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The Daily Dose/Tuesday, July 23, 2019

The Daily Dose/July 23, 2019
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

Leading Off
Leading Off will return. 

Today At The Site
The Diary of a NobodySparrow has the latest from the stabbing at the hotel, plus the crew runs roughshod over morning coffee service. Today’s Diary. 

What was funny with the Halliburton crew’s coffee service this morning is that very little coffee was consumed but boy, they did blow thru the creamers, all three, too: half and half, hazelnut and French vanilla…All were pillaged, it wasn’t safe for women and children and it was only because I was a trained professional that I was able to bring some order to the matter…What the hell was going on???…Were they only drinking creamer???…If so, did they use our provided cups, or were they doing shots???…How in theeee hell to you use a dozen creamers, at least, and two drops of coffee???

It’s Sparrow, an average man passing an average life.

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On This Date
In 1983 – What History now refers to as the Gimli Glider, actually Air Canada Flight 143, lands without fuel at a former Royal Canadian Air Force Base near Gimli, Manitoba. All 69 people on board survived, though ten were injured while being evacuated. Flight 143 was on it’s way from Montreal to Edmonton and plane ran out of fuel because the amount of fuel needed had been calculated in pounds instead of kilograms. 

In 2009 – Mark Bruehle of the Chicago White Sox throws the 18th perfect game in major league history, retiring all 27 Tampa Bay Rays he faces in a 5-0 White Sox victory. The perfect game was saved by a splendid defensive play by center fielder DeWayne Wise, who stole a home run from Gabe Kapler leading off the ninth inning. Wise scaled the fence in left-center field, had possession of the ball, then lost and only caught the ball on his way down. The Catch, as it is known in Chicago, is commemorated on the outfield at the spot it happened. 

In 1977 – Barry Manilow is at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the third and final time as Looks Like We Made It is at the top for its only week. The song as written by Will Jennings and Richard Kerr and also charted in Canada, where it peaked at #9, and in Australia, where it peaked at #91. It was Manilow’s sixth of eleven Top 10 hits and the seventh of the then-record eighteen consecutive Top 40 hits that started his career.

Quotebook
So they redefined evil…In the meantime the family on the summit was haunted by the sight of white relatives in slavery to them.
Henry Wiencek
Master of the Mountain: Thomas Jefferson and His Slaves

Answer To The Last Trivia Question
Lance Armstrong and Floyd Landis are the two Americans who have Tour de France titles stripped from them.

Today’s Stumper
How many Chicago White Sox pitchers have thrown perfect games? – Answer next time!

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The Diary of a Nobody/July 22

Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Monday, July 22
It turns out Q may not be leaving after all…Recall, last week he gave notice after taking the night manager gig at a fancy-pants condo/timeshare on the mountain…He didn’t actually give notice of his leaving, but he did cut down to one shift a week here. 

There have been developments, however.

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The Daily Dose/Monday, July 22, 2019

The Daily Dose/July 22, 2019
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

Leading Off
Some random numbers from Apollo 11:

2.5
Amount of time, in hours, Apollo 11 spent on moon

3.7
Age, in billions of years, of the moon rocks returned from lunar surface

5
Number of alarms the lunar module’s computer set off on descent to the lunar surface. These alarms were eventually disregarded.  

12
Number of lunar orbits Apollo 11 took before the lunar module (LM) separated from the command module (CM).

21
Number of days the Apollo 11 crew, and their physician and a technician, were quarantined. The quarantine actually began when they lifted off from the moon 

25.4
Cost, in billions of dollars, of the entire Apollo program. That is about $176 billion in today’s money. 

27, 51
Length of time, in hours and minutes, the LM spent undocked from the CM.

31
Total number of times Columbia orbited the moon.

33.31
Amount, in dollars and cents, that Buzz Aldrin jokingly filed for on his Apollo 11 travel claim.

45
Approximate amount of fuel, in seconds, that the LM had remaining at landing. The 60 and 30 seconds mission control referred to in the descent to the lunar service were the number of seconds of fuel remaining until Commander Neil Armstrong had to decide whether to land or abort. 

47.51
Number, in pounds, of moon rocks Armstrong and Aldrin brought back from the moon. 

100
Approximate number of items Apollo 11 left on the moon. This includes experiments, mementos and trash.

180
Weight, in pounds, of the Apollo 11 spacesuit. 

200
Farthest distance, in feet, that either Armstrong or Aldrin, ventured from the LM. 

233
Length, in words, of the speech President Nixon would have given had Armstrong and Aldrin been stranded on the lunar surface.  The speech was written by William Safire.

363
Height, in feet, of the Saturn V rocket that propelled Apollo 11 to the moon.

500
Number of feet above the lunar surface that Neil Armstrong took manual control of Eagle.

2,983
Length of time, in days, from the time President Kennedy committed America to putting a man on the moon on May, 25, 1961 to July 20, 1969.

238,900
Number of miles between Earth and the moon at the time of Apollo 11.

400,000
Approximate number of people who worked in some capacity on the mission.

Today At The Site
The Diary of a NobodySparrow gets his picture taken at the hotel for, he suspects, upcoming Employee of the Month honors. Today’s Diary.

Brandon took my picture, too…Officially, Brandon said it was because all employees must have their picture taken and even going thru the motions of wondering why it hadn’t been done earlier, but it has to be for my Employee of the Month pic that goes on the wall at the front desk…It still hasn’t been announced, but there is no other reason to take my picture. 

The only problem is, despite not completely unattractive, I am the most unphotogenic person on this planet…I take lousy pics, and the one Brandon shot of me up against the wall at the front desk was about as good as you’re going to get, considering what you have to work with, so I cropped it on his phone a little bit, made the sign of the cross, and told him to go with it. 

It’s Sparrow, an average man passing an average life.

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On This Date
In 1706 – Representatives of the parliaments of Scotland and England conclude negotiations on what would become the Union Acts of 1707, establishing the Kingdom of Great Britain. Ireland would join in 1801 and leave in 1922, replaced in the Union by Northern Ireland. The Union has included Wales from the start.

In 1990 – Greg LeMond of the United States wins his second consecutive, and third and final, Tour de France. LeMond finished 2 minutes and 16 seconds ahead of Claudio Chiappucci of Italy and won despite not winning a stage, only taking the lead on the next-to-last day. LeMond remains the only American to win the Tour and is one of only eight cyclists to win the Tour de France at least three times. In 1986 LeMond had become the first non-European to win the Tour.

In 1967 – Windy by the Association is at #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 for the fourth and final week. It was the group’s fourth Top 40 hit and their second and final #1 song, following 1966’s Cherish. The song also went to #1 in Canada and was Billboard’s fourth biggest hit of the year.

Quotebook
Personally, I do not think the human mind has any limits but those we impose ourselves.
Louis L’Amour
Education of a Wandering Man

Answer To The Last Trivia Question
The lowest temperature ever recorded in Africa is -11 F, at Ifrane, Morocco on February 11, 1935. It is one of only three sub-zero temperatures ever recorded on the continent.

Today’s Stumper
Who are the two Americans who have had Tour de France titles stripped from them? – Answer next time!

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The Diary of a Nobody/July 21

Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Sunday, July 21
I got the lowdown on the stabbing that happened at the hotel on my days off.

First, it happened early Friday morning, not early Thursday morning…Two, it turns out that Q actually saw the stabbing!!!…I am not making that up…He said there was already a crowd in the hall when he arrived to restore order and he was a couple of doors down when the guy came backing out of 151 followed shortly by his girlfriend, who was both holding a knife and announcing her intention to use it, as soon as she could get within range…Q also reported it wasn’t a stab so much as a couple of good slashes…Q added he immediately called paramedics and declined to render first aid, which is certainly anyone’s right to do. 

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The Daily Dose/Sunday, July 21, 2019

The Daily Dose/July 21, 2019
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

The Sunday Bottom 5
The very best of the worst of the week that was:

  1. Apollo 11 50th anniversary of man’s greatest adventure – a line of demarcation as triumphant as it is difinitive – now merely a stark reminder of how little America has accomplished since then…Forget going to Mars, America can no longer put anyone into space anymore.  
  2. US MediaInstead of having blathering billionaire out of 2016 GOP presidential race before primaries, once-proud institution ushered him straight to the White House and our planet is the worse for it…Worse, by legitimizing lying, sexual predator, he is likely to be re-elected next year…Also, temperatures in the 90’s, in July at least, aren’t news…It’s summer, it gets hot…It happens every year. 
  3. American ElectorateThanks to our two major parties, we’ve been herded into pens labeled either Racist or Socialst…And we’re taking it…Our fractured, bickering government merely a reflection of ourselves….We deserve better than this, but we are not demanding it. 
  4. Travis ArnaudBaseball player being heralded for being first catcher ever to hit three home runs in game while batting leadoff…Pipe down, folks…This isn’t a record, merely a curiosity that should have been mentioned in game notes section and not headline. 
  5. Trump Fact CheckClick here for latest misinformation from a president either unable or unwilling to tell the truth, something else we are tolerating, even though we deserve better. 

Today At The Site
The Diary of a NobodyThere’s a new item at the hotel’s sundry stand. Today’s Diary. 

The big news at the sundry stand is we are now offering a new item: iced lemon loaf cake…It’s kept frozen and, as a service to our guests of course, I tried one…It was pretty good…Not fresh-from-the-oven good, but not too far from it, either…It’s in the far right corner of the freezer, bottom shelf, and to make room for it we pushed the Hot Pockets to the left. 

It’s Sparrow, an average man passing an average life.

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On This Date
In 1983 – The lowest temperature ever recorded in an inhabited spot, -128.6 F, is recorded at Vostok Station in Antarctica. Satellite observations have recorded lower temperatures on Antarctica, but this remains the lowest directly measured temperature at an inhabited place on Earth.

In 1892 – For the first time in major league history, two 300-game winners oppose each other in the same game as Tim Keefe of the Philadelphia Phillies defeats Pud Galvin of the St Louis Browns 2-0. This would not happen again until Don Sutton (California Angels) and Tom Seaver (Chicago White Sox) met in 1986 and has happened several times since.

In 1973 – Jim Croce is at #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 for the first of two consecutive weeks with Bad, Bad, Leroy Brown. The song, inspired by someone Croce knew in the Army, also went to #1 in Canada and was Billboard’s second biggest song of the year. It was the first two #1s for Croce, who died before his next #1, Time In a Bottle, went to #1 in December.

Quotebook
The greatest chance that can come to man or woman is the chance to do something worth doing…The days that are happy are the hard days where effort is crowned at the end.
Theodore Roosevelt
6/1/1906

Answer To The Last Trivia Question
The last major league pitcher to win and lose 20 games in the same season was Phil Niekro of the Atlanta Braves, who went 21-20 in 1979.

Today’s Stumper
What is the lowest temperature recorded in Africa? – Answer next time!

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The Diary of a Nobody/July 20

Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Saturday, July 20
Brandon is back for the first time in a week or so…The entire family – his sister, and mom and dad who own the place – had hauled off to Florida for a funeral…Grandpa was 92, which I noted is a pretty long life adding, tho, it’s always tuff to lose Grandpa…Brandon agreed.

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The Daily Dose/Saturday, July 20, 2019

The Daily Dose/July 20, 2019
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

Leading Off
50 years ago today man landed and walked on the moon for the first time. Regardless of whatever else we accomplish, Apollo 11 will always be one of our species landmark achievements. 

Like most days times in our nation’s history, July 20, 1969 was a chaotic time. The 1960’s had seen two Kennedy brothers had been assassinated, blacks, and others, were demanding things whites weren’t prepared to give and we were mired in the battle about whether or not to fight the Vietnam War. Postage was six cents, gas was 35 cents a gallon and the average American made about $8,500 a year, roughly 42 cents, $2.43 and 58,000 in today’s money.

Apollo 11 is our earliest memory. I was three-and-a-half and still living with my parents, in an apartment in Downey, California. Like more or less everyone else, we had an old black and white TV for whom I was the remote control. If you remember Apollo 11 you are in the minority, because only about 21% of Americans can. 

Two members of Apollo 11 are still alive, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins, and of the twelve men who have walked on the moon, only four are still alive. Aldrin, at 89, is the oldest. Charles Duke, 83, is the youngest. 

NASA, of course, had a dozen astronauts capable of riding on Apollo 11, but we’ve always felt Deke Slayton made three good choices for the crew of man’s first lunar landing. 

Though a former Navy pilot, Neil Armstrong was a civilian when he commanded Apollo 11. He once said he would have been happy doing whatever NASA wanted him to do, but we’re pretty well read on Armstrong and we would not die of shock had he felt he was the best man for the job. Content with his place in history, and a bit dull and reticent besides, Armstrong was content to let his mission’s accomplishment speak for itself. 

Buzz Aldrin’s sheer genius at docking and other aspects of space travel made him an ideal member of the crew.  Someone, perhaps Armstrong, though we can’t remember anymore, once said Aldrin appeared to be more peeved at not being the first man to walk on the moon than he was happy to have been the second. His book Return to Earth chronicles his post-Apollo depression and alcohol battles and is a good read. 

Michael Collins, the command module pilot who stayed in orbit around the moon, isn’t going to lie to you: he said he did not have the best seat on Apollo 11, but he also admits he is completely satisfied and pleased with his role, adding he turned down an opportunity to return to and walk on the moon. His book Carrying the Fire was a good read. 

Fifty years after Apollo 11 America cannot even put humans into space anymore and it is hard to tell how History, decades and centuries down the line, will look at this. That’s an argument for other people at another time, though. Regardless of History’s  judgment, July 20, 1969, will always be remembered as a – perhaps the – landmark day in our human experience.

Today At The Site
The Diary of a NobodySparrow has a slow day at the VSO, and his stomach is still sending mixed signals. 

My stomach is still a bit tender from my Calzone gorge-fest last Monday…I came home from work rather hungry because I didn’t bring a lunch and I had a couple of sandwiches, one chicken and one peanut butter and peach jam and my stomach started objecting shortly thereafter…I don’t know why…I mean, I’ve been feeding it two sandwiches at a time since I was in diapers…It’s accustomed to it…But it was rebelling anyway.

It’s Sparrow, an average man passing an average life.

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On This Date
In 1969 – Man reaches another heavenly body for the first time as Apollo 11 lands on the moon. The landing was fraught with some peril. At about 30,000 feet above the lunar surface, the lunar module’s computer kept announcing it was overworked and the mission only continued because someone at mission control knew what they were doing and said it was OK to continue. The LM did not have unlimited fuel, either, and Eagle landed just a few seconds before what was known as the ‘bingo call”, when they would have 20 seconds to land or abort. Six-and-a-half hours later Neil Armstrong became the first human to walk on the moon and 20 minutes later Buzz Aldrin became the second. Neither found moving on the moon difficult, though both reported they found it useful to plan their movements a few steps ahead. The two spent two-and-a-half hours walking on the moon and all told spent 21 hours on the lunar surface. The landing happened 2,983 days after President Kennedy had called for the United States to land on the moon. 

In 1973 – Wilbur Wood of the Chicago White Sox starts both games of a doubleheader against the New York Yankees. Wood wasn’t a puzzle in either game, losing both as the Yankees swept 12-2 and 7-0, dropping Wood’s record to 18-14 for the season. Wood finished the year 24-20 and is one of ten major league pitchers since 1900 to both win and lose 20 games in a season and he remains the last major league pitcher to start both games a doubleheader. 

In 1969 – Perhaps appropriately, Zager and Evans are at #1 when man first lands on the moon, one day into the second week of their six-week reign at the top with In The Year 2525. It would be the only chart appearance for Zager and Evans, making them one of the Hot 100’s ultimate one-hit wonders: an act whose only chart single went to #1. They achieved this feat in Great Britain as well, the only act to do so in both countries.

Quotebook
We copy you down, Eagle.
Charlie Duke
Mission Control, Houston, second
s before:

Houston…Tranquility base here. The Eagle has landed.
Neil Armstrong
Commander, Apollo 11
July 20, 1969

Answer To The Last Trivia Question
519 women competed at the 1952 Helsinki Summer Olympics.

Today’s Stumper
Who was the last major league pitcher to both win and lose 20 games in the same season? – Answer next time!

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The Diary of a Nobody/July 19

Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Friday, July 19
I spent part of the morning at the veteran service office (VSO) following up on what I was working on Wednesday, trying to help a veteran get appointments with a civilian doctor scheduled by another contractor than the one who is making them now…Recall the current contractor does not have a doctor in town and the second one does and the veteran is too frail to travel to the big city. 

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The Daily Dose/July 19, 2019

The Daily Dose/July 19, 2019
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

Leading Off
Leading Off will return.

Today At The Site
The Diary of a NobodyThe Sparrows hire a maid to help clean the house and later go out to dinner in the next county. Today’s Diary.

This reminded me of the time I actually broke down and hired a maid…This was back in the bachelor days in Sin City and interest and opportunity had coincided and a chick was coming over and it had been a while since a chick had come over and I seemed to recall having a clean pad would be mission-critical to scoring…The pad was my usual pigsty and it took two professional cleaners several hours – no small amount of which was spent in the bathroom – to get it even remotely presentable.

It’s Sparrow, an average man passing an average life.

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On This Date
In 1963 – Joe Walker, a NASA test pilot, flies the hypersonic, rocket powered X-15 aircraft to an altitude of 347,800 feet, well high enough to qualify as human spaceflight, making Walker, a former US Air Force pilot, the first civilian in space. The flight took place over southern California and lasted 12 minutes. Walker would duplicate the feat the following year becoming the first human to reach space twice and he died in 1965 in a midair collision. 

In 1952 – The Games of the 15th Summer Olympics begin in Helsinki, Finland. 69 nations sent 4,955 athletes who competed in 17 sports. Among other feats, Bob Mathias of the United States became the first athlete to defend his decathlon title and the US basketball team defeated the Soviet Union, making their first Olympic appearance, 36-25 in the gold medal game. Helsinki had originally been awarded the 1940 Summer Games, replacing Tokyo, which were ultimately canceled due to World War II, and remains the northern-most city to host the Summer Games. 

In 1980 – Billy Joel is at #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 for the first of two consecutive weeks with It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me. The song was Joel’s 13th chart single, his 11th Top 40 hit, his 4th Top 10 hit and his first #1. The song also went to #1 in Canada and was Billboard’s 9th biggest hit of 1980. To date, Joel has had two other #1 songs on the Hot 100:  Tell Her About It (1983) and We Didn’t Start the Fire (1989).  

Quotebook
Great events make me quiet and calm; it is only trifles that irritate my nerves.
Queen Victoria

Answer To The Last Trivia Question
Nadia Comaneci won the following gold medals at the 1976 Montreal Olympics: individual all-around, uneven bars and balance beam.

Today’s Stumper
How many women competed at the 1952 Helsinki Summer Games? – Answer next time!

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The Diary of a Nobody/July 18

Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Thursday, July 18
Long-time readers of this crap know I am fond of saying that our lawn is an eclectic mix of grasses, weeds and whole grains, but this year fungi must be added to the list because we have more than the usual amount of mushrooms…We usually get them under the big tree near the front door, which we never use, but now they’re in the back near the alley, just up from the big tree near the front door, which we never use, near Main Street, underneath the tree near the heart garden that faces Main Street, and in the back corner, near the shed…I’m pro-mushroom, but even this is an awful lot and I’ll be honest, I just mow over them. 

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