Today in Hystery August 31st

   On this day in 1527, the first letter was written from Canada to the king of England. It was written by John Rut in Newfoundland. His letter said, “Your Majesty. Thank you for sending me to this cold, wet, godforsaken place. LOL. The people here, however, are quite humorous LMAO. I’ll write again in another few decades.” And he ends the letter with a happy face.

   On this day in 1673, all the beggars in Quebec were ordered to leave, making Quebec the ancestral home of the NIMBYs.

   On this day in 1829, the opera William Tell was first produced in Paris. The audition process was the hardest part of doing the opera. They had to audition 47 young boys until they got one that survived the ‘shooting the apple off his head with an arrow’ routine.

   On this day in 1895, the first professional football game took place. The quarterback, a guy named John Brallier, was paid $10 for the game. This was part of his un heard-of, multi-year contract that paid him a whopping $600 plus endorsements as the spokesman for Lye Soap, and a guaranteed position on Dancing with the Stars”.

   On this day in 1954, the U.S. Census Bureau was established by a committee of seven people, all male in the general demographic range of 34 to 54 with an average income of $40,000 a year, all of the committee living in suburban bungalows with one and a half bathrooms and 3.7 children who watched, on average 4.2 hours of television per night.

   On this day in 1988, the first day of a 5 day blackout began in Seattle. The worst hit during the power outage was all the Starbucks stores which were forced to sell $4 glasses of No Fat, Decaf, Extra Cold Water.

   If your birthday is August 31st, you share it with the Roman emperor Caligula whose reign is remembered as being filled with unseemly deaths, stabbings, orgies and general debauchery. These days we call it the Six O’clock News.

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