What I groove on

Archive for the tag “civil war”

Answers to questions you don’t need to know

Congrats again to Nelson Holder and Tom “Dusty Starr” Collins for answering all 11 questions correctly. Your booze awaits.  Martin Valade and Rob Perez deserve a nod of approval, but came up a little short.

Here are the answers:

The Hoff

1) Yes, the Hoff crab is named after the hairy chested David “The Hoff” Hasslehoff, the great actor from Baywatch and Knight Rider (my friend Bob Buena used to tell chicks that he was the voice of Kitt, the Trans Am that told ” The Hoff ” what to do…. I am sure it worked for him, though perhaps currently not as well.)  It proves that there are scientists that have a semblance of a sense of humor.

2) General Lew Wallace did write Ben-Hur which became the best selling book of the 19th century. It has never been out of print and has been adapted for film 4 times.  

3) Gilligan’s first name is Willie (there are a variety of spellings).  In one of the Brady Bunch movies it was hinted that Mrs. Brady’s first husband was a professor who was lost at sea. Both Gilligan’s Island and The Brady Bunch were created by Sherwood Schwartz.

4) Warren Zevon’s Dad, Willie Stumpy Zevon was a boxer and a bookmaker for notorious gangster Mickey Cohen. He was best man for Mickey first marriage.

5) The answer is 6,000,000 to 7,000,000.   The deaths of the American Civil War exceed the deaths of all U.S. wars combined.  An example of this is the 1st Maine Heavy Artillery’s charge at Petersburg, Virginia  where 635 of it’s 900 men were lost in 7 minutes.  The Christian family of Virginia lost 18 family members during the war.

6) The answer is Big Bill Taft. Bill was morbidly obese and suffered from loud belches and chronic flatulence. After his presidency he became Chief Justice of the United States. Sounds like a cool guy to groove with at an outdoor picnic, but not a fellow to get stuck in an elevator with.

7) Chuck Lindbergh had 7 kids outside of his marriage to Anne Morrow with 3 different German gals (two of them sisters). I suppose there is a reason Chuck is buried in Maui and Anne is buried back east.

8) Freddie Mercury was born a Parsi, with the name  Farrokh Bulsara in Zanzibar. He lived there and in India until his mid teens. He is known as Britain’s first Asian rockstar.

9) Gaylord Wilshire was a wild guy, but had very little to do with the magnificent street we know as Wilshire Blvd., owning just 4 blks which he donated to the city of Los Angeles under the agreement they name the street after him. Go to HMS Bounty bar which is connected to the Gaylord Apartments (named after Gaylord W.) and have a drink for every block he owned . You will groove.   

10) In his youth Daryl Gates was one time arrested for punching a police officer after getting a parking ticket. “Big D” as he was sometimes called, was Chief  “I’m so hammered that I find stairs a hazard” Parker’s driver and later became chief himself. Known as an arrogant leader and foolish with words (“casual drug users should be taken out and shot”) he resigned shortly after the Rodney King riots.

11) The answer here is Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. Though one does not hear much from the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Club or the Rabbiteers and I think one has to look very hard to find him at the Magic Kingdom, this does not diminish his groove to


the Disney folks because he is one of the original characters.

So that’s it. Again, congratulations to Nelson and Tom for they are champions for the rest of their days. I would like to thank all that tested their useless knowledge in the hope of drinking alcohol with me .  Perhaps next time you might be the one wrestling with 3 Samoan Fog-cutters .  Groove.

Fog Cutter

Quizmasters & Booze for the People

All right Cool Cats and Kittens, you steel souled gatherers of groove, you lusters of the crooked smile, the neon spandex jacket, and the all messy, dirty thoughts that cannot be helped by prayer.  It is time to put on your metallic colored caps of thinking and squeeze out the delicious strains of useless knowledge like the yellow matter custard that John spoke of.  Here’s the Daddy:  First two people who answer all eleven questions correctly will have 3 cocktails purchased for them at one of my favorite bars.  This deal is “on the belly” – so step up and be counted.  The questions, like my blog, mean nothing and everything, so pour yourself  a tall cool one and tax those dark shadows in your brain.  “Luck is the residue of design” the Old Branch said, so let’s start crackin.

Hoff crab

1.   The Hoff crab is a type of yeti crab discovered in 2010 on the Southern Ocean floor near Antarctica. It is named after:

A) Abbie Hoffman , political and social activist who co-founded the Yippies and was thrown off the stage at Woodstock in 1969 by Pete Townsend when he tried to interrupt  The Who’s performance.

B) David “the Hoff” Hasselhoff  because the crab has many hairs on its abdomen and it reminded the scientists of the strapping hairy chested actor.

C) The great relief pitcher Trevor Hoffman, one time save leader in the MLB.

D) For  Helsinki, Finland –  home  of crab discoverer Vaanta Kaajanokka.

2.  Lew Wallace  was a Civil War general and Governor of the New Mexico territory.  He broke his promise to pardon Billy the Kid after the Lincoln County Wars in 1879.  He is also famous for :

Lew Wallace

A) inventing the Graham Cracker

B) making the first baseball glove

C) writing the religious classic Ben-Hur

D) is distantly related to Frankie Valle of the Four Seasons

3.  We all love that wacky yet pleasantly attractive Gilligan from ” Gilligan’s Island”. What was his first name on the show?

A) Willie

B) Gill as in Gill Egan

C) Buddy

D) Ezra

4.  Rockstar Warren Zevon ‘s (“Werewolves of London”, “Poor,Poor,Pitiful Me” ) father was:

A) A minor league catcher in the Los Angeles Dodger organization

B) Part of L.A. Gangster Mickey Cohen’s gang

C) Invented a life saving tool used today by lifeguards in Santa Monica

D) Invented the Pez dispenser

Warren Z

5.  If the amount of soldiers who died in the American Civil War were to be computed to the current population of the United States population there would be

A) 700,000 – 1,000,000 dead

B) 2,000,000 – 3,000,000 dead

C) 4 ,000,000 – 5 ,000,000 dead

D) 6,000,000-7,000,000 dead

6.  The Powers that Be took over Bob Lee’s pad during the Civil War and turned it into Arlington National Cemetery.  (Bob’s estate sued and it was returned to his family, then they sold it back to the Government).  Besides JFK, only one other President is buried there.  Which one ?

A) Ike Eisenhower

B) Andy Jackson

C) Billy Taft

D) Ted Roosevelt

7.  Charlie Lindberg was known for being the first to fly across the Atlantic on a solo.  He was also known to have spread his seed counting 12 children he called his own.  How many of those were illegitimate (conceived outside of his marriage to Anne Morrow)?

A) all 12

B) 23

C) 7

D) 4


8. The word is that Sasha Baron Cohen is going to play Fred Mercury of the rock group Queen in a up and coming movie bio.  Who didn’t dig that stick microphone and his huge overbite ?  Fred is from what descendants ?

A) English

B) Indian

C) French

D) Brazilian

9. Wilshire Blvd is named after Gaylord Wilshire, the socialist millionaire, who made and lost a number of fortunes and had even less respect for the mighty dollar than I do.  How much of this famed street did he actually own?

A) 16 miles

B) 7 miles

C) 1 mile

D) 4 blocks

10.  Los Angeles was a delicious cesspool of corruption and vice until the new police chief  Bill Parker (Parker Center) took over in 1950.   Sure, he cleaned up Los Angeles, but don’t we all miss the days when the L.A. Vice squad ran their own prostitution ring and the coppers were extorting dough from the local hoodlums?   Chief Bill had his issues : “After trying to absorb Parker’s brilliance by day,  I would, too often by night, drive him home drunk.  And I mean loaded.  He drank until words slurred and stairs became a hazard.  He would repeat the same thought over and over until he became a terrible bore.”  Who said this about the Chief ?

A) Future L.A. mayor Sam Yorty

B) Jack Webb of Dragnet fame

C) Future Police chief Darrell Gates

D) L.A. Ram Quarterback Roman Gabriel

11.   In 1928 Walt Disney lost one of his cartoon characters to Universal Pictures.  78 years later the Walt Disney Company through a trade with NBC Universal got the characters back when NBC got the rights to sportscaster supreme Al Michaels.  What cartoon character did the Disney Company get back?

A) Mickey Mouse

B) Arnold Schwarzenegger

C) Donald Duck

D) Oswald the Lucky Rabbit

So there you have it. Enter as many times as you like.  Free booze is in the future of the 2 winners.  Good luck and cocktails are on me. Groove.

Print The Legend

The strange  dusty road of Truth has many hairpin turns and hazy stretches. It collides with Myth at a billion miles per hour and leaves chunks of reality mixed in with lumps of fantasy. Yet truth is stranger than fiction. An example of that is that Richard Dawson, the host of Family Feud who recently passed away, married one of the contestants and that the descendants of the Hatfield’s and McCoy’s were contestants on the show in 1979 where they played for cash prizes and a pig. ( The Hatfields won).

Like in Western History there are some who believe that myth is more important than History. That myth transcends the truth, and like religion, is beyond fact. Truth is a much harder sell for we Americans don’t really study History we shop for it.  Stephen Jay Gould , paleontologist, Harvard instructor, and a great baseball guy said that “humans have a psychic need for an indigenous creation of myth. That we need to come up with an explicit point of origin rather than accept that most beginnings are gradual and complex. We need to identify heroes and sacred places while evolutionary stories provide no palpable particular thing as a symbol for reverence, worship, or patriotism.”

Many Baseball heads credit Abner Doubleday for “inventing Baseball” one day in a cow pasture  in 1839. Now Abner was a cool cat : a Union officer who is credited with firing the first cannon blast while defending Fort Sumter, which was the opening battle of the Civil War, and after the war he moved to San Francisco where he obtained the patent on the cable car , but he never claimed to have invented Baseball. The man who gave him posthumous credit for creating the sport was later judged ” criminally insane”on murder charges. There is clear evidence that our ” National pastime” evolved over decades from English games such as Rounders and Stool Ball. Now that cow pasture is where the Baseball Hall of Fame resides in Cooperstown , New York.

Rhode Island, which is not an island, got its name from a geographic mixup with Block Island, which Gio De Verrazzano thought  resembled the Greek Island of Rhodes. ” California” is believed to derive it’s name from Calafia, queen of the tall black Amazons, whom 16th century Spaniards conjured up as occupiers of the Golden State. And two continents, North & South America, bore the name of Amerigo Vespucci, who never set foot upon them and wrote fantasies about lands he never saw.

As they said in “The Man who Shot Liberty Valance” when ” The Legend becomes fact, print the Legend.”


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