…The Poet in Exile, that was little more than a therapy exercise masquerading as fiction, in which a Jim Morrison-type rock star known as “The Snake Man” fakes his own death, reunites with his keyboard player “Roy,” apologizes for how he treated him, then thanks him profusely for keeping his legacy alive. As of 2011, Manzarek was still trying to turn it into a movie, convinced, as always, that this story needed to be told… by Ray Manzarek.
Archive for the ‘Obits’ Category
Actual headline on an AP story from the NYT:
Well, you see, when a mommy anteater and a daddy anteater love each other very much….
Obit watch: NASCAR driver Dick Trickle. The NYT obit (by way of the AP) is just awful: here’s a better obit from the HouChron.
Obit watch: “flamboyant swindler” Billie Sol Estes. NYT.
The AP adds the telling detail that he died with chocolate chip cookie crumbs on his lips.
Billie Sol was a little before my time, much less the time of some of my younger readers, but the NYT gives a good one-paragraph summary:
Nonexistent fertilizer tanks. Faked mortgages. Bogus cotton-acreage allotments. Farmers in four states bamboozled. Strange “suicides,” including a bludgeoned investigator shot five times with a bolt-action rifle. Assassination plots. Jimmy Hoffa and Fidel Castro. Jack Ruby and Lee Harvey Oswald.
Paging Mayor Bloomberg! Mayor Bloomberg, white courtesy phone, please!
…the new expert committee, commissioned by the Institute of Medicine at the behest of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said there was no rationale for anyone to aim for sodium levels below 2,300 milligrams a day. The group examined new evidence that had emerged since the last such report was issued, in 2005.
I remember when the blood alcohol limit was 0.10%. I remember the arguments at the time for and against lowering the limit to 0.08%. The one question I had was: how many accidents were caused by drivers who were at 0.08% or above, but below 0.10%? I never got an answer to that question, and it didn’t matter anyway, since the government issued a decree:
Initially, Congress choose the carrot over the stick, creating a $500-million incentive fund to coax states into enacting the 0.08% standard. But after only a few states did, lawmakers voted in 2000 to require states to set a 0.08% blood-alcohol level or lose millions of dollars in federal highway funds. Currently, all states use the 0.08% standard to define drunk driving for non-commercial drivers ages 21 and older.
And now the government is talking about dropping it down to 0.05%. Again, I ask: how many accidents are caused by people at or above 0.05% but below 0.08%? There was a report on Reason‘s website (I can’t find it right now) that estimated “500-800″ lives saved per year by lowering the limit to 0.05%. But does this take into account the number of lives that might be lost by diverting police resources to pursue drivers at the 0.05% level, instead of pursuing other crimes?
…the board’s recommendation came on the 25th anniversary of the nation’s worst drunk-driving crash when an intoxicated driver, going the wrong way on Interstate 71 near Carrollton, Ky., killed 24 teenagers and three adults on a school bus and injured 34 others.
Larry Wayne Mahoney, the intoxicated driver, had a 0.24% BAC at the time of the crash, so he was already DWI even by 1988 standards, let alone the 2000 standard or the proposed 0.05% standard. Most of the serious DWI accidents I hear about involve people who are above – in many cases, way above – the 0.10% mark. Would we save more lives going after the highly intoxicated drunk; the guy who blows a 0.20% or the gal who blows a 0.25%?
Milton Brothers’s residency paid $50 a month. Joyce Brothers, who had a steel-trap memory, decided to supplement their income by appearing on a quiz show. She settled on “The $64,000 Question,” produced in New York and broadcast on CBS. On the show, contestants answered a string of increasingly difficult questions in fields of their choosing.
Dr. Brothers quickly saw that the show prized incongruous matches of contestant and subject: the straight-backed Marine officer who was an expert on gastronomy; the cobbler who knew all about opera. What she decided, would be more improbable than a petite psychologist who was a pundit of pugilism?
She embarked on weeks of intensive study, a process little different, she later said, from preparing to write a doctoral dissertation. She made her first appearance on the show in late 1955, returning week after week until she had won the top prize, $64,000 — only the second person, and the first woman, to do so. She later won the same amount, also for boxing knowledge, on a spinoff show, “The $64,000 Challenge.”
I spent a lot of time yesterday trying to find the specific question Dr. Brothers answered for “The $64,000 Question”. The NYT has the answer, I think (the writing in that last paragraph is a bit fuzzy).
In other news, the HouChron reports that the Dallas Police Department is giving the “police commendation award” to retired detective Jim Leavelle. Why does this matter? Well, you probably know who Jim Leavelle is, but not by name:
That’s Leavelle in the hat handcuffed to Oswald.
Deanna Durbin, movie star of the 1930s and 1940s. NYT.
Ms. Durbin, who gave almost no interviews after she left Hollywood, did send reporters a letter in 1958 that read in part: “I was a typical 13-year-old American girl. The character I was forced into had little or nothing in common with myself — or with other youth of my generation, for that matter. I could never believe that my contemporaries were my fans. They may have been impressed with my ‘success.’ but my fans were the parents, many of whom could not cope with their own youngsters. They sort of adopted me as their ‘perfect’ daughter.”
Dr. Kenneth I. Appel, noted mathematician.
Dr. Appel is famous, along with Dr. Wolfgang Haken, for their 1976 proof of the four-color map theorem. Their proof was significant for two reasons:
- The four color theorem was a major unsolved problem in mathematics.
- The Appel/Haken proof was the first major mathematical proof that used computers in the process.
The Appel/Haken proof was rather controversial at the time:
I would have been 11 at the time, and I remember this being a big deal. I even remember trying to read the Scientific American article about the four color proof, and it being more than a little above my head. I’d love to go back and read that article now, but (of course) it doesn’t seem to be available online unless you’re willing to cough up money to Nature.
(When did Nature acquire the Scientific American archives? Did I miss that?)
Heading out to the gun show, and then a ceremony at the university later on. Busy day coming.
The mayor of Patton Village, Texas, is no longer the mayor of Patton Village.
She was removed from office by the judge shortly after her conviction. Ms. Munoz still faces charges of tampering with government records: she was convicted of a felony in 1979, but lied about that conviction when she ran for mayor.
In 1984, in an effort to push USA Today executives to cut costs, he invited them to a dinner near his home in Cocoa Beach. They arrived to see a long table set with matzo and Manischewitz wine in a mock tableau of the Last Supper and a Passover Seder. At the center sat Mr. Neuharth, a crown of thorns on his head and a huge wooden cross behind him.
“I am the crucified one,” he told the stunned executives, and warned them that they would be “passed over” if the newspaper foundered.
This is not a repeat from two weeks ago.
Today is my birthday. I’m going to be out of pocket most of the day: going to the gun shop, then over to the capitol to take pictures, then on a tour of the UT Tower, and then to dinner. In my absence, consider this an open thread to talk about things you want to talk about: Boston, West, Michael Morton and Ken Anderson, the Astros, the vertical integration of the broiler industry, etc.
(As always, if this is your first time posting, I have to approve your comment. Once you’ve been approved, additional comments should go through without requiring moderation. Comment approval is one blog function I can do fairly easily from my phone, so you should not have to wait too long. Unless I’m driving.)
Frank Bank, most noteworthy for playing Clarence “Lumpy” Rutherford on “Leave It To Beaver”, has died.
It is somewhat interesting (at least to me) that Mr. Bank was unable to escape his role as “Lumpy”. So he left acting and became a successful broker.
Among his clients were former co-stars Mathers and Barbara Billingsley, who had played Mrs. Cleaver. “Frank is certainly brighter than Lumpy Rutherford, and a very good stockbroker,” Billingsley said in the People magazine article.
A longtime resident of the San Fernando Valley, he wrote a memoir, “Call Me Lumpy” (1997). Subtitled “My Leave It to Beaver Days and Other Wild Hollywood Life,” it drew attention mainly because of a bawdy chapter detailing his “perpetual sexfest” during the 1960s. “I have slept with over 1,000 women,” the chapter begins.
“Call Me Lumpy” is available from Amazon. And, yes, there is a Kindle edition.