Old Sailors' Almanac


Week 18, 2017

Previous Week   May 01, 2017 - May 07, 2017  Next Week

The Haymarket Square Riot on May 04, 1886

The Haymarket Square Riot on May 04, 1886

The Haymarket Square Riot: What begins as a peaceful labor protest in Haymarket Square in Chicago, Illinois, turns into a riot, leaving more than 100 wounded and 8 police officers dead. After Chicago authorities arrested and detained nearly every anarchist and socialist in town, eight men, who were either speakers in or organizers of the protest, were charged with murder.

The day before the riot, a couple of people were killed and others were wounded in an unprovoked attack by police officers firing into a crowd of striking workers at the nearby McCormick Reaper Works. Despite tension the following day, the crowd at Haymarket Square was listening quietly to speakers advocating a mandatory eight-hour workday for employees. As the final speaker was winding the rally down, police officers forced their way toward the stage to disperse the crowd, provoking someone to throw a bomb into the crowd.

After the explosion, officers began firing wildly in all directions, inciting a riot among protestors.About sixtypolice officers were wounded and eight died. Although the public was later led to believe that the deaths resulted from the bomb, seven of the eight fatalities and the great majority of the injuries were caused by shots fired by fellow officers during the confusion.

Despite the lack of evidence linking the eight anarchists to the bomb, Chicago authorities clamped down on the radicals with the full support of the public. The defendants were widely believed to be guilty before the trial began. In fact, jury selection at the trial took a full 21 days. Not a single juror was accepted in the first eight days because virtually every one was convinced that the defendants were guilty.

Seven of the eight defendants received death sentences. On November 11, 1887, four of the defendants were hanged. One man, also scheduled for execution, killed himself the day before. Governor John Atgeld pardoned the remaining three defendants in 1893, after they had served seven years in prison.

History Channel / Wikipedia / Britannica Encyclopedia / PBS / American Historama.org The Haymarket Square Riot - May 04, 1886 (YouTube) video

Understanding Military Terminology: Scout of Many Trails (Sea Scout and Boy Scout look at globe with old sailor) ~ Norman Rockwell

Understanding Military Terminology - Measurement and signature intelligence

(DOD) Information produced by quantitative and qualitative analysis of physical attributes of targets and events to characterize, locate, and identify targets and events, and derived from specialized, technically derived measurements of physical phenomenon intrinsic to an object or event. Also called MASINT. See also intelligence; scientific and technical intelligence.

Joint Publications JP 2-0 (Joint Intelligence - Defense Technical Information Center)

“The Odyssey”

The Old Salt’s Corner

“The Odyssey”

Book I

Tell me, O muse, of that ingenious hero who travelled far and wide after he had sacked the famous town of Troy. Many cities did he visit, and many were the nations with whose manners and customs he was acquainted; moreover he suffered much by sea while trying to save his own life and bring his men safely home; but do what he might he could not save his men, for they perished through their own sheer folly in eating the cattle of the Sun-god Hyperion; so the god prevented them from ever reaching home. Tell me, too, about all these things, O daughter of Jove, from whatsoever source you may know them.

So now all who escaped death in battle or by shipwreck had got safely home except Ulysses, and he, though he was longing to return to his wife and country, was detained by the goddess Calypso, who had got him into a large cave and wanted to marry him. But as years went by, there came a time when the gods settled that he should go back to Ithaca; even then, however, when he was among his own people, his troubles were not yet over; nevertheless all the gods had now begun to pity him except Neptune, who still persecuted him without ceasing and would not let him get home.

Now Neptune had gone off to the Ethiopians, who are at the world's end, and lie in two halves, the one looking West and the other East. He had gone there to accept a hecatomb of sheep and oxen, and was enjoying himself at his festival; but the other gods met in the house of Olympian Jove, and the sire of gods and men spoke first. At that moment he was thinking of Aegisthus, who had been killed by Agamemnon's son Orestes; so he said to the other gods:

“See now, how men lay blame upon us gods for what is after all nothing but their own folly. Look at Aegisthus; he must needs make love to Agamemnon's wife unrighteously and then kill Agamemnon, though he knew it would be the death of him; for I sent Mercury to warn him not to do either of these things, inasmuch as Orestes would be sure to take his revenge when he grew up and wanted to return home. Mercury told him this in all good will but he would not listen, and now he has paid for everything in full.”

Book I continued ...

~ Homer

Written 800 B.C.E

Translated by Samuel Butler

Table of Contents

“I’m Just Sayin’”

“I’m Just Sayin”

“Work expands to fill the time available for its completion.”

“The time spent on any agenda item will be in inverse proportion to the sum of money involved.”

~ Parkinson's law of triviality

“Thought for the Day”

“Thought for the Day”

“If you want happiness for an hour take a nap

If you want happiness for a day go fishing.

If you want happiness for a year inherit a fortune.

If you want happiness for a lifetime help someone else.”

~ Chinese Proverb

“What I Have Learned”

“What I Have Learned”

“Just when the caterpillar thought her life was over, she began to fly.”

~ Anonymous

Bizarre News (we couldn’t make up stuff this good – real news story)

Bizarre News (we couldn’t make up stuff this good – real news story)

Campaign to change the name of fire ants to “spicy boys” gathers pace

Campaign to change the name of fire ants to “spicy boys” gathers pace

“It has taken far too long for this issue to be dragged into the public eye”

First, one calling for a second referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU attracted 4.1 million signatures, and now another is going viral on a similarly important topic: the rechristening of fire ants to their rightful name of ‘spicy boys’.

“It's 2016, there are 36 genders, bayblade might be a new olympic sport, why arent we calling fire ants 'spicy boys’?” the Change.org petition asks.

Fire ant is the common name for several species of ants in the genus Solenopsis, though they also go by ‘red ant’ and, in some parts, ‘ginger ant’. It’s time we put an end to this confusion and all agree on the superior name.

“It has taken far too long for this issue to be dragged into the public eye”, one signee commented. “The time for this fire any nonsense to stop has come. Let’s all just agree that spicy boys are called spicy boys and move on.”

Independent (07/05/2016) video

What’s the source of energy that powers the human brain?

Mr. Answer Man Please Tell Us: What’s the source of energy that powers the human brain?

Mainly sugar, glucose. Glucose is broken down and in the process it is used to create a gradient of hydrogen ions (oxygen is also needed, which is why we breathe). So you get a sort of dam with lots of hydrogen on one side and little on the other. They can only pass through a specific structure, which uses the force to create ATP (Adenosine triphosphate). ATP (Adenosine triphosphate) is then used to power many biological processes, including the active processes that keep your neurons firing. (See Fabian van den Berg's answer to “Why do we inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide?”.)

Neurons fire using a similar method of gradients. When the incoming signal increases the voltage enough, voltage gated channels spring open and sodium can flow in making it more positive. The neighboring gate also springs open, the same happens, and the chain keeps going until the synapses, where neurotransmitters are released to, do the same to the next neuron. (See Fabian van den Berg's answer to “How does opening a sodium channel cause depolarization in a neuron?”)

In order to keep the neuron negative, and to reset it back after firing, an active process ferries ions across the membrane, which requires energy, and the energy comes from ATP (Adenosine triphosphate).

Economic (or “econ”) Officers work with foreign governments to secure internet freedom, fund scientific advances, protect the environment, or negotiate new trade laws.

So ultimately your brain runs on sugar and oxygen, which it uses to power the ATP (Adenosine triphosphate) machine in your mitochondria.

Electronic Research Collections (ERC)National Center for Biotechnology Information.govQuoraScientific AmericanWikipedia

Where Did That Saying Come From? “Flash in the Pan”

Where Did That Saying Come From?

Flash in the Pan”  Meaning: Something disappointingly short-lived.

Origin: There was an old type of gun that had a “pan” on which a trail of powder led from the charge to the flint.

Sometimes the powder ignited, but the gun didn’t go off. Hence it was merely a flash in the pan.

Phrases.org UK

NAVSPEAK aka U.S. Navy Slang - U.S. Navy America's Navy - A Global Force For Good

NAVSPEAK aka U.S. Navy Slang

Old Man: The Commanding Officer or Admiral in command. The term is used, regardless of the officer's age or gender, when the officer has gained the respect of subordinates. RADM Grace Hopper is a female “Old Man”.

Old Salt: A naval veteran. See “Salty”.

On my six: Naval aviation expression referring to having someone or thing at my back, on my tail, directly behind me, relative to the hours of a clock; 12-dead ahead, 3-starboard or to the right, 6 aft or behind and 9-port or to the left.

O-N-O-F-F actuator (or switch): The on/off button or switch on any device, usually used in the context of a subordinate not grasping how to power a device up or down.

One-eyed Jack: See “Barney Clark”. tasty treat served at midrats consisting of a slider topped with a fried egg.

Just for MARINES - U.S. Marines Marines - The Few. The Proud.

Just for you MARINE

(The) Pits: Depressed area on a shooting range where the targets are located, shooters staff it by marking, raising, and lowering targets from behind a berm. See also butts and pulling butts / pits.

Pitting: Incentive training for a large group of recruits, so named for the sandy pits set aside for such events. See also quarterdecking.

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

Naval Aviation Squadron Nicknames

VUP-19 - Unmanned Patrol Squadrons (used for Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance): “Big Red”
Established October 1st, 2016, Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida, NAS Point Mugu (detachment)

Science & Technology

Science & Technology

Science & Technology

Mona Lisa's smile decoded: science says she's happyDoctors find patient brain activity continued for 10 minutes after deathThe future of space colonization – terraforming or space habitats?“Recycling protein” shown to affect learning and memory in miceIs Qualcomm, Microsoft collaboration a sign of less Intel dominance to come?“Blurred times” in a quantum worldCould fast radio bursts be powering alien probes?Hubble dates black hole's last big meal


The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

The Strange, Mysterious or Downright Weird

Why Space Travel Can Be Absolutely Disgusting

Why Space Travel Can Be Absolutely Disgusting

NASA's requirements for becoming an astronaut are stringent, but not overly daunting. Essentially, hopefuls must have a bachelor's degree in science, be physically fit, and stand between 58.5 and 76 inches tall. What NASA doesn't mention, however, are the intangibles. You can probably think of a few: coolness under pressure, a problem-solving mentality, and the ability to work in a team setting. But one trait you might not consider is a strong stomach. The following stories illustrate why that definitely can come in handy.

The microgravity of space can lead to a lot of disgusting situations. If you think carpet spills are hard to clean, try collecting floating vomit, or desiccated skin.

“The calluses on your feet in space will eventually fall off”, astronaut Scott Kelly revealed in a Reddit AMA. “So, the bottoms of your feet become very soft like newborn baby feet. But the top of my feet develop rough alligator skin because I use the top of my feet to get around here on space station when using foot rails.”

In April 1981, astronauts John Young and Robert Crippen piloted the Space Shuttle Columbia successfully through its maiden mission, but not without a few hitches. The toilet clogged early on, forcing the two crewmembers to use fecal containment systems, long, tube-shaped bags affixed to the buttocks with a sticky seal to trap, and store, evacuated feces. Even worse, during re-entry, vacuum-dried fecal matter from the broken, bloated toilet migrated to the ventilation system and entered the main cabin. Young and Crippen survived the poop particles and soldiered through the “ick” factor in professional fashion.

Thanks to futuristic vacuum toilets and well-designed filtration systems, escaped turds are no longer an issue. In fact, the International Space Station is “many, many times cleaner than your bathroom at home”, Astrobiologist Kasthuri Venkateswaran, told the Washington Post.

Live Science (03/09/2017) video

© CEASAR CHOPPY by cartoonist Marty Gavin - archives Ceasar Choppy's Navy! “© CEASAR CHOPPY” by Marty Gavin


“Funk #49” - The James Gang 1970

“Funk #49” - James Gang
Album: James Gang Rides Again
Released 1970 video

The James Gang is best known for their guitarist, Joe Walsh, whose playing on this track helped establish him as a superstar axeman. Walsh joined the Cleveland-based group in 1969 after making a name for himself as one of the top guitar men in Ohio. He replaced Glenn Schwartz in the band, who Walsh considers a mentor. They were a 5-piece when Walsh joined, but were down to three (like popular acts Cream and The Jimi Hendrix Experience) when they released their second album “James Gang Rides Again”.

With just three members, it meant Walsh had to play both rhythm and lead guitar parts, and also sing (he got a lot more help when he joined the Eagles in 1975). It was quite a learning experience for Walsh, who left the James Gang in 1971 after recording three studio albums with the group.

Walsh wrote this song with his bandmates, drummer Jim Fox and bass player Dale Peters. The song is about a girlfriend whose wild ways the singer just can't tame (the female equivalent of Joe Walsh's character in his solo hit “Life's Been Goodvideo). There isn't much in the way of lyrics, as the song is mostly a showcase for Walsh's guitar work. He explained in the book The Guitar Greats, “I came up with the basic guitar lick, and the words never really impressed me intellectually, but they seemed to fit somehow. It was a real good example of how we put things together, bearing in mind that it was a three piece group, and I don't think that there was any overdubbing. The only thing we really added was the percussion middle part, which the three of us actually played, putting some parts on top of the drums, but that's the three piece James Gang, and that's the energy and kind of the symmetry we were all about.”

The first James Gang album (Yer' Album, 1969) contained the track “Funk #48video, which according to producer Bill Szymczyk, got its title “out of thin air”. When they came up with what would become “Funk #49”, they were once again faced with no logical title based on the lyrics, and followed the sequence. There was a “Funk 50video, but not until Joe Walsh released it on his 2012 album Analog Man after being asked to rework “Funk #49” for the ESPN show Sunday NFL Countdown.

“Funk #49” became a staple of Album Oriented Rock and Classic Rock radio, but it wasn't the biggest chart hit for the James Gang - that would be “Walk Away”, which made #51 in 1971 and was later reworked for Walsh's 1976 solo album “You Can't Argue with a Sick Mindvideo. “Funk #49” is one of Joe Walsh's most popular songs, and by the mid-'70s he admitted that he couldn't stand playing it any more, but did so because fans loved it.

The James Gang, official site / Billboard / All Music / Song Facts / Ultimate Classic Rock / Wikipedia

Image: “James Gang Rides Again (album)” by James Gang



● Michelangelo built statue of David, 17 feet tall in Florence, Italy in 1504.

● Two, To, Too three similar common words can be defined as plural, destination, and also.

● James Buchanan was President of the United States when seven states seceded from the union.

People Who Know Everything

A Test for People Who Know Everything

From the Jeopardy Archives Category - 1933 ($300):

In the U.S., hoarders of this type of coinage were jailed & fined for refusing to surrender them.

Answer for People Who Do Not Know Everything, or Want to Verify Their Answer Wikipedia

Answer to Last Week's Test

From the Jeopardy Archives Category - Food and Drink (1,000):

This food is celebrated on August 24, the anniversary of the patent of the iron used for making them.

Answer: Waffles. Google patents

Joke of the Day

Joke of the Day

A Dog Walks Into a Bar...

and asks the bartender, “Do you have any jobs?”

The bartender says, “Why don’t you try the circus?”

The dog replies, “Why would the circus need a bartender?”

Quotable Quotables

“Criminal Minds” Season 1 Episode 1 “Extreme Aggressor” opening and closing quotes

Gideon: Joseph Conrad said, “The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary. Men alone are quite capable of every wickedness.”

Gideon: Emerson said, “All is riddle, and the key to a riddle is another riddle.”

Gideon: Winston Churchill said, “The farther backward you can look, the farther forward you will see.”

Gideon: Nietzsche once said, “When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks into you.”

~ “Criminal Minds” - “Extreme Aggressor” (September 22, 2005) video Written By: Jeff Davis - CBS (from 2005)