Saturday, May 31, 2003

The New Moon occurs this afternoon at 1:16 pm Mongolian time. I must say it has been a very interesting lunar cycle. Now I am gearing up for the Summer Solstice on June 22, 4:11 pm Mongolian time. I am sure all of you pagans are aware of the significance of this . . .

On this day in the year 1057 Tax protester Lady Godiva made her famous naked ride through the streets of Coventry. Sorry, no photos; they didn't have digital cameras then.

And for all you PA-ers, also on this day was the famous Johnstown Flood of 1851. Here is the start of the New York Times story about the Flood:

"Pittsburg, May 31 -- An appalling catastrophe is reported from Johnstown, Cambria County, the meagre details of which indicate that the city of 25,000 inhabitants has been practically wiped out of existence and that hundreds if not thousands of lives have been lost.

A dam at the foot of a mountain lake eight miles long and three miles wide, about nine miles up the valley of the South Fork of the Conemaugh River, broke at 4 o'clock this afternoon, just as it was struck by a waterspout, and the whole tremendous volume of water swept in a resistless avalanche down the mountain side, making its own channel until it reached the South Fork of the Conemaugh, swelling it to the proportions of Niagara's rapids."

This is still the only thing Johnstown is famous for (excluding scumbag accountants). Curiously Pittsburgh was mis-spelled in the dateline: seems the NYT was flubbing even back then.