Don Knotts would have been 86 today.
Happy birthday Cat Stevens. 62 today.
This was a hit song in the 1970s. It improved singing at my school assemblies where hymns weren’t generally regarded with much enthusiasm.
I’m not finished with Duncan Garner yet – Brian Edwards gives credit where it’s due.
Dinner with the Stars – Not PC asks where and in which period in history you’d pick as being the best in history in which you might get a large number of your heroes around a dinner party table. He also has a post on the malapropisms of refudiation.
Vagrant spotted in Parnell – Inquiring Mind gets satirical.
Under Aotearoan skies – goNZo Freakpower takes us star watching.
Star the nineteenth – In A Strange Land continues her stellar effort for Dry July.
Question (and answer) of the day – Keeping Stock found a gem from question time.
This Tuesday’s Poem is The Shape Of Words (desert love poem) by Odawni AJ Palmer.
It’s beautiful, and those who weren’t charmed by last week’s prose poem may be relieved to know this one is a poem poem (there has to be a better phrase than that).
One of the links in the sidebar led me to Stoatspring where Harvey McQueen had chosen A.R.D. Fairburn’s Song At Summer’s End.
The opening lines Down in the park the children play/rag-happy through the summer’s day . . . took me back to third form English where we learned the poem by heart and were introduced to the power of metaphor.
The Australian election campaign has only just opened but it will be difficult to top this quote:
“It would be better to attend campaign events fully clothed.”
It came from Prime Minister Julia Gillard in response to a stunt by Conrad French, who works at ALP Victorian election campaign HQ, and who interrupted opposition leader Tony Abbot while dressed only in speedos.
It’s a reminder of Don Brash’s “I don’t want any candidates talking about their testicles, to be quite frank.” after a comment from then-Tauranga MP Bob Clarkson.
Things like this may be amusing for onlookers and the media but are very frustrating for parties and their leaders who are trying to keep campaigns focussed and positive.
The people squealing in outrage at the proposed improvements to employment law labour under the misapprehension that all employers are bad and all employees are good.
They’re not. The changes are aimed at the few poor employees not the many good ones. That’s better than the existing regime which makes employing people harder for the many good employers because there are a few bad ones.
Employers aren’t going to request medical certificates, which they have to pay for, from every employee who takes a day or two off for illness once or twice. It will just be the few who abuse the system by regularly pulling sickies who are asked to prove they’re unwell.
When the law changed to allow workers to take up to three days off without needing proof of illness a meat company noticed a significant deterioration in employee health, particularly on Mondays and Fridays.
That came at considerable cost to the company and that ultimately impacts on its ability to pay its staff.
15/15 in this week’s Dominion Post political triva quiz.
Though Kiwiblog is right to say the answer given as correct to one question is subjective. For the answer given to be correct, the question should have been what was the most controversial issue from the National Party conference not at it.
The planned changes to Labour laws may have upset the left outside the conference but were greeted with enthusiasm by delegates inside.
On July 21:
285 Diocletian appointed Maximian as Caesar and co-ruler.
365 A tsunami caused by an earthquake estimated to be 8.0 on the Richter Scale devastated Alexandria, killing 5,000 people in Alexandria, and 45,000 more outside the city.
1403 Battle of Shrewsbury: King Henry IV defeated rebels to the north of Shropshire.
1545 The first landing of French troops on the coast of the Isle of Wight during the French invasion of the Isle of Wight.
1568 Eighty Years’ War: Battle of Jemmingen – Fernando Álvarez de Toledo, Duke of Alva defeated Louis of Nassau.
1718 The Treaty of Passarowitz between the Ottoman Empire, Austria and the Republic of Venice was signed.
1774 Russia and the Ottoman Empire signed the Treaty of Kuchuk-Kainarji ending the Russo-Turkish war.
1831 Inauguration of Léopold I of Belgium, first king of the Belgians.
1858 Alfred Henry O’Keeffe, New Zealand artist, was born (d. 1941).
1861 American Civil War: First Battle of Bull Run – the first major battle of the war began.
1865 Governor George Grey oversaw the capture of the Pai Marire (Hauhau) pa at Weraroa, Waitotara.
1873 Jesse James and the James-Younger gang pulled off the first successful train robbery in the American Old West.
1899 Ernest Hemingway, American writer, Nobel laureate, ws born (d. 1961).
1904 Louis Rigolly, became the first man to break the 100 mph (161 km/h) barrier on land. He drove a 15-liter Gobron-Brille in Ostend.
1918 U-156 shelled Nauset Beach, in Orleans, the first time that the United States was shelled since the Mexican-American War.
1920 Isaac Stern, Ukrainian-born violinist, was born (d. 2001).
1922 Mollie Sugden, British comedic actress, was born (d. 2009).
1924 Don Knotts, American actor, was born (d. 2006).
1925 Sir Malcolm Campbell became the first man to break the 150 mph (241 km/h) land barrier at Pendine Sands in Wales. He drove a Sunbeam to a two-way average of 150.33 mph (242 km/h).
1944 World War II: Battle of Guam – American troops land on Guam starting the battle.
1944 Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg and fellow conspirators were executed in Berlin, Germany for the July 20 plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler.
1946 Barry Whitwam, British musician (Herman’s Hermits), was born.
1948 Cat Stevens (Yusuf Islam), English singer/songwriter, was born.
1948 Garry Trudeau, American cartoonist, was born.
1949 Hirini Melbourne, New Zealand musician and composer, was born (d 2003).
1949 The United States Senate ratified the North Atlantic Treaty.
1951 Robin Williams, American comedian/actor. was born.
1953 Jeff Fatt, Chinese-Australian actor was born.
1954 First Indochina War: The Geneva Conference partitioned Vietnam into North Vietnam and South Vietnam.
1955 Howie Epstein, American musician (Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers), was born (d. 2003).
1956 Michael Connelly, American author, was born.
1959 Elijah Jerry “Pumpsie” Green became the first African-American to play for the Boston Red Sox, the last team to integrate.
1961 Jim Martin, American musician (Faith No More), was born.
1966 Sarah Waters, British novelist, was born.
1969 Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first men to walk on the Moon, during the Apollo 11 mission.
1970 After 11 years of construction, the Aswan High Dam in Egypt was completed.
1973 In the Lillehammer affair in Norway, Israeli Mossad agents killed a waiter whom they mistakenly thought was involved in 1972’s Munich Olympics Massacre.
1977 The start of a four day long Libyan-Egyptian War.
1983 The world’s lowest temperature was recorded at Vostok Station, Antarctica at −89.2°C (−129°F).
1994 Tony Blair was declared the winner of the leadership election of the British Labour Party, paving the way for him to become Prime Minister in 1997.
1995 Third Taiwan Strait Crisis: The People’s Liberation Army began firing missiles into the waters north of Taiwan.
1997 The fully restored USS Constitution (aka “Old Ironsides”) celebrates her 200th birthday by setting sail for the first time in 116 years.
2004 The United Kingdom government published Delivering Security in a Changing World, a paper detailing wide-ranging reform of the country’s armed forces.
2005 Four terrorist bombings in London – all four bombs failed to detonate.
2008 Bosnian-Serb war criminal Radovan Karadžić was arrested in Serbia and indicted by the UN’s ICTY tribunal.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia