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Archive for August 11th, 2009

Today In History

What happened on this day in history, August 11?

–*In 335 A.D., Claudius Silvanus, in a remote hiding place, and not having the benefit of modern telephones or e-mail, fails to realize he’s been declared innocent of treason against the Roman Empire at trial, and so commits actual treason by declaring himself emperor.

–*In 2001, George Bush continues three-month long summer vacation.

–*In 1999, Amanda Jeffers, a college student in Des Moines, Iowa, declares to her mother that “let’s agree to disagree” is the lamest debate tactic ever used, and that her mother must concede her point.

–*In 1919, the Weimar Republic adopts its constitution, which its framers call the finest beacon of Democracy ever made, one that will likely last forever and ever.

–*In 1898, U.S troops enter the city of Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, freeing that city from … um … imperialism.

–*In 1965, The Watts Riots begin, launching several days of playful shenanigans and tomfoolery after cops have a comical “wanh-wanh” moment with a black motorist.

–*In 1994, 14-year-old student Tom K. Brim declares his julienned potatoes “taste like ass.” His bowdlerizing of the phrase “taste like my ass” is widely declared by linguists to be the beginnings of a coup in scatological slang.

–*In 1988, a fledgling group called Al-Qaeda is formed whose early club membership rules include being a good listener and having good manners.

–*1929, Babe Ruth hits his 500th home run in Cleveland, Ohio, in what we must simply hope was not due to performance enhancing drugs injected into his belly.

–*In 1956, the end of painter Jackson Pollock’s life in a car wreck turns out to be a messy and difficult-to-understand affair.

–*In 430 B.C., “Father of History” Herodotus invents “This Day In History” segments.

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