Friday, January 30, 2009


On this date in 1835, Richard Lawrence became the first person in history to attempt to assassinate a United States President. Lawrence, who fancied himself King George III of England, blamed President Andrew Jackson for a host of things, including the death of his father. Lawrence purchased two pistols, and then, in true "deranged gunman" fashion, he tracked Jackson's movements for some time before making his move (he must have seen Taxi Driver). On January 30th, he attempted an ambush as the President was leaving a funeral service. He aimed one of his pistols at Jackson's back and pulled the trigger. Misfire. Then he aimed the second pistol and pulled the trigger. Same deal. And since he didn't have the foresight to arrange for a backup shooter in the grassy knoll, Lawrence's assassination attempt fell flat. And so did Lawrence, after the crowd, which included Congressman (and King of the Wild Frontier) Davy Crockett, tackled him. Rumor has it that even the President got in on the act, whacking the wannabe shooter with his cane for good measure. Lawrence was tried and found not guilty by reason of insanity. He spent the remainder of his life in an insane asylum that would later house future wannabe assassin John Hinckley. For years, there was speculation that Lawrence was put up to the assassination attempt by enemies of President Jackson, but there was never any evidence to support the charge. A conspiracy? No evidence to prove its existence? I'm thinking we have Oliver Stone's next movie here.

Further reading:

Wikipedia - Richard Lawrence - Trying to Assassinate President Jackson


"There you go with that wishin' stuff again. I wish you was a wishing well, so that I could tie a bucket to ya and sink ya."

-Tom Powers (James Cagney), The Public Enemy (1931)

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Here's another tale of unquestionable criminal mastermindedness from beautiful Schenectady, NY, home to some of the galaxy's most brilliant criminals. From today's Schenectady Gazette:

Police: Regents taker an imposter

SCHENECTADY — A former Schenectady High School student is in trouble with the law — facing a felony — after he allegedly disguised himself as a girl to take a Regents exam for a current student, school officials and police said on Wednesday.

The female student’s status — the real student — is under review, an official said. The incident was uncovered, school officials said, when a monitor discovered the name on the test and the person taking it didn’t match. Upon a closer look, authorities realized the “student” trying to take the exam was a male masquerading as a girl, school district spokeswoman Karen Corona said.

I guess the five o'clock shadow was a dead giveaway. Then again, this is Schenectady we're talking about here.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


On this date in 1982, US Army Brigadier General James Dozier was rescued by Italian police. Dozier, who had been kidnapped by Italian Red Brigades terrorists 42 days earlier, was being held in an apartment in the northern Italian city of Padua. After determining the General's location, the Italian police sent in the NOCS, a special operations unit trained in hostage rescue. A bulldozer was started near the building to cover the noise of the rescuers as they moved into position. A 12-man NOCS team stormed the apartment and overpowered the terrorists without firing a shot, rescuing the General, and taking five of his captors into custody.

Further reading:

Wikipedia - James L. Dozier

Wikipedia - Red Brigades

NY Times - General Dozier Freed in Major Red Brigades Defeat

Air & Space Power Journal - The Dozier Kidnapping: Confronting the Red Brigades

SpecWarNet - NOCS

Monday, January 26, 2009


This week's babe is actress Tricia Helfer, who plays Carla in the TV series Burn Notice. Rumor has it, she also plays a Cylon in BSG - the new one, not the old one. I guess Cylons are hot babes in the new one. I wonder if they still say "By your command." If they don't, they damn well ought to. If, for some unknown reason, you want to see more of her, you can check out her official website.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


On this date in 1989, serial killer Ted Bundy was executed in the electric chair at Florida State Prison. His last words: "I'd like you to give my love to my family and friends."

Further reading:

truTV: Ted Bundy

FBI: Theodore Robert Bundy

Famous Last Words--Ted Bundy

Wikipedia: Ted Bundy


This Dutch TV commercial pretty much sums up the whole Mars-Venus thing.

Friday, January 23, 2009


If you missed RocknRolla (the subject of this week's Friday Movie Quote) when it was out in theaters (what was it, all of 2 weeks?), I have good news. January 27th is the release date for the DVD (two-disc special edition pictured at left). If you liked Snatch and Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, you're gonna like RocknRolla. You can check out my take on the movie here. And make sure you stop by the official movie website. The video section there has the theatrical trailers for the movie. Very cool.


"I'm dead, Pete. Dead people don't like company."

-Johnny Quid (Toby Kebbell), RocknRolla (2008)

Thursday, January 22, 2009


On this day in 1957, George Metesky was arrested at his home in Waterbury, CT. Metesky was suspected of being the "Mad Bomber" that had terrorized New York during the 1940s and 50s. In all, he had planted thirty-three bombs. Twenty-two of the bombs exploded, injuring fifteen people. His motive: denial of a worker's compensation claim against Consolidated Edison in 1931. Metesky's arrest was the result of an early use of profiling techniques by police. Metesky was found legally insane and committed to a mental institution in 1957. He was released in 1973, and died in 1994 at the age of 90.

Further reading:

truTV: George Metesky: New York City's Mad Bomber

Wikipedia: George Metesky

Time Magazine: An article from 1957 titled "George Did It"

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Looks like it's spam for lunch again today:

Unleash your tank cannon today
No, not the tank cannon! Anything but the tank cannon!

Make her love every second
Or maybe every third.

Creamy mounds of beautiful flesh
Where? A buffet for cannibals?

Never be the butt of jokes again
Just don't act like an idiot. That was easy, wasn't it?

Be rock hard and never stop
Never? Not even long enough to have an icy cold beverage and a few tasty snack crackers.

Transform from a grass snake to a python
Why, am I supposed to strangle her with it?

increase youur love stick
Stick? I thought it was a snake. I'm confused.

Re: finally I put on 2 inches
So? I put on 3. That kind of thing happens during the holidays. But with diet and exercise, I hope to have it gone before summer.

Does your manhood look shrivelled?
I can't tell. Those extra 3 inches I put on are blocking my view.

Don't you love it when they come
Not half as much as when they go.

Ride her like a mofo
Will I need spurs?

Now it's easy to make her come
Yeah, it's making her go that's the hard part.

Your 9 inch tool will drive her nuts
What kind of tool? Is it a chain saw? Trying to use a 9 inch chain saw would drive anyone nuts.

Chicks dig big dick guys
Hear that guys? If you want to be a chick magnet, just act like a big dick. From what I've seen, this technique does work. Especially in trailer parks.

Chicks will love your huge pecker
But I want them to love me for my mind!

Make your pecker your trump
Donald Trump? Will it have a really bad combover?

Monday, January 19, 2009


You may have noticed that I'm a dedicated winter-hater. In keeping with that theme, this week's babe puts me in a summertime mood. Summer Altice is an actress, a model, and was Playmate of the Month in the August 2000 issue of Playboy magazine.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


On this date in 1950, the Brinks Armored Car depot in Boston, MA was robbed of over $2.5 million in cash, checks and money orders. It took years for cops to solve the crime. The robbery inspired a 1978 movie starring Peter Falk. There was also a sequel--to the robbery, not the movie--when members of the Weather Underground and the Black Liberation Army robbed a Brinks Armored car in Nanuet, NY in 1981. As usual, the sequel was inferior to the original.

FBI History: The Brinks Robbery

Crime Magazine: The Great Brinks Robbery

Wikipedia: Great Brinks Robbery

The Brinks Job (1978)

Friday, January 16, 2009


On this date in 1935, Kate "Ma" Barker, matriarch of the infamous family of criminals, died in a hail of gunfire in Ocala, FL. Far from the Tommy-gun toting outlaw she's been portrayed as in popular culture, Ma Barker's role in the Barker-Karpis gang was probably limited to providing logistical and moral (or is it immoral?) support. She would travel the country with the gang, and they would pose as mother and sons. Then Ma would go to the movies while the boys "worked."

On January 8, 1935, her son Arthur "Doc" Barker was arrested in Chicago. When he was searched, a map of the area where his brother Fred Barker was hiding out with Ma. On the 16th, FBI agents surrounded the house and ordered the Barkers to surrender. A gunfight followed. Both Ma and Fred were killed in the battle. When they entered the house, agents found a Tommy gun still in Ma's hands. Or so they claimed.

Further reading:

Wikipedia - Ma Barker 

truTV - Alvin Karpis: Pursuit of the Last Public Enemy

Find a Grave - "Ma" Barker 

FBI - Barker-Karpis Gang 


"When I was your age they would say we can become cops or criminals. Today, what I'm saying to you is this: when you're facing a loaded gun, what's the difference?"

-Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson), The Departed The Departed (2006)

Thursday, January 15, 2009


On this date in 1947, the mutilated remains of a young woman were found in Los Angeles. The woman would soon be identified as Elizabeth Short, an unemployed 22 year old, originally from Massachusetts. The news media would soon dub her the Black Dahlia. The LAPD conducted an exhaustive investigation, but the case remains unsolved.

Further reading:

The Black Dahlia Web Site

truTV - Black Dahlia

Wikipedia - Black Dahlia


I got tagged by Captain America  with a meme. It works like this:

1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Share six non-important things/habits/quirks about yourself.
4. Tag six random people with a link.

OK, I have one and two covered, so here are the six non-important things/habits/quirks about me:

1. I never learned to type. I pretty much use the hunt and peck method. I've gotten pretty good at it, but it's still slower than "real" typing.

2. I love pizza. I could eat it almost every day. I usually have it with pepperoni. Sometimes I eat it with other meat toppings, but no veggie toppings - ever.

3. I hate winter. The only thing good about this season is its end.

4. I skipped my senior year of high school and went to college on an early admissions program. In retrospect, this was a mistake; another lesson learned the hard way.

5. I've seen every episode of the original Star Trek series dozens of times. When I was a kid, this was may favorite show. Even today, if I'm surfing the channels and I see that it's on, I'll stop and watch it. I also enjoyed Star Trek: The Next Generation. Deep Space Nine and Voyager didn't do it for me. And I've never seen a single episode of Star Trek Enterprise.

6. When I was 16, I had a nasty accident involving a lawn mower and my right foot. It was really unpleasant. And painful.

OK, that's six things. I checked a few of the folks, in my blogroll for tag-appropriateness. Three of the five bloggers I looked at had already been tagged. I took that as a sign that I'm not gonna hit six. If you feel like tagging yourself, by all means, be my guest. If you choose to do so, please let me know.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


On this date in 1979, Lucchese crime family associate Thomas "Two-Gun Tommy" DeSimone was reported missing by his wife. Turns out he was whacked, reportedly by members of the Gambino family. DeSimone, who was believed to have killed at least ten people, apparently killed someone he shouldn't have. I guess if you kill enough people, that's bound to happen eventually. Anyway, DeSimone's victims included William "Billy Batts" Devino, a made man with the Gambino family, and Ronald "Foxy" Jerothe, a protege of future Gambino family boss John Gotti. Killing made men without permission is a big no-no in the mob, which Tommy found out the hard way. He was lured to his death by Lucchese family members who told him he was being "made," and that they were taking him to the ceremony. They made him all right; they made him dead. DeSimone's body was never found. His remains were thought to be buried in a "mob graveyard" on the Brooklyn-Queens border.

Tommy DeVito, the character played by Joe Pesci in the movie Goodfellas, was based in large part on Thomas DeSimone.

Further reading:

Wikipedia - Thomas DeSimone 

The Free Information Society - DeSimone, Thomas  

truTV - The End of Tommy DeSimone 

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


On a scale of 1 to 10, this week's babe is a 24. Elisha Cuthbert played Jack Bauer's daughter Kim in 24. Rumor has it she may be back for a few episodes later this season.

Monday, January 12, 2009


According to a story in the Telegraph, a girl from san Diego, CA is auctioning off her virginity in order to pay for graduate school. Over 10,000 men have bid so far. The current high bid for a one-night stand with 22 year old Natalie Dylan is $3.7 million. She was inspired to do this by her sister, who paid for school by working as a prostitute for three weeks. "I think me and the person I do it with will both profit greatly from the deal," Miss Dylan said.

A few thoughts:

-Nothing says "Desperate!" like being willing to pay seven digits for a roll in the hay.

-When this whole transaction is complete, Natalie Dylan will be a woman who has only had sex once, with one man. And a whore. Interesting combination.

-I hope that degree is really valuable, job-wise. Now that this story's made the news, the whole world is going to know that Natalie's a whore. What kind of job can a shameless whore get these days? The only ones that come to mind are porn star, personal injury lawyer, and politician - nothing respectable.*

-Based on the above quote from Ms. Dylan, I hope she's not studying to be an English teacher.

-Both parties will "profit greatly from the deal?" Talk about chutzpah! The girl hasn't even done it yet, and she thinks a tumble with her is well worth seven digits? Oy.

h/t: Drudge

*Update - OK, I may have been a bit harsh lumping politicians and personal injury lawyers in with porn stars. That being said, I offer my sincerest apologies to porn stars for including them in this nefarious group.

Sunday, January 11, 2009


"Fill your hands, you son of a bitch!"

-Rooster Cogburn (John Wayne), True Grit (1969)

*Yeah, I know. Two days late. Spent the last three days tied up, thanks to the military. I have no internet access there, so the movie quote had to wait until I got home. C'est la vie.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009


OK, this isn't the only reason. But even if I didn't hate the cold weather, it'd do all by its lonesome.

Skier Suffers Exposure 

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


This week's babe is actress Olivia Wilde, who plays Dr. Remy "Thirteen" Hadley on House. Maybe thirteen is a lucky number after all.

Monday, January 05, 2009


On this date in 1945, Albany, NY Police Chief William Fitzpatrick was shot and killed in his office at police headquarters. It all started when the Chief's bodyguard and longtime friend, Detective John McElveney, entered the office at 3:00 PM. The two men broke into an argument. The argument ended at 3:10 when Detective McElveney drew his pistol and shot Chief Fitzpatrick in the head, killing him.

According to the Albany Police and the D.A.'s office, the argument was part of an "ongoing dispute." The nature of this dispute was never revealed.

Detective McElveney was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison, avoiding the appointment with the electric chair that usually awaited most cop killers back in those days. He was released in 1957, when his sentence was commuted by Governor Averill Harriman. He died of cancer in 1968 at the age of 71.

There are those who believe that Chief Fitzpatrick, back when he was a sergeant, was one of the gunmen who killed gangster Legs Diamond in 1931. But that murder will have to remain a mystery; at least until some enterprising true crime writer unearths the truth.

Further reading:

Albany Police - Chief William J. Fitzpatrick

O Albany!, by William Kennedy

Friday, January 02, 2009


"I'm not superstitious. And I don't believe in jinxes, but that stone's jinxed me and it won't let go. I've been damned near bitten, shot at, peed on and robbed. And worse is gonna happen before it's done. So I'm takin' my stand. I'm going all the way. Either I get it, or it gets me."

-John Dortmunder (Robert Redford), The Hot Rock* (1972)

*The Hot Rock is based on the book by the late Donald E. Westlake, who passed away on New Year's Eve. If you're a regular reader of my blog, you probably know that Westlake was my favorite author. Critic/blogger Sarah Weinman posted a whole slew of links to various tributes to the master:
Donald Westlake, R.I.P.

Thursday, January 01, 2009


This news really sucks.