Word of the day


Multiloquence – condition, quality or state of being multiloquent; use of many words; talkativeness, garrulousness.

Saturday’s smiles


A novice pilot called Michael was flying into Heathrow on the day after Christmas.

He couldn’t get the undercarriage down, so he called the control tower in panic and says, ‘Boxing Day, Boxing Day, Boxing Day!’

An air controller came back on the airwaves and said, ‘Michael, I think the call sign you’re looking for is: Mayday, Mayday, Mayday!’.

Saturday Soapbox


Saturday’s soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation. You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, amuse, bemuse or simply muse, but not abuse.

Every gift from a friend is a wish for your happiness. - Richard Bach

Every gift from a friend is a wish for your happinessRichard Bach.

December 26 in history


1135 – Coronation of King Stephen of England.

1481 – Battle of Westbrook – Holland defeated troops of Utrecht.

1620 Pilgrim Fathers landed at what became New Plymouth in Massachusetts.

1716  Thomas Gray, English writer, was born (d. 1771).

1780  Mary Fairfax Somerville, British mathematician, was born (d. 1872).

1791 Charles Babbage, English mathematician and inventor, was born (d. 1871).

1860  The first ever inter-club football match took place between Hallam F.C. and Sheffield F.C. at the Sandygate Road ground in Sheffield.

1862 Four nuns serving as volunteer nurses on board USS Red Roverwere the first female nurses on a U.S. Navy hospital ship.

1870 The 12.8-km long Fréjus Rail Tunnel through the Alps was completed.

1871 – Gilbert and Sullivan collaborated for the first time, on their lost opera, Thespis.

1879 In Christchurch, 30 Catholic Irishmen attacked an Orange (Protestant) procession with pick-handles, while in Timaru 150 men from Thomas O’Driscoll’s Hibernian Hotel surrounded Orangemen and prevented their procession taking place.

Sectarian violence in Canterbury

1891 Henry Miller, American writer, was born  (d. 1980).

1893 Mao Zedong, Chinese military leader and politician, was born (d. 1976).

1898 Marie and Pierre Curie announced the isolation of radium.

1919   Babe Ruth of the Boston Red Sox was sold to the New York Yankees by owner Harry Frazee.

1933 FM radio was patented.

1935 – Abdul “Duke” Fakir, American singer (The Four Tops), was born.

1940 –  Phil Spector, American music producer, was born.

1942 Marco Vinicio Cerezo Arévalo, Guatemalan president, was born.

1949 José Ramos-Horta, President of East Timor, Nobel laureate, was born.

1953 Leonel Fernández, President of the Dominican Republic, was born.

1953 Toomas Hendrik Ilves, President of Estonia, was born.

1980 Aeroflot put the Ilyushin Il-86 into service.

1982 Time Magazine’s Man of the Year was for the first time a non-human, the personal computer.

1986 World Population reached 5 billion according to www.ibiblio.orgworld population tracker.

1991  The Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union met and formally dissolved the USSR.

2003 A magnitude 6.6 earthquake devastated southeast Iranian city ofBam, killing tens of thousands and destroying the citadel of Arg-é Bam.

2004 A 9.0 magnitude earthquake created a tsunami causing devastation in Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, the Maldives and many other areas around the rim of the Indian Ocean, killing 230,000 people.

2004 – Orange Revolution: The final run-off election in Ukraine was held under heavy international scrutiny.

2006 – An oil pipeline in Lagos, Nigeria exploded, killing at least 260 people.

2006 The 2006 Hengchun earthquake (7.1 magnitude)  hit Taiwan.

2009 – China opened the world’s longest high-speed rail route, which links Beijing and Guangzhou.

2011 –  Cyclone Dagmar swept over Scandinavia, deracinating trees, disrupting public traffic, and destroying buildings.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.

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