took this photograph with a 70mm lunar surface camera; (row four, bottom right) Our wonderful flag (with all of the footprints) planted on the moon! Are you kidding!!! (bottom) The Apollo 11 crew await pickup by a helicopter from the USS Hornet. They splashed down at 11:49 a.m. (CDT), July 24, 1969, about 812 nautical miles southwest of Hawaii and only 12 nautical miles from the USS Hornet. Wow!! God Bless America!!!

 

Talk about a PIA (Pain in the @%$) Job!  When the President of the United States gives you a project, never before attempted, you accept.  And then set out to accomplish the greatest event in history. Given all the space specials and history news this week, you probably know tomorrow marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Lunar Landing.  With so many amazing problem-solving solutions that had to come together, it’s tough to find them all.  A task this big, with no past history, is simply unheard of – but we did it. My team solves PIA (Pain in the @%$) jobs each and every day.  When I explored deeper into the history of Apollo 11 I was amazed and humbled at the dedication of this previous generation.   All of us Americans should /can be so proud of their accomplishments and know that together there is nothing we in these wonderful United States can’t solve together!  Here is some fun trivia from the mission.  Enjoy! And special thanks to NASA, Smithsonian, cnet, and Wikipedia.

The ultimate PIA (pain in the @%$ Job(s)! – On May 25, 1961, when Kennedy asked Congress to send Americans to the Moon before the 1960s were over, NASA had no rockets to launch astronauts to the Moon, no computer portable enough to guide a spaceship to the Moon, no spacesuits to wear on the way, no spaceship to land astronauts on the surface (let alone a Moon car to let them drive around and explore), no network of tracking stations to talk to the astronauts en route, no Mission Control, no nutrition plan, no multi-gravity food – in essence we didn’t even know what was needed.

Our unpreparedness for the task goes a level deeper: We didn’t even know how to fly to the Moon. We didn’t know what course to fly to get there from here. And as the small example of lunar dirt shows, we didn’t know what we would find when we got there. Physicians worried that people wouldn’t be able to think in micro-gravity conditions. Mathematicians worried that we wouldn’t be able to calculate how to rendezvous two spacecraft in orbit—to bring them together in space and dock them in flight both perfectly and safely.

Ten thousand problems had to be solved to get us to the Moon. Every one of those challenges was tackled and mastered between May 1961 and July 1969. The astronauts, the nation, flew to the Moon because hundreds of thousands of scientists, engineers, managers and factory workers unraveled a series of puzzles, often without knowing whether the puzzle had a good solution.

Here are just some of the PIA Jobs that were solved:

  • That computer navigated through space and helped the astronauts operate the ship. But the astronauts also traveled to the Moon with paper star charts so they could use a sextant to take star sightings—like 18th-century explorers on the deck of a ship—and cross-check their computer’s navigation.
  • The software of the computer was stitched together by women sitting at specialized looms—using wire instead of thread.
  • The heat shield was applied to the spaceship by hand with a fancy caulking gun;
  • The parachutes were sewn by hand, and then folded by hand. The only three staff members in the country who were trained and licensed to fold and pack the Apollo parachutes were considered so indispensable that NASA officials forbade them to ever ride in the same car, to avoid their all being injured in a single accident.
  • Three times as many people worked on Apollo as on the Manhattan Project to create the atomic bomb. In 1961, the year Kennedy formally announced Apollo, NASA spent $1 million on the program for the year. Five years later NASA was spending about $1 million every three hours on Apollo, 24 hours a day.
  • The LM was, in fact, perhaps the strangest flying craft ever created. It was the first, and remains the only, manned spacecraft designed solely for use off Earth. It would never have to fly through an atmosphere, so it didn’t need the structural robustness that would require.
  • The lunar module’s other significant challenge was that it could never be test-flown before being used for its critical role. There’s no place on Earth to take a spaceship designed for flight in a zero-gravity vacuum and fly it around. So the people who would pilot the lunar modules to the Moon never practiced flying them, except in simulators, which were designed and built by people who had never flown a lunar module.
  • For the first Moonwalk ever, Sonny Reihm was inside NASA’s Mission Control building, watching every move on the big screen. Reihm was a supervisor for the most important Moon technology after the lunar module itself: the spacesuits, the helmets, the Moonwalk boots. The spacesuits were the work of Playtex, the folks who brought America the “Cross Your Heart Bra” in the mid-1950s, a company with a lot of expertise developing clothing that had to be flexible as well as form-fitting.  The suits were hand stitched marvels: 21 layers of nested fabric, strong enough to stop a micrometeorite, but still flexible enough for Aldrin’s kangaroo hops and quick cuts.

And here is some trivia about the mission:

  • On July 20, 1969, an estimated 650 million people around the world watched the same televised image of an otherworldly sight.  It’s an amazing number, based on the lack of cable, dish, the internet and global communications today.
  • The American flag the Apollo 11 astronauts planted on the moon was manufactured by Sears, but NASA wanted that information kept secret.
  • Tang. The powder-based orange drink from General Foods – ideal for consumption in a zero-gravity environment – soared to celebrity status in 1962 when Mercury astronaut John Glenn performed eating experiments while orbiting Earth aboard Friendship 7. Astronauts brought Tang on their missions and all manned space flights from 1965–1975.
  • There’s a mystery surrounding Neil Armstrong’s famous quote. “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”  Fake news? Not exactly. Armstrong has always insisted that he said “one small step for a man,” not the widely quoted “one small step for man,” and the grainy NASA audio recordings don’t offer a definitive answer. Researchers from Michigan State University and Ohio State University set out to solve the mystery, and their findings seem to back up Armstrong’s assertion. They analyzed recordings of conversational speech from 40 people raised in Columbus, Ohio, near Armstrong’s hometown of Wapakoneta, and found that they typically blended the words “for a” so they sound like “frrr(uh)”.
  • Your cellphone is more powerful than Apollo 11’s computers.  While the Apollo Guidance Computer systems that powered Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins to the moon and back in July 1969 were cutting-edge for the time, they’re technologically primitive compared to the cell phones and smartwatches we use half a century later.  Today’s Samsung Galaxy S10 Smartphone6, with its eight gigabytes of memory, is light years ahead of the Apollo 11’s computer, which propelled our fearless astronauts to the moon and back with only two kilobytes.
  • Krispy Kreme doughnuts were served. This marketing ploy is not just empty calories: Krispy Kreme was at the launch of Apollo 11 in 1969, serving fresh doughnuts to Americans who had gathered to witness lift-off of this monumental mission.
  • “The Eagle has landed,” is one of the most famous quotes in NASA history. It was named in honor of America’s national bird, while the mission’s command module, Columbia, was named after Columbiad, the giant canon that launched the moonship in Jules Verne’s novel From the Earth to the Moon.
  • The Apollo’s Saturn rockets were packed with enough fuel to throw 100-pound shrapnel three miles, and NASA couldn’t rule out the possibility that they might explode on takeoff. NASA seated its VIP spectators three and a half miles from the launchpad.
  • Drinking water was a fuel-cell by-product, but Apollo 11’s hydrogen-gas filters didn’t work, making every drink bubbly, making going to the bathroom troublesome.
  • When Apollo 11’s lunar lander, the Eagle, separated from the orbiter, the cabin wasn’t fully depressurized, resulting in a burst of gas equivalent to popping a champagne cork. It threw the module’s landing four miles off-target.
  • Pilot Neil Armstrong nearly ran out of fuel landing the Eagle, and many at mission control worried he might crash. Apollo engineer Milton Silveira, however, was relieved: His tests had shown that there was a small chance the exhaust could shoot back into the rocket as it landed and ignite the remaining propellant.
  • The “one small step for man” wasn’t actually that small. Armstrong set the ship down so gently that its shock absorbers didn’t compress. He had to hop 3.5 feet from the Eagle’s ladder to the surface.
  • The astronauts all carried Duro-brand felt-tip pens, and if not for these the mission would not have made it home. In the cramped environment, someone had broken off the switch to the circuit breaker that activated the ascent engine. This is where Aldrin had a flash of ingenuity. “Since it was electrical, I decided not to put my finger in, or use anything that had metal on the end. I had a felt-tipped pen in the shoulder pocket of my suit that might do the job. After moving the countdown procedure up by a couple of hours in case it didn’t work, I inserted the pen into the small opening where the circuit breaker switch should have been, and pushed it in; sure enough, the circuit breaker held. We were going to get off the moon, after all.”
  • The toughest moonwalk task? Planting the flag. NASA’s studies suggested that the lunar soil was soft, but Armstrong and Aldrin found the surface to be a thin wisp of dust over hard rock. They managed to drive the flagpole a few inches into the ground and film it for broadcast, and then took care not to accidentally knock it over.
  • A few minutes after Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong landed on the moon, fellow Apollo 11 astronaut Michael Collins remained in orbit.  They sent a message back asking for a moment’s silence. In this time, Aldrin, an elder in his local Presbyterian Church, had a little communion ceremony of his own, reading scripture and taking the sacrament.  “I ate the tiny Host and swallowed the wine. I gave thanks for the intelligence and spirit that had brought two young pilots to the Sea of Tranquility. It was interesting for me to think: The very first liquid ever poured on the moon, and the very first food eaten there, were the communion elements.”
  • Along with the American flag, the Apollo 11 mission left behind a small collection of items. Among them were medallions honouring Russian cosmonauts Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space, and Vladimir Komarov, both of whom died tragically. Komarov’s death is particularly shocking. The story goes that he knew he was probably going to die on the 1967 mission to put a man into Earth orbit. He didn’t back out, because Gagarin was his back-up and he didn’t want Gagarin to die.
  • On their return to Earth, the three astronauts were brought back via Hawaii. On their entry, they had to be processed like any other traveler, filling out customs declarations. In the “Departure From” field, they simply wrote “Moon,” and declared the “moon dust” and “moon rock” as items they were bringing back into America.
  • Life insurance premiums for a trip to the moon were well beyond the means of Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins. As a preemptive measure to take care of their loved ones if they didn’t come back, the astronauts signed hundreds of postal covers. If they did not return, their families could sell these signatures. Today, these signed postal covers occasionally show up in space memorabilia auctions, where they can sell for thousands of dollars.
  • President Richard Nixon had a contingency speech lined up for if the mission failed, too. You can read it here.
  • The Moon has a smell. It has no air, but it has a smell. Each pair of Apollo astronauts to land on the Moon tramped lots of Moon dust back into the lunar module—it was deep gray, fine-grained and extremely clingy—and when they unsnapped their helmets, Neil Armstrong said, “We were aware of a new scent in the air of the cabin that clearly came from all the lunar material that had accumulated on and in our clothes.” To him, it was “the scent of wet ashes.” To his crewmate Buzz Aldrin, it was “the smell in the air after a firecracker has gone off.

CLICK HERE to download this cool chart I found on the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s website. It shows the major events of the Apollo 11 mission from ignition to splashdown. Everything had to go absolutely right on this mega PIA job.

 

What Armstrong and Aldrin Saw: Simulation vs. Original 16mm Film

WANT CHILLS TO GO UP YOUR SPINE? WATCH AND LISTEN TO THIS!  The only visual record of the historic Apollo 11 landing is from a 16mm time-lapse (6 frames per second) movie camera mounted in Buzz Aldrin’s window. The visual above is from the footage (l to r) at 568 feet, 370 feet, 230 feet and 15 feet.  More notes and links on the You Tube page.

 

 


 

That Burning Sensation

No matter what you like to do outside, gotta play it safe with sun exposure. 

With this most recent batch of amazing weather, it got me thinking about sun exposure and the impact of prolonged sun on skin.  Like most of us, I LOVE being outside – riding bikes, running, kayaking with Jackie and the girls, playing golf with my buds or just enjoying the summer breeze in the backyard. I’ve experienced that “burning sensation” telling me it’s time to get out of the sun or put on more protection. For those who don’t know I am what some might call follicley challenged (bald!) So…. This blog really hits home with me.    As “heat people” we know a thing or two about heat, cold and temperature, when we’re solving your PIA (pain in the #$%) Jobs! I decided to do some digging on sunscreen and found this great article at livescience.com along with some tips on Wikipedia.  Take a read and be sure to load up on the sunblock – and ENJOY this amazing weather.

  • Whether you’re lounging on the beach, going for a run or bike ride or hiking up a mountain, when you’re outside, you’re pummeled by invisible rays that can cause your skin to darken and burn. This ultraviolet (UV) radiation can also damage DNA in your skin cells, causing genetic mutations that can lead to skin cancer. Fortunately, you can protect against many of the damaging effects of these rays with sunscreen.
  • Sunscreens, which can be sprays, lotions, gels or waxes, are usually made up of a mix of chemicals. Inorganic chemicals in sunscreen can reflect or scatter the light away from the skin, and organic (carbon-based) ones can absorb UV rays so that our skin doesn’t.
  • Some inorganic chemicals, including minerals such as zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, act as a physical sunblock. They reflect UV rays, similar to how white paint reflects light. The white-colored noses on beach-goers in the 1980s and 1990s were due to these compounds; because manufacturers make the inorganic particles much smaller now, we don’t see the visible white.
  • Along with inorganic chemicals, sunscreens often contain organic chemicals, with names such as avobenzone or oxybenzone. Instead of physically deflecting UV light, these molecules absorb UV radiation through their chemical bonds. As the bonds absorb UV radiation, the components of the sunscreen slowly break down and release heat.
  • The SPF (introduced in 1974) on sunscreen bottles stands for Sun Protection Factor (I never knew this) and refers to how well the sunscreen protects against one type of UV radiation, called UVB (it may be helpful to think B for burning). UVB rays cause sunburn and several types of skin cancer.
  • To understand how the rating works – “SPF 15” means that ​115 of the burning radiation will reach the skin, assuming sunscreen is applied evenly at a thick dosage of 2 milligrams per square centimeter (mg/cm2). A user can determine the effectiveness of a sunscreen by multiplying the SPF by the length of time it takes for him or her to suffer a burn without sunscreen. (Thus, if a person develops a sunburn in 10 minutes when not wearing a sunscreen, the same person in the same intensity of sunlight will take 150 minutes to develop a sunburn of the same severity if wearing a sunscreen with an SPF of 15) It is important to note that sunscreens with higher SPF do not last or remain effective on the skin any longer than lower SPF and must be continually reapplied as directed, usually every two hours.
  • The SPF is an imperfect measure of skin damage because invisible damage and skin aging are also caused by ultraviolet type A (UVA, wavelengths 315–400 or 320–400 nm), which does not primarily cause reddening or pain. Conventional sunscreen blocks very little UVA radiation relative to the nominal SPF; broad-spectrum sunscreens are designed to protect against both UVB and UVA.
  • Another type of radiation, called UVA radiation, penetrates deeper into the skin and can cause premature wrinkling, age spots and can also heighten the risk for some skin cancer.  Sunscreen lotions labeled broad-spectrum block against both UVA and UVB, but currently there is no standard for listing UVA blocking power. Inorganic chemicals that deflect sunlight will deflect both UVA and UVB rays.
  • The ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) is a similar scale developed for rating fabrics for sun protective clothing. According to recent testing by Consumer Reports, UPF ~30+ is typical for protective fabrics, while UPF ~20 is typical for standard summer fabrics.
  • Most organizations recommend using sunscreen with an SPF between 15 and 50 (SPF ratings higher than 50 have not been proven to be more effective than SPF 50). A sunscreen with an SPF of 15 protects against about 93 percent of UVB rays, and one with an SPF of 30 protects against 97 percent of rays, according to the Mayo Clinic. No SPF can block 100 percent of UV rays.  I am a SPF 50 man (It’s because I am such a sensitive soul!)
  • Because most people don’t use enough sunscreen and because sunscreen tends to rub or wash off, the Skin Cancer Foundation recommends reapplying sunscreen within two hours regardless of its strength, and using at least an ounce (a shot glass-full) for maximum protection.  My guess is that most of us do fall into the not enough category!  Also, I think we should only use shot glasses as God intended!
  • For people with fair skin, health organizations strongly recommend also using a hat and sunglasses, long sleeve clothing and shade to protect your skin.  For those of us that ‘BRONZE”  a hat should be fine!