These are random musings of my life journey, the people, animals, places, and events which have woven, and continue to weave, a tapestry that is me. We all know there is no real destination, only the ongoing experiences which blend together, creating the trail. Each step gives a glimpse of what is to come, without allowing me to see the end result. It is exciting. I have a home base that is mine, that gives me a place to rest. This is it. This is where my heart is, no matter where I journey...................

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Tuesday Trivia

This morning, let's take a look at people. Trivial people, er, I mean trivia about people!

First up ..... FAMOUS FIRSTS

In 1910 Alice Wells became the 1st policewoman in the US. She was hired by the Los Angeles Police Department. She was allowed to design her own uniform and was active in propagating the need for policewomen elsewhere. As a result of her efforts seventeen departments in American were employing policewomen by 1916.

Chuck Yeager was the first person to break the sound barrier by flying faster than the speed of sound. On October 14, 1947, he flew a Bell X-1 rocket at 670 mph in level flight.

Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin became the first human in space and the first human to orbit Earth in 1961.

Lady Peseshet of Ancient Egypt (2600-2100 BC) is the world's first known female physician.

Adriaan van der Donck was the first and only lawyer in New York City in 1653.

The first letter Vanna White ever turned on the game show Wheel of Fortune was the letter "T."


French writer George Sand carried on an affair with Frederic Chopin.

When Alexander Graham Bell passed away in 1922, every telephone served by the Bell system in the USA and Canada was silent for one minute.

Leonardo da Vinci could write with the one hand and draw with the other simultaneously.

The 17th-century French Cardinal Mazarin never traveled without his personal chocolate-maker. (I need to get myself one of those!)

Winston Churchill was a stutterer. As a child, one of his teachers warned, "Because of his stuttering he should be discouraged from following in his father's political footsteps."

Jeremy Bentham, a British philosopher who died in 1832, left his entire estate to the London Hospital provided that his body be allowed to preside over its board meetings. His skeleton was clothed and fitted with a wax mask of his face. It was present at the meeting for 92 years.

The Greek-born performer and composer Yanni is self-taught.He received no formal musical training but did get a psychology degree from the University of Minnesota. He does compose all his own works.


Ever since 1927, TIME Magazine has chosen a man, woman, or idea that "for better or worse, has most influenced events in the preceding year." You can use this list as a fairly accurate judge of what was important during each year of the past. Here are some interesting facts about the list! Charles Lindbergh (1927) was the first, and the youngest, person to receive the distinction. He was 25 years old.

In 1936, Mrs. Wallis Warfield Simpson, the woman whom English King Edward VIII abdicated in order to marry, was the first woman to receive the honor.

Though a number of people have received the honor twice, U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt is the only person to have been named three times: 1932, 1934, and 1941. Adolf Hitler, the murderous leader of Nazi Germany, received the honor in 1938.

A whole generation was named in 1966 - "Twenty-five and Under." In 1982, the computer became the first object ever to receive the distinction.

There are several years where large groups of people were nominated: the American Fighting-Man (1950), the Hungarian Freedom Fighter (1956), U.S. Scientists (1960), Twenty-Five and Under (1966), the Middle Americans (1968), and American Women (1975).

Children's book author Dr. Seuss's real name was Theodor Geisel. His middle name was Seuss.

Beatrix Potter, author of Peter Rabbit, had a real pet rabbit named "Peter". She put Peter on a leash and walked him through her neighborhood in London.

Many of Agatha Christie's stories involved people getting poisoned. She knew so much about chemicals because she worked in a hospital laboratory during World War II.

Charles Dickens had two pet ravens, both known as Grip. Upon Grip I's demise, Dickens had his beloved bird stuffed. These days, Grip can be seen at the Free Library of Philadelphia's Rare Books Department, where he stands guard over the Poe and Dickens collections.

During World War I, Edith Wharton traveled to the Western Front in France, both to write about the battlefields for American publications and to help the Red Cross create hostels and schools for those displaced by war.

Flannery O'Connor had a special fondness for peacocks, which she often used in her fiction to represent Christ. When she returned to live on the family farm as an adult, she raised an unusually large flock of peacocks, which she tended to until her death in 1964.

And with the election nearing, here is a little about .....


After the assassination of John Kennedy in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, l963, his Vice President, Lyndon Baines Johnson, was sworn in aboard Air Force One by a local judge, Sarah Hughes, as he stood next to the blood stained wife of his predecessor. Then the plane carrying the new President and the body of the old President returned to Washington DC.

In 1890, Woodrow Wilson became a professor of jurisprudence at Princeton University which, at that time, he regarded as the crowning success in his career. He was a popular lecturer and a respected researcher who, in his spare time, wrote the five-volume epic, "History of the American People." Interesting note: He received 12,000 dollars from his editor. In 1997, 12,000 dollars from 1902 would have been worth 225,603 dollars.

Before going into politics, Ronald Reagan was an actor who starred in movies, such as Brother Rat (1938), Bedtime for Bonzo (1951), and Knute Rockne, All American (1940), from which came the famous line " Win one for the Gipper." During the course of his acting career, Reagan starred in more than fifty films.

Franklin D. Roosevelt is the only President to be elected to the U.S. Presidency for four consecutive terms. After his death, on February 22, l951, Congress passed the Twenty-second Amendment to the Constitution, which states that a President may only run twice, unless he or she took over from another President with more than two years of term remaining, in which case he or she may only run once.

William McKinley's wife had fragile health. He doted on her, and every afternoon at precisely 3:00 would interrupt whatever he was doing, go to the window, and wave his handkerchief at her as she watched from a hotel room across the street. Likewise, when he left for work in the morning, he would stop, remove his hat, look up at the window and bow to her.

While president of New York City's Police Board, Theodore Roosevelt prowled the streets at night in a black cape looking for goof-off police. Because of Roosevelt's diligence, the police chief was eventually fired. The newspapers ate it up, giving rise to the first speculations that Teddy Roosevelt might be Presidential material.


  1. I love Flannery O'Connor! Da Vinci is very impressive! And the Jeremy Bentham fact--very strange, but interesting (as a side note, my very fave tv show "Lost" has all sorts of philosophy-driven character names and this year "Jeremy Bentham" showed up in an interesting twist).

    Love your Tuesday trivia. Fun, fun!

  2. I didn't know that about George Sand and Chopin! I adore them both. We visited Chopin's grave at Pere La Chaise Cemetery in Paris. It's amazing. Beautiful white marble. Visitors bring fresh flowers to adorn his tomb every day. It's far more impressive than Jim Morrison's... even though they're not that far from each other!

  3. Very cool, as usual! And the next time I'm in Philly I'm going to the Free Library to see Grip!!

  4. Interesting trivia ! I like learning from snippets like that, Lynilu ! Happy Tuesday to you :)


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