10 Facts About August 31

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1.  In 1897, Thomas Edison received a patent for the kinetographic camera, an ancestor of the motion picture projector.

2.  Henry VI became King of England – at the age of 9 months – in 1422.  (In comparison, my ability to gurgle inanely and lift my head at the age of 9 months seems like small potatoes.)

Don’t let your son marry this woman.

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10 Facts About “Boardwalk Empire”

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1.  It’s an HBO series, of course. 

2.  The first episode, which aired September 19, 2010, was directed by Martin Scorsese and cost $18 million.  (Don’t you just hate chintzy people?)

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10 Facts About Doctor Who’s TARDIS

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1.  The TARDIS is the Doctor’s irreplaceable time machine; the letters stand for Time And Relative Dimension In Space.  (Acronyms rock.)

2.  It looks like a blue police box, mainly  due to a problem with its “chameleon circuit” which occurred in the very first episode, leaving it stuck with this appearance from then on.  (And thank goodness for that faulty chameleon circuit!)

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10 Facts About the Telephone Book

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1.  The first phone book was published in 1878.  (The same year as Anna Karenina – really, the similarities are astoubnding!)

2.  It was only one page long and listed 50 businesses in New Haven, CT.  (New York is so jealous that New Haven was ahead of them on this one.)

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10 Facts About Pluto

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1.  It was famously “knocked down” from “planet” to “dwarf planet” by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) in 2006.  (Boo!  Hey, umpire, whattaya – blind???!!!!)

2.  On USA Network’s TV series Psych, that reclassification has been mentioned several times, often used as something of a pick-up line.  (“Did you hear about Pluto?  That’s messed up.”)  (Yes, I’m re-using this fact – but I can’t help it.  I really like it.)

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10 Facts About George “Superman” Reeves

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1.  The actor found his most lasting fame playing Superman and Clark Kent in the TV series The Adventures of Superman.  (I saw the show in reruns many years later and all I can say is, I bought it.)

2.  The Adventures of Superman was syndicated in the early days of TV, and so its exact air dates are hard to nail down, but it premiered September 19, 1952 and debuted its last original episode on April 28, 1958, for a total of 104 action-packed episodes.

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10 Facts About (& Recipes Using) Broccoli

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1.  Broccoli is a member of the cabbage family.  (Here’s a tasty broccoli-artichoke dip recipe – http://www.vegetariantimes.com/recipe/hot-broccoli-artichoke-dip/)

2.  It’s not fond of very hot weather and does better in cool weather (64-73 degree) climates.  (A white pizza with broccoli and mushrooms recipe is at http://www.vegetariantimes.com/recipe/white-pizza-with-broccoli-and-mushrooms/)

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10 Facts About Scottish Historical Figure Sir William Wallace

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1.  He was executed on August 23, 1305.  (Hence my choice of  him as subject of today’s post.  I’m nothing if not timely.)

2.  Wallace was one of the leading figures in the Scottish Wars of Independence.

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10 Facts About “Superman’s Girl Friend” Lois Lane

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1.  Lois was there from the beginning, in the first Superman story in Action Comics #1 (June, 1938).

2.  Lois has a younger sister, Lucy, who at one time was an airline flight attendant and had an on-again, off-again relationship with Jimmy Olsen. (Perhaps she eventually preferred the friendly skies to Jimmy’s friendly eyes.)

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10 Facts About Butterflies

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1.  A butterfly is a flying insect (big surprise, yes?)  that is most often active during the day.

2.  Butterflies belong to the order Lepidoptera, which includes moths as well as the three “Superfamilies” of butterflies, skipper butterflies and moth-butterflies.  (I didn’t know Lepidoptera had superfamilies?  Makes me wonder if there’s a butterfly Fortress of Solitude somewhere, and if sometimes a butterfly puts on glasses and disguises itself as a mild-mannered moth.)

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