John’s Believe It Or Not… March 10th

John standing at the front of his classroom.

It’s Frolicsome Friday! Did you know…

* 1876 – Alexander Graham Bell, a Scottish Canadian, makes the first successful test of his new invention, the telephone. (Alexander Graham Bell makes the first successful test of his new invention, the telephone, a month after patenting the device. He transmits the First intelligible speech, room to room, telling his assistant, ‘Come here, Watson. I need you.’ Back at his father’s house in Brantford, Ontario, on August 3, he makes the first building-to-building call with his uncle David Bell, and a year later sets up the world’s first telephone service in Hamilton, with four customers.)

picture of an 1876 telephone

* 1988 Disco sensation Andy Gibb dies at the age of 30. (With his knee-buckling good looks and his brothers’ songwriting talents backing him up, 19-year-old Andy Gibb staged an unprecedented display of youthful pop mastery in the 12 months following his American debut in the spring of 1977. And his star may have risen even higher were it not for the prodigious cocaine habit that derailed his career and contributed to his premature death. With his heart greatly weakened from years of cocaine abuse, Andy Gibb succumbed to an inflammatory heart virus on this day in 1988. He was only 30 years old.)head and shoulder shot of Andy Gibb with long hair

* 1993 Dr David Gunn is murdered by an anti-abortion activist. (Dr. David Gunn is shot and killed during an anti-abortion protest at the Pensacola Women’s Medical Services clinic. Dr Gunn performed abortions at several clinics in Florida and Alabama and was getting out of his car in the clinic’s parking lot when Michael Griffin shouted, “Don’t kill any more babies!” and shot the doctor three times in the back. Griffin immediately surrendered to a nearby police officer.)Pro-abortion demonstration commemorating Dr Gunn

* 1997 The Warner Brothers Network premieres its first hit show. (On this day in 1997, the fledgeling Warner Brothers (WB) television network airs the inaugural episode of what will become its first bonafide hit show, Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Buffy‘s creator, Joss Whedon, developed the series from an original script he had written for the big screen a number of years earlier. The 1992 movie, starring Kristy Swanson and directed by Fran Rubel Kuzui, had disappointed Whedon by turning his edgy story with its powerful female heroine into too much of a silly comedy. When he was approached about creating a television series based on his original script, Whedon jumped at the chance. For the TV series, he went with the concept of “high school as a horror movie” and re-created his darker version of Buffy. The result was a blend of drama, romance, comedy, action and horror unique on network television. Whedon served as an executive producer throughout the show’s run and was heavily involved in its writing; he also directed a number of episodes.)Picture of three main characters from Buffy the Vampire Slayer

* 2006 Cuba plays in World Baseball Classic. (On March 10, 2006, the Cuban national baseball team plays Puerto Rico in the first round of the inaugural World Baseball Classic. While the Puerto Rican team was made up of major league All-Stars, the Cuban team was largely unknown to the world. Puerto Rico beat Cuba 12-2 that day, but the Cuban team would soon have its revenge. Baseball has long been a favourite national pastime in Cuba. American sailors brought the game into port cities in the 19th century and its popularity soon spread. Professional leagues had sprung up by the 1870s and by the 20th century, both Negro Leaguers and major leaguers spent their winters playing amongst Cuban professionals in the Cuban Baseball Leagues. Professional baseball in Cuba was abolished in 1960 when Cuban President Fidel Castro instituted state-run athletic programs modelled after those in the communist Soviet Union.)

Picture of the winning Japanese team in 2006
Japan celebrating after winning the inaugural World Baseball Classic in 2006 at Petco Park.

Look who was born on this date!

Picture dressed as Walker Texas Ranger* Chuck Norris in 1940. (Carlos Ray “Chuck” Norris (born March 10, 1940) is an American martial artist, actor, film producer and screenwriter. After serving in the United States Air Force, he began his rise to fame as a martial artist and has since founded his own school, Chun Kuk Do. Norris appeared in a number of action films, such as Way of the Dragon, in which he starred alongside Bruce Lee, and was The Cannon Group’s leading star in the 1980s. He played the starring role in the television series Walker, Texas Ranger from 1993 until 2001.)

head shot of bin Laden* Osama bin Laden in 1957. (Saudi Islamic Militant & Terrorist:  Born into a wealthy Saudi Arabian family bin Laden joined and helped fund mujahideen forces in Afghanistan against the Soviets before founding al-Qaeda in 1988. Banished by his country he established a base in Sudan before moving to Afghanistan from where he issued a fatwā against the United States. Attacks by al-Qaeda that followed included the 1998 US Embassy bombings and September 11 in the US. Killed in 2011 by US special forces and buried at sea.)

head shot of Carrie Underwood* Carrie Underwood in 1983. (Underwood is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. She rose to fame as the winner of the fourth season of American Idol in 2005. Her debut album, Some Hearts, was released in 2005. Bolstered by the huge crossover success of the singles “Jesus, Take the Wheel” and “Before He Cheats”, it became the best-selling solo female debut album in country music history, the fastest-selling debut country album in Nielsen SoundScan history and the best-selling country album of the last 14 years. Underwood won three Grammy Awards for the album, including Best New Artist.)

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Author: John Fioravanti

I'm a retired History teacher (35 years), husband, father of three, grandfather of three. My wife, Anne, and I became business partners in December, 2013, and launched our own publishing company, Fiora Books (http://fiorabooks.com), to publish my books. We have been married since 1973 and hope our joint business venture will be as successful as our marriage.

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