Should Have Used the Cone of Silence

We told you all week that it would be around 60 on Sunday with rain and then the mercury would plunge. First part of the promise is fulfilled now for the second. Look for a brisk Monday. It matters not what the temperature will be because the wind will make it feel cold. It’s not completely clear cut at this point but we may see a bit of a warm up next weekend. The week looks chilly. A cold rain on Wednesday may turn to some largely insignificant snow but other than that I doubt if we see 50 degrees until next weekend.

On This Date In History: The British could have used Control’s Cone of Silence. By this time in 1777, General William Howe had his army occupying Philadelphia. When his headquarters proved too small, he commandeered an upstairs room across the street at the Darragh home. The story is that Mrs. Lydia Darragh, a nurse and mother, would eavesdrop on the conversations and sew her notes into her coat lining. She would then pass the notes on the colonials. On December 2, she found out that Howe was planning an attack on General Washington’s army nearby. She sewed the message into the lining and went through British lines saying she was getting flour. She passed on the information to Lt. Col. Thomas Craig who forwarded the information to General Washington. When the Redcoats marched toward Washington’s position, they were surprised to find the Continental Army facing them down. A three day event of skirmishes made Howe return to Philadelphia to think up another plan….presumably from a new headquarters.

On this date in 1954, Senator “tailgunner Joe” Joe McCarthy was condemned for his snooting about for communists in the government. An ironic twist to the story not typically told; many historians now suggest that there were in fact a number of communist influences in the government. Maybe if McCarthy used honey to attract flies instead of…well….you get the point.

On this date in 1942, Enrique Fermi produced the first nuclear fission chain reaction in Chicago. The place? Under the grandstands of the University of Chicago football stadium. Fermi’s work led directly to the development of the atomic bomb and later nuclear power. Thing is, Fermi wasn’t exactly certain that the reaction could be controlled and many physicists were concerned such an attempt would result in an uncontrolled reaction which would mean an explosion….as in an atomic explosion. I don’t think that the Bears were playing for that day or they may have had two potential disasters in one stadium.


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