Monday, 31 October 2016

The Mystery of the disappearance of Agatha Christie

The Mystery of the disappearance of Agatha Christie
 
Agatha Christie was an English novelist, specialising in crime and mysteries, and also a Dame. Not the panto kind, the real kind.
 
The Guinness Book of Records lists Agatha Christie as the best selling novelist of all time, selling over 2 billion copies, mostly to my grandmother, who really loved them. Every time she went to a car-boot sale, my gran would pick up a Hercule Poirot novel or Jane Marple novel, even if she had bought one the previous week. Yes, my gran was bat-shit crazy.
 
Much like Agatha Christie.
 
But, unlike my grandmother, Christie was nutso-whacko because she had been kidnapped by aliens who had stripped her naked before taking her. Or she was taken by a giant wasp and Doctor Who.
 
I kid you not.
 
In 1926, Agatha Christie's husband had asked for a divorce. It probably has nothing to do with it, but I thought I'd mention it nonetheless.
 
December 3rd 1926, after a huge argument, Archie stormed out the family home to go spend the weekend with his new love, Nancy Neele. That night, Agatha left the house leaving behind a steamy dump on her husband's favourite dressing gown, and a letter for her secretary telling of her plans to spend the next few days in Yorkshire.
 
Agatha Christie's car was found perched above a chalk quarry at Newlands Corner. Inside was an expired driving licence, and her clothes.
 
Her Alien Abduction caused a massive public outcry. Even the Home Secretary got involved, pressurizing the police to launch a massive manhunt which included over 1000 police officers and 15,000 volunteers.
 
When they realised Agatha was a woman, they changed it to a woman-hunt. A newspaper also offered a £100 reward.
 
They didn't find Agatha Christie, despite the fact Sir Arthur Conan Doyle got involved, approaching a medium to help in the search.
 
Ten days later, Agatha was found at Swan Hydropathic hotel in Harrogate, Yorkshire, under the name Mrs Teresa Neele (the name of her husband's bit on the side). She claims to have no memory of those ten days, or how she got to Yorkshire.
 
That's because the Aliens mind-wiped her before returning her to Earth after all the probing.

Sunday, 30 October 2016

History Fun Facts October 30

Historical facts for October 30
 
On This Day In History in 1485, King Henry VII of England was crowned King of England.
 
Henry-The-Father-Of-The-famous-One, seventh of his name was the last king to win the crown on the field of battle. That field of battle was The Battle of Bosworth Field, both a battle, and an actual field. He was fighting against the child and nephew killer, Richard III.
 
When Henry VII died in 1509, his son, Henry VIII became King of England. Wow, that's like fifteen Henrys.
 
Upon ascending to the kinglyshop of the land of Eng, Henry climbed on top of the tallest pauper and sang, "I'm Henry the 8th I am. Henry the 8th, I am I am. I've been married to the girl next door, she's been married seven times before. But I'll only be married once, as I'm a loyal and trustworthy husband."
 
On This Day In History in 1905, Tsar Nicholas II of Russia issued the October Manifesto, which granted the people of Russia basic civil liberties and the right to form a Duma.
 
Tsar Nicholas II of Russia was forced to abdicate the Russian throne in March 1917 and, as such, was the last Tsar of Russia. He was also known as Nicholas the Bloody, perhaps due to a strange ritual of covering himself with hedgehog blood before he defecated.
 
His name Nicholas the Bloody might also have referred to him killing anyone who had a bad word to say about him. Anyone who looked at him funny. And anyone who mocked his hedgehog-blood-defecation ritual. It included an awful lot of people. That hedgehog thing is just weird.
 
Nicholas abdicated after the February Revolution, held in 1917, in February. The February Revolution was followed later that year by a revolution in October, called, err, wait a minute, I always forget the name of that one. The October Revolution. Yes, The October Revolution.
 
Anyways, the February and October Revolutions brought with them the downfall of Nicholas II and three hundred years of Romanov rule.
 

Stranger News: Church angry at German Men taking the piss

ALSO IN THE NEWS: CHURCH ANGRY AT GERMAN MEN TAKING THE PISS

Ulm Minster, in Germany, which has the world's largest church tower, is having a problem with men spending a penny on the church.
 
The urine is destroying the stone base and the fear is that the church may collapse in the future if men continue to syphon the python on the structure.
 
As a punishment for blokes taking a leak the Pee-Police have doubled the fine for those caught to 100 euros.
 
However it seems to have made little difference.
 
Michael Hilbert, head of the department that maintains the building, and a semi-professional peepeeping Tom, said, "I've been keeping an eye on it for half a year now and, once again, it's coated with urine and vomit."
 


HISTORICAL FUN: On This Day In History Humorous Facts for October 29th

Kite Fun

Check out: Fun Facts About Kites and how to make your own homemade kite

Stranger News: Brides banned from dancing at their own weddings

Also in the news: Some of the Stranger News stories

Brides banned from dancing at their own weddings.
 
They are also banned from cutting the wedding cake with their new husband.
 
The Mayor of Grozny, in the Russian republic of Chechnya, banned cake cutting and any indecent dance moves at Chechen weddings.
 
The bans on cake cutting and indecent dance moves, as well as showing up drunk and being dressed in a way "that doesn't conform with the Chechen mentality" are an attempt by the Mayor to "Safeguard the spiritual and moral development" of young Chechens from what it believes are increasingly Western influences.
 
Whilst dancing, partners must be held at arms length. And under no circumstances should the bride be allowed to dance.
 
All Weddings in Chechnya will be observed by officials who will immediately put a stop to any inappropriate behaviour they witness.
 
Acting Minister of Culture, Khozh Baudi Daayev, said, "Our special working groups will stop proceedings if they see clothing or dance moves deemed alien to our national customs and traditions."
 
The Morality Police, as local media have dubbed them, will stop any proceedings.
 
President Ramzan Kadyrov has condemned "Western cultural imports."
 
These include: drinking alcohol, the bride and groom cutting their wedding cake together, wearing of skimpy clothing, celebratory gunfire, and spontaneous dancing.
 
There are mixed reactions to the Morality Police monitoring weddings in Grozny.
 
One local resident said: "The authorities are trying to control the public as much as possible. What next, are they going to monitor funerals?"
 
Another commented: "They are right to do this. Traditional weddings often turn into discos."
 
What would you prefer, a traditional wedding or a disco? Comment below.


Kite Fun

Check out: Fun Facts About Kites and how to make your own homemade kite

Saturday, 29 October 2016

History Fun Facts October 29th

HISTORICAL FUN FACTS for OCTOBER 29th

On This Day in 437, Valentinian III married Licinia Eudozia.
 
Valentinian III became Roman Emperor at the age of six years. Thanks to various marriages, births, assassinations, appointments, political dealings and one case of bonking between an aunt and a goat, Valentinian III was the son, grandson, great-grandson, cousin, and nephew (twice over), and pet, of Roman Emperors.
 
Through the marriage to Licinia Eudoxia, the two branches of the House of Theodosius were united.
 
Licinia was the daughter of Valentinian's cousin, Theodosius II, the Eastern Roman Emperor in Constantinople. Nothing like keeping it in the family. Bunch of sickos.
 
On the 16th of March, 455, Emperor Valentinian was assassinated in Rome.
 
Valentinian was in Rome, out on the Campus Martius, about to do a spot of archery practice. He was with his friend and adviser, Heraclius, no relation to Hercules.
 
As they dismounted their horses, Optelas and Thraustelas, both real names, who had been devout followers of the now undead zombie General Aetius, attacked the Emperor with their swords.
 
Optelas swiped at Valentinian's head -- a glancing blow.
 
Valentinian turned to see what occurrence had interrupted his tranquillity on this splendid, sunny ... what the heck is all this blood pouring from the side of my head?
 
Optelas then delivered the death-strike. Right in the throat. All the way through. Right up to the hilt and then he pushed his hand and arm through the slit. And then his head and shoulders. He couldn't stop there. He climbed all the way through the hole, emerging on the other side covered in honey.
 
At the same time, Thraustelas, compatriot of Optelas-Honey-Monster, struck down the Emperor's companion, Heraclius. He stabbed him with the pointy end.
 
It was rumoured at the time, that these two men were goaded into killing the Emperor and Heraclius by Petronius Maximus, as his political advancement had been dealt a crippling blow by Heraclius.
 
The Emperor had also raped Maximus' wife, Lucina. So, there's a motivation that also sounds plausible.
 
Onlookers, and a dude called Priscus, noted an odd situation following the death of the Emperor.
 
True Story: As Valentinian lay dead on the ground, a swarm of bees appeared from nowhere, circled the Emperor's body, and then landed on it and sucked up all his blood.
 
Now, I know what you're thinking. I made that last bit up, as these articles have "added humour." However, that was an actual account from Priscus. The Bees swarmed the Emperor's body and sucked up his blood.
 
Weird.
 
On This Day In History, 1618, Sir Walter Raleigh was beheaded for allegedly conspiring against the English King, James I.
 
Walter Raleigh was a one time favourite of Queen Elizabeth I of England. Not saying they played does-the-rug-match-the-curtains, but it's entirely possible.
 
In Brief: On March 20th, 1616, after 13 years, Sir Walter Raleigh was freed from his prison in the Tower of London.
 
As I said, Sir Walter Raleigh was the one-time favourite of Queen Elizabeth-I-Am-Ginger-It's-Not-A-Wig. Although they did have their rocky patches in an on-off and off-on and almost Off-With-His-Head relationship.
 
In March 1603, Sir Walter Raleigh and the Queen of Virgins were best of buds. Raleigh was in the good books of the monarch and stood to profit from her generosity.
 
Then, on the 23rd of March, she kicked the bucket.
 
As Sir Walter Raleigh said, "Oh, carp-on-a-stick."
 
Elizabeth the first's successor, King James-Just-Got-An-Upgrade, took a disliking to Sir Walter Raleigh.
 
Probably due in no small part to a clash of personalities. King James, although 1st of England, had been King James VI of Scotland.
 
A suave, dashing, charismatic English knight of the Realm, versus the Scottish-Turned-English-But-Still-Scottish King.
 
There were some differences between them, to say the least.
 
On the 19th of July, 1603, Walter Raleigh was arrested and charged with treason.
 
He'd been implicated in the Main Plot, the first but not the last plot that decade, to overthrow King James' rule.
 
OFF WITH HIS HEAD.
 
Not yet. There has to be a trial. Sheesh, you guys are bloodthirsty.
 
Sir Walter Raleigh was imprisoned in the Tower of London - where good men go to die.
 
On the 17th November, 1603, the trial began in the Great Hall of Winchester Castle.
 
Although, some might say, the outcome had all ready been decided. But not me. I have confidence.
 
All those present approached the trial free from any preconceived ideas of Raleigh's guilt. They'd look at the evidence and decided fairly.
 
The main evidence against Sir Walter Raleigh at his trial consisted of a sworn confession from Henry Brooke, the 11th Baron Cobham. Incidentally, Raleigh and Cobham were best of friends. Obviously not after Raleigh found out Cobham had just stabbed him in the back. But, back in the day, they used to do a spot of ten-pin hedgehog bowling at the local pub.
 
Sir Walter Raleigh demanded Cobham be summoned to testify at the trial.
 
On the first day, Raleigh spoke quite passionately and insisted the evidence was mere hearsay: "Let my accuser come face to face and be deposed. Were the case but for a small copyhold, you would have witnesses or good proof to lead the jury to a verdict. And I am here for my LIFE."
 
Nothing worked. The court refused to summon Cobham and allow him to be cross-examined by Raleigh, who was acting as his own attorney. Not a great idea. But given the foregone conclusion of the outcome of the trial, it probably didn't matter.
 
Sir Walter Raleigh was found guilty of treason.
 
OFF WITH HIS HEAD.
 
Sheesh, what is wrong with you guys?
 
Not "off with his head". King James decided to spare Raleigh's life. Instead, he was imprisoned in the Tower of London, never to be set free.
 
However, on the 20th of March, 1616, Raleigh walked free from the Tower.
 
Fun Fact: Walter Raleigh's son, Carew, was conceived and born whilst Raleigh was imprisoned in the Tower of London.
 
The following year, in 1617, Raleigh was pardoned by the King. He was then told to sail across the oceans in a great second expedition to Venezuela in search of El Dorado and its famous stash of gold.
 
And if you happen to find any dinosaurs, bring one of those back, too. Preferably a T-Rex. There're awesome.
 
But, alas, no gold and no dinosaurs. What a jerk.
 
It's probably why James I of England decided to seal Sir Walter Raleigh's fate. He was eventually executed in an Off-With-His-Head ceremony on this day in history, 1618.

War between Lindsay Lohan and Kettering town escalates

War between Lindsay Lohan and Kettering escalates

UPDATE: It is now likely that Lindsay Lohan won't turn on the Christmas Lights in Kettering on November 24th.
 
Unconfirmed rumours have it that Lindsay Lohan turned down Kettering Borough Council's offer.
 
Instead, Cheryl Fergison, who played Heather Trott in Eastenders, will switch on the lights in Kettering this year.
 
More on this in tomorrow's blog post.

The Story with Lindsay Lohan and Kettering's Christmas Lights

Back in June, on the date of the European Union exit vote, Lindsay Lohan tweeted that she had no idea where Kettering was, after her disagreeing with Kettering voting to leave the EU.
 
It got the Kettering MP, Philip Hollobone, fuming. She soon apologised, deleted the tweet and, after an invite from the Conservative MP, agreed to come to Kettering to switch on the Christmas lights.
 
Everyone was jumping with joy. It would surely be a huge coup to get an A-List Hollywood star to come to the sleepy midlands town for the big Christmas lights turn-on.

In the past, Kettering could only arrange not-quite stars to push the button. Daren Day, a star of the West End, and former "I'm a Celebrity, get me out of here," contestant has had the honour. As has Jake Wood, who played Max Branning in the television soap, Eastenders.

So, if Hollywood came to Kettering, it would be a huge boost for the town, known only as the "Home of Weetabix."

But it's never that simple. A war was brewing.

Kettering Borough Council repeatedly said they had tried to get in contact with Lindsay Lohan, but the Mean Girl's star had just ignored them.
 
Philip Hollobone told BBC news, "She said she would come and switch on the Christmas lights at Kettering but, despite everyone's best efforts, it's simply not possible to track her down."
 
Hollobone added, "I'm a great believer in if you have made a pledge, then you should honour it. However, the people of Kettering know what celebrities can be like, so we weren't counting our chickens too much."
 
A few days ago, Kettering Borough Council confirmed, "We have made direct contact with Lindsay Lohan's representatives."
  
They added, "Understandably, Lindsay Lohan is very busy, but her representatives are looking to see whether she can make it work."
 
But that's not the whole story.
 
Philip Hollobone MP, told BBC news they had made "multiple" efforts to contact Lindsay Lohan about coming to Kettering, but were unsuccessful.
 
"Despite everyone's best efforts, it's simply not possible to track her down."
 
However, a representative for Lindsay Lohan has revealed they hadn't, in fact, heard anything at all from either Philip Hollobone, or Kettering Borough Council.
 
Their combined efforts to try and embarrass Lindsay, or shame her into honouring the tweet she made about turning on the Christmas lights in Kettering, was shameful.
 
But Kettering Borough Council have now made contact.
 
The representative told the Independent Newspaper: "We heard from the council for the first time late yesterday afternoon. Any claims Philip Hollobone made that he tried to get in touch with her by official means are completely unfounded."
 
He added: "Lindsay will be there if her schedule allows."
 
Kettering Borough Council have now backtracked. A spokesperson has come out and said, "All the efforts we made were in the public arena."
 
Adding: "Due to the limited resources available to them, the council struggled to find the best official contact for her."
 
They also apologised for any misunderstanding caused.
 
Kettering Borough Council are now in talks with Lindsay Lohan's agent to arrange for her to come to Kettering to switch on their Christmas Lights, which would be a huge boost for the town, and a night to remember for all residents.
 
Philip Hollobone issued a statement: "It is great news that contact between Kettering Council and Lindsay Lohan has now been made."
 
He went on to say: "Everyone understands that Lindsay Lohan is a world famous actress and a busy person. Clearly, if she makes time from her busy schedule to attend, everyone in Kettering and across the UK would regard her as a really good sport."

Read the previous stories about Lindsay Lohan

Lindsay Lohan to switch on Kettering town's Christmas Lights

Lindsay Lohan in hiding over Christmas lights debacle

Friday, 28 October 2016

History Fun Facts for October 28th

Historical Fun Facts for October 28th

On the 28th of October, 1919, the United States Congress, in their infinite wisdom, passed the Volstead Act, even though the American President, Woodrow Wilson, vetoed it.
 
This act paved the way for Prohibition to begin the following January.
 
Of course, for those who don't know, Prohibition was the banning of Alcohol. Not a great day for, well, pretty much everyone. Because, as everyone knows, the three things humans need for survival and sanity are Alcohol, Bacon, and a decent WiFi signal.
 
On the 28th of October, 1958, John XXIII was elected Pope of the Planet Earth.
 
Legend has it, that when a Pope is elected, he has to sit on a chair which has a hole in the centre, whilst wearing no under-crackers, so that his testicles dangle through the hole.
 
The Cardinals then have to look up as he is carried through the hall to check they do, in fact, dangle.
 
This is due to the unfortunate election of Pope Joan, a woman, as Pope a thousand years ago, who went undiscovered until she gave birth to a child. Soon after, she was stoned to death in the streets, and forever after, the newly elected Pope must prove he has dingily-dangilies.

Lindsay Lohan will switch on Kettering's Christmas Lights

Lindsay Lohan to switch on Kettering town's Christmas Lights
 
In yesterday's post, I reported that Lindsay Lohan made a promise to the people of Kettering to switch on their Christmas lights.
 
 
She made the promise after she tweeted that she had no idea where Kettering was. It got the Kettering MP, Philip Hollobone, fuming.
 
After Lindsay Lohan's utterly disgusting and offensive tweet on the night of the European Union referendum, Mr Hollobone invited her to come to Kettering to switch on their Christmas lights.
 
In his words, "To redeem her political reputation."
 
Yes, apparently she has a political reputation. Who knew?
 
Lindsay Lohan responded to the Kettering Member of Parliament: "Direct message me about your offer. Would be happy to light the Christmas tree in Kettering."
 
Kettering Borough Council jumped on the bandwagon and repeatedly tried to contact the Mean Girl, who lived up to the title of being a Mean Girl, and ignored them.
 
Philip Hollobone told BBC news, "She said she would come and switch on the Christmas lights at Kettering but, despite everyone's best efforts, it's simply not possible to track her down."
 
Hollobone added, "I'm a great believer in if you have made a pledge, then you should honour it. However, the people of Kettering know what celebrities can be like, so we weren't counting our chickens too much."
 
But he may get his Christmas wish after all.
 
Lindsay Lohan WILL turn on Kettering's Christmas lights, probably.
 
Yes, Lindsay Lohan may yet travel to the Northamptonshire town of Kettering to switch on the Christmas lights.
 
Hopefully, if she does, Kettering Borough Council will purchase a few more lights. Kettering is famous, not just for its Weetabix, or Cheaney's and Loake's shoes, but for also having some of the most dismal Christmas decorations in the country.
 
One local resident said, "They are terrible. A few strands of lights dotted around with half the bulbs blown, doesn't make for a great Christmas atmosphere. Lindsay Lohan would be sickened to see them if she came here."
 
Another wrote: Last year, they had about twenty lights on a tree that were just thrown on from a nearby building. It didn't look good.
 
Kettering has finally made contact with Lindsay Lohan
 
"We can confirm," said a Kettering Borough Council spokesman, "that we have made direct contact with Lindsay Lohan's representatives."
 
But would she really come to Kettering?
 
Lindsay Lohan is having a few difficulties at the moment. She could be facing the possibility of bankruptcy.
 
Lohan has until November 8th to pay a bill of £77,600 for her £3.5million London apartment after being issued with legal papers. If she doesn't pay up, her creditors will petition the court for her bankruptcy.
 
Kettering Borough Council said, "Understandably, Lindsay Lohan is very busy, but her representatives are looking to see whether she can make it work."
 
So, Kettering may yet get a Hollywood star to do the big switch-on.
 
Watch this space for updates.
 
However, there are some residents of Kettering who are hoping to have Sonia from Eastenders (a British soap-opera) turn on the lights on November 24th.
 
Her storyline in the long-running television show famously saw her move from Albert Square in the East End of London, to Kettering, Northamptonshire, to pursue her dream job in private healthcare.
 

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Chinese city inundated with clean butts

Also in the news (a glance at some stranger news stories):
 
Butts, there are too many butts.
 
One Chineses city has had to stop offering tissues for butts because of too many butts.
 
In Shengzhou, Zhejuang Province, China, people were encoured to collect discarded cigarette butts from the streets and hand them in for a reward of a pack of tissues.
 
They were rewarded with a pack of tissues for every 50 cigarette butts they collected and handed in.
 
It proved popular. Way too popular.

There were butts everywhere. However, not a lot of dirty butts. And you only get tissues for dirty butts.

They were inundated with butts. Almost five million of them. But the authorities cried foul play as the butts didn't seem to be dirty enough.

They believed people were shipping the butts from out of the city as they were just too clean to have been picked up from the streets.

One old lady had over 9,000 butts. Probably from her own personal supply. She smoked a lot. Reminds me of my grandmother. That'd be about a week's supply.

Also In The News

Lindsay Lohan goes missing after Christmas Lights Debacle

Gorilla Escapes London Zoo and Downs Five Litres of Undiluted Blackcurrant Squash

Lindsay Lohan in hiding over Christmas lights debacle

Lindsay Lohan is a really Mean Girl
 
She made a promise to the people of Kettering to switch on their Christmas lights, and now she can't be found.
 
Back during the whole Brexit fiasco, where Britain voted to leave the European Union, Lindsay dissed the town in a tweet. Well, dissed is a strong word, she basically asked where in hell Kettering was located.
 
Right on the outskirts, it would seem.
 
Actually, it's in Northamptonshire, in the middle of England. Or, the middle of nowhere, and on the road to hell.
 
The town's MP, Philip Hollobone responded, "Everyone knows where Kettering is, it's famous as the home of Weetabix."
 
Weetabix is located in the village of Burton Latimer, just outside Kettering. But that's just splitting hairs.
 
After Lindsay Lohan's utterly disgusting and offensive tweet on the night of the European Union referendum, Mr Hollobone invited her to come to Kettering to switch on their Christmas lights. In his words, "To redeem her political reputation."
 
Lindsay Lohan responded, "Direct message me about your offer. Would be happy to light the Christmas tree in Kettering."
 
Yet, Kettering Borough Council have said they can't reach the Mean Girl.
 
Philip Hollobone told the BBC, "She said she would come and switch on the Christmas lights at Kettering but, despite everyone's best efforts, it's simply not possible to track her down."
 
On November 24th, the Christmas lights in Kettering are due to be switched-on. All four of them. Yep, that's the total number of lights at Kettering's disposal.
 
So if Lohan is going to switch them on, assuming all of the bulbs have been replaced, "she needs to know when and where she needs to be," according to Mr Hollobone.
 
He went on to add, "The message is, Lindsay Lohan, please get in touch, your public awaits. And remember, Kettering is only an hour from London on the train."
 
Where is Lindsay Lohan?
 
It's entirely possible she was sent to prison by a military court for a crime she didn't commit. She promptly escaped from the maximum-security stockade to the Los Angeles underground.
 
Today, we believe she is still wanted by the government, and survives as a soldier of fortune. However, it has be rumoured that if you have a problem with your Christmas lights switch-on, and if no one else can help, and if you can actually find her, then maybe, just maybe, you can hire ... Lindsay Lohan.
 

Theodore Roosevelt and the Teddy Bear Massacre

History Fun Fact for October 27th

On the 27th October, 1858, Theodore Roosevelt was born.

He would later become an American Colonel and, of course, the 26th President of the United States of America.
 
But his most famous achievement was winning the costly war of the Cuddly Toy Revolution.
 
It's an almost forgotten part of American history.
 
Started by a small fluffy bear, the war escalated until Theodore Roosevelt took direct control of the American forces and utterly destroyed the Cuddly Toy Revolution, which led to the subjugation of all cuddly toys from then until all of eternity.
 
The cuddly teddy bears didn't count on the courage of Theodore Roosevelt, and his ability to venture into the woods in disguise. And, although Roosevelt got a surprise when he went down to the woods that day, he composed himself and massacred every last bear whilst they were eating quiche.
 
Thus, after that frightful and terrifying day, Roosevelt, as a badge of honour, was forever known as Teddy Roosevelt.

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

History Fun Facts October 26th

HISTORICAL FUN FACTS for OCTOBER 26th

On This Day in History, October 26th, 899, Alfred The Great died.
 
By many historians, Alfred the Great was considered to be the first King of England. His cause of death  is not known, however, due to accounts of his life and his symptoms, it is thought he may have had Crohn's disease.
 
[Writer's personal note: I find that interesting as I have Crohn's disease.]
 
It is also thought Alfred's grandson also suffered from Crohn's.
 
Alfred the Great was King of Wessex from 871, and later, King of England, if you don't count the parts he wasn't. Which we don't. He was also the only English monarch to be officially called "Great." Obviously we don't count Cnut the Great, as he doesn't count. As he was a right Cnut.
 
Alfred the Great's father, Aethelwulf, was King of Wessex, as were three of his older brothers, Aethelbald, Ethelbert, and Ethelred. Alfred became king by default of not dying young.
 
Legend has it, after Alfred's army was defeated by the Viking invaders, they dispersed and Alfred fled into the countryside. He came across a old woman, not like that you sicko, who was baking some cakes in her hut.
 
Alfred was starving and in need of food. He begged the old woman for food and shelter. She took pity on the King, although she didn't actually know he was the king, but thought he was just and withered man in need of help.
 
She instructed him to watch her cakes, baking in her oven, whilst she milked her cow. Not a euphemism. He promised her the cakes were safe in his hands.
 
However, he had much on his mind. Not least, how to rebuild his army, formulate a battle plan, and defeat those Viking invaders, so he could reclaim his kingdom.
 
The woman returned after satisfying the cow to find her cakes smoking in the oven.
 
"You lazy little fecker," she screamed. "You were given one flipping job to do and you couldn't even do it."
 
She hit him over the head with a stick and the king went hungry into the night.
 
Not long afterwards, Alfred the Great gathered his new army and battled the Vikings, defeating them and winning back his throne.
 
On the 26th of October, 1775, King George III of Great Britain, the nutso-crazy-bonkers king, went before the British Parliament and declared the American colonies in rebellion, authorizing a military response to destroy the American Revolution.
 
Not saying being crazy, nutso, bonkers and declaring war on the Colony were connected, but it's possible.
 
On the 26th of October, 1776, Benjamin Franklin left for a nice holiday in France.
 
Not, of course, to try and get French support for the American Revolution. He just liked croissants and frogs legs. Also, the wine. Oh, boy, did he like the wine.
 
On the 26th of October, 1881, in a little place called Tombstone in Arizona, the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral raged, killing three ducks and a turkey.
 
On the 26th of October, 1999, Britain's House of Lords voted to end the right of hereditary peers to vote in Parliament.
 
It was around the same time the smell of urine disappeared from the House of Lords. Not sure if that's a coincidence.
 

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Fun History Facts for October 25th

Historical Fun Facts October 25th

On This Day In History, October 25th, 1154, The Anarchy was over, at least for King Stephen of England, as he died.
 
Yes, you heard me correctly, there was a king of England called Stephen. He was often called Stephen of Blois, or You-Utter-Git, by his cousin, Matilda.
 
Stephen of Blois was the grandson of William the Conqueror and King of England between 1135 until his death in 1154.
 
His reign was troubled, to say the least. Most of it was referred to as The Anarchy, as he was fighting a civil war with his cousin, The Empress Matilda, who also claimed the throne.
 
Matilda, who was almost, perhaps, probably not, maybe technically, but unlikely, the Queen of England for a few days, lost her fight to rule England. However, after the death of King Stephen, Matilda's son, Henry II, became King of England.

On the 25th October, 1415, King Henry V of England and his army, as he didn't do it on his own, although he did try, defeated the French (yes, all of them) at the Battle of Agincourt.

The French army was far larger than the English army. The French had up to 36,000 troops, and anywhere between 10,000 and 15,000 were killed.
 
The English army totalled about 9,000 and around 112 were killed.
 
Crikey Mr Spikey, that's a huge difference.
 
King Henry V of England actually took part in hand-to-hand combat, and even the odd bit of head-butting and shin-kicking. However, Charles VI, the French King at the time, was suffering from Me-Is-Big-Chicken syndrome and was therefore unable to personally fight.
 
On This Day in History, October 25th, 1760, King George II died whilst having a crap on his toilet.
 
The half blind, almost deaf King rose early in the morning. After drinking a nice cup of hot chocolate, he did what most people do, and took a poo, yes a number two, in the loo.
 
His valet heard a loud crash, like thunder. That was one heck of a dump.
 
He rushed into the bog to find the King on the floor, ever so slightly soiled. Feel sorry for the guy cleaning up that mess.
 
The valet carried the king to his bed, but he was already dead.
 
 
On This Day In History, October 25th, 1760, King George III became King of Great Britain.
 
King George III ruled Great Britain for 60 years, one of the longest reigns of any monarch in British history.
 
It wasn't without its troubles, though.
 
George-The-Turd-Thrower enjoyed taking a dump on the throne and chucking it out the window at the commoners. He did this on instructions from the gorilla in the purple tutu.
 
Yes, in case you had no doubt, George-Third-Of-His-Name was nutso-bonkers-crazy.
 
King George III was the third British Monarch of the House of Hanover and was also King of Hanover at the same time. And, unlike the previous two Georges, he was actually born in England. He also spoke English, and Klingon when conversing with the tutu-clad gorilla, and never actually visited Hanover.
 
But, George III is best known for having many episodes of insanity. They took over his life in 1810, so much so, his son, the Prince of Wales took over running the country as Prince Regent.
 
Upon the death of his father on January 29th, 1820, the Prince Regent became King George IV.
 
Fun Fact About George III: On May 15th, 1800 King George III of the United Kingdom survived two separate assassination attempts on one day.
 
That's crazy. But not as crazy-bonkers-nutso as the king, who was whacko-jacko.
 
Ironically, James Hadfield, who unsuccessfully attempted to assassinate the king that day, was later tried and then acquitted by reason of insanity.

Monday, 24 October 2016

History Fun Facts October 24th

HISTORICAL FACT for OCTOBER 24th

On This Day in 1537, Jane Seymour, third wife of Henry VIII, died.
 
Jane Seymour became the wife of Henry-Eight-All-The-Pies, and Queen of England, after the rather unfortunate and unpredictable death of her predecessor, Anne Boleyn.
 
Jane Seymour died after postnatal complications almost two weeks after the birth of her son, who later became King Edward VI of England.
 
Because of her successfully giving Henry VIII a son, because he didn't like daughters, she was the only one of Henry VIII's wives to get a Queen's funeral.
 
Plus, as an extra special treat, she was the only one to be buried beside the King in St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle.
 
On This Day In History in 1851, William Lassell discovered something remarkable through his telescope.
 
Yep, he noticed you doing naked Yoga and he eye-spied the moons Umbriel and Ariel orbiting Uranus.
 
Must wipe more thoroughly in future.
 
Also on This Day In History
 
The Roman Emperor Domitian was born on this day in history in 51 AD.
 

Sunday, 23 October 2016

The Assassination of Roman Emperor Domitian

The Assassination of Roman Emperor Domitian
 
On This Day In History in 96 (a real year, even if it looks wrong when you write it down), the Roman Emperor Domitian was assassinated.
 
Some would say he had it coming to him, considering 15 years before, Domitian had murdered his own brother, Titus, to take his place as Emperor of Rome.
 
Domitian had killed his brother with a poison which created an uncomfortable feeling in Titus' bottom. Basically it was no longer a Titus. In fact, it was quite pliable. And erupted like a sticky brown volcano. Having blown off his Titus, Emperor Titus died shortly after.
 
Emperor Domitian was killed by a former slave called Maximus (not Russell Crowe) and a steward called Stephanus in a conspiracy led by a guy called Parthenius, who was Domitian's chamberlain.
 
There were a lot more people involved, but let's be honest, like me, you probably skip over the names that are hard to pronounce.
 
It's thought that Domitian's Praetorian Guard were involved. And possibly Domitian's wife. And Donald Trump. The emails linking Hilary Clinton to the conspiracy have been deleted, so there is no way of knowing for sure if she had anything to do with it.
 
Stephanus had pretended to be injured so as to conceal a dagger beneath his bandages. Not the smartest bloke, the feigned injury was to his groin. Women kept asking, "Is that a dagger down your pants or are you just pleased to see me?"
 
When he entered the Emperor's presence with his bandaged woodland area, Domitian asked, "Are you pleased to see me or have you concealed a dagger down you pants with the intention of assassinating me?"
 
Stepanus remembered he had forgotten the dagger and had no choice but to tell the truth. He lowered his head and whispered, "I dreamt about your nipples last night."
 
He then bolted. And after that, left the room.
 
Stephanus returned the next day, this time with a bandaged arm. He had concealed the dagger beneath those bandages, along with his friend, Maximus, who was not Russell Crowe. After a bit of chit chat, where Domitian revealed he loved Donald Trump, Stephanus and Maximus stabbed Emperor Domitian to death.
 
Give the Emperor his due, he did fight back and there was quite a struggle. He managed to stab  Stephanus and he died soon after Domitian.

History Fun Facts October 23rd

HISTORICAL FUN FACTS for OCTOBER 23rd

On This Day in 42BC, during the Liberators' Civil War, the forces of Mark Anthony and Octavian (who became the first Roman Emperor, Augustus Caesar) defeated the army of Marcus Brutus in the 2nd Battle of Philippi.
 
The war was to avenge the assassination of Julius Caesar, in which Brutus was the lead conspirator.
 
After his defeat at the Battle of Philippi, Marcus Brutus fled into the nearby hills with four of his remaining legions.
 
Not wanting to be captured by Octavian and Mark Anthony, and knowing it was only a matter of time, Brutus took the easy way out.
 
He ordered two of his men to hold out a sword and, ready, steady, he sprinted right into it.
 
According to Plutarch, the last words Brutus spoke were, "By all means must we fly, not with our feet, however, but with our hands."
 
Obviously, his actual last words were in Latin, "Shittus, thatus hurtus. Rightus throughus myus penus."
 
As a show of respect, upon discovering Brutus had committed suicide, Mark Anthony ordered the body of Brutus wrapped in Anthony's own most expensive purple cloak.
 
However, it was later stolen. But recovered. Mark Anthony then had the thief executed.
 
Upon hearing her husband had committed suicide, Porcia, yes, the wife of Marcus Brutus, committed suicide herself.
 
On This Day in 425, Valentinian III became the Roman Emperor at the age of six-years-old.
 
Thanks to various marriages, births, assassinations, appointments, political dealings and one case of bonking between an aunt and a goat, Valentinian III was the son, grandson, great-grandson, cousin, and nephew (twice over), and pet, of Roman Emperors.
 
 
On This Day in History in 1958, The Smurfs first appeared in the story La flute à six schtroumpfs.
 
The Smurfs are a fictional race of small blue tiny people led by Papa Smurf, who is Smurf-tastic. So, when you strangle a Smurf, what colour does it turn?

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Stranger News: Gorilla Escaped London Zoo

Stranger News: Gorilla Escapes London Zoo
 
Kambuka, a 29 stone sliverback gorilla, escaped from his enclouse at London Zoo on October 13th, 2016, in a daring prison break.
 
The gorilla didn't need to break any doors, or bend prison bars, or smash through hardened glass. Nope. The doors to his enclosure were left unlocked.
 
Kambuka took a chance and opened the doors, making a bolt for it. He made it all the way to a secure keepers' area, where he encountered a rather surprised keeper who, after a brief discussion, left to get the gun.
 
Kambuka took the opportunity to down five litres of undiluted blackcurrant juice.
 
Shortly afterwards, the gorilla was tranquilised and then returned to his enclosure.
 
Now that's a lot of undiluted blackcurrant squash.
 
I can only ever manage about one litre. On one occasion, I managed two litres of undiluted blackcurrant juice.
 
And, yes, after that, they had to tranquilise me as well.