Does This Look Like A Camel?
The forecast as previously outlined is still generally in line with current thinking. The clouds Wednesday and chilly start gave way to sunshine and temperatures pushing to 70 at the airport. Pegasus Parade weather still looks great, though the parade balloons may require some muscle power as it will be pretty breezy as we get up toward 80 with partly cloudy skies. The storm system is still approaching. I’ll update the SPC severe outlook as it updates but I suspect it will be similar to what was posted previously. We will probably see some scattered showers or t’showers on the roam for Friday afternoon but folks at the Oaks would have to be unlucky to get a passing storm. Nevertheless, probably be a good idea to be prepared, just in case. The main action still looks like Friday night into the first part of Saturday. While most data does not support the idea of an enormous amount of rain, the infield may prove interesting. It should be comfortable temperature wise on Derby Day but we still have an upper low that looks poised to pounce late Saturday afternoon. It will do two things. The first will be the leading edge of cooler air for Saturday night and Sunday. The other thing, probably more important to Derby-goers, will be that it will bring the threat of some scattered showers or t’showers as it passes overhead. I think the question here is the timing and it is possible that it’s tardy enough that the showers don’t invade until after the Derby, but if it comes through a few hours quicker, then scattered showers may dampen a few races. So, again, at this point its probably a good idea to be prepared. It’s not a forecast that will end up in the winner’s circle, but also it won’t end up in the glue factory either.
On This Date In History: In 1893, Chicago opened the Columbus Fair to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the explorer’s voyage. It was a financial disaster until word got out that a dancer calling herself Little Egypt supposedly showed up. Word was that she did a belly dance nude! But, apparently it may have been a scam. The crowds did flock in and the fair was saved. But most historians who bother to look up such things have had a difficult time finding any evidence that the woman ever existed. There were belly dancers on the midway, but they were covered in long ethnic costumes. One fair-goer complained that the women had “inordinately thick ankles and large, voluptuous feet.” I’ve never heard of feet being described as “voluptuous.” There were rumors of a naked Little Egypt at Coney Island and there was a woman who claimed to be Little Egypt who jumped out of a cake at a rich guy’s stag party at the Waldorf Astoria. The stag party Little Egypt may be the source of the Chicago fair’s apparently mythological version because after the party, Little Egypts started popping up everywhere, including a Camel. No word on if anyone found the camel’s feet to be “voluptuous.”
The 1933 Chicago World’s Fair opened on this date and organizers decided to pay homage to the 1893 Columbus Fair when it used the world largest telescope in Wisconsin to capture the light from the star Arctus. It is 40 light years away and so the light captured was the light emitted 40 years earlier when the Columbus fair opened. The light was captured and focused on a photoelectric cell that in turn used the current to throw a switch that illuminated the fairgrounds. Probably would have been more interesting to have a naked woman on a camel throw the switch.
May 1st is May Day. While there are some pre-Christian roots to the day of celebration, the modern version has its roots in France in 1889 when a group of socialists decided to have an international worker’s day in commemoration of the HaymakerMarket riot in Chicago of three years earlier. The socialists were honoring anarchist workers who were sentenced to death in Chicago for their involvement in the violence that erupted at a rally at the Haymaker Market that was supposed to be a protest of police violence against workers who were campaigning for an 8 hour work day. Anyway, the day for some is sort of a labor day but instead it’s largely remembered for the military parades held in the Soviet Union…supposedly to honor the workers of the Communist regime but really was more of a forced honoring of Communist leadership. During the Red Scare of the 1950′s, American leadership did some things in an effort to combat the “communist threat”. For one thing, the term “under God” was inserted into the Pledge of Allegiance and May 1, 1958 was designated as “Loyalty Day.” Labor Day in the US has its origins in the late 19th Century by the American Labor movement to honor the economic and social achievement of American workers and is held on the first Monday in September.
Today, May-Day is marked by some in the world by protesting globalization and capitalism. In other words, it still has a communist/socialist influence. I guess a legacy of the Soviets were to mess up a perfectly good day on the calendar.