On April 8, 1766, the first fire escape was supposedly patented. There is a rudimentary drawing that showed a wicker basket attached to a rope and pulley system that would allow people to lower themselves to the ground from a second, third, or fourth floor window. There is not an identifiable inventor for this contraption. Many people over the years have stated that being thrown out a window would have been safer than using the contraption pictured in 1766. Gaspard II de Coligny, Gary Hoy, William Douglas, Miguel de Vasconcelos, Alexander I of Serbia, and Ivan Safronov would disagree if they were still alive. They all died from being thrown out of a window. They were defenestrated. Dying by being thrown out of a window is called defenestration. It’s happened enough times throughout history that we’ve invented a word for it. So, the rickety basket that might tip over is much better than just being thrown out of a window.
On April 7, 1864, the first camel race was put on by Samuel McLenegham in Sacramento, California. Mr. McLenegham had purchased the camels from the US Army after its failed attempt to establish a Camel Corp that could transport goods and mail across the America desert. What the US Army failed to understand was that camels are angry, anti-social beasts that will bite you and spit on you just because they can. The winner of the first race was a one-humper named “You Idiot Beast” and it barely edged out the second place finisher “Can’t You Run Friggin Straight!”. They say “You Idiot Beast” won by a toe.
On April 6, 1722, Peter the Great, Tsar of Russia ended the beard tax that he imposed back in 1698. He imposed the tax, along with other measures to modernize Russia so it could compete with the Englands, Frances, and Spains of the European world. The other things he did, like changing Russia’s calendar, the way Russian was written, and updating the military really improved Russia’s culture and economy. But the beard tax was unpopular. Russian men, and some women, needed those beards to keep warm in the cold sub-Artic winters, and the Russian Orthodox Church was very anti-shaving. But Peter the Great did not care, and a beard tax was imposed, and for the first time in centuries, some Russian women learned they were married to actual bears. So when the beard tax ended, those women, and some men, were allowed to go back to living the lie that their husbands, and some wives, were actual people.
On April 5, 456, the most famous Ophidiophobicist in history returned to Ireland. Saint Patrick returned to Ireland as a missionary bishop and the last snake packed its bags and immigrated to England before making its way to France. The last snake was heard to hiss on its way out, “Hope you choke on the potatoes.” And it being 456 CE, Saint Patrick looked around and asked, “What’s a potato?”
On April 4, 1581, Sir Francis Drake was knighted by Queen Elizabeth I. This was due to his feat of being the first captain to circumnavigate the world and not die in the attempt. Ferdinand Magellan was the first captain to start an attempt as a sea voyage from 1519 to 1522, but he died in the Philippines and Juan Sebastian Elcano had to finish the trip for him. So, just like in NASCAR, since Magellan started the trip, he gets credit for completing it, even though Elcano had to substitute as captain. It does need to be noted that Drake’s trip was protested by the Square-Earthers of that time. They said that since the Earth is shaped like a gambling dice, Drake’s ship, the Golden Hind, would never have been able to crest the huge pyramid shaped waves that had to be there. But since it was 1581, and people knew what idiots the Square-Earthers were, they just pelted them with rotten fruit and animal feces and told them to shut up.
On April 3, 1776, George Washington received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Harvard College. While honored, George Washington almost declined it, as he was waiting to hear back from the Art Instruction School. He’d read an ad in the Pennsylvania Gazette that said, “Dost Thou Lovest To Scribble? Can Thoust Draw This Drunken Tortoise? Send in 2 pounds, sterling and Thou’s Bestest Attempt and Thou Mightest Win A Drawing Scholarship.” George was convinced he had artistic ability, since at one time he had been a fairly competent surveyor, but Martha, his wife, wasn’t as convinced, since George only liked to draw cherry trees and naked women. She convinced George to accept the honorary law degree, since artists, at that time, usually died poor and penniless.
On April 2, 2008, President Bush backed Ukraine’s and Georgia’s bid to join NATO over the staunch opposition of Russia. Alabama Governor, Bob Riley, secretly sent President Bush a note that whined, “How the H E double hockey sticks is Georgia getting an invitation to NATO. If Georgia’s getting an invitation, then by damned, Alabama should get one too. They’re already getting our water and they’re allowed to be an hour ahead of us. Shit, George, excuse my French, we vote Republican too, so let us also join NATO.” Vice President Dick Cheney was reported to send Governor Riley back a message that read, “Shut up you gol-damned idjit. It’s Georgia the country, NOT Georgia the state. Don’t you ever send me another idiot message, excuse me, don’t you send the President another idiot message like this, unless you want me to take you hunting. Know what I mean?” And that was how Alabama’s secret inquiry into joining NATO was squashed.
On April 1, 1970, the first of over 670,000 AMC Gremlins were released into the American driving ecosystem to compete with the invasive Volkswagon Beetles and Toyota Coronas. Unfortunately, the Gremlin was a weaker and inferior automotive species and was quickly devoured and beaten by the stronger, and better built foreign subcompacts. American automotive companies were surprised at how intelligent the average American car buyer was, and their reluctance to buy crap at any price, just because it said, “Made In America.” American car makers learned that quality, not cheap slogans and poorly made cars, pried the dollar bills from the American car buying public
On March 31, 1776, Abigail Adams, the wife of future President and Founding Father, John Adams, wrote to her husband that women were “determined to foment a rebellion” if the new Declaration of Independence failed to guarantee their rights. Well, not the rights of all women, such as black women, or native women, or even poor women, but women of well-to-do wealthy, landowning families. Women who had been educated and understood politics and which fork to use with the shrimp cocktails. That said, it only took 144 years for them to get the right to vote.
The answer is Jeopardy. The question is, ‘What premiered on March 30, 1964 on the television network NBC and was originally hosted by Art Fleming’. It should be noted that many intelligent people have appeared and won on Jeopardy over the years. It should also be noted that many intelligent and crazy nutjob people have appeared and won on Jeopardy. Case in point, Hutton ‘Red’ Gibson won the 1968 Tournament of Champions. He later leveled up to become a prominent sedevacantist and conspiracy theorist extraordinaire. What is a sedevacantist? It’s a traditional Catholic that believes that the Catholic Church has not had a bona fide Pope since 1958, because the Catholic Church has accepted too many modern beliefs into its tenets. Oh, he also sired Mel Gibson of Mad Max fame. Its where Mel got his crazy from. Oh, I know, most people say you get your crazy from your momma, but not Mel. It’s from his dad. Old Coocoo for Coco Puffs.