Today in history, greetings, and social banter here. (More)

Mount Vesuvius began to rumble on the feast day of Vulcan, the Roman god of fire, today (79). Also, Germanic general Odoacer was proclaimed Rex Italiae, a date considered to mark the end of the Western Roman Empire (476), Jacques Cartier landed near Québec City in his third voyage to Canada (1541), Catherine de Medici and her son, Charles IX, ordered the St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre of Huguenot leaders, igniting three months of mob violence that killed at least 5000 French Protestants (1572), English Colonel George Monck formed the regiment now known as the Coldstream Guards (1650), then western North Carolina, now eastern Tennessee, declared itself the short-lived and never-admitted state of Franklin (1784), Britain captured Hong Kong as a base for operations in China now known as the First Opium War (1834), the Treaty of Prague ended the Austro-Prussian War (1866), London’s Albert Bridge opened (1873), the Cry of Pugad Lawin opened the Philippine Revolution (1896), the Southern Cross Expedition left London for Antarctica (1898), the automobile tire chain was patented (1904), Lowell Smith and John Richter performed the first mid-air refueling (1923), Ferdinando Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti were executed (1927), English cricketer Len Hutton set a world record 364 individual Test innings in a Test match against Australia (1938), Germany and Russia signed the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, allowing Germany’s invasion of Poland and the start of World War II (1939), the British Military Government established the German states of Hanover and Schleswig-Holstein (1946), the World Council of Churches was formed (1948), China bombarded Quemoy, igniting the Second Taiwan Strait Crisis (1958), Lunar Orbiter 1 took the first photograph of the Earth from lunar orbit (1966), the Salad Bowl Strike organized by César Chávez began (1970), a bank robbery in Stockholm began a four-day standoff that would give rise to the term “Stockholm Syndrome” when the hostages bonded with their captors to survive (1973), the Gossamer Condor won the Kremer Prize as the human-powered craft to allow controlled and sustained flight (1977), 2 million people from Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania stood on the Vilnius-Tallinn road, holding hands in the Singing Revolution (1989), Tim Berners-Lee opened the World Wide Web to new users, on the same day that East and West Germany declared they would reunite and Armenia declared independence (1990), the Galileo spacecraft discovered the moon Dactyl orbiting 243 Ida, the first known asteroid moon (1993), Eugene Bullard, the only black pilot in World War I, was posthumously commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force (1994), Osama bin Laden issued his declaration of war against the U.S. (1996), 18-year-old Natascha Kampusch escaped from Wolfgang Priklopil after eight years in captivity (2006), the skeletal remains of Alexei Nikolaevich and his sister Anastasia were found near Yekaterinburg, Russia (2007), and a magnitude 5.8 earthquake shook Virginia and Washington D.C., damaging the Washington Monument and other structures (2010). And Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown, ending his almost 42-year dictatorship in Libya (2011).

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The Janitor Professor of Astrology was not reading trashy novels while researching this week’s Bippiescopes….

Virgo: Your cusp begins this weekend. Expect to feel cuspy.

Libra: Honest communication is key this weekend. But don’t say that.

Scorpio: Enjoy team bonding this weekend. Share the good cuffs.

Sagittarius: Work hard and play later this weekend. If you have to.

Capricorn: Comfort at home will buoy you this weekend. Except for that.

Aquarius: Keep your sense of humor this weekend. The other one.

Pisces: Explore your angst this weekend. Write a sophomoric novel.

Aries: Let your actions speak this weekend. They’ll enjoy the quiet.

Taurus: Recognize shades of grey this weekend. But not all 50.

Gemini: Enjoy quiet self-reflection this weekend. Clean the mirrors.

Cancer: Explore new territory this weekend. Try it in the garage.

Leo: Tie up loose ends this weekend. All 50 of them.

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Good morning! ::hugggggs::