December 24th / 2022

View todays celebrity birthdays and find out what happened in history today.

1914 – World War 1 – Not a shot was fired, as German & British soldiers played football & handed out drinks, cigars & souvenirs.
Celebrity : birthdays
Carol Vorderman, TV personality, 62; Ed Milliband, former leader of the Labour Party, 53; Will Oldham, singer-songwriter, 52; Ricky Martin (Enrique Martín Morales), singer, 51; Stephenie Meyer, author, 49; Ryan Seacrest, US TV presenter/broadcaster, 48; Louis Tomlinson, singer (One Direction) 31.

What : day is it

December 24th is Christmas Eve, Last-Minute Shopper’s Day as well as Eggnog Day.
This day : in history

1818 – The first performance of the carol Silent Night took place in the church of St Nikolaus in Oberndorf, Austria, on Christmas Eve. 

1914 – World War 1 – Not a shot was fired, as German & British soldiers played football & handed out drinks, cigars & souvenirs. It was possibly the most poignant moment of the ‘Great War’ & for several days afterwards the two sides appeared reluctant to fire on the men they had met face to face.

1922 – The BBC broadcast ‘The Truth About Father Christmas’ by Phillis M Twigg, the first play written for radio in Britain.

1932 – Colin Cowdrey, MCC President and former England test captain, was born. His career lasted from 1950 to 1976. He was the first cricketer to play in 100 Test matches and he toured Australia a record six times, between 1954-55 and 1974-75.

1965 – A meteorite weighing about 100 lb (45kg) was the largest to fall on Britain and landed in the village of Barwell, Leicestershire.

1974 – Former UK minister John Stonehouse was found in Australia after apparently faking his own death.

1979 – The first European Ariane rocket was launched. It had been officially agreed upon at the end of 1973 after delicate discussions between France, Germany and Britain. The project was Western Europe’s second attempt to develop its own launcher, following the unsuccessful Europa project.

1988 – Three North Sea oil fields were shut down after a giant floating storage vessel, the Medora, broke free of its moorings in gale-force winds.

2013 – Alan Turing, the World War Two codebreaker at Bletchley Park was granted a Royal pardon over his homosexuality conviction. The work done at Bletchley Park, particularly the codebreaking feats of Alan Turing, were credited with shortening the Second World War by several years. In August 2014 a film ‘The Imitation Game’ was released, based on the biography ‘Alan Turing: The Enigma’.

2013 – Several thousand passengers were stranded at Gatwick Airport following stormy weather. The airport said electricity sub-stations on the airfield had flooded with water from the River Mole.

2018 – Christmas Eve – Because of ongoing major conservation work on Parliament’s Elizabeth Tower, the bell of Rochdale Town Hall replaced the usual chimes of Big Ben on BBC Radio 4 news bulletins. The Rochdale bell was selected, in part, because it uses the same ‘Westminster chime’ as Big Ben.

2020 – At approximately 2:45pm and after four and a half years of legal and political wrangling, the UK and the EU reached a post Brexit trade deal.

Trivia : and shower thoughts

Did you know that on this day in 1818, the Christmas carol Silent Night was first sung? The performance took place at St Nicholas parish church in Oberndorf, Austria. The largest man-made lake in the U.S. is Lake Mead, created by the Hoover Dam.

The village of Carol Stream, Illinois is not named after a local stream, but is in fact one of only a few municipalities in the US named after a person’s first and last name.

Coffee is the most popular beverage worldwide with over 400 billion cups consumed each year

Santa has to deliver presents to almost 22 million kids an hour, every hour, on the night before Christmas. That’s about 365,000 kids a minute; about 6,100 a second.

The drug term “trip” was first coined by U.S. Army scientists in the 1950’s when they were experimenting with LSD.

“Don’t empty my mind! Please, I beg you! My mind is all I have! I’ve spent my whole life trying to fill it!” – Dr. Hans Zarkov, Flash Gordon #moviequotes

A group of Cobras is called a Quiver.

Despite their reputation, it is actually very rare for an opossum to have rabies because their body temperature is too low for rabies to survive and replicate well.

Charles W. Howard Santa Claus School (established in 1937) is the longest continuously running Santa Claus School in the world.

Birthday : quotes

“A scientist ought to have a healthy disregard for coincidences.” – Fritz Leiber

“Failure? Scared to death of it.” – Ryan Seacrest

“I like the night. Without the dark, we’d never see the stars.” – Stephenie Meyer

“Everyone knows Newton as a great scientist. Few remember that he spent half his life muddling with alchemy, looking for the philosopher’s stone. That was the pebble by the seashore he really wanted to find.” – Fritz Leiber

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