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Thursday, November 15, 2018


On this date in 1492, Christopher Columbus noted in his journal the use of tobacco among Indians, the first recorded reference to tobacco. He put out the idea of the Great North American Smoke-Out and that's when things went south.
  • He noted in his journal that that the native Americans were using something called, tobacco, despite warnings from the Medicine Man General.
  • That was the first recorded reference to tobacco, which came right after a meeting with the local tribe's chief, Smells Like Ashtray Breath.
  • Ironically, the ones using it were with the Nicorette tribe.
  • The tribe had divided the teepees into smoking and non-smoking sections.
  • Local Indians smoked tobacco and would often walk a mile to search for camels.
  • He first noticed it when walking into a casino.
On this date in 1806, Explorer Zebulon Pike discovered the mountaintop in Colorado now known as "Pikes Peak." Just think how different it would have turned out if the explorer William Don't had found it.

In 1869, the U.S. began free postal service. Well, I can see how it didn't make money.
On this date in 1889, Dom Pedro, the 2nd Emperor of Brazil was dethroned. I won't go into details how citizens got him to leave his thrown, but it was revolting.

In 1901, the first electric hearing aid, "the Acousticon," was patented.
  • The only problem with this early version was the incredibly long extension cord. Which reminds me of this joke: A guy was bragging about his new hearing aid. How incredibly well it worked and it only cost him $10! His friend asked, "What kind is?" and the guy responded, "Oh, around 7:15!"
  • Someone asked what kind it was and the inventor said, "Oh, around 8:30."
  • It was a popular replacement for the gas-engine powered hearing airs which were so loud, they defeated the purpose.
On this date in 1937, air conditioning was installed in the House and Senate chambers of Congress. Just like congress -- having air conditioning installed in November.

It was on this date 1996 that the late Michael Jackson married the woman carrying his baby -- his plastic surgeon's nurse, Debbie Rowe, in an Australian wedding ceremony. Hey, if you were Michael Jackson's plastic surgeon, you were practically family already.


The end of today, we'll be mid-way through November.

Britain's Prince Peter Mark Andrew Phillips turns 41. He's 13th in line for the throne, which is about as likely as me taking over for Kobe Bryant when he retired.

Jonny Lee Miller, who played Sherlock Holmes on TV's "Elementary," turns 46 today. Hard to believe he is among Angelina Jolie's ex's. Their marriage only lasted 18 months. He's a marathon runner, probably because he wanted to get as far away from her as possible.

Rap singer E-40 turns 51 today. His cousin is a famous Bingo player, B-13.

The former band leader of "The Tonight Show" when it was hosted by Jay Leno, Kevin Eubanks, turns 61. He left the show in 2010. Apparently, he saw the writing on the cue card.

Beverly D'Angelo turns 67 today, forever to be known as Mrs. Clark Griswald in the "Vacation" movies. Just about time to watch her and the rest of the Griswold family again.

Frida Lyngstad, one of the original members of Abba, celebrates her 73rd birthday today. Back in Abba's hey day, "Dancing Queen" had such a different meaning.

Wow, Petula Clark turns 86 today. She seemed so much younger in the 60's. Wait a minute...

Ed Asner turns 89 today. We really should tie a bunch of balloons to his house today. If you look up "crotchety" in the dictionary, Ed's picture is there.

C.W. McCall, who gave us the song "Convoy" turns the big 9-0 today. He hopes to live to be 10-4.


  • Believe it or not, there's a new "Build a Wall" toy for kids. It comes with more than 100 building block pieces for building a wall to stop what the company is calling a "mob" of 10,000 approaching Central American migrants. Along with the blocks, the toy set includes a figurine of "President Trump in a MAGA hard hat!"
  • For the record, the "Today Show" ratings have gone up since Megyn Kelly left the show.
  • The Chiefs and Rams were supposed to play in Mexico City next Monday night, but due to field conditions, the game has been moved to the L.A. Coliseum.
  • Pink's husband, Carey Hart, says he'll be shooting anyone he sees trying to loot homes in the California fire zone.
  • Britain's Prince Charles hit the big 7-0 yesterday.
  • Bloomingdale's, known for selling chic clothing to shoppers with champagne tastes, is going to begin selling TVs, washing machines and refrigerators for the first time.
  • Netflix has canceled the Josh Groban-Tony Danza comedy "The Good Cop" after one season.
  • Even though Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth lost their home to a California wildfire, they are donating $500,000 to The Malibu Foundation through Cyrus' charity, The Happy Hippie Foundation.
  • New Orleans band leader Claude Bryant and his band, Claude Bryant and the All Stars, were playing their regular Thursday night gig last week at Cafe Negril when a woman stepped up on the stage and offered to sing. The band leader told her to sit down and get off the stage. She did. It most likely was the band's one shot to have Christina Aguilera sing with them.
  • Drew Carey and his fiancee Dr. Amie Harwick have split and ended their engagement after less than a year.
  • John Mayer says it was at Drake's 30th birthday party that he got so drunk and embarrassed himself... and that's when he gave up drinking. That and a six-day hangover.
  • Lady Gaga stopped by a Red Cross shelter at Pacific Palisades High School on Sunday to visit those displaced by the wildfires in California.


Apparently There's No Politics on Main Street USA

Apparently political signs and banners are persona non grata on Main Street USA... in Disney World. New Yorker Dion Cini, 49, had his annual pass suspended earlier this year after he unfurled a huge pro-President Trump banner on Main Street in the theme park. He was eventually let back in the park but is now permanently banned after riding down Splash Mountain with a "Trump 2020" sign then bringing a "Keep America Great" sign on Expedition Everest. Disney says it's not a Trump thing. They ban all unauthorized "demonstrations or speeches, or the usage of any flag, banner, or sign for commercial purposes, or to incite a crowd." Cini insists he wasn't breaking the rules and definitely wasn't inciting a crowd. He added, "I wanted to actually abide by their rules ... but I kind of wanted to test them. I just really wanted to find out whether or not it had to do with unfurling a flag, or what was written on the flag." He claims Disney "never mentioned the fact that there was some kind of safety issue on the ride. That I was holding up a sign and I shouldn't be doing that." In a Facebook post he wrote: "They hate my signs, or the President? Maybe both?" A Disney spokesperson says Cini was banned not because of politics, but because "demonstrations and the display of signs and banners is not permitted on the premises," and he had previously been reminded of the rules. Cini says he plans to fight the ban in court-and to unfurl a 50-foot Trump banner elsewhere in the country soon. (WFTV)

The Demonic Power of Yoga

Pastor John Lindell leads a congregation almost 11,000 strong at the James River megachurch in the Ozarks. And apparently he's got a thing against yoga. He told his parishioners that yoga positions were "created with demonic intent to open you up to demonic power because Hinduism is demonic." He also spoke out against fortune-telling and paganism. According to Lindell, America has moved on to a "post-Christian culture" where the country has lost its ability to spot obvious evils like yoga. Lindell also went on his anti-yoga diatribe on Twitter. On the upside, Lindell assured his flock they'd be okay if they quit practicing yoga immediately but added, "I can't say the same if you keep doing it." (New York Daily News)

Tulsa Really Wants You to Move There!

Go West, young entrepreneur. Go to Tulsa, Oklahoma - which is currently offering remote workers $10,000 to move there! The city is joining the ranks of other locations in the U.S., including Vermont and Maine, offering incentives to workers for relocating. Tulsa claims it is "the ideal city" for remote workers due to its array of museums, low cost of living, and food and drink scene. The fine print: you have to stay in Tulsa for a full year to get all the loot. Each $10,000 grant comes in the form of $2,500 to be put towards relocation expenses, a 500 per month stipend, and $1,500 at the end of a 12-month program. The grant, which is offered in partnership with the City of Tulsa and the George Kaiser Family Foundation, also includes a free membership to 36 Degrees North, a co-working space in the city. The folks behind the program are hoping remote workers will choose to stay beyond that 12-month finish line. Meanwhile, the number of people quitting their jobs for flexible work doubled from 2014 to 2017 and the number of remote jobs rose 115% between 2005 and 2018, according to FlexJobs, a job-search site for remote work. Remote workers are shown to be more productive than non-remote workers: A 2017 study of 24,000 workers from the video and voice collaboration technology company Polycom Inc. found that 98% of people said the ability to work anywhere has a positive impact on productivity. (MSN)

Mother of Satan Bomb Materials Found at House in Florida!

The chemical is called triacetone triperoxide or TATP - a bomb making material that is so volatile and dangerous that the members of al-Qaida dubbed it "The Mother of Satan!" And police found a bunch of it at the home of 37-year-old Jared Coburn in Lake Helen, Florida. Colburn told officers he was using the TATP to make his own fireworks. Sheriff Mike Chitwood said investigators believe Coburn made the chemical because it is easily manufactured using products for home use such as nail polish. The tipster who led police to the home also told them that a manufactured bomb was under a bed. When police found the initial devices they withdrew from the home. The bomb squad found additional explosives so delicate they will not be moved to the Sheriff's Office's disposal field. Instead they'll be detonated underground in a nearby field. A terrorist task force, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and other law enforcement officials were on scene, authorities said. Additionally, the Federal Aviation Administration has posted a temporary no-fly zone in the area. Chitwood said the chemical TATP is favored by terrorists who have carried out bombings in Manchester, England; Spain; and other places in Europe. Authorities did not release much personal information about Coburn but did say that he works as a parachute packer. (News Journal)

Mississippi Stupid!

In Gulfport, Mississippi, 28-year-old Keith Cavalier was arrested after driving his pickup truck into the Harrison County Courthouse and then telling officers he did it on purpose because it was the best way to let them know his drug paraphernalia had been stolen. Fortunately nobody was hurt. Cavalier has been charged with driving under the influence and malicious mischief because of damage to the building. He'll be chilling out in the county jail for a while and of course any county jail in Mississippi is always a fun place to be! (NBC News)

Get a DUI in Jersey? You May Be Off the Hook!

In New Jersey, some 20,607 people accused of driving drunk may have their cases tossed because Sgt. Marc Dennis didn't do his job. He allegedly failed to perform a temperature check while calibrating the machines used to check blood-alcohol levels. It's a big deal and means that test results from five of New Jersey's 21 counties-Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Somerset, and Union-are inadmissible as evidence. A criminal case against Dennis, who denies wrongdoing, is still pending. It's not clear how many convictions will actually be vacated-some defendants will have been found not guilty, while others could have been convicted on other evidence. State authorities told the top court that the step Dennis allegedly skipped is only required in New Jersey. The judges ordered the state to notify people who could seek to have DWI convictions vacated because of the ruling, though lawyer Matthew W. Reisig predicts a "hornets' nest" lies ahead in the courts. (

What the What?

Talk about your idiots. In St. Augustine, Florida, 23-year-old Brandon Keith Hatfield navigated through several barriers at the St. Augustine Alligator Farm, then jumped into a pool with a trio of 12-foot crocodiles. Yep, he got bit, escaped from the pool, then was arrested after being spotted at dawn crawling in his underwear across an area resident's lawn. Hatfield suffered a bite to his leg and foot, according to a statement from the St. Augustine Police Department officials, who reviewed surveillance video from the animal farm. Ironically, Alligator Farm staff, they were prompted to check the surveillance tapes after finding a "Croc"-style shoe in the crocodile pit and damage to the property. Then a resident called 911 to report a man crawling in just boxers shorts on the lawn outside. Police responded and took Hatfield into custody. Hatfield, who remains hospitalized, was charged with burglary, criminal mischief and violation of probation. Officials said he will be transported to the St. John's County jail after he is released. (ABC News)


Gerald Reibmann is the author of "Centered" and in his book he reveals that the shape of your belly button says things about your personality and how long of a life you will live. If your belly button is...
  • Off-center -- you're fun-loving but moody. You'll live into your early 70's.
  • Round -- you're modest, even tempered, and quiet. Expect to live until your early 80's.
  • An outty -- you're optimistic, outgoing, and enthusiastic. You will live until your early 70's.
  • An innie -- you're gentle, cautious, and prone to worry. You'll live into your mid 60's.
  • Horizontal -- you're complex, emotional, and sensitive. You will live until your late 60's.
  • Vertical -- you're self-confident, generous and stable. You will live until your mid 70's.


Smacking Gum
Why you do it: It's another oral fixation that serves as a security blanket when you're nervous or anxious. How to stop: The fastest and most effective solution? Switch to hard candy. But if you really don't want to give up gum, have a friend stop you every time she hears you doing it. Then keep smacking long enough to hear yourself and recognize what an irritating sound it is. You might be embarrassed enough to stop.

Running Late
Why you do it: The nice reason? You're a pleaser and an overdoer, packing too much in. Not so nice? Deep down, you may think your time is more important than the time of those waiting. Either way, you lack some essential time-management skills. How to stop: When someone asks you to do something, don't accept right away. Say you'll get back to him, then decide whether you have the time. Also, figure out which tasks always seem to make you late. Maybe it's drying your hair in the morning: Time yourself to see how long it takes, then allot enough time in your routine. Tricks: Set your watch five minutes fast and build in time for unexpected delays. And always call ahead if you're running late. Not only is it gracious but the shame of making repeated calls might also be the incentive you need to be punctual.

Why you do it: It's a strategy for managing the anxiety of having to complete a task. How to stop: Recognize that when you procrastinate, others may think you don't care about the job, and that's worse than completing something less than perfectly. One trick to get you started: Make a check out to an organization you despise and give it to a friend to hold. If you don't finish the self-assigned task by a certain date, have her mail the check. If you make yourself accountable for the consequences, it will motivate you to wrap up the task.

Why you do it: You may have slouched when growing up because you were self-conscious or taller than others or developed breasts before your peers, and the posture stuck. Or you might just be tired. How to stop: Take dance lessons, Pilates, or yoga to strengthen the abdominals and upper-back muscles. A simple shoulder-shrug exercise -- think of touching your shoulders to your earlobes -- is an even easier way to combat slouching. Do 10 rotations forward and 10 rotations back, says Phil Haberstro, executive director of the National Association for Health and Fitness, in Buffalo. "This will raise consciousness of posture and help remind you to stand and sit tall," he says. "Regular physical activity helps combat the mental and physical fatigue that can contribute to slouching."

Why you do it: You may be a visual processor. You like to be surrounded by a mess because it's stimulating -- and it reminds you to do your work. But it backfires, since you waste time searching for things. How to stop: Separate papers into a pile you need to do and a pile you can think about doing. Use folders or boxes in different colors. "One of my clients has 12 clipboards hung up in her office: six for current projects and six for those she may get to later," says Lynn Cutts, a Colorado-based certified life coach. "She's still being visually stimulated, but her stuff is organized." Set up a system that works for you, and start with basic steps, like putting your keys in the same place every day.

Why you do it: You feel insignificant and want to be perceived as more special than others around you. You think people will be impressed with you if you're associated with a particular person. In addition to that, name-dropping can serve as a form of intimidation. "It's a kind of one-upmanship," says Lynn Cutts. How to stop: Listen to yourself! Would you want to stick around and hear all this? Remind yourself that you don't need to resort to mentioning names as a way of increasing your value. If you can't resist dropping a name or two, do so in a non-self-promoting way or with humor. Do it to share information, as opposed to putting someone down or making yourself look more important. And make sure to tell the full story, even if it's "Oh, I passed Harrison Ford on the street. He didn't actually speak to me, but he did glance in my direction."

Nail Biting
Why you do it: You use it to derive comfort and relieve stress. "Nail biting could be the adult version of thumb sucking," says Alan Strathman, associate professor of social psychology at the University of Missouri, Columbia. How to stop: First, note when you bite your nails, and then substitute another action. Keep a stress ball on your desk, or even play with Silly Putty the next time your fingers start tickling your teeth. You can also try wearing synthetic nails or painting your natural nails with a polish that has a foul taste. Or get a manicure. You'll look good, and after paying for the service, you'll think twice about ruining the results.

Why you do it: You don't feel confident that you have the power to request something. As a kid, you probably whined when you didn't get what you wanted, and it paid off-then. How to stop: As an adult, you're in for a big surprise if you think you'll get the same results. If your husband or friends say you're a whiner, take note. Simply state what you want by making a direct request. For example, instead of ruining an evening out by complaining that you got stuck at a table next to the kitchen, politely ask the waiter to reseat you. Remember: Most people will develop a resistance to whiners.


Look out for extraverted older adults and conscientious or curious teens who get behind the wheel. Why? They may be more likely to engage in risky driving behavior, according to researchers from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, who have concluded that certain personality characteristics can predict distracted driving tendencies. Distracted driving, which can include anything from changing the radio station to texting, is a factor in about half of all car crashes, which translates to one million crashes that result in injuries. And 10 percent of those crashes result in fatalities. That is why it's important to understand more about distracted drivers.
The "Big Five" personality traits are:
  1. Openness to experience: inventive and curious vs. consistent and cautious
  2. Conscientiousness: efficient and organized vs. easy-going and careless
  3. Extraversion: outgoing and energetic vs. solitary and reserved
  4. Agreeableness: friendly and compassionate vs. analytical and detached
  5. Neuroticism: sensitive and nervous vs. secure and confident
The study: The UAB team targeted two driving age groups that tend to have the most dangerous driving practices: teenagers ages 16 to 19 and older adults ages 65 to 85. Some 120 volunteers who fit one of these two age group profiles completed the 45-item "Big Five" questionnaire to assess their own personality traits, as well as the Questionnaire Assessing Distracted Driving, or QUADD, which assesses the frequency of distracted driving behaviors. Teens who identified with the "openness to experience" personality trait also were more likely to text and use their cellphone while driving. Specifically, a 10 percent increase in openness was associated with a 22% increase in risk for distracted driving. In older adults, only one personality factor was significantly associated with distracted driving behaviors: extraversion. A 10 percent increase in extraversion scores translated to a 20 percent increase in instances of talking on or interacting with a phone.


Fibs about shopping top the list of tall tales women spin to get what they want in the world, says the author of a new book that rips the lid off the secret lives of gals. "Women lie more cleverly and successfully than men," says Susan Shapiro Barash, the author of "Little White Lies, Deep Dark Secrets: The Truth About Why Women Lie." "They lie as a survival technique but also to get what they want." After interviewing 500 women across the country. Barash discovered:
  • About 75% of women hide how much money they spend. These women confessed to stunts like sneaking purchases home and hiding price tags.
  • The second most common reason for women to lie is cheating. About 60% of the gals confessed to having had an affair.
  • Motherhood comes in at number three on the hit parade of female falsehoods, with about 50% of moms having mixed feeling about rearing their kids.
  • Women often lie to get what they want from people, including lovers, co-workers and bosses.
  • They also tell lies either to keep up appearances or one up others, including untruths about plastic surgery, children's accomplishments or husbands' success.


You may not know it, but your favorite ice cream flavor speaks gallons about your personality:

While this may seem a blah flavor, don't be fooled. Vanilla lovers are fearless and confident. You're not foolhardy you support your plans with solid research. You're willing to risk it all once you have an idea that makes you feel safe and secure.

You're always looking for a thrill a new experience to get your adrenaline pumping. You're a catalyst for spontaneous adventures and others follow your lead. You also handle stress with a mature sophistication that loved ones find comforting.

You're wonderfully generous with your time and talents and never refuse a request for help from family and friends. You've earned the respect of your community, too, by working hard to improve the lives of the less fortunate.

Chocolate Chip
No one can tell you not to fight City Hall. You're eager to debate when you believe an injustice has been committed. You have definite opinions, and loved ones turn to you when they need a champion to defend their rights.

Butter Pecan
You strive for perfection, whether at work or at home. Your precision of thought and deed make you a valuable team member. You also have a sensitive side that nurtures others a compelling combination that makes you beloved.

You're the mellowest of creatures, facing life with a smile and a positive outlook. You're happy, outgoing approach makes you the most popular person in your crowd. Even when adversity strikes, you never lose faith in your ability to win.

Rocky Road
You have as many sides to your personality as this flavor has ingredients. Those charming contradictions attract others to your side. You enjoy solitude, but you can be sociable. You have a knack for ingenious solutions to difficult problems.


  • How long does it take to hard-boil a three-pound ostrich egg? (1 hour and 45 minutes)
  • A pound of ground coffee yields 50 cups. How many cups does a pound of tea yield? (200)
  • What popular fruit was named after a papal estate outside Rome? (The cantaloupe, which was named after the Pope's summer residence of Cantalupo)
  • What was Charles Elmer Hires originally going to call the drink we now know as root beer? (Root tea--but a friend convinced him the name would discourage sales)
  • What is the most widely eaten fish in the world? (The herring)
  • How long does it take a ginseng root to reach marketable size? (Seven years)
  • What snack food commercial was pulled off the air in 1970 because of complaints from an outraged ethnic group? (The Frito Bandito commercial for Frito corn chips. The complaints came from Mexican-Americans)
  • What fruit did the Visigoths demand in ransom when they laid siege to Rome in 408? (Peppercorns--3,000 pounds of them. Pepper was a highly valued spice at the time)
  • What ethnic food did Jeno Paulucci make available in supermarkets nationwide for the very first time in 1947? (Paulucci gave us Chinese food--under the Chun King label. He later brought us Jeno's pizza)
  • What recipe -- first published 50 years ago -- has been requested most frequently through the years by the readers of "Better Homes and Garden"? (The recipe for hamburger pie, which has been updated and republished a number of times over the years)
  • How long -- in feet -- is the trunk of the average full-grown elephant? (8 feet)
  • How many pounds of fish can a pelican hold in its pouch? (About 25 pounds)
  • An average human has 46 chromosomes. How many does a cabbage have? (18)
  • On an average day how many hours does an elephant spend sleeping? How about a giraffe? (Four hours for both)
  • What breed of dog is particularly distinctive because of a genetic condition called achondroplasia? (The dachshund. Achondroplasia causes dwarfism--in the dachshund's case, abnormally short legs)
  • What bird has been spotted flying at 27,000 feet - higher than any other bird on record? (The whooper swan. A flock of 30 was spotted by a pilot and picked up on radar at that altitude in 1967)
  • What percentage of the world's food crops are pollinated by insects? (80 percent)
  • What is the difference between a crawfish and a crayfish? (Nothing)
  • How many eyes do most spiders have? (Eight)
  • Berkshire, Cheshire, Victoria and Poland China are breeds of what animal? (The pig)
  • What percentage of its body weight does the average bear lose during hibernation? (Up to 25 percent)


If you want to be successful, get up early. When it comes to successful people -- from top CEOs to top politicians -- many share a common trait: Their alarms go off early. Very early. We're talking 4:30am, maybe as late as 5am. And then they get busy. Forbes magazine has identified five things successful people accomplish before 8am when most of us are still swigging that second cup of coffee and looking for our car keys.

1. Exercise
People who successfully work out every day do it in the morning--before the phone calls, text messages and emails interrupt them and make them too tired to hit the treadmill later. Morning exercise not only gives you a health benefit of stronger bones and muscles and lower blood pressure, but also a sense of accomplishment.

2. Plan your day
Making both a to-do list of the minutiae and a goal list for the big picture is essential for the most productivity. Doing this in the morning allows not only for quiet reflection, but also the time and concentration to work the magic of time management and fit it all into the coming day's schedule.

3. Eat a healthy breakfast
It's long been known that people who eat breakfast are healthier than people who skip out the door with a cup of coffee and a doughnut. Take the time to eat a bowl of hot oatmeal or cold cereal to fuel your body for the demands of the day ahead. Bonus: It's a great time to socialize with your family.

4. Meditate or pray -- and then visualize
Take a few minutes to calm your mind and improve your mood. Think of it as quiet time for your head. Mediate or pray and then visualize your day ahead, focusing positive thoughts on the successes you will enjoy.

5. Make your day top heavy
Choose the most difficult (or dreaded) item on your to-do list and do it first. You'll bring your best energy to the task and get a great feeling of accomplishment when it's completed. Best of all, with the task done, you won't have it hanging over you


On this date in 1492, Christopher Columbus noted in his journal the use of tobacco among Indians, the first recorded reference to tobacco....