The Daily Dose/Friday, December 31, 2021

The Daily Dose/December 31, 2021
By Gaylon Kent – America’s Funniest Guy™

Leading Off
Notes from around the human experience.

Editor’s Note: We – generally – take great pleasure in providing fresh content, but today’s Leading Off segment is more or less a rehash of the past couple of New Year’s Eve columns. 

2020 2021, 2022: On It!: As you read this the planet has been ringing in the new year for several hours already. 2022 started at 3 am Mountain Standard Time (MST) almost due south of Hawaii with festivities in the Christmas Island and Kiribati, despite the fact these places should be east of the International Date Line and amongst the last to leave 2020.

Dry, Technical Matter: 15 minutes later the Chatham Islands celebrated and at 6 am MST New Year celebrations began in much of Australia.

Do You Wonder Why You Don’t Get Invited To More (Any) Parties: The International Date Line is an imaginary line of demarcation more or less at 180 degrees longitude, directly opposite the Prime Meridian (0 degrees longitude). It veers east and west though, to accommodate assorted international borders.

Dry, Technical Matter II: Kiribati changed its position vis-a-vis the International Date Line in the 1990s after it acquired territory that caused it to straddle the International Date Line. So, in accordance with international convention, it moved the dateline east so it was completely west of it, placing it in the first group of jurisdictions to make a new year.

Hey, Gaylon, Come To Our Party…Well, Nevermind: The International Date Line is so jury-rigged Samoa is one of the first to ring in 2022 while American Samoa, a mere 100 or miles to the east of Samoa, is the last inhabited place on the planet to enter 2022.  

Oh, Jesus H: Both Baker Island and Howland Island, uninhabited US possessions near the equator, are the last places to enter a new year, doing so Saturday morning at 5 am Mountain Standard Time.

Please Pass The Dry, Technical Matter: Due to the bastardizing of the International Date Line, it now takes 26 hours for a planet theoretically divided into 24 time zones to have everyone ring in the new year.

Please Pass The Dry, Technical Matter II: It’s already 2021 at the South Pole, too. They have 24 time zones to choose from because all of them converge at Amundson-Scott Station, but because virtually all access to the South Pole is from New Zealand, they keep New Zealand time.

The Bottom Line: As long as New Year’s Eve remains the last day of the year, we will continue to trot this column out. Thank you for reading. 

Today At The Site
Writing worth reading. Usually. 

The Diary of a Nobody – Sparrow chooses to do as little as possible. Today’s Diary. 

This quest was neither arduous nor unrewarded…


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On This Date
History’s long march. 

In 1991 – The last remnants of the Soviet Union officially dissolve as the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) takes over the few remaining bureaucratic and diplomatic functions of the central government and the UN recognizes Russia as the Soviet Union’s successor. The USSR had been leaderless since President Mikhail Gorbachev’s resignation on Dec 25 and the country’s legislature had dissolved both itself and the country the following day. Research into exactly what the remaining bureaucratic functions were was as exhaustive as it was inconclusive. 

In 1953 – Bill Shoemaker wins one race at Santa Anita, finishing the year with an all-time US record of 485 wins. Shoemaker broke the record of 390 established by Anthony DeSpirito the year before and his record stood for 20 years when Sandy Hawley rode 515 winners in 1973 and the record is now 598, done by Kent Desormeaux in 1998. Shoemaker retired in 1990 with a then-record 8,883 wins and died in 2003. 

In 1983 – Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson are at #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 for the fourth of six consecutive weeks with Say, Say, Say. The song went to #1 in five other countries including Norway and peaked at #2 in Great Britain and on Billboard’s soul chart. It was Billboard’s 3rd-biggest hit of 1984, its 8th-biggest of the decade and ranked 44th on Billboard’s 60th Anniversary Hot 100 in 2018. It was the 29th appearance at #1 for McCartney and the 10th for Jackson.

Some Philosophy Crap
The wisdom of the ages. Whatever. 

It is remarkable how little concern men seem to have for logic, statistics and, even, indeed, survival: we live by emotion, prejudice, and pride.
Dwight Eisenhower

Answer To The Last Trivia Question
Knowledge is power.

Kenny Rogers had two #1 songs in Great Britain, Lucille (one week, 1977) and Coward of the County (two weeks, 1980). 

Today’s Stumper
Match wits with Gaylon. It’s not that hard.

Who currently holds the record for most career horse racing wins by a trainer in the US? – Answer next time!  

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