Tag Archives: Renaissance Faire

Spidey Bites the Dust

It wasn’t that long ago and the movie, Superman vs. Batman was playing in theaters. I, unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on which reviews you read) missed it. Guess I’ll just have to catch it on video. But I have to say that the whole idea of Superman vs. Batman strikes me as silly for at least a couple of reasons: 1) everyone knows that Batman is just a guy in a special suit with lots of cool gadgets and that Superman is, well, supernatural and superhuman, meaning he’d kick Batman’s hiney easily; 2) everyone knows that Batman isn’t real, while Superman is!!!! Regardless, battles involving super-heroes do capture our attention and fascination.

Witness today’s photo of the superhero, Spiderman. You may not believe it, but I encountered Spiderman at the Renaissance Faire where he was casually strolling down the path with some mortals.  Then, out of the blue, this girl approached him and put him in a headlock!


Now there’s a battle that was no contest!  Everyone knows that Spiderman is just some troubled young man in a funky looking suit and that no man, perhaps not even Superman, would stand a chance against a woman!  Today’s photo is proof!  And she’s enjoying choking the life out of him as you can tell!  Women of the world unite!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1949, the body of Leon Besnard was exhumed in Loudun, France, by authorities searching for evidence of poison. For years, local residents had been suspicious of his wife Marie, as they watched nearly her entire family die untimely and mysterious deaths. Law enforcement officials finally began investigating Marie after the death of her mother earlier in the year.

Marie married Leon in August 1929. The couple resented the fact that they lived relatively modestly while their families were so well off. When two of Leon’s great aunts perished unexpectedly, most of their money was left to Leon’s parents. Consequently, the Besnards invited Leon’s parents to live with them.

Shortly after moving in, Leon’s father died, ostensibly from eating a bad mushroom. Three months later, his widow also died and neighbors began chatting about a Besnard family jinx. The inheritance was split between Leon and his sister, Lucie. Not so surprisingly, the newly rich Lucie died shortly thereafter, supposedly taking her own life.

Becoming increasingly greedy, the Besnards began looking outside the family for their next victim. They took in the Rivets as boarders, who, under the Besnards’ care, also died abruptly. No one was too surprised when the Rivets’ will indicated Marie as the sole beneficiary.

Pauline and Virginie Lallerone, cousins of the Besnards, were next in line. When Pauline died, Marie explained that she had mistakenly eaten a bowl of lye. Apparently, her sister Virginie didn’t learn her lesson about carelessness, because when she died a week later, Marie told everyone that she too had inadvertently eaten lye.

When Marie fell in love with another man in 1947, Leon fell victim to her poisoning as well. Traces of arsenic were found in his exhumed body, as well as in the rest of her family’s corpses. But Marie didn’t let a little bit of pesky evidence get in her way. She managed to get a mistrial twice after trace evidence was lost while conducting the tests for poison each time. By her third trial, there wasn’t much physical evidence left. On December 12, 1961, Marie Besnard was acquitted. The “Queen of Poisoners,” as the French called her, ended up getting away with 13 murders. (This Day In History)

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: before the 1500s, couples in Europe were free to marry themselves. It wasn’t until 1564 when the Council of Trent declared marriage was a sacrament that weddings became the province of priests and churches. (Random Facts)


Red-Tailed Devil Vulture


So, here’s another bird that I saw at the Renaissance Faire south of Atlanta.  This bird was laying in wait for me. I’d not seen it at all until I was walking out the door over which it was perched.

My first reaction was that it was a hummingbird, but when I inquired of the bird handler nearby, I told them I thought it could be a red-tailed devil vulture.  The way it was looking at me, I could have believed it…it looked like it was hoping I’d drop dead so it could devour my corpse on the spot! Do you see how it was eye-balling me?!?!?!  And look at those talons!!!!  I suppose that if he discovered I was still breathing he would have punctured my heart and finished me off!!!

Seriously, though…does anyone know what kind of bird this is?

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1865, Jefferson Davis, president of the fallen Confederate government, was captured with his wife and entourage near Irwinville, Georgia, by a detachment of Union General James H. Wilson’s cavalry.

On April 2, 1865, with the Confederate defeat at Petersburg, Virginia imminent, General Robert E. Lee informed President Davis that he could no longer protect Richmond and advised the Confederate government to evacuate its capital. Davis and his cabinet fled to Danville, Virginia, and with Robert E. Lee’s surrender on April 9, deep into the South. Lee’s surrender of his massive Army of Northern Virginia effectively ended the Civil War, and during the next few weeks the remaining Confederate armies surrendered one by one. Davis was devastated by the fall of the Confederacy. Refusing to admit defeat, he hoped to flee to a sympathetic foreign nation such as Britain or France, and was weighing the merits of forming a government in exile when he was arrested by a detachment of the 4th Michigan Cavalry.

A certain amount of controversy surrounds his capture, as Davis was wearing his wife’s black shawl when the Union troops cornered him. The Northern press ridiculed him as a coward, alleging that he had disguised himself as a woman in an ill-fated attempt to escape. However, Davis, and especially his wife, Varina, maintained that he was ill and that Varina had lent him her shawl to keep his health up during their difficult journey.

Imprisoned for two years at Fort Monroe, Virginia, Davis was indicted for treason, but was never tried–the federal government feared that Davis would be able prove to a jury that the Southern secession of 1860 to 1861 was legal. Varina worked determinedly to secure his freedom, and in May 1867 Jefferson Davis was released on bail, with several wealthy Northerners helping him pay for his freedom.

After a number of unsuccessful business ventures, he retired to Beauvoir, his home near Biloxi, Mississippi, and began writing his two-volume memoir The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government (1881). He died in 1889 and was buried at New Orleans; four years later, his body was moved to its permanent resting spot in Richmond, Virginia.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: Artillery barrage and mines created immense noise. In 1917, explosives blowing up beneath the German lines on Messines Ridge at Ypres in Belgium could be heard in London 140 miles (220 km) away.

Screamin’ Pink Meanies…

You wouldn’t usually expect to see exotic birds at a Renaissance Faire. I certainly didn’t.  But at the Georgia Renaissance Faire two weekends ago, we saw several. An aviary had been created there that was raising money for the care of the birds, I think. There were numerous beautiful birds and I shot several photos that I’ll share in the next few days.

I’m not a “birder”, but my wife is. I must confess, however, that birds can be among the most beautiful of the creatures in nature.

This particular bird (I can’t recall it’s name) was the star of the exhibition. He seemed to delight in hanging by his beak and then screaming at the top of his little birdy lungs!  He even posed for this first picture for me…and I’ll include a second so you can see him hanging by his beak while screaming (I will spare you the noise, which I didn’t record).

Here he is posing and seemingly smiling at the camera:


…and here he is screamin’ his little pink head off while hanging by his beak…


This rascal was L.O.U.D.!!!!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in London, in 1671, Thomas Blood, an Irish adventurer better known as “Captain Blood,” was captured attempting to steal the Crown Jewels from the Tower of London.

Blood, a Parliamentarian during the English Civil War, was deprived of his estate in Ireland with the restoration of the English monarchy in 1660. In 1663, he put himself at the head of a plot to seize Dublin Castle from supporters of King Charles II, but the plot was discovered and his accomplices executed. He escaped capture. In 1671, he hatched a bizarre plan to steal the new Crown Jewels, which had been refashioned by Charles II because most of the original jewels were melted down after Charles I’s execution in 1649.

On May 9, 1671, Blood, disguised as a priest, managed to convince the Jewel House keeper to hand over his pistols. Blood’s three accomplices then emerged from the shadows, and together they forced their way into the Jewel House. However, they were caught in the act when the keeper’s son showed up unexpectedly, and an alarm went out to the Tower guard. One man shoved the Royal Orb down his breeches while Blood flattened the Crown with a mallet and tried to run off with it. The Tower guards apprehended and arrested all four of the perpetrators, and Blood was brought before the king. Charles was so impressed with Blood’s audacity that, far from punishing him, he restored his estates in Ireland and made him a member of his court with an annual pension.

Captain Blood became a colorful celebrity all across the kingdom, and when he died in 1680 his body had to be exhumed in order to persuade the public that he was actually dead.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: The largest item found on any menu is roasted camel which is still served at some Bedouin weddings and was offered by royalty in Morocco several hundred years ago. The camel is cleaned and then stuffed with one whole lamb, 20 chickens, 60 eggs, and 110 gallons of water, among other ingredients.

Keeping Your Balance


Do you ever struggle to get the balance right in your life?  It could be the balance between work and family or just about any other of the myriad things that clamor for your attention. It’s not easy, is it?  I have long struggled to find the right balance, let alone keep the right balance.  So, I have great admiration for those who seem to do a better job of it than I.

At the Georgia Renaissance Festival which we attended a week ago, ther was a man who seemed to have figured out the balance…or at least, how to balance. He was doing a stage show and was a juggler/balancer. In this shot, he started out with the wash tub and started it spinning on a broomstick.  He then switched from the broom stick to the chair while the wash tub was spinning. He then balanced the chair on his chin with the wash tub above that.  But that wasn’t enough, he got the broomstick again and put the brushy end of the broomstick on the back of the chair and proceeded to balance the spinning washtub on top of a chair leg which was supported by the broomstick which he then balanced on his chin!  I have a hard enough time just balancing when I walk these days!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1988, Stella Nickell was convicted on two counts of murder by a Seattle, Washington, jury, found guilty of violating the Federal Anti-Tampering Act after putting cyanide in Excedrin capsules in an effort to kill her husband.

Stella and Bruce Nickell married in 1976, shortly after seven people were killed in Chicago, Illinois, from poisoned Tylenol pills. According to Stella’s daughter from a previous marriage, Stella had begun planning Bruce’s murder almost from the honeymoon. The Chicago Tylenol incident (which was never solved) had a lasting impact on Stella, who decided that cyanide would be a good method of murder.

In 1985, Stella took out a life insurance policy on Bruce that included a substantial indemnity payment for accidental death. A year later, Stella put cyanide in an Excedrin capsule that Bruce later took for a headache. He died in the hospital, but doctors did not detect the cyanide and ascribed the death to emphysema. Stella, who stood to lose $100,000 if his death wasn’t ruled an accident, decided to alter her plan.

Nickell tampered with five additional bottles of Excedrin and placed them on store shelves in the Seattle area. Six days later, Susan Snow took one of these capsules and died instantly. After her death was reported in the news, Stella called police to tell them that she thought her husband had also been poisoned.

When investigators came toNickell’s home to pick up the Excedrin bottle, she told them that there were two bottles and that she had purchased them on different days at different places. When both turned out to contain contaminated capsules, investigators grew suspicious. FBI detectives knew that it was an unlikely coincidence that Nickell had purchased two of four known contaminated bottles purely by chance. Still, hard evidence against her was hard to come by until January 1988.

Cynthia Hamilton, Stella’s daughter, came forward (possibly in order to obtain reward money) with her account of Stella’s plan to kill her husband. She told authorities that her mother had done extensive research at the library. When detectives investigated, they found that Stella had borrowed, but never returned, a book called Human Poisoning. Her fingerprints were also found all over other books on cyanide.

Nickell was given two 90-year sentences for the murders of her husband and Susan Snow. She will be eligible for parole in 2018. New evidence in the case has led some to believe that Nickell might be innocent.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY:  Hershey’s produces over 80 million chocolate Kisses–every day.


…Gargoyles Can Have Fetishes

Double click for a larger version...
Double click for a larger version…

I’ve learned that going to Renaissance Festivals can be a very educational experience.  I mean, who knew that so many people back in the day had elf ears (see my most recent post prior to this one)?  Who knew that there were cell phones in renaissance times, yet I saw them all over the festival.  And did you know that they had Coca-Cola products then?  Nope, me neither.  See how educational such events can be?

Sometimes, however, you learn things that you wish you didn’t.  I mean, we all know that there are people who get excited by various things…and those things sometimes are referred to as fetishes.  These are typically things which people take to extremes and which are a bit out of the ordinary.

The word fetish originally meant “charm,” and it originates from the 15th century Portuguese word feitico, which means false power, object or charm. For example, when the Portuguese explored West Africa and encountered native religions, they called whatever talisman (totems, carvings, beads) they revered a fetish.

To the Portuguese in those days, the fetishists were those who worshiped the unusual. Later on, however, the implication of the word took on a whole different meaning.

First, a fetish involves the transfer of power from an original source onto a substitute. Second, a fetishist is someone who operates outside the circle of what is characteristically considered normal. Yeah right, what is normal nowadays?

There are “media fetishes” – such as someone who likes leather; there are form fetishes – where someone likes a certain shape like high heels; and there are “animate fetishes” which relate to humans, such as an eye fetish, where one is obsessed with eyes.  (I just want you to know I had to look all the preceding up!!!!)

Then, there are the more weird fetishes, like the fetish of the fellow in today’s photo.  You may have heard about such a fetish before, in this case, apparently an animate fetish…as this gargoyle clearly is into feet and nibbling on toes.  All I can say is that I’m glad he was under lock and key…I didn’t want him nibbling on my toes!!!!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1864, a dozen days of fighting around Spotsylvania, Virginia, ended with a Confederate attack against the Union forces. The epic campaign between the Army of the Potomac, under the effective direction of Ulysses S. Grant, and Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia began at the beginning of May when Union forces crossed the Rapidan River. After a bloody two-day battle in the Wilderness forest, Grant moved his army further south toward Spotsylvania Court House. This move was a departure from the tactics of the previous three years in the eastern theater of the Civil War. Since 1861, the Army of the Potomac had been coming down to Virginia under different commanders only to be defeated by the Army of Northern Virginia, usually under Lee’s direction, and had always returned northward.

But Grant was different than the other Union generals. He knew that by this time Lee could not sustain constant combat. The numerical superiority of the Yankees would eventually wear Lee down. When Grant ordered his troops to move south, a surge of enthusiasm swept the Union veterans; they knew that in Grant they had an aggressive leader who would not allow the Confederates time to breathe. Nevertheless, the next stop proved to be more costly than the first.

After the battle in the Wilderness, Grant and Lee waged a footrace for the strategic crossroads at Spotsylvania. Lee won the race, and his men dug in. On May 8, Grant attacked Lee, initiating a battle that raged for 12 awful days. The climax came on May 12, when the two armies struggled for nearly 20 hours over an area that became known as the Bloody Angle.

The fighting continued sporadically for the next week as the Yankees tried to eject the Rebels from their breastworks. Finally, when the Confederates attacked on May 19, Grant prepared to pull out of Spotsylvania. Convinced he could never dislodge the Confederates from their positions, he elected to try to circumvent Lee’s army to the south. The Army of the Potomac moved, leaving behind 18,000 casualties at Spotsylvania to the Confederates’ 12,000. In less than three weeks Grant had lost 33,000 men, with some of the worst fighting yet to come.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: The Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) is home to the world’s largest parking lot. The Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport has the third largest runway in the world and is the alternate landing site for the space shuttle. Texas has more airports than any other state in the country.

…of Lothlorien


Where precisely is Middle Earth?  Where is Gondor, the Shire, or for that matter, Fanghorn Forest?  There are those who would say that they existed only in the mind of JRR Tolkien, who “wrote” them into existence.  There are those who say there are no such things as hobbits, cave trolls or dwarves who mine gold from the depths of the earth.  There are many who don’t believe there are such things as elves, and I would have counted myself among them up until a weekend ago when we visited the Georgia Renaissance Festival and I came across the comely elfin lass in today’s photo.

Imagine my surprise when I came around a corner and my eyes beheld this bewitching elf!  Now I have to start to rethink all sorts of things: if there are elves, are the leprechauns who hide pots of gold at the end of rainbows?  How about fairies with pixie dust that can make you fly?  Perhaps there really is a large rodent relative who hides eggs for children to find at Easter and a jolly old red-faced man in a red suit who has a team of flying reindeer who works all year long at the far northern reaches of the globe just to delight us all at Christmas?  If this lass is anything, she surely must be evidence that elves exist, that they are lovely creatures, and that all sorts of wondrous things are possible…

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1769, George Washington fired a legislative salvo at Great Britain’s fiscal and judicial attempts to maintain its control over the American colonies. With his sights set on protesting the British policy of “taxation without representation,” Washington brought a package of non-importation resolutions before the Virginia House of Burgesses.

The resolutions, drafted by George Mason largely in response to England’s passage of the Townshend Acts of 1767, decried Parliament’s plan to send colonial political protestors to England for trial. Though Virginia’s royal governor promptly fired back by disbanding the House of Burgesses, the dissenting legislators were undeterred. During a makeshift meeting held at the Raleigh Tavern in Williamsburg, Virginia’s delegates gave their support to the non-importation resolutions. Maryland and South Carolina soon followed suit with the passing of their own non-importation measures.

The non-importation resolutions lacked any means of enforcement, and Chesapeake tobacco merchants of Scottish ancestry tended to be loyal to their firms in Glasgow. However, tobacco planters supported the measure, and the mere existence of non-importation agreements proved that the southern colonies were willing to defend Massachusetts, the true target of Britain’s crackdown, where violent protests against the Townshend Acts had led to a military occupation of Boston, beginning on October 2, 1768.

When Britain’s House of Lords learned that the Sons of Liberty, a revolutionary group in Boston, had assembled an extra-legal Massachusetts convention of towns as the British fleet approached in 1768, they demanded the right to try such men in England. This step failed to frighten New Englanders into silence, but succeeded in rallying Southerners to their cause. By impugning colonial courts and curtailing colonial rights, this British action backfired: it created an American identity where before there had been none.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: With nearly 3,000 years of rich history, Rome is often called the “Eternal City.” Though Rome dates back to possibly 625 B.C., the oldest continuously populated city in the world is widely to be considered Byblos in present-day Lebanon dating back to 5000 B.C.

…Must Have Been Very Strange

Double click for a larger image (if you dare!)
Double click for a larger image (if you dare!)

Meet Roxie.  Roxie is a, well, I’m not sure what she is supposed to be.  But this past weekend when we went to the Georgia Renaissance Festival, Roxie was just a short distance inside the entry to greet us.  This strange creature (and the other strange folks we saw) really made me think that we’d not fallen into a Renaissance Faire, but into something from the Dark Ages…the VERY Dark Ages!  There were people everywhere with elf ears, horns on their heads, elf ears and horns on their head…and even some folks dressed as Imperial Storm Troopers!  For a while I thought we’d fallen through a rip in the space-time continuum and were in the future until someone reminded me that Star Wars took places “long, long ago in a galaxy far, far away!”  That made me feel better right way…at least, until I saw Roxie again!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1987, firefighters finally contained a giant fire sweeping eastward across China, but not before 193 people are killed.

The fateful fire began on May 6 in Mohe County of the Heilongjiang Province. From the outset, authorities mishandled the blaze, failing to contain it while the size was still manageable. It spread quickly and within two days, 2,000 square miles had burned and 100 people were dead. Firefighters also had to contend with a separate large forest fire that had broken out near China’s border with the Soviet Union that threatened to join the initial blaze.

It took several more days for the firefighters to finally stop the spread of the fire as it moved toward Inner Mongolia. Although the city of Manqui was saved by controlled fire breaks set by the firefighters, the toll from this huge fire was already immense. Two and a half million acres of land burned and 50,000 people lost their homes. In addition to the 193 people who were killed, hundreds more were injured.

When the fire finally burned out completely on May 27, Yang Zhong, China’s Forestry Minister, was fired for the initially incompetent firefighting response.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY:  The lobotomy, from the Greek lobe=of brain +tome=slice, was one of the most popular types of brain surgery ever invented. Neurologist and psychiatrist Walter Freeman (who was not a surgeon) simplified the surgery by taking an icepick through the eye sockets instead of through drilled holes in the skull. He chose an ice pick because regular surgical tools made at the time kept snapping off inside of people’s heads.  Headache, anyone?

All Decked Out and No Where To Go

Are you one of those people who enjoy getting all dressed up?  I guess there really are people who like doing that.  I think it is more prevalent among women than men…women like to dress nicely and look pretty. (What do you readers think?  Do women like to dress up more than men?)  Maybe men aren’t into it that much because it’s harder to make us look “pretty”.  As for me, if I could spend my entire life in blue jeans, a short-sleeved t-shirt, white socks and sneakers, I’d be perfectly happy.  Whoever invented the men’s tie should be tied to a stake, sliced with sharp razors, have salt and acid poured into the cuts and die.  Ties are a heinous invention…and by now maybe you guessed that I’m not into getting ties for Christmas!  (In face, I can’t remember the last time that happened!)

At the Renaissance Faire, people do dress up, but not so much to look pretty as to get in the spirit of the event and to try to look “authentic.”  I suppose that it could be fun to dress up in a costume, though I’ve not done that for eons, either.

Today I’m featuring a photo of a performer at the Renaissance Faire who was awaiting her turn to take the stage.  I just thought her outfit was interesting, so I took a photo.  In her case, she was all dressed up…but she did have a place to go…center stage, shortly after this photo was taken.


ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1788, George Washington sold Magnolia, his race horse, to Colonel Henry Lee.  Colonel Lee was the father of his more famous son, General Robert E. Lee, of Civil War fame.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: popcorn “pops” because the water in the center, inner part of the seed expands when heated, causing the seed to rupture and turn inside out.


Not Now, Not Ever

OK.  I know it’s Halloween.  I don’t know about where you are, but it’s dumping rain here in northern California’s wine country (at least in Cloverdale).  I love Halloween.  Always have.  But there are things that I just refuse to do on Halloween.  Sure, I’d put on a costume, but not just any costume.  I’m too picky and self-conscious for that!!!

A super-hero?  (Sure, ’cause I am one!)  An astronaut?  (Of course, cause I’m so brave and daring!)  A surgeon?  (Absolutely – I always wanted to be a neurosurgeon!)  A hobo?  (Yeah, I like traveling!)  An athlete?  (Naturally – it’s not even a stretch for someone as athletically inclined as I am – or was!)

But, I would not, not in a million, bazillion years, not now not ever would I dress up like the guy in today’s picture.  I took it at the Renaissance Faire near Hollister about a month ago, and while silly looking stuff like this may have been the rage in medieval times, to me it just looks pouffy, frivolous, pompous and silly!  Yikes!  Can you imagine a woman being proud of a man who dressed like this?  “Oh, yeah, that’s my MAN.  Isn’t he manly?”

Not now, not ever.

What are some costumes you’d never be caught wearing?

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1952, the United States detonated the world’s first hydrogen bomb at the Eniwetok Proving Grounds in the Marshall Islands.   The explosive “yield” was 10.4 megatons of TNT, over 450 times more powerful than the bomb that was dropped on Nagasaki, Japan.  The device was nicknamed “Sausage.”

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: there are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order: “abstemious” and “facetious”.  Now, aren’t you glad you asked?!?!


Time Travel and Other Anachronisms

I have always thought it would be great to be able to travel across time to either the future or the past, to wind up in the middle of historic events, of spectacles…and to watch history (and the future!) unfold.  Just recently there was a movie that came out about a man who time travels (I think it was a Bruce Willis movie, but I could be wrong) who is sent into the future to kill himself.  I haven’t seen the movie and I have no idea how it turns out.  If you saw it and know, you might share that as a comment to this post so we all know.

When we were at the Renaissance Faire last Saturday, costumes were plenteous.  One of them was a guy dressed up as Captain Jack Sparrow.  I must admit, he had a good likeness to the character made famous in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies by Johnny Depp.

What made this so interesting is that this character was standing there taking pictures with a camera.  Now, come on!!!! There were no cameras in those days!!!!  BUT, what if there were?  Or, what if the pirate Blackbeard could suddenly appear at a Renaissance Faire?  What if I could suddenly appear from the future at Ford’s Theater in Washington, DC on the night Lincoln was assassinated and could alter that event?  Wouldn’t it be something?

I don’t know about you, but I find stuff like that fun to ponder.  Maybe you do, too.  So, “Ladies and gentlemen, without further ado, I present to you, Time Traveller Captain Jack Sparrow!”  (That kinda sounds like “Malibu Barbie”, doesn’t it?)

Is that a time-traveling Captain Jack Sparrow?

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1871, the Great Fire of Chicago was finally extinguished after burning for 3 days.  During that time, at least 300 people died, 90,000 were left without homes, and damage was estimated at $200,000,000 (a lot of money in that time!)

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: donuts have holes in the center because if they didn’t, the interior of the donuts would not cook thoroughly…they’d be a gooey mess.