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Wednesday 1.31.18
Morning Trivia: He was the original guitarist and a founding member of the group Chicago. He died in early 1978 eight days before his 32nd birthday. The cause of death was an unintentional self-inflicted gunshot wound. Who was he?

So what was life like the last time the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles faced off in the Super Bowl? Super Bowl 39 was the first weekend of February 2005. We still had two years to go until the first iPhone. The world was reeling from the January 2005 split of the ultimate power couple Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston, and the game took place weeks after Donald and Melania Trump married at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. One year after the infamous Janet Jackson Super Bowl halftime show, it was Paul McCartney who rocked the Jacksonville, Florida stadium. What was different back then? The top TV show was American Idol. That season's winner -- Carrie Underwood -- was catapulted to stardom. What's the same now and then? New episodes of Will & Grace are back on the air. And quarterback Tom Brady is still a Patriot, of course. While this year marks the Eagles' first Super Bowl appearance since 2005, the Patriots have made it to the big game eight times since Brady was drafted in 2000. At Super Bowl 39, the Patriots beat the Eagles 24-21. The rematch is this Sunday in Minneapolis.

Birthdays: Actress Carol Channing is 97; former Secretary of the Interior, James Watt is 80; Baseball Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan is 71; Harry Wayne Casey a-k-a KC of KC & The Sunshine Band is 67; Sex Pistols frontman Johnny Rotten is 62; actress Kelly Lynch is 59; actress Minnie Driver is 48; and Justin Timberlake is 37.

Today is Backward Day, a day to do everything backward. Today is Inspire Your Heart With the Arts Day. Tonight is Play An Old Game You Haven't Played in Years Night. Maybe Yahztee, Scrabble, Monopoly, or Canasta. Today is Scotch Tape Day, marking the birth of the sticky stuff to 3M Company's Richard Drew on this date in 1928. It's Eat Brussel Sprouts Day. Today is Hell is Freezing Over Day -- on this day we're encouraged to to pull out those old lists of things we said we were going to do when hell freezes over.

Calendar notes: On this date in 1949, the first TV daytime soap opera, These Are My Children, was telecast from NBC in Chicago. The show's creator, Irna Phillips, would later produce As the World Turns and The Guiding Light. In 1961, a chimpanzee named Ham became the first US animal sent into space. Ham traveled 158 miles above the Earth in the Mercury-Redstone-2 space capsule. In 1990, McDonald's opened its first fast-food restaurant in the Soviet Union in Moscow. In 1999, the Denver Broncos repeated as NFL champions, defeating the Atlanta Falcons 34-19 in Super Bowl 33. In 2010, Avatar became the first film to gross over $2 billion worldwide. Also in 2010, Beyoncé set a Grammy record for females when she won six. The six awards were Song Of The Year, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance, Best Female R&B Vocal Performance, Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance, Best R&B Song, and Best Contemporary R&B Album. Two years later, Adele also won six.

While you personally may only be consuming 4,000 calories on Super Bowl Sunday -- a figure I just pulled out of thin air -- according to the Calorie Control Council, the snacks eaten by Americans watching the Super Bowl will contain 4 million pounds of fat.

Trivia Answer: Terry Kath who was born in this date in 1946. About 5 o'clock in the afternoon of January 23rd of 1978, after a party at a roadie and band technician home in Woodland Hills in Los Angeles, Kath took an unloaded .38 revolver and put it to his head, pulling the trigger several times on the empty chambers. Johnson had warned Kath several times to be careful. Kath then picked up a semiautomatic 9 mm pistol and, leaning back in a chair, said to both his wife and Johnson, "Don't worry, it's not loaded". After showing the empty magazine to Johnson, Kath replaced the magazine in the gun, put the gun to his temple, and pulled the trigger. There was a bullet in the chamber, and he died instantly. It was the week before his 32nd birthday. He left a widow, Camelia Emily Ortiz. Camelia was later married to Kiefer Sutherland from 1987 to 1990.

Tuesday 1.30.18
Morning Trivia: What team has the most Super Bowl victories?

The Kid's kid is getting a shot with the Pittsburgh Steelers. The AFC North champions have signed wide receiver Trey Griffey, son of baseball Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr., to a reserve/futures contract. The 24-year-old Griffey went undrafted last spring after graduating from Arizona. He spent time with Indianapolis and Miami last summer before being cut by the Dolphins at the end of training camp. The 6-foot-3, 209-pound Griffey caught 79 passes for 1,241 yards and six touchdowns in four seasons at Arizona.

The Cleveland Indians are dropping the Chief Wahoo logo from their uniforms next year, bowing to years of complaints that the grinning, red-faced caricature used in one version or another since 1947 is racist. The move, announced yesterday, came after protracted discussions between the team owner and baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred.

Birthdays: Actor Gene Hackman is 88; actress Vanessa Redgrave is 81; Russian chess player Boris Spassky is also 81; former Vice President Dick Cheney is 77; one of the lead singers for Jefferson Airplane and Jefferson Starship, Marty Balin is 76; drummer and singer Phil Collins is 67; singer Jody Watley is 59; and actor Christian Bale is 44.

Today is National Inane Answering Machine Message Day. Today is Yogi Bear Day, marking debut of the Yogi Bear Show on this date in 1958. Yogi had first appeared as a cartoon extra on Huckleberry Hound in October of 1957. Today is National Croissant Day. Today is National Yodel at Your Neighbors Day.

Calendar notes: On this date in 1847, the town of Yerba Buena was renamed San Francisco. In 1933, Adolf Hitler was named the German Chancellor. In 1956, Elvis Presley recorded Blue Suede Shoes. In 1968, Bobby Goldsboro recorded Honey. In 1969, The Beatles made their last-ever public appearance as a group. The performance of Get Back was filmed for the movie Let It Be. In 1972, in Northern Ireland, British soldiers shot and killed thirteen Roman Catholic civil rights marchers. The day is known as Bloody Sunday. In 1973, KISS played their first show. It was at The Coventry Club in Queens, NY. The band performed two sets at the club that night for a crowd of under 10 people. In 1974, Bob Dylan made his first New York concert performance in eight years at Madison Square Garden. In 1998, Elton John received a knighthood in British Prime Minister Tony Blair's first New Year's Eve Honours List.

Trivia Answer: Nineteen different franchises, including teams that relocated to another city, have won the Super Bowl. The Pittsburgh Steelers at 6-and-2 have won the most Super Bowls with their six championships The New England Patriots, at 5-and-4, the Dallas Cowboys at 5and–3, and the San Francisco 49ers at 5-and–1) each have five wins. The first Super Bowl was on January 15th of 1967. In the first-ever AFL-NFL World Championship, later known as Super Bowl I, at Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, the Green Bay Packers of the National Football League (NFL) smashed the American Football League (AFL)'s Kansas City Chiefs, 35-10.

Monday 1.29.18
Morning Trivia: He was a comedian, actor, juggler and writer. His comic persona was a misanthropic and hard-drinking egotist, who remained a sympathetic character despite his snarling contempt for dogs and children. The quote, “Any man who hates dogs and babies can’t be all bad” is generally credited to this guy. His career in show business began in vaudeville, where he attained international success as a silent juggler. He gradually incorporated comedy into his act, and was a featured comedian in the Ziegfeld Follies for several years. Who is he?

The Super Bowl is a week away, but football was still kind of played yesterday. The NFC's and AFC's best players -- minus members of the Patriots and Eagles -- took part in the Pro Bowl -- an exhibition game that involved soft tackles, trick plays, and many interceptions. If you hoped the Pro Bowl would somehow fix itself and provide an actual football game filled with hard hits, top-notch effort, and high-level football, you walked away sorely disappointed. If you wanted a close game that came down to the wire, you got what you wanted. The AFC got their first lead of the game with 91 seconds remaining and went on to win 24-23. For most of the game, the tackling was nonexistent. But once the fourth quarter began, the players upped their intensity and starting to actually hit each other. Why? Money. Each player on the winning Pro-Bowl team receives $64,000 while each player on the losing Pro-Bowl team receives $32,000. True to the regular season, Seahawks defensive lineman Michael Bennett was the first player to be penalized in the game, for . . . yup, you guessed it, offsides.

Birthdays: Actress Katharine Ross is 78; actress Claudine Longet is 77; he was Magnum P.I. now NYPD Commissioner Frank Reagan in Blue Bloods, actor Tom Selleck is 73; actress Ann Jillian is 68; talk-show host, network owner, Weight Watchers partner and spokesperson, not a presidential candidate, very rich person Oprah Winfrey is 64; Olympic diver Greg Louganis is 58; he was James Martines on NYPD Blue, actor Nicholas Turturro is 56; actor Edward Burns is 50; the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Paul Ryan is 48; she was Darlene on Rosanne, and soon will be again, actress Sara Gilbert is 43; musician Jonny Lang is 37; and singer Adam Lambert is 36.

The artist and creator of the decades-long running comic strip Beetle Bailey about the antics of a work-shirking Army private, Mort Walker, died at his home Saturday. His son Greg Walker, who co-wrote the strip with his father in his later years, said his dad died at his home in Stamford, Connecticut, of pneumonia while recovering from a broken hip. Mort Walker drew his daily award-winning comic strip for 68 years, longer than any other comic strip artist. His strip debuted in 1950 with Beetle as a college student, but Mort Walker had Beetle enlist in the Army in the first year of the cartoon and it was a hit. Picked up by King Features Syndicate, it went from a 12-newspaper run to eventually reaching 200 million readers in 1,800 newspapers worldwide. Mort Walker was 94.

It’s Carnation Day. Today is National Puzzle Day. Whether it’s a crossword, jigsaw, word search, brain teaser or Soduku, puzzles put our brains to work. It’s Free Thinkers Day, also known as Thomas Paine Day, whose birthday is today. It's National Cornchip Day.

Calendar notes: On this date in 1845, The Raven was published in the New York Evening Mirror, the first publication with the name of the author, Edgar Allan Poe. In 1900, the American League was organized in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with 8 founding teams. In 1936, the first inductees into the Baseball Hall of Fame were announced. They included Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, Babe Ruth, and Honus Wagner. In 1979, Emerson, Lake & Palmer disbanded. In 1990, Joseph Hazelwood, the former skipper of the Exxon Valdez, went on trial in Anchorage, Alaska, on charges that stemmed from America's worst oil spill. Hazelwood was later acquitted of all the major charges and was convicted of a misdemeanor. In 1995, the San Francisco 49ers became the first team in National Football League history to win five Super Bowl titles. The 49ers defeated the San Diego Chargers 49-26. in 1997, America Online agreed to give refunds to frustrated customers under threat of lawsuits across the country. Customers were unable to log on after AOL offered a flat $19.95-a-month rate. In 2002, in his State of the Union Address, President George W. Bush described "regimes that sponsor terror" as an Axis of Evil, in which he included Iraq, Iran, and North Korea. In 2009, Governor of Illinois Rod Blagojevich was convicted of several corruption charges, including the alleged solicitation of personal benefit in exchange for an appointment to the United States Senate as a replacement for then-US president-elect Barack Obama.

The weekend box saw Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle back in second place for the first time in weeks. The highest grossing film of the weekend, taking in $23.5 million, was Maze Runner: The Death Cure. Starring Dylan O'Brien, it's the finale of the dystopian trilogy. The opening had been delayed for a year following injuries O'Brien suffered on the set. Jumanji still pulled in $16.4 million in its second place finish. Christian Bale's Hostiles placed third. The sixth weekend of The Greatest Showman came in fourth. Steven Spielberg's The Post rounded out the top five.

Bruno Mars won the top prize at the Grammy Awards last night in another victory for pop-driven music over rap, now the most popular genre in the United States. Mars won six Grammys including song of the year for That’s What I Like, and both record and album of the year for 24K Magic. Jay-Z, whose soul-baring album “4:44” had gone into the show with a leading eight nominations, won nothing and chose not to perform at the three-hour show. Alessia Cara was the best new artist winner. Ed Sheeran beat Kesha to win two Grammys for his best-selling album Divide and single The Shape of You, but he did not attend the ceremony.

Trivia Answer: William Claude Dukenfield -- we know him better as W.C. Fields -- who was born on this date in 1880. That quote was actually about him rather than from him. Some quotes that are from him:

  • I like children. If they're properly cooked.
  • A woman drove me to drink and I didn't even have the decency to thank her.
  • If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a damn fool about it.
  • I cook with wine, sometimes I even add it to the food.

  • By the way, Fields is one of the figures that appears in the crowd scene on the cover of The Beatles' 1967 album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. In 1946, on Christmas Day -- the holiday he said he despised -- Fields suffered an alcohol-related gastric hemorrhage and died, at the age of 66.
    Friday 1.26.18
    Morning Trivia: He was an actor, film director, entrepreneur, professional racing driver and team owner, environmentalist, activist and philanthropist. He won numerous awards but surprisingly, just one Academy Award -- that for his performance in the 1986 film The Color of Money. However, he was nominated on nine other occasions. In fact, he is one of four actors to have been nominated for an Academy Award in five different decades. The other nominees were Laurence Olivier, Michael Caine, and Jack Nicholson. Who is he?

    NFL action this weekend has the AFC and NFC squaring off in the Pro Bowl. That game is Sunday at noon in Orlando.

    Matt Hasselbeck could soon become the newest voice of Monday Night Football. The former Seahawks quarterback, currently serving as an analyst on ESPN's Sunday NFL Countdown show, is reportedly one of the front-runners to replace Jon Gruden, who is now coaching the Oakland Raiders. In sort of an audition, Hasselbeck is calling Pro Bowl on Sunday alongside current Monday Night Football play-by-by man Sean McDonough. Hasselbeck, a three-time Pro Bowl QB, played in Seattle from 2001 to 2010. He retired in 2016 after stints with the Titans and Colts, then joined ESPN. Gruden left ESPN after nine years as a Monday Night Football analyst. There are also reports that ESPN is also considering recently retired quarterback Peyton Manning.

    Birthdays: Mr. Baseball, Bob Uecker is 84; Singer Jean Knight -- remember Mr. Big Stuff? -- is 75; activist and author Angela Davis is 74; from Seattle, Ms. Angel in the Morning, Merrilee Rush is also 74; drummer Corky Lang is 70; singer Lucinda Williams is 65; guitarist Eddie Van Halen is 63; Anita Baker is 60; comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres is 60; The Great One, hockey's Wayne Gretzky is 57; the other half of Wham!, guitarist Andrew Ridgeley is 55; and the Suleman octuplets (the Octomom's kids) are 9.

    Tonight is Wipeout Night in West Virginia, marking this night in 1960 when Burnsville wiped out Widen in basketball 173 to 43. Burnsville’s Danny Heater scored 135 points. Today is Dukes of Hazzard Day. The TV series premiered on this date in 1979, starring John Schneider and Tom Wopat as Bo and Luke and Catharine Bach as Cousin Daisy. Today is National Peanut Brittle Day. Today is Spouse's Day, a time to enjoy and appreciate your better half. You can use this day as a prelude or warm up to Valentine's Day. The annual Clean Out Your Inbox week is underway.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1784, in a letter to his daughter, Benjamin Franklin complained about the choice of the eagle as America's symbol, saying he preferred the turkey. In 1970, John Lennon wrote and recorded Instant Karma. In 1984, Michael Jackson was hospitalized with scalp burns after a spark ignited his hair during filming of a Pepsi TV commercial. In 1988, the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Phantom of the Opera opened at Broadway's Majestic Theater. In 1997, ZZ Top, James Brown and The Blues Brothers performed at the Super Bowl 31 halftime show. In 2003, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers won their first NFL championship, routing the Oakland Raiders 48-21 in Super Bowl 37. In 2003, Billy Joel was hospitalized for several hours after crashing his car into a tree in Sag Harbor, New York. He was released early the next morning. In 2005, confirmed by the US Senate, Condoleezza Rice was sworn in as secretary of state. In 2010, it was announced that James Cameron's movie Avatar had become the highest-grossing film worldwide. In 2014, the US First Class postage rate increased to 49 cents.

    Earlier this week, Neil Diamond announced that following a diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease, he would no longer tour. Then the next day, Elton John announced that the's retiring from the road after his upcoming three-year global tour, capping nearly 50 years on stages around the world. He says he's hoping to out "with a bang." The 70-year-old singer, pianist, and composer said he wanted to spend time with his family. His children will be 10 and 8 when he stops and he hoped he might be able to take them to soccer practice. Then the announcement came out yesterday that Lynyrd Skynyrd is about to embark on their final tour. It kicks off May 4th in West Palm Beach, Florida, more than 40 years after the band's debut album was released. The Rock & Roll Hall of Famers announced that their farewell tour will also feature Kid Rock, Hank Williams Jr., Bad Company, The Marshall Tucker Band, and 38 Special.

    What's the worst sound in the world. An awful, horrible sound that makes most people cringe? In a year-long survey of over a million votes, microphone feedback was the second worst sound. Crying babies and the scrapes and squeaks of train wheels tied for third. But number one? The sound of someone vomiting.

    Trivia Answer: Paul Newman who was born on this date in 1925. Newman was married to actress Joanne Woodward from 1958 until his death. He was a co-founder of Newman's Own, a food company from which Newman donated all post-tax profits and royalties to charity. Over $450 million has been donated to to charities since 1982. In June 2008, it was widely reported that Newman had been diagnosed with lung cancer. Newman's spokesman told the press that the star was "doing nicely", but neither confirmed nor denied that he had cancer. Newman died the morning of September 26th of 2008 at the age of 83.

    Thursday 1.25.18
    Morning Trivia: This actor was best known for his light-hearted leading roles in several Walt Disney films between 1965 and 1977, such as The Love Bug. Who was he?

    Chipper Jones. Vladimiro Guerrero, Jim Thome, and Trevor Hoffman are all headed for Cooperstown. Edgar Martinez will have to wait another year to see if he will be enshrined in the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame. The longtime Seattle Mariners designated hitter was named on 70.4 percent of the ballots -- coming up just short of the required 75 percent of votes cast by the Baseball Writers' Association of America Hall of Fame Election committee to be elected. Put another way, he was 19 votes short. Martinez has one more year of eligibility on the ballot left, and will have to pin his hopes on being inducted in the 2019 class. But the trend is promising, even if he was just short this year, as he has been gaining additional support over the past few years. Martinez, who now serves as Seattle's hitting coach, was a career .312 hitter over 2,055 games spanning 18 major league seasons. The seven-time All-Star won two American League batting titles (1992 and 1995), hit 309 home runs and 514 doubles and drove in 1,261 RBIs over his career, which began in 1987. And he owns perhaps the most famous hit in Seattle Mariners' history -- The Double that drove in Joey Cora and Ken Griffey Jr. to advance the Mariners into the ALCS during their inaugural run in the baseball playoffs in 1995. The award for baseball's best designated hitter, won by Seattle's Nelson Cruz in 2017, was named for Martinez in 2004.

    Birthdays: Rachel Welles on Peyton Place, actress Leigh Taylor-Young is 73; she began her career appearing in Broadway musicals and worked as a back-up singer for Bette Midler, before appearing in films and is known as the voice of Flo in Cars, actress Jenifer Lewis is 61; and singer, songwriter, record producer, pianist, actress, and activist Alicia Keys is 37.

    It’s Speak up and Succeed Day, time to face your fear of public speaking and speak out anyway. Today is A Room of One's Own Day, for anyone who knows or longs for the bliss of having a private place. And it's National Opposite Day. Thought for the Day: Opposites attract.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1959, American Airlines opened the jet age in the US with the first scheduled transcontinental flight of a Boeing 707. In 1964, The Beatles reached #1 on US music charts with I Want to Hold Your Hand. In 1969, Creedence Clearwater Revival released the single Proud Mary. In 1993, President Bill Clinton appointed his wife Hillary to lead a task force on health-care reform. Also in 1993, Sears announced, after 97 years, it was closing its catalog sales department. The Sears Catalog was gone. In 1998, the Denver Broncos beat the Green Bay Packers 31-24 in the Super Bowl. The Broncos had lost 3 previous Super Bowl appearances with quarterback John Elway. In 2010, KISS rang the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange. Also in 2010, in Arlington, Texas, the International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame had its grand opening. In 2011, a revolution began in Egypt with the demonstrations that demanded the end of President Hosni Mubarak's rule.

    Super Bowl Sunday means it's guacamole time. Around 40 million pounds of avocado will be eaten during Super Bowl parties this year. That’s enough to cover the field at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis in five feet of guacamole.

    Trivia Answer: Dean Jones who was born on this date in 1931. Jones started his film career by signing a contract at MGM, beginning with a small role as a soldier in Somebody Up There Likes Me in 1956, and he later played disc jockey Teddy Talbot in the Elvis Presley film Jailhouse Rock in 1957. After appearing in minor film and television roles, Jones made his Broadway debut along with Jane Fonda in the 1960 play There Was a Little Girl. Jones subsequently starred in the NBC television sitcom Ensign O'Toole in the early 1960s. Ensign O'Toole was the lead-in show on NBC to Walt Disney's The Wonderful World of Color. Disney signed Jones on for a string of Disney films in the 1960s and 1970s, beginning with That Darn Cat!. His performance was so well-received that Disney used him for future movies including The Ugly Dachshund in 1966, Blackbeard's Ghost in 1968, and Snowball Express in 1972. Jones' signature Disney role, though, would be as race car driver Jim Douglas in the highly successful The Love Bug series. He appeared in two feature films, The Love Bug in 1968 and Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo in 1977, as well as the short-lived Herbie, the Love Bug television series and the made-for-TV movie The Love Bug in 1997. Jones then appeared as Dr. Herman Varnick, the evil veterinarian in the family film Beethoven in 1992. He also appeared in a small role as Director of Central Intelligence Judge Arthur Moore in the film adaptation of Tom Clancy's Clear and Present Danger , which stars Harrison Ford, in 1994. Jones died from Parkinson's disease on September 1st of 2015 at the age of 84.

    Wednesday 1.24.18
    Morning Trivia: He was a rock singer-songwriter and musician. His compositions include Werewolves of London; Lawyers, Guns and Money; Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner; and Johnny Strikes Up the Band, all of which are featured on his third album, 1978's Excitable Boy. He also wrote major hits that were recorded by other artists, including Poor Poor Pitiful Me, Mohammed's Radio, Carmelita, and Hasten Down the Wind. Who was he?

    We'll find out today if Edgar Martinez makes it into the Hall of Fame this year -- 13 years after his final swing. His percentage of the vote more than doubled from 2015 to last year, and he is projected to be around the 75 percent needed for election when this year's voting is announced this afternoon. Martinez received 25.2 percent in 2014, when Frank Thomas became the first player elected after spending the majority of his career as DH, a position instituted in 1973. Martinez rose to 27 percent the following year, 43.4 percent in 2016, and 58.6 percent last year. He is on 77 percent of the 226 ballots obtained by Ryan Thibodaux and posted on his Hall of Fame vote-tracker. Martinez is making the ninth of the 10 appearances he is allowed on the Baseball Writers' Association of America ballot. A seven-time All-Star, Martinez was a designated hitter in 1,412 of 2,055 career regular-season games. During an 18-season big league career spent entirely with Seattle, he won two AL batting titles, earned seven All-Star selections and finished with a .312 average and 309 homers. Anyone elected will be inducted into the Hall at Cooperstown on July 29th. The announcement is coming this afternoon about 3:00.

    Birthdays: Singer Ray Stevens is 79; singer-songwriter Neil Diamond is 77; singer Aaron Neville is also 77; comedian Yakov Smirnoff is 67; a founding member of the band Squeeze, keyboardist Jools Holland is 60; actress Nastassja Kinski is 57; gymnast Mary Lou Retton is 50; and the first person to walk a tightrope stretched directly over Niagara Falls, acrobat, aerialist, daredevil, and high wire artist Nik Wallenda is 39.

    It's Beer Can Appreciation Day. Beer Can Appreciation Day celebrates that day in 1935 when beer was first sold in cans. Today is Social Sipping and Nibbling Rehearsal Day, a time to practice cutting a piece of cake with a plastic fork on a paper plate while holding a cup of punch, a napkin, and some mints. Memorize something clever to say if you drop it all on the carpet. Today is Global Belly Laugh Day, a day to celebrate the great gift of laughter. At 1:24 this afternoon (local time) smile, throw your arms in the air, and laugh out loud. Today is National Compliment Day. Compliment at least five people today.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1952, the NFL New York Yankees turned up in Texas as the Dallas Texans, to become history's worst pro football team. They were run out of Dallas after only four games and had to play eight games on the road, finishing 1-and-11. In 1955, Major League Baseball announced that during the new season the rule requiring a pitcher to deliver the ball within 20 seconds after he received it would be strictly enforced. It's still the rule. It's never enforced. In 1962, Brian Epstein signed to manage the Beatles, swapping their leather jackets for matching suits and a smarter stage show. In 1995, the prosecution gave its opening statement at the O.J. Simpson murder trial. Also in 1995, Van Halen released their Balance album. It was the last album recorded with lead singer Sammy Hagar. In 2003, the new Department of Homeland Security officially opened as its director, Tom Ridge, was sworn in.

    When Hawaii pushed out that ballistic missile alert earlier this month, the Governor knew within two minutes that it was a false alarm. But David Ige couldn’t hop on Twitter and tell everybody -- because he didn’t know his password. He said this week: “I have to confess that I don’t know my Twitter account login and passwords."

    Last week a Montgomery, Alabama, Taco Bell burned to the ground. The closure of the fast food joint affected many residents on a personal level, apparently. A joke Facebook proposal for a candlelight vigil to mourn the restaurant spread like wildfire, and more than 100 people showed up.

    Trivia Answer: Warren Zevon who was born on this date in 1947. That Excitable Boy album was produced by Jackson Browne and guitarist Waddy Wachtel. The single release Werewolves of London features Mick Fleetwood and John McVie from Fleetwood Mac. It's a relatively lighthearted version of Zevon's signature macabre outlook and a Top 30 success. David Letterman was credited by Zevon as being the best friend his music ever had. Warren was a guest numerous times on Late Night with David Letterman and the Late Show with David Letterman. In 2002, Warren was diagnosed with cancer (a type usually caused by exposure to asbestos). Refusing treatments he believed might incapacitate him, Zevon instead began recording his final album, The Wind, which includes performances by close friends including Bruce Springsteen, Don Henley, Jackson Browne, Timothy B. Schmit, Joe Walsh, David Lindley, Billy Bob Thornton, Emmylou Harris, Tom Petty, Dwight Yoakam, and others. On October 30th of 2002, Zevon was featured on the Late Show with David Letterman as the only guest for the entire hour. The band played I'll Sleep When I'm Dead as his introduction. Zevon performed several songs and spoke at length about his illness. At one point he noted, "I might have made a tactical error in not going to a physician for 20 years." It was during this broadcast that, when asked by Letterman if he knew something more about life and death now, he first offered his oft-quoted insight on dying saying, "Enjoy every sandwich." In the green room after the show, Zevon presented Letterman with the guitar that he always used on the show, with a single request: "Here, I want you to have this, take good care of it." Zevon died on September 7th of 2003 at the age of 56.

    Tuesday 1.23.18
    Morning Trivia: He started to play accordion when he was seven years old. He learned from watching The Lawrence Welk Show. When he mastered classical music and polka. While he continued his studies in classical accordion, he gained an interest in jazz and blues, after he heard a professor of music in Philadelphia play those styles on accordion. He went on to become most and best known as the longtime organ, glockenspiel, and accordion player for Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band. Who is he?

    Hall of Fame season is upon us. Major League Baseball announces the former players who have made the cut tomorrow afternoon. Is this the year for Edgar Matines? We'll find out tomorrow. By the way, Mariner pitchers and catchers report for Spring training in 22 days -- on February 14th.

    Birthdays: She was Millie on The Andy Griffith Show and Mayberry R.F.D., actress Arlene Golonka is 82; Pointer Sister Anita Pointer is 70; MacGyver on MacGyver, actor Richard Dean Anderson is 68; retired airline captain responsible for the January 2009 water landing of US Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson River off Manhattan after the plane was disabled by striking a flock of Canada geese immediately after takeoff, Sully Sullenberger is 67; the lead singer and rhythm guitarist for Cheap Trick, Robin Zander is 65; and from Saved by the Bell and from Beverly Hills, 90210, actress Tiffani Thiessen is 44.

    Today is National Pie Day, a day created by the American Pie Council. The American Pie Celebration began in 1986 to commemorate Crisco's 75th anniversary of serving foods to families everywhere. Today is National Handwriting Day, always on the birth date of John Hancock, flamboyant signer of the Declaration of Independence. Which means we're in the midst of National Handwriting Analysis Week. Today is Cold, Cold, Cold Day! The coldest temperature ever recorded in the United States was at Prospect Creek Camp, Alaska, on January 23rd of 1971: a record 79.8 degrees below zero Fahrenheit. Today is Snowplow Mailbox Hockey Day, time for snowplow drivers everywhere to see how many rural mailboxes they can knock over. And today is Measure Your Feet Day, a day to, well, measure your feet. At this point, we stop and ask ourselves...why? We pondered this question for a while. Then, we decided it was best not to even speculate.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1975, Barney Miller made his debut on ABC. In 1977, the most watched TV program in history began on ABC. It was a mini-series based on the Alex Haley novel Roots. In 1978, Terry Kath of the band Chicago died after accidentally shooting himself in the head with a pistol he didn't know was loaded. He was 32 years old. In 1983, The A-Team debuted on TV. In 1985, OJ Simpson became the first Heisman Trophy winner to be elected to pro football's Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. In 1986, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted its first members: Little Richard, Chuck Berry, James Brown, Ray Charles, Fats Domino, The Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis and Elvis Presley. In 2004, Friends filmed its final episode in front of an invitation-only audience. In 2005, former Tonight Show host Johnny Carson died at age 79.

    Neil Diamond, one of the most iconic entertainers of the past few generations announced the abrupt ending of his touring career, cancelling a tour in the process, after being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. The legendary singer, songwriter, and performer made the announcement on his website. The news release stated that the onset of the disease made it difficult for him to travel and perform on a large-scale basis. Said Diamond, "My sincerest apologies to everyone who purchased tickets and were planning to come to the upcoming shows. I plan to remain active in writing, recording and other projects for a long time to come." Diamond turns 77 tomorrow.

    Trivia Answer: Danny Federici who would have been 68 today. On November 21st of 2007, it was announced that Federici would take a leave of absence from Springsteen and the E Street Band's ongoing tour to pursue treatment for melanoma. Federici made his only return to the stage on March 20th of 2008, when he appeared for portions of a Springsteen and E Street Band performance at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Federici died on April 17th of 2008 in New York having suffered for three years with melanoma.

    Monday 1.22.18
    Morning Trivia: He was film and television actor, director, and frequent game show panelist. His career spanned more than three decades, including appearances on stage, in films, and on television series. He is known for his roles as Tim O'Hara on My Favorite Martian, Tom Corbett on The Courtship of Eddie's Father, stage illusionist Anthony Blake in The Magician, but is perhaps best known for his role as scientist Dr. David Banner on The Incredible Hulk. Who was he?

    The Super Bowl is now set. Tom Brady shook off a hand injury and threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to Danny Amendola with 2:48 remaining , rallying the New England Patriots to a 24-20 comeback victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC championship yesterday afternoon. After that, Nick Foles -- filling in for injured starting quarterback Carson Wentz -- was on fire against the stingiest scoring defense in the NFL. Philly made big play after big play on both sides of the ball in a stunning 38-7 rout of the Minnesota Vikings for the NFC championship. So the New England Patriots meet the Philadelphia Eagles in Minneapolis on Sunday, February 4th, in Super Bowl 52. It's the Eagles' first Super Bowl appearance since 2005, and against the team that beat them then, the Pats.

    Birthdays: The Galloping Gourmet, Graham Kerr is 84; former Journey frontman Steve Perry is 69; actress Linda Blair is 59; DJ Jazzy Jeff is 53; actress Diane Lane is also 53; Karen Arnold on The Wonder Years, actress Olivia d’Abo is 49; and singer-songwriter and pretty good guitarist, Orianthi is 33.

    Today is Celebration of Life Day, a day when we are supposed to take a step back and truly appreciate our children and grandchildren. Granted, some may do this on an everyday basis, but it's an opportunity to look at our young ones' lives from a different angle, and think about what it is that makes them truly special. It's National Polka Dot Day. Ever wondered why your feline companion acts a certain way or starts meowing at you for no apparent reason? Today is the day to unravel the mystery. It's Answer Your Cat's Question Day. Today is National Blonde Brownie Day. What's a blonde brownie, you ask? Well, to make blonde brownies, light brown sugar is used in the recipe in place of dark brown chocolate.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1946, the Central Intelligence Group, forerunner of the Central Intelligence Agency, was created. In 1947, KTLA, the first commercial television station west of the Mississippi River, began operation in Hollywood. In 1951, Fidel Castro was ejected from a Winter League baseball game after hitting a batter. He later gave up baseball for politics. In 1968, Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In debuted on NBC TV. In 1973, the Supreme Court delivered its decision in Roe v. Wade, legalizing elective abortion in all fifty states. In 1983, Bjorn Borg retired from tennis. He had set a record by winning 5 consecutive Wimbledon championships. In 1984, the Apple Macintosh, the first consumer computer to popularize the computer mouse and the graphical user interface, was introduced during Super Bowl XVIII with its famous 1984 television commercial. In 1997, the US Senate confirmed Madeleine Albright as the first female secretary of state. In 2002, Kmart became the largest retailer in United States history to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Also in 2002, AOL Time Warner filed suit against Microsoft in federal court seeking damages for harm done to AOL's Netscape Internet Browser when Microsoft began giving away its competing browser.

    Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle has won its third weekend box office title with ease, topping newcomers 12 Strong and Den of Thieves, with $20 million. Afghan war drama 12 Strong took second, Den of Thieves followed. The Post finished fourth, and its fifth weekend -- The Greatest Showman -- remained a solid draw in the fifth slot.

    Trivia Answer: Bill Bixby who was born on this date in 1934. In early 1993, after rumors began circulating about his health, Bixby went public with his cancer, discussing his disease and the energy needed to keep him alive. As a result, he made several guest appearances on shows such as Entertainment Tonight, The Today Show, and Good Morning America, among many others. Bixby's cancer recurred and was diagnosed as terminal. On November 21st, 1993, he died of complications. He was 59 years old.

    Friday 1.19.18
    Morning Trivia: He's a former running back and head coach in the National Football League. Over the course of his 38 years in the NFL, he participated in a combined nine Super Bowls as a player and as a coach, the second-most in league history behind Bill Belichick's ten. He served as a head coach for 23 seasons, primarily with the Denver Broncos and the Atlanta Falcons. As a player, he spent the entirety of his eight-season career with the Dallas Cowboys. Who is he?

    The Jacksonville Jaguars-New England Patriots AFC Championship game Sunday got slightly more interesting this week with Tom Brady landing on the injury report Wednesday. As it turns out, Brady has a right hand injury. It’s not the first time Brady has popped up on the injury report this season. He had been on and off the Patriots’ injury report with an Achilles’ tendon injury since the middle of the season. Brady was at practice on Wednesday, and was seen throwing the football. Reports say X-rays of Brady’s hand revealed no structural damage. And it seems like he’s OK. He was at practice yesterday, though the Patriots officially listed him as "Did Not Practice." For now, for Patriots fans, there doesn’t appear to be a reason to panic. The Pats host the Jaguars Sunday at noon. After that game is the NFC Championship game as the Philadlelphia Eagles host the Minnesota Vikings Sunday afternoon at 3:40. The winners advance to the Super Bowl on February 4th.

    Birthdays: From the movie The Birds, actress Tippi Hedren is 88; actress Shelley Fabares is 74; singer/songwriter/actress Dolly Parton is 72; from The Motels, singer Martha Davis is 67; frontman for the band America, Dewey Bunnell is 66; actor and musician Desi Arnaz, Jr. is 65; Peg on Married With Children, Katey Sagal is 64; comedian and actor Paul Rodriguez is 63; the current bassist with Foreigner -- he grew up in Longview and went to U-Dub -- Jeff Pilson is 59; best known as the lead singer, guitarist and songwriter of the band Marcy Playground, John Wozniak is 47; and comedian/impressionist Frank Caliendo is 44.

    It's National Popcorn Day. Today is Little Ricky Day, marking the birth of Lucy and Ricky Ricardo’s TV son on I Love Lucy on this date in 1953. Today is Tin Can Day, marking the patent of a process for storing food in tin cans issued to Ezra Daggett and Thomas Kensett. Today is Women's Healthy Weight Day, a day to honor women of all sizes, and confirm that beauty, talent, and love cannot be weighed. Today is Get to Know Your Customer Day. Today is Whisper I Love You Day.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1953, 68% of all TV sets in the US were tuned to CBS-TV, as Lucy Ricardo, of I Love Lucy, gave birth to a baby boy. In 1955, a presidential news conference was filmed for television for the first time, with the permission of President Eisenhower. In 1978, the last US-made Volkswagen Beetle rolled off the assembly line. Twenty years later, the Beetle returned. In 1988, a statue of singer Janis Joplin was unveiled in her hometown, Port Arthur, Texas, on what would have been her 45th birthday. In 1989, on his last day in office, Ronald Reagan pardoned New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, who had been convicted of contributing illegally in 1972 to Richard Nixon's reelection campaign. In 1993, IBM announced a loss of $4.97 billion for 1992. It was the largest single-year loss in US corporate history. In 1993, Fleetwood Mac reunited for the Inaugural Ball of President-elect Bill Clinton. In 2013, in Scottsdale, Arizona, the original Batmobile for the TV series Batman sold at auction for $4.6 million. It was the first of six Batmobiles produced for the show.

    Earth's long-term warming trend continues, and 2017 now ranks as one of the top three hottest years on record, according to a report released yesterday by NASA and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration.

    According to new research that will surprise almost no one, over 77% of websites track users as they navigate around the web. The widely used mechanism for much of the tracking is an image file of a single pixel. The researchers examined 144 million web pages and found that just under a quarter (22.6%) use no trackers at all.

    Trivia Answer: Dan Reeves who is 73 today. Reeves made his first two Super Bowl appearances during his playing career, winning one in Super Bowl VI. He began his coaching career as an assistant coach for the Cowboys, where he made three more championship appearances and was part of the team that won Super Bowl XII. As the head coach of the Broncos for 12 seasons, Reeves led the team to three Super Bowls in XXI, XXII, and XXIV, each of which ended in defeat. Following four seasons as the head coach of the New York Giants, Reeves served as the Falcons' head coach for seven seasons. With the Falcons, he led the franchise to their first championship appearance in XXXIII, in which he was defeated by his former team, the Broncos. As a head coach, Reeves is only one of five to lead two different franchises to a championship and has the most Super Bowl appearances without a victory at four, along with Bud Grant and Marv Levy. He is also tied with Jeff Fisher for the NFL record of most regular-season losses as a head coach at 165, although both have overall winning records.

    Thursday 1.18.18
    Morning Trivia: He was an engineer and he was the inventor of the noise reduction system known as Dolby NR. He helped develop the video tape recorder while at Ampex and was the founder of Dolby Laboratories. Who was he?

    We're down to the final four. The NFL Conference Championship weekend is coming up. The AFC gets things started as the New England Patriots host the Jacksonville Jaguars Sunday at noon. Then it's the NFC as the Philadlelphia Eagles host the Minnesota Vikings Sunday afternoon at 3:40. The winners advance to the Super Bowl on February 4th.

    Birthdays: Singer-songwriter Bobby Goldsboro is 77; the youngest member of The Hudson Brothers, Brett Hudson is 65; actor and director Kevin Costner is 63; NHL Hall of Famer Mark Messier is 57; and comedian Dave Attell is 53.

    Lost for words? Before falling back on your standard, boring vocabulary, consider using taking advantage of Thesaurus Day today and lookup an exciting alternative? Today is UFO Day, marking the first reported sighting of a UFO in America by Pilgrims in Boston. The year was 1644. And today is Winnie the Pooh Day, celebrating the birth of A.A . Milne in 1882. He was an author of children's story books, and created Winnie the Pooh and his friends, including Christopher Robin, Tigger, Eeyore, Piglet, and Roo. By the way, the initials stand for Allan Alexander.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1964, the plans for the original World Trade Center in New York were unveiled to the public. In 1973, Pink Floyd began recording Dark Side of the Moon, which would set a record by staying on the Billboard album chart for over 14 years. In 1989, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in New York City inducted the Rolling Stones, Otis Redding, Stevie Wonder, the Temptations, and Dion. In 1993, the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday was observed in all 50 US states for the first time. In 1996, Lisa Marie Presley filed for divorce from Michael Jackson after 20 months of marriage, citing irreconcilable differences. In 1996, Australian scientists who claimed to have contacted life on other planets stumbled on the real source of the signals -- a microwave oven in the kitchen of their laboratory. In 2012, Wikipedia began a 24-hour "blackout" in protest against proposed anti-piracy legislation (S. 968 and H.R. 3261) known as the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA) in the Senate and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the House. Many websites, including Reddit, Google, Facebook, Amazon and others, contended it would make it challenging -- if not impossible -- for them to operate.

    Trivia Answer: Ray Dolby, who was born on this date in 1933. Dolby was born in Portland, Oregon. He was raised in San Francisco. As a teenager in the decade following World War II, he held part-time and summer jobs at Ampex in Redwood City, working with their first audio tape recorder in 1949. While at San Jose State College and later at Stanford University (interrupted by two years of Army service), he worked on early prototypes of video tape recorder technologies. As a non degree-holding "consultant", Ray played a key role in the effort that led Ampex to unveil their prototype videotape recorder in April of 1956. Soon thereafter, it entered production. In 1957, Dolby received his B.S. in electrical engineering from Stanford. He then got a Ph.D in physics from the University of Cambridge. After Cambridge, Dolby acted as a technical advisor to the United Nations in India, until 1965 when he returned to England, where he founded Dolby Laboratories in London with a staff of four. That same year, 1965, he officially invented the Dolby Sound System, a form of audio signal processing. The filter was first used by Decca Records in the UK. Dolby died of leukemia on September 12th of 2013, at his home in San Francisco at the age of 80.

    Wednesday 1.17.18
    Morning Trivia: Sometimes known by the nickname Scarface, he was a mobster, crime boss, and businessman who attained notoriety during the Prohibition era as the co-founder and boss of the Chicago Outfit. His seven-year reign as crime boss ended when he was 33. He was born in Brooklyn to Italian immigrants. In his early twenties, he moved to Chicago and became a bodyguard and employee of Johnny Torrio, the head of a criminal syndicate that illegally supplied alcohol. After North Side gunmen almost killed him, Torrio went into retirement and handed control over to this guy. He then expanded the bootlegging business through increasingly violent means, but his mutually profitable relationships with the mayor and the city's police meant he seemed safe from law enforcement. He apparently basked in attention, such as the cheers from spectators when he appeared at ball games. He made donations to various charities and was viewed by many as "modern-day Robin Hood". However, the Saint Valentine's Day Massacre, in which seven gang rivals were murdered in broad daylight, damaged Chicago's and this guy's image, leading influential citizens to demand government action and newspapers to dub this guy Public Enemy No. 1. Who was he?

    The Seahawks finally made official the largest staff overhaul of the Pete Carroll era, changing both the offensive and defensive coordinators plus the offensive line coach. They also stopped letting defensive coordinator Kris Richard dangle very publicly in the wind. They just fired him. The team announced yesterday afternoon via its website that Seattle’s lead defensive coach the past three seasons and secondary coach before that since 2011 was relieved of his duties by Pete Carroll. That word came as the Seahawks finally made official the sweeping moves that had been known for days: former linebackers coach Ken Norton Jr. is returning to Seattle to be its defensive coordinator, Brian Schottenheimer is the new offensive coordinator to replace fired play caller Darrell Bevell and Mike Solari is the new offensive line coach to replace fired Tom Cable. Carroll fired Bevell and Cable last week. The team also announced it has fired linebackers coach and assistant head coach Michael Barrow.

    Birthdays: Actress Betty White is 96; actor James Earl Jones is 87; talk show host Maury Povich is 79; Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is 64; singer Paul Young is 62; actor and comedian Steve Harvey is 61; from The Bangles, singer Susanna Hoffs is 59; actor Jim Carrey is 56; Michelle Obama is 54; Kid Rock is 47; and actress Zooey Deschanel is 38.

    Today is Ditch New Years Resolutions Day. Today is Make Your All-Time Top Ten Favorite TV Characters List. Go ahead. Will you include Lucy, Fonzie, Barney, Latka, Reverend Jim, Kramer, Boss Hogg, Corky, Gomer, Georgette, or Meathead, Bart Simpson? Today is Kid Inventors Day, honoring the 500,000 kids and teens who invent gadget and games each year to make our lives easier and more fun. Today is Judgment Day, a day to see how you measure up, a day to look in the mirror. Today is Rid the World of Fad Diets and Gimmicks Day. Today is National Professional Boxer's Day, always on the birthday of Muhammad Ali.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1972, Bellvie Street in Memphis was renamed Elvis Presley Boulevard. All the new street signs immediately disappeared. In 1983, Ham, the chimpanzee, died at the age of 26. He was America's first space pioneer and a member of the Space Hall of Fame. In 1984, the US Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that using a home video recorder to tape movies and TV shows for non-commercial purposes did not violate federal copyright law. In 1994, Donny Osmond and the Partridge Family's Danny Bonaduce fought in a charity boxing match in Chicago. Bonaduce won a split decision.

    Trivia Answer: Alphonse Gabriel Capone -- Al Capone -- who was born on this date in 1899. The federal authorities became intent on jailing Capone and prosecuted him in 1931 for tax evasion, which was at that time a federal crime and a novel strategy. During a highly publicized case, the judge admitted as evidence, Capone's admissions of his income and unpaid taxes during negotiations to pay the government taxes he owed. An effort that failed. He was convicted and sentenced to 11 years in federal prison. Capone showed signs of syphilitic dementia early in his sentence and became increasingly debilitated before being released after eight years of incarceration. On January 25th of 1947, Capone died of cardiac arrest after suffering a stroke.

    Tuesday 1.16.18
    Morning Trivia: She was a primatologist and conservationist known for undertaking an extensive study of mountain gorilla groups from 1966 until her death in 1985. She studied them daily in the mountain forests of Rwanda. In 1983, she wrote a book, Gorillas in the Mist, that combined her scientific study of the gorillas with her own personal story. It was adapted into a 1988 film of the same name. Who was she?

    The Seahawks are expected to bring back Ken Norton Jr. as the new defensive coordinator, according to a report yesterday afternoon from NFL Network's Mike Garafolo. Garafolo tweeted, "With Kris Richard likely out, the Seahawks are expected to turn to Ken Norton Jr as defensive coordinator, sources say. All indications are he'll be back in Seattle, where he was the team's LB coach from 2010-14." Seattle last week fired offensive line coach Tom Cable and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell. Multiple reports indicate that Seattle is expected to hire Brian Schottenheimer to replace Bevell. Garafolo reports that Seattle is planning to hire Mike Solari to replace Cable as O-line coach. Most recently with the New York Giants, Solari coached the Seattle O-line from 2008-09.

    Birthdays: Retired race car driver -- the only driver to win the Indianapolis 500, the Daytona 500, the 24 Hours of Daytona, and the 24 Hours of Le Mans -- A.J. Foyt is 83; country music’s first blind superstar, singer Ronnie Milsap is 75; singer-songwriter Jim Stafford is 74; director John Carpenter -- he did Halloween -- is 70; actress, dancer, choreographer Debbie Allen -- probably best known for her work on the series Fame -- is 68; singer Sade is 59; and supermodel Kate Moss is 44.

    Today is Hot and Spicy Food Day. Today is Appreciate a Dragon Day, celebrating fictional dragons as memorable characters. Today is Civil Service Day. On this date in 1883, the Pendleton Act created the federal civil service system and the US Civil Service Commission. Today is Religious Freedom Day and, for the non-religious, it’s National Fig Newton Day. Today is also National Nothing Day, a day to not celebrate anything.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1920, the US outlawed alcohol and went dry, a year after states ratified the 18th Amendment. Fourteen years of prohibition followed. In 1957, The Cavern Club opened in Liverpool. Originally a jazz club, it became famous as the first home of The Beatles. In 1961, Mickey Mantle signed a contract that made him the highest paid baseball player in the American League at $75,000 for the 1961 season. In 1973, Bonanza, a top western TV show, aired its final episode after 14 seasons on NBC. It starred Lorne Greene, Michael Landon, Dan Blocker, Pernell Roberts, and Victor Sen Yung. In 1976, the TV show Donny & Marie premiered on ABC-TV. In 1987, red M&Ms returned for the first time in 11 years after being banned because the original red dye used in the candy had caused cancer in laboratory rats. In 1991, boxer George Foreman's wife Joan gave birth to yet another George, George the 5th. The couple already had three sons: George the 2nd, George the 3rd, and George the 4th. Dad is George the 1st. In 1996, Jamaican authorities fired on Jimmy Buffett's seaplane, after mistaking it for a drug trafficker's plane. U2's Bono was with Buffett, but neither was hurt. In 1998, the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, cancelled the premiere of Nick Broomfield's documentary Kurt and Courtney due to unresolved legal issues. In 2009, Boy George was sentenced to 15 months in jail for falsely imprisoning a male escort.

    If you're doing the post-holiday diet thing, if you're trying to lose weight, don't go out to eat, at least not with others. According to a Georgia State University study, people dining with other people consume 44% more food than when they eat alone, mainly because they spend more time at the table. A related study, published in the journal Appetite, revealed that women tend to mirror the eating patterns of their same-sex dining friends.

    Mariner pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in just under a month. Valentine's Day is the day. February 14th.

    How popular is your birthday? Two decades of American birthdays, averaged by month and day. It turns out September 9th is the most popular birthday of the year. Click here to access the original article and find your birthday.

    Trivia Answer: Dian Fossey, who was born on this date in 1932. During her time in Rwanda, she actively supported conservation efforts, strongly opposed poaching and tourism in wildlife habitats. Fossey was brutally murdered in her cabin at a remote camp in Rwanda in December of 1985. It has been theorized that her murder was linked to her conservation efforts.

    Monday 1.15.18
    Morning Trivia: He was the lead vocalist, primary lyricist, and a founding member of a Southern rock band. He was the older brother of .38 Special's founder. He was born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida, and aspired to be many things before finding his love for music. Notably, he was interested in becoming a boxer and in playing professional baseball. He also tossed around the idea of becoming a stock-car racer. He formed the band that would make him famous in late summer 1964. The group's name was inspired by a gym teacher the boys had in high school, a gentleman who disapproved of students with long hair. Who is the guy and what is the band name?

    And then there were four. On Saturday, in the NFL Divisional round, the Phildadelphia Eagles eliminated the Atlanta Falcons 15-13. Then the New England Patriots ended the Tennessee Titans year 35-14. Yesterday, the Jacksonville Jaguars upset the Pittsburgh Steelers 45-42, and in a thriller to close out the weekend, the Minnesota Vikings got past the New Orleans Saints 29-24. That sets up next weekend's conference championships. The winners advance to the Super Bowl on February 4th. Coming up Sunday, Jacksonville is at New England at 12:05. That's followed at 3:40 with Minnesota at Philadelphia. Three of the four teams remaining have never won a Super Bowl.

    Birthdays: Martin Luther King, Jr. would have been 89 today. He was born on this date in 1929. This year, MLK Day and his real birthday coincide; actor and director Mario Van Peebles is 61; singer Lisa Lisa is 52; actor Chad Lowe is 50; New Orleans Saint quarterback Drew Brees 39; Pitbull is 37; and electronic music producer, DJ, singer and songwriter Skrillex is 30.

    Today is National Hat Day. Today is National Fresh Squeezed Juice Day. It's Martin Luther King Jr. Day -- celebrated on the third Monday in January. Which falls on his actual birthday this year. He was born on January 15th of 1929 and grew to become one of the greatest Social Activists the world has ever known. At 35, he became the youngest person to win the Nobel Peace prize. He was assassinated on April 4th of 1968 while making a speech from the balcony of his hotel room in Memphis, Tennessee. His birthday became a National Holiday by an act of Congress in 1983.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1889, the Coca-Cola Company, then known as the Pemberton Medicine Company, was originally incorporated in Atlanta, Georgia. In 1892, James Naismith published the rules of basketball. In 1943, the Pentagon was dedicated as the world's largest office building just outside Washington, DC, in Arlington, VA. The structure covers 34 acres of land and has 17 miles of corridors. In 1967, the first Super Bowl was played. It was in Los Angeles. The Green Bay Packers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 35–10. In 1974, Happy Days premiered on ABC-TV. In 1987, Paramount Home Video reported that it would place a commercial at the front of one of its video releases for the first time. It was a 30-second Diet Pepsi ad at the beginning of Top Gun. In 2001, Wikipedia, a free content encyclopedia, was launched. In 2003, the US Supreme Court ruled that the US Congress had permission to repeatedly extend copyright protection. In 2009, US Airways Flight 1549 made an emergency landing in the Hudson River shortly after takeoff from LaGuardia Airport in New York, New York. All passengers and crew members survived. The incident became known as the Miracle on the Hudson.

    Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle dominated the North American box office to easily win the Martin Luther King Jr. weekend box office. The Post is leads the rest of the pack handily and finished second. Liam Neeson’s thriller The Commuter topped expectations and finished in third place. The fifth weekend of Star Wars: The Last Jedi finished fourth and the fourth weekend of The Greatest Showman was good for a fifth place finish at the holiday box office.

    Trivia Answer: Ronald Wayne Van Zant -- Ronnie Van Zant -- who was born on this date in 1948. Donnie Van Zant founded .38 Special. Johnnie Van Zant is the current lead vocalist for Lynyrd Skynyrd. Leonard Skinner, by the way, was the gym teacher. Lynyrd Skynyrd's biggest hit single was Sweet Home Alabama which came off the album Second Helping. Sweet Home Alabama was an answer song to Neil Young's Alabama and Southern Man. The common belief that Van Zant and Young were rivals is incorrect; they were actually fans of each other and considered collaborating on several occasions. On October 20th of 1977, a Convair 240 carrying the band between shows from Greenville, South Carolina to Baton Rouge, Louisiana crashed outside of Gillsburg, Mississippi. The passengers had been informed about problems and told to brace for impact. Ronnie and bandmates Steve Gaines, Cassie Gaines, assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, pilot Walter McCreary and co-pilot William Gray were all killed. Remaining band members survived, although all were seriously injured. Van Zant's younger brother, Johnny, took over as the new lead singer when the band reunited in 1987.

    Friday 1.12.18
    Morning Trivia: He was an Olympic gold medalist, professional boxer, and undisputed world heavyweight champion. His professional career lasted from 1965 to 1976, with a one-fight comeback in 1981. He was known for his sheer strength, durability, punch power, and all-out relentless attack. He emerged as the top contender in the late 1960s, defeating opponents en route to becoming undisputed heavyweight champion in 1970, and followed up by defeating Muhammad Ali by unanimous decision in the highly anticipated "Fight of the Century" in 1971. Who was he?

    The NFL made the announcement yesterday morning. The Seattle Seahawks will play their first-ever game in London next season. The Seahawks face the Oakland Raiders on October 14th at the brand-new Tottenham stadium, just north of London. The new 60,000-plus capacity venue is being built on the site of the White Hart Lane stadium that was recently demolished. Four other NFL teams are also playing in London next season. The Philadelphia Eagles face the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Tennessee Titans face the Los Angeles Chargers at Wembley Stadium on October 21st or 28th. Game times for each contest are being announced at a later date. The NFL releases the full 2018 schedule around mid-April. Personally, I'm hoping for a late start for the Hawks. If it's 1:00 in the afternoon in London, it's 5:00 in the morning here.

    the meantime, a full weekend of NFL action is on tap. This year's Divisional Round features the Atlanta Falcons in Philadelphia against the Eagles tomorrow afternoon. After that, the Tennessee Titans are at New England. Then coming up Sunday morning, it's the Jacksonville Jaguars at Pittsburgh to face the Steelers, and Sunday afternoon features the New Orleans Saints at Minnesota to face the Vikings.

    Birthdays: Political commentator Rush Limbaugh is 67; actress Kirstie Alley is also 67; CNN correspondent Christiane Amanpour is 60; Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is 54; singer Rob Zombie is 53; model, activist, and Paul McCartney’s ex, Heather Mills is 50; Melanie Chisholm -- Sporty Spice -- is 44; and the younger daughter of Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall, Georgia May Jagger is 26.

    Today is Batman Day, marking Batman's TV debut on this date in 1966. The campy series starred Adam West as Bruce Wayne and Batman and Burt Ward is Dick Grayson and Robin. Some 120 episodes are still in syndication. Today is HAL's Birthday. According to Arthur C. Clarke's book and movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey, the HAL 9000 computer was brought to consciousness on January 12th of 1997 in Urbana, Illinois. HAL stands for a heuristically-programmed algorithmic computer. Today is Little League Girls Baseball Day. Girls were first allowed to play Little League baseball on this date in 1974. Ironically, today is Rejection Day, marking this date in 1915 when the US House rejected a proposal to grant women the right to vote. Today is Eat Crackers and Try To Whistle Day, just to see if it’s still as much fun as it was when you were a kid.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1959, Berry Gordy borrowed $800 to found the Motown record empire. In 1969, Led Zeppelin's debut album was released in the United States. In 1970, the Boeing 747 jetliner made its maiden voyage. In 1971, the first episode of All In The Family aired on CBS-TV, featuring the first toilet flush on network television. In 1985, after a record 24 weeks as the #1 album in the nation, Prince's Purple Rain was knocked off by Bruce Springsteen's Born In the USA. In 1991, Congress passed a resolution authorizing President Bush to use military power to force Iraq out of Kuwait. In 2006, the US Mint began shipping new 5-cent coins to the 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks. The coin has an image of Thomas Jefferson taken from an 1800 Rembrandt Peale portrait in which the president is looking forward. Since 1909, when presidents were first depicted on circulating coins, all presidents had been shown in profile.

    Trivia Answer: Smokin' Joe Frazier who was born on this date in 1944. Two years after the "Fight of the Century," Frazier lost his title when he was knocked out by George Foreman. Frazier's last world title challenge came in 1975, but he was beaten by Ali in their brutal rubbermatch. He retired in 1976 following a second loss to Foreman. He made a comeback in 1981, fighting just once, before retiring. After retiring, Frazier made cameo appearances in several Hollywood movies, and two episodes of The Simpsons. His son Marvis became a boxer -- trained by Frazier himself -- but was unable to match his father's success. His daughter Jackie Frazier-Lyde also boxed professionally. Frazier continued to train fighters in his gym in Philadelphia. His later years saw periodic insults and bitter feelings towards Ali, interspersed with brief reconciliations. Frazier was diagnosed with liver cancer in late September of 2011 and admitted to hospice care. He died on November 7th of 2011.

    Thursday 1.11.18
    Morning Trivia: Also known as The Big Man, he was a saxophonist, musician and actor. He was 6' 5" tall, hence his nickname. From 1972 until his death he was a member of a band. He also released several solo albums and in 1985, had a hit single with You're a Friend of Mine, a duet with Jackson Browne. As a guest musician he was featured on Aretha Franklin's classic Freeway of Love and on Lady Gaga's The Edge of Glory as well as performing in concert with the Grateful Dead and Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band. As an actor, he was featured in several films, including New York, New York and Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. He also made cameo appearances in several TV series, including Diff'rent Strokes, Nash Bridges, and The Simpsons. Who was he?

    The Seattle Seahawks have undergone a major shakeup of their coaching staff, firing both offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and offensive line coach Tom Cable. That announcement from the team yesterday afternoon. At the same time, the Seahawks could be in the market for a new defense coordinator. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport is reporting that defensive coordinator Kris Richard "would be allowed out of his contract for another opportunity." In the season just concluded, Seattle finished at 9-and-7 and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2011, Bevell's first season with the Hawks. The past two seasons the Seahawks have struggled mightily on the ground, and this year the offense was plagued by sluggish first halves.

    Meanwhile, this morning, the NFL announced the London games for the upcoming season. The Hawks are traveling across the pond to meet John Gruden and the Oakland Raiders in jolly old England on October 14th. The Raiders will be the home team so Seattle won't lose a home game. Paul Allen tweeted that we'll get the same weather, it's just we'll drink tea rather than coffee.

    Birthdays: Singer Naomi Judd is 72; golfer Ben Crenshaw is 66; jazz guitarist, session musician, and composer Lee Ritenour is also 66; Phyllis Logan from Downton Abbey is 62; guitarist with The Bangles, Vicki Peterson is 60; singer-songwriter and entertainer -- he'll be at the Washington Center on the 27th with Lyle Lovett, Robert Earl Keen is 62; No Doubt guitarist Tom Dumont is 50; and singer Mary J. Blige is 47.

    It’s International Thank You Day, time to thank someone who did something nice for you. Today is National Step In a Puddle and Splash a Friend Day. Today is Smoking May Be Hazardous to Your Health Day. US Surgeon General Luther Terry issued the first government report saying smoking might be hazardous to your health on this date in 1964.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1922, at Toronto's General Hospital, 14-year-old diabetic Leonard Thompson became the first person to be treated successfully with the drug insulin. In 1963, The Whiskey-a-Go-Go nightclub opened in Los Angeles. It is recognized as the first disco in the US. In 1967, Jimi Hendrix began recording Purple Haze. In 1973, American League baseball team owners voted to adopt the designated-hitter rule on a trial basis. In 1984, the Denver Nuggets beat the San Antonio Spurs 163-155: The 318 points, the most ever scored in an NBA game without overtime.

    Trivia Answer: Clarence Clemons who was born on this date in 1942. He was a member of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, playing the tenor saxophone. His playing on songs such Born to Run and Jungleland, and his presence as a visual foil to Springsteen, made him the most prominent member of the E Street ensemble. Clemons suffered a stroke on June 12th of 2011, and died of complications from it on June 18th. Three years following his death, along with the rest of the E Street Band, Clarence was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

    Wednesdy 1.10.18
    Morning Trivia: He was an entertainer of stage and screen, best known for his portrayal of the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz. Who was he?

    Ch-ch-changes. The Seattle Seahawks have fired seven-year offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell. The news was first reported by Curtis Crabtree of last night. Bevell had been Seattle’s offensive coordinator since the 2011 season, when he took over for Jeremy Bates, who was fired following the 2010 season -- Pete Carroll’s first year with Seattle. The Seahawks ranked 15th in the NFL in total offense in 2017 at 330.4 yards per game, but had increasing issues scoring and moving the ball as the season progressed. Back in 2015, Seattle ranked fourth in the NFL in total offense at 378.6 yards per game, but struggled specifically with its running game the past two seasons, which also took a toll on the offense as a whole. The firing is the first of a coordinator for the Seahawks since the removal of Bates following the 2010 season.

    Birthdays: Rod Stewart is 73; from Steely Dan, singer and keyboardist Donald Fagen is 70; former boxer George Foreman is 69; singer Pat Benatar is 65; and singer Shawn Colvin is 62.

    Today is National Cut Your Energy Costs Day. It's Houseplant Appreciation Day. Today is Woman's Suffrage Day, marking introduction of the Susan B. Anthony Amendment into the US Senate on this date in 1878. The amendment was signed into law 42 years later. Today is National Peculiar People Day. Today is Bittersweet Chocolate Day. Today is National Sturdy Flat-Heeled Shoes Appreciation Day.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1917, Buffalo Bill Cody died in Denver at the age of 70. Some 25,000 viewed the body, and the Colorado National Guard marched in the funeral procession. In 1955, both the star, Jane Russell, and the audience showed up for the Silver Springs, Florida, premiere of the film Underwater in swim suits, scuba tanks, and swim fins for the first (and probably only) movie ever to debut underwater. In 1990, the San Jose, California, library displayed a 30-foot banner which was supposed to say "Welcome" in 27 languages. It didn't. In 26 languages it said "welcome," and in native Filipino it said "circumcision." They took the sign down. In 2003, North Korea announced that it was withdrawing from the global nuclear arms control treaty and that it had no plans to develop nuclear weapons. In 2007, the iTunes Music Store reached 1.3 million feature length films sold and 50 million television episodes sold.

    Then there was the Omaha man that was showing a couple of friends how to clean his gun when he decided to show them how fast he could take the gun apart. The man racked the gun's slide and ejected a bullet. He then tried to show them that the gun was empty by holding the muzzle of the gun to his hand and pulling the trigger. A bullet went through the man's hand. His friends drove him to the hospital.

    Amazon says that Prime members shipped over 5 billion items using the service in 2017.

    Trivia Answer: Ray Bolger who was born on this date in 1904. He died in January of 1987. In 1939, Bolger's M-G-M contract stipulated that he would play any part the studio chose; however, he was unhappy when he was cast as the Tin Man in The Wizard of Oz. The Scarecrow part had already been assigned to another lean and limber dancing studio contract player, Buddy Ebsen. In time, the roles were switched. While Bolger was pleased with his new role as the Scarecrow, Ebsen was struck ill by the powdered aluminum make-up used to complete the Tinman costume. The powdered aluminum badly coated Ebsen's lungs, leaving him near death. Ebsen's illness paved the way for the Tinman role to be filled by Jack Haley. Whenever asked as to whether he received any residuals from telecasts of the 1939 classic, Bolger would reply: "No, just immortality. I'll settle for that."

    Tuesday 1.9.18
    Morning Trivia: He was the 37th President of the United States. He had previously served as a US representative and senator from California and as the 36th Vice President of the United States. He was the only president to resign from the office. Who was he?

    They had to go to overtime but the Crimson Tide would not be denied. Alabama downed Georgia in the College Football Playoff National Championship game last night 26-23 giving Bama its 5th national title in nine seasons. It's number six for coach Nick Saban, adding the one he gained with LSU in 2004. That ties him with legendary Alabama coach Paul Bear Bryant for the most championships on college football history.

    Birthdays: Romance novelist Judith Krantz is 90; NFL great Bart Starr is 84; novelist Stuart Woods is 80; singer and songwriter Joan Baez is 77; guitarist Jimmy Page is 74; David Johansen who also works under the Buster Poindexter is 68; singer Crystal Gayle is 67; singer Dave Matthews is 51; Jamaican rapper, singer, songwriter, musician Sean Paul is 45; Backstreet Boy A.J. McLean is 40; Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge -- we used to know her as Kate Middleton -- Prince William's wife is 36.

    Today is National Static Cling Day. It's Put The Toilet Seat Down Day. On this day in 1993, responding to a sensor alarm, Mission Control at Cape Canaveral scolded space shuttle Endeavor astronauts to please remember and put the toilet seat down.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1902, New York State introduced a bill to outlaw flirting in public. In 1935, actor Bob Denver was born. The mailman and high school teacher became Maynard G. Krebs, the first television beatnik on The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis and the star of Gilligan's Island, one of TV's most popular shows. He died in 2005. In 1959, CBS-TV premiered Rawhide, starring newcomer Clint Eastwood as Rowdy Yates. In 1992, Sting made a guest appearance on The Simpsons in the episode Radio Bart. In 2002, the US Justice Department announced that it was pursuing a criminal investigation of Enron Corp. The company had filed for bankruptcy on December 2nd of 2001. In 2007, Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled the first iPhone.

    Christmas gifts of things like power tools given to dedicated do-it-yourself home handymen send thousands of them to the hospital in the weeks after the holiday. A medical expert says, "They'll be trying out a new saw or a new power-staple gun and next thing you know they're in the emergency room with a nail through their arm."

    Trivia Answer: Richard Milhous Nixon who was born on this date in 1913. He was president from from 1969 to 1974. One word: Watergate. It was on November 17th of 1973, +during a televised question and answer session with the press, Nixon said, "People have got to know whether or not their President is a crook. Well, I'm not a crook. I've earned everything I've got." In light of his loss of political support and the near-certainty of impeachment, Nixon resigned the office of the presidency on August 9th of 1974, after addressing the nation on television the previous evening. The resignation speech was delivered from the Oval Office and was carried live on radio and television. Nixon stated that he was resigning for the good of the country and asked the nation to support the new president, Gerald Ford. Nixon went on to review the accomplishments of his presidency, especially in foreign policy. He defended his record as president. Nixon's resignation had not put an end to the desire among many to see him punished. The Ford White House considered a pardon of Nixon, though it would be unpopular in the country. Nixon, contacted by Ford emissaries, was initially reluctant to accept the pardon, but then agreed to do so. On September 8th of 1974, Ford granted Nixon a "full, free, and absolute pardon", which ended any possibility of an indictment.

    Monday 1.8.18
    Morning Trivia: He’s a former professional baseball player. He played for the Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, Seattle Mariners, New York Mets, San Diego Padres, Milwaukee Brewers, Boston Red Sox, and Florida Marlins. While with the Mariners, he became the 13th player to hit four home runs in one game. Who is he?

    The NFL Divisional Round matchups are now set. Coming up Saturday afternoon, the Atlanta Falcons are in Philadelphia against the Eagles. Saturday evening, the Tennessee Titans are at New England to face the Patriots. Then coming up Sunday morning, it's the Jacksonville Jaguars against the Steelers in Pittsburgh, followed by the New Orleans Saints at Minnesota facing the Vikings.

    The 2018 College Football National Championship game is coming up tonight. The Alabama Crimson Tide and Georgia Bulldogs play in Mercedes-Benz Stadium Atlanta. The game is at 5:00 on ESPN.

    That was a massive sigh of relief you heard yesterday. The collective reaction to news that Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider isn't going anywhere. The Green Bay Packers asked the Seahawks if they could interview Schneider for their GM opening. Seattle said no. Then yesterday Green Bay filled that position by promoting Brian Gutenkunst from within.

    Birthdays: From F Troop, Larry Storch is 96; former US senator Slade Gorton is 90; radio and TV journalist Charles Osgood is 85; Elvis Presley would have been 83; game show host Bob Eubanks is 80; famed scientist Stephen Hawking is 76; the guitarist in the Doors, Robby Krieger is 72; from Loverboy, singer Mike Reno is 63; singer R. Kelly is 51; and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is 36.

    Jerry Van Dyke, the yournger brother of Dick Van Dyke, has died. He died Friday afternoon at his ranch in Arkansas. According to his wife, Jerry's health deteriorated following a car accident he had over two years ago. He made his acting debut on The Dick Van Dyke show, followed by appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show and The Judy Garland Show. He's best known for his Emmy nominated performance as Luther Van Dam on the show Coach. Jerry Van Dyke was 86.

    Today is National Man Watcher's Day. It's National Argyle Day. Today is National Bubble Bath Day. Remember back in school when it was your turn for Show & Tell? You got to bring in your pet, your baby brother, or a medal you'd won and be the proud center of attention for a few moments. Such fun doesn't have to end once you're grown up. Today is Show & Tell At Work Day.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1790, George Washington delivered the first State of the Union address in New York, New York. In 1835, the United States national debt was 0 for the only time. In 1889, the tabulating machine was patented by Dr. Herman Hollerith. His firm, Tabulating Machine Company, later became International Business Machines Corporation (IBM). In 1982, the break up of AT&T: AT&T the company agrees to divest itself of twenty-two subdivisions. In 1987, the Dow Jones industrial average closed over the 2000 mark for the first time at 2,002.25. In 2002, President George W. Bush signed into law the No Child Left Behind Act. In 2004, the RMS Queen Mary 2, the largest passenger ship ever built, was christened by her namesake's granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth II. In 2005, the rate for US First Class mail was raised to 39¢.

    Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle handily won the first box office weekend of 2018. The fourth installment of the Insidious horror franchise finished second. The Last Jedi followed in third. The Greatest Showman was fourth. It was followed in fifth by Pitch Perfect 3.

    Yes, there were a bunch of awards given out last night in Hollywood at the 75th Annual Golden Globes, but who won what took a back seat to who said what, as the evening was punctuated with passionate and heartfelt speeches from women praising and championing the #MeToo movement and Time's Up initiative. Seth Meyers got the show started with joke after joke about the fallout of the Hollywood sexual harassment scandals, taking on Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey and men in general. He then disappeared for most of the rest of the show. Every female star who took the stage last night wore black in solidarity with victims of abuse and assault, including Oprah Winfrey, who received the Cecil B. DeMille Award and brought down the house with her rousing and touching speech.

    Trivia Answer: Cammy -- Mike Cameron -- who turns 45 today. Along with three other players he was traded to the Seattle Mariners for Ken Griffey, Jr. before the 2000 season. Cameron tied a major league record on May 2nd of 2002 when he hit four home runs in one game. In his fifth at bat, he hit one to the warning track, just missing what would have been a record setting fifth home run. He was also an All-Star in 2001 and won Gold Gloves in 2001, 2003, and 2006. Cameron announced his retirement on February 19, 2012. He then signed a one-day contract with Seattle on April 14th of 2012, to officially retire as a Mariner before throwing out the ceremonial first pitch at the Mariners' home opener that same day. By the way, Mariner pitchers and catchers report in 37 days -- on February 14th -- for Spring Training.

    Friday 1.5.18
    Morning Trivia: He was a singer, songwriter, and producer, and later, a politician. He came to fame in partnership with his second wife. The two were a popular singing duo. After his showbiz career, he transitioned to politics, first as the mayor of Palm Springs, California from 1988 to 1992, and then as congressman for California's 44th district from 1995 until his death in 1998. Who was he?

    The NFL playoffs get underway this weekend. The Tennessee Titans meet the Chifs in Kansas City tomorrow afternoon at 1:35. Then the Atlanta Falcons face the Rams in Los Angeles tomorrow night at 5:15. Sunday, the Buffalo Bills are in Jacksonville taking on the Jaguars at 10:00. That's followed at 1:40 Sunday afternoon by the Carolina Panthers at New Orleans to meet the Saints.

    Birthdays: Former Vice-President Walter Mondale is 90; actor Robert Duvall is 87; the former host and executive producer of the talk show Charlie Rose on PBS, the man himself, Charlie Rose is 76; actress Diane Keaton is 72; best known for his role as the bartender, Isaac Washington, on the TV series The Love Boat, actor Ted Lange is 70; actress Pamela Sue Martin is 65; musician Marilyn Manson is 49; actor Bradley Cooper is 44; and best known for her work on Mad Men, actress January Jones is 40.

    Today is All My Children Day. The popular soap opera debuted on this date in 1970. One of the original characters was 15-year-old Erica Kane, played by actress Susan Lucci. Today is Review Your Wrestling Holds Day, a day to try to get someone to let you practice all the wrestling holds you learned as a child: the hammerlock, half-nelson, flying scissors. Don’t try the sleeper. Today is National Whipped Cream Day. The holiday falls on the birthday of Reddi-wip founder Aaron "Bunny" Lapin. It celebrates the ice cream topper, and its contribution to the dessert world. While whipped cream existed long before Lapin, it wasn't until 1946 and the invention

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1643, in the first legal divorce in the American colonies, Anne Clarke of the Massachusetts Bay Colony was granted a divorce from Denis Clarke. She accused her husband of adultery. In 1914, the Ford Motor Company announced that there would be a new daily minimum wage of $5 and an eight-hour workday. In 1933, construction of the Golden Gate Bridge began. In 1971, the New Jersey Reds defeated the Harlem Globetrotters 100-99, raising the Reds’ career record against the Globetrotters to 1 win and 2,495 losses. It was the Globetrotters’ first loss in nine years. In 1990, TV Guide gave its Phoney Baloney Award to the impostor who duped ABC's 20-20 by claiming to be Buckwheat from the Our Gang comedies. The real Buckwheat, Billy Thomas, died in 1980. In 1993, the state of Washington executed Westley Allan Dodd. It was America's first legal hanging since 1965. Dodd was an admitted child sex killer. In 2004, after 14 years of denials, Pete Rose admitted publicly he had bet on baseball games involving his own team.

    Apple has shared some staggering statistics about how well the App Store is doing. On January 1st -- just a few days ago -- the App Store had $300 million in purchases.

    Trivia Answer: Salvatore Phillip Bono -- Sonny Bono -- who died on this date in 1998. His second wife was Cher and together they were Sonny and Cher. Bono remains the only member of Congress to have scored a number-one pop single on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. It was in 1965 that Sonny & Cher topped the charts with I Got You Babe. Bono died on January 5th of 1998 of injuries sustained when he hit a tree while skiing near South Lake Tahoe, California.

    Thursday 1.4.18
    Morning Trivia: This former NFL head coach led his team to two Super Bowl victories, and to the National Football League's only perfect season. He was named 1993 Sportsman of the Year by Sports Illustrated. In his 32 year career, he had only two losing seasons (below .500). Who is he?

    The search for a kicker in Seattle now includes former Jacksonville kicker Jason Myers after he signed a reserve/future contract with the Seahawks. Seattle appears unlikely to bring back Blair Walsh after he missed eight field goals this season, including missed kicks that played a major role in three Seattle losses. Myers was the full-time kicker in Jacksonville for the 2015 and 2016 seasons, making 53 of 64 field goal attempts over those two seasons. He was cut after six games this season after making just 11 of 15 field goal attempts. Blair Walsh was 33rd in the NFL in field-goal accuracy this past season. This new guy, Myers, was 32nd until Jacksonville cut him.

    Birthdays: Actress Dyan Cannon is 81; best known as Max Headroom in the 80s, actor Matt Frewer is 60; and from R.E.M., singer Michael Stipe is 58.

    Today is Short People Day, marking the birthday of General Tom Thumb on this day in 1838. Today is Dimpled Chad Day, commemorating all the dimpled chads left over from various contested elections. Today is National Spaghetti Day so grab a big bowl, fill it with spaghetti, top it with a generous helping of your favorite sauce, and dig in. By the way, Americans consume about 20 pounds of pasta per person per year. And today is Trivia Day, a fun day for us to share those many little trinkets of knowledge. It doesn't matter how big or how trivial. Dazzle your friends and family with generous portions of trivia today.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1965, CBS bought the Fender Guitar Company from Leo Fender for $13 million. In 1974, President Nixon refused to release any more documents subpoenaed by the Senate Watergate Committee. In 1981, the Broadway show Frankenstein opened and closed on the same night at a reported loss of $2 million. In 1987, TV evangelist Oral Roberts said God would strike him down unless donations improved. The money poured in at first, then dropped off, and within two years Roberts had to sell much of his property in Tulsa. In 1994, the 104th Congress convened, the first Republican Congress since the Eisenhower era. Newt Gingrich was elected speaker of the House. In 1999, former professional wrestler Jesse Ventura took the oath of office as Minnesota's 37th governor. In 2006, Nancy Pelosi became Speaker of the US House of Representatives. She was the first woman to hold the position.

    Still trying to figure out what exactly this means in the bigger scheme of things. Taco Bell has announced that later this month it will begin selling fries.

    Did I miss something? FOX decided that American Idol had run its course and so the network dropped the program. Well, tonight on FOX, it's the series premiere of The Four: Battle for Stardom. In this new, six-episode singing competition, four singers compete to try and knock each other out, and defend their final four positions against new competition. Four judges (Meghan Trainor, Sean “Diddy” Combs, DJ Khaled, and president of Republic Records Charlie Walk) combine their skills to choose a winner and help launch their career in the music industry. Fergie is hosting. Isn't that awfully similar? Just sayin'.

    Trivia Answer: Best known as the coach of the Miami Dolphins, Don Shula who turns 88 today. Before the Dolphins, he was the head coach of the Baltimore Colts, with whom he won the 1968 NFL Championship. It was in 1972 that the Dolphins were unbeaten (14–0) in the regular season. They swept the playoffs and finished 17–0. He currently holds the NFL record for most career wins as a head coach, with 347. Shula was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1997.

    Wednesday 1.3.17
    Morning Trivia: This actor is best known for his roles in 9 to 5, WarGames, You've Got Mail, Sworn to Silence, The Beverly Hillbillies, Moonlight Mile, and Rules Don't Apply, and as the voice of Principal Peter Prickly in Recess and Recess: School's Out. Who is he?

    The future for Seahawks Kam Chancellor and Cliff Avril has been blurry since each suffered season-ending neck injuries in last year. There has been speculation that both Avril and Chancellor could be done playing football, and coach Pete Carroll added validity to those thoughts yesterday morning. Carroll said: "Cliff and Kam are going to have a hard time playing football again." Chancellor suffered what Carroll called a stinger in the closing moments of Seattle's win over the Arizona Cardinals on November 9th. It's unclear what exactly caused the damage. Avril had disc surgery in November after suffering a neck/spine injury on October 1st when he was inadvertently heeled in the chin, causing the defensive end to lose feeling in his arms. Details of his injury were chronicled in a Sports Illustrated feature, in which Avril says that what was initially described as a neck injury actually impacts his spine and that changes everything because, he says, "My life and my kids are more important than football."

    Birthdays: Hockey legend Bobby Hull is 78; singer and guitarist Stephen Stills is 73; Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones is 72; actress Victoria Principal 68; actor Mel Gibson is 62; and New York Giants quarterback (at least for now) Eli Manning is 37.

    No, you are not dreaming, but perhaps you should be. Today is Festival of Sleep Day -- an opportunity to sleep in, snooze, doze, nap, and catch 40 winks. Today's the perfect day for Festival of Sleep Day. The holidays are over. Time to hibernate. And, why not re-charge the batteries as a new year of school and work begins? Caution: Sleeping at work is not recommended, today, or any day. Today is National Chocolate Covered Cherry Day. Today is Tom Sawyer's cat's birthday. Today is Apple Day, marking incorporation of Apple Computer on this date in 1977. Today is Drinking Straw Day. Marvin Stone of Washington, DC patented the paraffin-covered paper drinking straw on this date in 1888. Today is National Write to Congress Day, to tell them how best to represent us during the coming year. And today is Fruitcake Toss Day -- your opportunity to finally throw away the old fruitcake.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1938, the March of Dimes campaign to fight polio was organized. In 1973, CBS sold the New York Yankees to a syndicate headed by George Steinbrenner for $10 million. In 1983, Michael Jackson's Thriller album was released. It would top the LP chart for 37 weeks and become the best selling album of all time. In 1987, Aretha Franklin became the first woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 1997, Bryant Gumbel signed off for the last time as host of NBC's Today show. In 2000, the final new daily Peanuts comic strip by Charles Schulz ran in 2,600 newspapers.

    There was snow in Tallahassee, Florida this morning. It was actually warmer in Anchorage, Alaska yesterday than it was in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Weird.

    No big winner in last night's Mega Millions drawing. Friday's drawing now has 418 million dollars on the line. Tonight, meanwhile, is the Powerball drawing with 440 million dollars up for grabs. Yours and my chance of winning the Powerball jackpot is over 1 in 292 million.

    Trivia Answer: Dabney Coleman who turns 86 today. Coleman is a character actor who has a wide range, with over 60 films to his credit. He is often typecast as a comic relief villain, the smarmy, devious foil to the main character. Coleman's fate in these types of roles was cemented with roles such as that of Franklin Hart, Jr. in 1980's Nine to Five, a sexist boss whose murder is fantasized about by his office employees (Jane Fonda, Dolly Parton and Lily Tomlin). He also worked on the TV series Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman where he played Fernwood's mayor, Merle Jeeter.

    Tuesday 1.2.18
    Morning Trivia: He was born in New York, New York, but raised in Puerto Rico. As a Major League Baseball player, he spent his entire 18-year career with the Seattle Mariners. He along with Ted Williams, Babe Ruth, Stan Musial, Rogers Hornsby, Lou Gehrig, and Manny Ramirez are the only players in history with 300 home runs, 500 doubles, a career batting average higher than .300, a career on-base percentage higher than .400 and a career slugging percentage higher than .500. Who is he?

    Jimmy Graham's Seattle Seahawks career may be over after just three years. The Seattle Times reported yesterday that the former All-Pro tight end, who is a free agent this offseason, is "generally considered really unlikely" to return to the Seahawks. Graham defied the odds these last two seasons by returning to Pro Bowl form after suffering a torn patellar tendon in November of 2015. He finished the 2017 campaign with 57 catches for 520 yards and a team-high 10 touchdowns. For what it's worth, quarterback Russell Wilson indicated that he would like to see Graham back. Nevertheless, the Seahawks are already expected to see some major defensive changes in 2018, and that may now extend to the other side of the ball as well.

    BIRTHDAYS: Former TV evangelist Jim Bakker is 78; zoologist Jack Hanna is 71; and actor, voice artist, and comedian, Cuba Gooding Jr. is 50.

    Today is National Cream Puff Day. Today is Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy Day. The Andrews Sisters recorded the song in Los Angeles on this date in 1941. Today is No-Fault Divorce Day. The first no-fault divorce law became effective in California on this date in 1971. Today is National Run It Up the Flag Pole and See If Anybody Salutes It Day. It's a day set aside to allow people to do just that. Be creative today. Use this day to try and test new ideas and concepts. Today is National Motivation and Inspiration Day. Some Day We'll Laugh About This Week is underway.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1910, the first junior high school in America opened in Berkeley, California. In 1935, Bruno Richard Hauptmann went on trial for the kidnap-murder of Charles Lindbergh's baby. Hauptmann was found guilty and executed. In 1936, Burma Shave erected roadside signs throughout the US promising, "Free! Free! A Trip to Mars For 900 Empty Jars." Arliss French collected 900 jars and demanded the free trip. He finally settled when Burma Shave supplied a space suit and flew him to Mars (Moers), Germany, a small town near Dusseldorf. In 1965, the New York Jets signed University of Alabama quarterback Joe Namath for a reported $400,000. In 1971, a federally imposed ban on radio and television cigarette advertisements went into effect. In 1974, President Richard Nixon signed a bill requiring states to limit highway speeds to 55 mph or lose federal highway funds. In 1980, after 25 years as host of the Miss America Pageant, Bert Parks was fired. In 1983, the musical Annie closed on Broadway after 2,377 performances. In 1993, New York police revealed that a "thriving" gun rental business had been operating in a Brooklyn housing project. Rental price for a 9mm pistol was $20.00 a night, or $100 if the gun was used to shoot someone. In 2004, a third US cowherd was quarantined near Yakima for fears of spreading mad cow disease.

    Trivia Answer: Edgar Martínez who turns 55 today. He retired from baseball at the end of the 2004 season. Gar now lives in Bellevue, with his wife Holli and their three children: Alex, Tessa, and Jacqueline. He runs Branded Solutions by Edgar Martínez, a byproduct of his family's embroidery business, in Redmond. He also serves as hitting coach for the Mariners. And, in my opinion, he should be in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

    Friday 1.1.18
    Morning Trivia: Trivia returns tomorrow morning.

    Happy New Year!

    The Seattle Seahawks needed outside help to make the postseason and apparently the Atlanta Falcons apparently weren't in the mood to provide it. The Falcons defeated Carolina 22-10 yesterday afternoon. At that point, Seattle was officially eliminated from playoff contention. The Seahawks, of course, needed to help themselves as well by beating Arizona. That didn't happen as Seattle fell 26-24 thus ending the 2017 season with a 9-and-7 mark. Seattle misses the postseason for the first time since 2011. It's the first time since drafting Russell Wilson in 2012 that the Seahawks have not qualified for the playoffs. January with no Seahawks?

    Birthdays: The lead singer of the 1960s psychedelic rock group Country Joe and the Fish, Joseph Allen "Country Joe" McDonald is 76; and writer, film director, producer, actor, singer and comedian -- best known for his work on Saturday Night Live, often as the character Father Guido Sarducci -- Don Novello is 75.

    New Year's Eve is when all the fun and festivities are. We see out the old year and ring in the new. New Years' Day on the other hand, is a time to relax and enjoy the start of a bright and promising new year -- a new beginning. So, enjoy everything about New Year's as it only comes once a year. On the downside, today is National Hangover Day. It's ingrained in our culture, to bring in the New Year with a whole lot of optimism, anticipation, and alcohol. Millions partied last night, and partied very hard. For many, the biggest drinking night of the year, is followed by the biggest hangover of the year. For this very reason, today is called National Hangover Day.

    Calendar notes: On this date in 1964, The Beach Boys recorded Fun Fun Fun. In 1968, stunt performing daredevil Evel Knievel lost control of his motorcycle midway through a jump of 141 feet over the ornamental fountains in front of Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. Also 1968, The Blue Velvets changed the name of their band to Creedence Clearwater Revival. In 1971, tobacco ads representing $20 million dollars in advertising were banned from TV and radio broadcasts. In 1984, AT&T was broken up into 22 Bell System companies under terms of an antitrust agreement with the Federal government. In 1985, VH1 premiered as an adult contemporary music video channel with Marvin Gaye's Star Spangled Banner video. In 1994, Bill Gates and Melinda French were married. Also in 1994, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) went into effect.

    With $517 million, Star Wars: The Last Jedi has blown past Beauty and the Beast to become the highest-grossing domestic release in 2017. To put that in perspective, it took Beauty and the Beast 15 weeks to reach the $500 million mark domestically. The Last Jedi did it in 16 days. Worldwide the film also surpassed the $1 billion mark and currently sits in third place behind only Fate of the Furious and Beauty and the Beast. Over the three-day weekend The Last Jedi brought in $52 million and with today being a holiday, the film is expected to add another $10 – 15 million to its domestic total for a total around $65.5 million. The real surprise of the weekend is the performance of Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. The film will finish the weekend in second place with $50 million, more than $10 million above predictions, but is expected to finish the 4-day weekend ahead of The Last Jedi with $67 million. Back in third place is Pitch Perfect 3. In fourth place is The Greatest Showman -- the Hugh Jackman film about P.T. Barnum, has now earned $53 million. Ferdinand, the animated film about a kind-hearted bull, rounds out the top five.