Wednesday, February 1, 2017

PARACULTURAL CALENDAR FOR FEBRUARY 1

On this day in 1709, British sailor Alexander Selkirk is rescued after spending five years marooned on a desert island at his own request. His adventure - which mostly consists of eating bugs, masturbating and screaming at the mocking blue sky - becomes the stuff of literary legend when it's fictionalized by Daniel DeFoe in his novel Robinson Crusoe.

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On this day in 1790, in New York City, the Supreme Court of the United States convenes for the first time.

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On this day in 1884, the first volume (A to Ant) of the Oxford English Dictionary is published.

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On this day in 1920, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police begins operations.

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On this day in 1929, one Charles Rigoulet successfully "clean and jerks" 401 lbs, 6 oz. It's the first time that more than 400 lbs is lifted overhead in a sporting competition. Nowadays, that happens every Thursday at Oprah Winfrey's house.

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On this day in 1978, once-great film director Roman "the Tweenmaster" Polanski skips bail and runs away to France after pleading guilty to charges that he had sex with a 13-year-old girl in Jack Nicholson's hot-tub. Bad movies ensue.

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On this day in 2002, American journalist and South Asia Bureau Chief of the Wall Street Journal Daniel Pearl, kidnapped January 23, 2002, is beheaded and mutilated by his captors.

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On this day in 2003, the Space Shuttle Columbia on mission STS-107 disintegrates during reentry into the Earth's atmosphere, killing all seven astronauts aboard.

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On this day in 2004, 251 people are trampled to death and 244 injured in a stampede at the Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia.

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On this day in 2004, Janet Jackson's breast is exposed during the half-time show of Super Bowl XXXVIII, resulting in US broadcasters adopting a stronger adherence to Federal Communications Commission censorship guidelines.

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