Jokes and Trivia for May 17, 2012

I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world.  This makes it hard to plan the day. – Elwyn Brooks White


138th day of 2012 with 228 to follow.

Holidays for Today:

*Galician Literature Day (Galicia, Spain) celebration of the Galician language and its literature

* World Information Society Day (UN)  commemorates the founding of the International Telecommunication Union

* Pack Rat Day

* Constitution Day (Norway)

* St. Paschal Baylon’s Day (patron of shepherds)

* National Cherry Cobbler Day



  • 1749 Edward Jenner, England, physician, discovered vaccination
  • 1836 Joseph Norman Lockyer, England, scientist/astronomer – discovered Helium, founded Nature magazine
  • 1885 Elvin Charles Stakman, Algoma, Wisconsin, plant pathologist, educator (established methods for identifying and combatting diseases of wheat and other important food crops)
  • 1911 Maureen O’Sullivan, Ireland, actress (Tarzan, Pride & Prejudice)
  • 1936 Dennis Hopper, Dodge City, Kansas, actor (True Grit, Blue Velvet, Easy Rider)
  • 1939 Gary Paulsen, Minneapolis, Minnesota, author (Tucket series, Hatchet series, World of Adventure series)
  • 1940 Alan Kay, Springfield, Massachusetts, computer scientist (pioneer object-oriented programming / windowing graphical user interface design)
  • 1946 F. Paul Wilson, Jersey City, New Jersey, author (Adversary Cycle, Repairman Jack, Sims, Healer)
  • 1956 “Sugar” Ray [Charles] Leonard, Wilmington, North Carolina, welter/middle/light-heavyweight boxing champion (Olympics-gold-76)
  • 1956 Bob Saget, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, comedian/actor (Danny-Full House, America’s Funniest Home Videos, Surviving Suburbia, Madagascar)
  • 1965 Paige Turco, Springfield, Massachusetts, actress (April/TMNT, Invincible)
  • 1966 Hill Harper, Iowa City, Iowa, actor (City on Angels, Sheldon Hawkes/CSI NY)
  • 1970 Matt Lindland, Oregon City, Oregon, mixed martial arts fighter (silver Greco-Roman wrestling 2000)
  • 1973 Sasha Alexander, Los Angeles, California, actress (Kate/NCIS, Wasteland, Dawson’s Creek, Yes Man, He’s Just Not That Into You, Rizzoli and Isles)
  • 1974 Sendhil Ramamurthy, Chicago, Illinois, actor (geneticist Mohinder Suresh/ Heroes)
  • 1985 Derek Hough, Salt Lake City, Utah, dancer and singer (Dancing w/the Stars, World Latin American Dance Champion)
  • 1988 Nikki Reed, Los Angeles, California, actress (Thirteen, Twilight Saga)


There is no finish line. – Nike advertisement



  • 1521 Edward Stafford, 3rd Duke of Buckingham, is executed for treason.
  • 1673 Louis Joliet and Jacques Marquette begin exploring the Mississippi River.
  • 1775 American Revolutionary War: the Continental Congress bans trade with Canada.
  • 1792 The New York Stock Exchange is formed.
  • 1839 Water wheel patented by Lorenzo Adkins.
  • 1849 A fire threatens to burn St. Louis, Missouri to the ground.
  • 1927 U.S. Army aviation pioneer, Major Harold Geiger, dies in the crash of his Airco DH.4 de Havilland plane at Olmstead Field, Pennsylvania.
  • 1943 The United States Army contracts with the University of Pennsylvania’s Moore School to develop the ENIAC.
  • 1943 World War II: the Dambuster Raids by No. 617 Squadron RAF on German dams.
  • 1954 The United States Supreme Court hands down a unanimous decision in Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas.
  • 1955 An atomic reactor patented by Fermi and Szilard.
  • 1973 Watergate scandal: Televised hearings begin in the United States Senate.
  • 1974 Police in Los Angeles, California, raid the Symbionese Liberation Army’s headquarters, killing six members, including Camilla Hall.
  • 1983 The U.S. Department of Energy declassifies documents showing world’s largest mercury pollution event in Oak Ridge, Tennessee (ultimately found to be 4.2 million pounds), in response to the Appalachian Observer’s Freedom of Information Act request.
  • 2004 Massachusetts becomes the first U.S. state to legalize same-sex marriage.
  • 2006 The aircraft carrier USS Oriskany is sunk in the Gulf of Mexico as an artificial reef.
  • 2007 Trains from North and South Korea cross the 38th Parallel in a test-run agreed by both governments. This is the first time that trains have crossed the Demilitarized Zone since 1953.
  • 2011 Queen Elizabeth II’s historic first visit to the Republic of Ireland. The first visit of a British monarch to Ireland since 1906.


A down-on-his-luck artist visits the art gallery where all of his paintings are on display. He sees the art dealer standing in front of the art gallery and accosts the latter, “So how did my paintings do today?”

The art dealer smiles and says, “Well, I got good news and bad news.”

“Well, give me the good news first. I haven’t had such luck these days,” sighs the struggling artist.

“This morning, a gentleman walks in and asks me if it is true that when an artist dies, his paintings will triple in value. I say yes and the gentleman then buys all 20 of your paintings on the spot – no questions asked. He even paid cash up front!”

“Hey, that’s really good news! The best I have heard in years!” shouts the artist joyfully as he does a little jig. He then stops and asks, “What’s the bad news?”

“The gentleman says he’s your doctor.”



  1. Never give me work in the morning. Always wait until 4:00 and then bring it to me. The challenge of a deadline is refreshing.2. If it’s really a rush job, run in and interrupt me every 10 minutes to inquire how it’s going. That helps. Or even better, hover behind me, advising me at every keystroke.3. Always leave without telling anyone where you’re going. It gives me a chance to be creative when someone asks where you are.4. If my arms are full of papers, boxes, books, or supplies, don’t open the door for me. I need to learn how to function as a paraplegic and opening doors with no arms is good training in case I should ever be injured and lose all use of my limbs.

    5. If you give me more than one job to do, don’t tell me which is the priority. I am psychic.

    6. Do your best to keep me late. I adore this office and really have nowhere to go or anything to do. I have no life beyond work.

    7. If a job I do pleases you, keep it a secret. If that gets out, it could mean a promotion.

    8. If you don’t like my work, tell everyone. I like my name to be popular in conversations. I was born to be whipped.

    9. If you have special instructions for a job, don’t write them down. In fact, save them until the job is almost done. No use confusing me with useful information.

    10. Never introduce me to the people you’re with. I have no right to know anything. In the corporate food chain, I am plankton. When you refer to them later, my shrewd deductions will identify them.

    11. Be nice to me only when the job I’m doing for you could really change your life and send you straight to manager’s hell.

    12. Tell me all your little problems. No one else has any and it’s nice to know someone is less fortunate. I especially like the story about having to pay so much taxes on the bonus check you received for being such a good manager.

    13. Wait until my yearly review and THEN tell me what my goals SHOULD have been. Give me a mediocre performance rating with a cost of living increase. I’m not here for the money anyway.




~When sign makers go on strike, is anything written on their signs?

~When you open a bag of cotton balls, is the top one meant to be thrown away?

~Where do forest rangers go to “get away from it all”?

~Why isn’t there mouse-flavored cat food?

~Why do they report power outages on TV?



~Rats have poor vision.

~ It is possible to group female or male rats together, though care should be taken when introducing a new rat.

~Rats can eat chocolate.

~Rats can also eat smaller pets – omnivores, and have enough predatory instinct left in them to consider birds, fish and even some smaller rodents as “snacks.”

~The oils in cedar and pine are toxic to rats, and should not be used in their bedding materials.

~A group of rats is called a mischief.

~Red discharge from a rat’s nose or eyes is usually porphyrin, not blood. Unlike blood, porphyrin is flourescent under UV light.

~Soda does not make rats explode.

~There has not been a record in the US of a human being catching rabies from a rat bite (Center of Disease Control, CDC).

~ Romans considered the rat to be a sign of good luck and Egyptians and Mayans worshiped rats.

~China: The first of the 12 animal symbols in Chinese Zodiac is the rat.


QUIP OF THE DAY: Happiness is in the heart, not in the circumstances.


Thought for the day. . .

Life becomes harder for us when we live for others, but it also becomes richer and happier.Albert Schweitzer