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11 Things That Happened on Other Cool Dates

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11/22/11 is the 791st anniversary of Frederick II being crowned Holy Roman Emperor, the 293rd anniversary of Blackbeard’s beheading, the 254th anniversary of the Austrian defeat of Prussia in the Seven Years’ War’s Battle of Breslau, the 48th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination, and what would have been novelist George Eliot’s 192nd birthday. (Also: Toy Story turns 16 today.)

So many distinctions and yet 11/22/11 may only be the second coolest date in the last 11 days. But its proximity to the ever-so-flossy 11/11/11 should not keep us from celebrating its place among history’s very fun numerical dates. In honor of its coolness, here are some things that happened on other fun dates in history.

1. 7/8/9 (July 8, 1709): The Russians defeated the Swedes in the Battle of Poltava.

“But, why were they fighting?” you ask. Well, it was a part of the Great Northern War in which Tsar Peter the Great’s Russia and his allies in Denmark-Norway, Saxony, and Poland-Lithuania challenged the supremacy of the Swedish Empire. Russia’s decisive victory at Poltava (in modern-day Ukraine) pretty much sealed the deal establishing Russia as a major power in that part of the world and sending the Swedish Empire, under their teenage leader Karl XII, into a power decline. As you know, the date also explains very clearly why 6 was so very afraid of 7.

2. 3/3/3 (March 3, 1803) The first impeachment trial for a federal judge began.

Then-Chief Justice of the New Hampshire Superior Court of Judicature, John Pickering has the proud distinction of being the first United States federal official to be removed from office after conviction by impeachment. Basically, he just stopped showing up to court and many contended that he had simply gone bonkers.

After a bit of a political debate regarding the constitutionality of the removal of a federal official for something not considered a high crime or misdemeanor, then-Prez TJ sent evidence to the House of Representatives of Pickering’s drunkenness and unlawful rulings and they voted to impeach. The Senate voted to convict. And that was that.

3. 1/2/3 (January 2, 1903): Teddy Roosevelt shut down a Mississippi Post Office.

President Theodore Roosevelt shut down the post office in Indianola, Mississippi, for its racially motivated mistreatment of black postmistress, Minnie Cox. Racist politicians pointed to Cox’s position as evidence that blacks had attained too much power and demanded her removal. The postmistress was also threatened with violence and local law enforcement refused to provide appropriate protection. Fearing for her safety, she resigned her position and left town. The next day, the President closed down the post office, declined Ms. Cox’s resignation and continued her salary. Indianola residents were told that their mail could be collected at the Greenville post office 30 miles away.

Though Roosevelt could not keep the post office closed because the county was entitled to one by statute and though Cox did not accept the reappointment, it was still a pretty cool move by Teddy.

4. 11/11/11 (November 11, 1811): Cartagena, Colombia, declared its independence, the first Colombian province to do so.

The colonial city was established in 1533 by Pedro de Heredia and was named for a town in Spain from which many of his sailors had come. After existing under Spanish rule for 275 years, on 11/11/1811, Cartagena became independent of Spanish rule and now, as a beach resort city, is a popular tourist destination and center of economic activity in Columbia.

Every 11/11, Cartagena’s independence is celebrated with parades and dance performances. The central event of the day is the crowning of the queen of the Concurso Nacional de Belleza (national beauty contest) in which the two most important moments are the Desfile de Balleneras, where the contestants and their entourages parade their good looks via yachts and sailboats around the Bay of Cartegena, and when the bathing-suit-clad contestants parade around the pool at the Hilton. If you were not in Cartegena on 11/11, I am not sure why not.

5. 12/12/12 (December 12, 1812): The French invasion of Russia came to an end.

A major turning point in the Napoleonic Wars, the Little Corporal’s invasion of Russia was a pretty costly move, reducing his army to a small fraction of its size prior to the invasion. He could have quit while he was ahead with basically all of Europe under either his direct or indirect control. But, noooooo. He had to go and invade Russia because Tsar Alexander wouldn’t buy into the whole Napoleonic economic system.

The French armies were not prepared for the different and less agriculturally-rich Russian landscape and, in the course of the invasion, Napoleon’s Grande Armee became not nearly as grande. They lost more soldiers to desertion, starvation, and disease than they lost in actual battles with the Russians.

6. 1/1/1 (January 1, 1901): Australia became a commonwealth.

Previously six separate colonies, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, and Western Australia became states united under a federal government and began operating under the Constitution of Australia. The federation of Australia, as this process become known, also lends its name to a type of architecture that was popular during the time. As we all, of course, know, Federation architecture is similar to Edwardian architecture but stands out because of the use of verandah and images of distinctly Aussie plants and animals (yes, kangaroos and kookaburra included).

7. 8/8/8 (August 8, 1908): A Wright Brother proved the French wrong.

Wilbur Wright made his first public flight at the Hunaudieres racecourse near Le Mans, France. Prior to the public display, the press was openly skeptical about the Wright Brothers’ claim of having flown. One newspaper stated of the brothers, “They are in fact either flyers or liars. It is difficult to fly. It is easy to say, ‘We have flown.’” Well, Wibur proved to be a flier, indeed, as his first flight lasted one minute and 45 seconds and featured crafty turns and maneuvers that the public had not thought possible. The crowd went wild, headlines were made, and skeptics were silenced.

8. 8/9/10 (August 9, 1910): The washing machine was patented.

Alva Fisher patented the Thor washing machine, the first electric clothes washer sold commercially in the United States. Produced by the Hurley Electric Laundry Equipment Company of Chicago, the Thor was mass marketed throughout the country starting in 1908 and was a major leap ahead from crude early attempts at an automatic washer that usually involved the use of a crank. There is controversy over whether or not Fisher “invented” the automatic washing machine. A different company out of New York, Nineteen Hundred Washing Machine Company, says they invented the electric washing machine in 1906 and some claim that a Ford Motor Company employee invented the electric washer even earlier than that. Regardless, Fisher’s patent is a matter verified by official record and the mighty Thors were certainly the first washers to reach the thunderstruck public, en masse.

9. 11/11/11 (November 11, 1911): Lots of weather craziness went down.

In the Midwest, as many cities broke their record high and low temperatures on the same day. Springfield, Missouri, for example, recorded a temperature of 80 degrees Fahrenheit during the day before dropping to 13 degrees before midnight – a 67-degree drop in 10 hours. In some cities, there were tornadoes on 11/11 followed by blizzards on 11/12. Some folks call that cold snap that impacted the central part of the U.S. “The Great Blue Norther of 11/11/11,” some just call it straight-up, unadulterated meteorological wackiness.

10. 2/2/2 (February 2, 2002): A Prince married an investment banker.

The scandalous marriage between Crown Prince Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands and Argentine-born NY investment banker Maxima Zorreguieta Cerruti occurred on 2/2/2. The controversy surrounding the marriage was unrelated to her involvement with the bulls and the bears — rather, it was regarding her father’s prior role as Argentina’s Minister of Agriculture from 1976-1981 under the military dictatorship. During that time, between 10,000 and 30,000 people just up and disappeared (and are presumed dead), but Maxima’s father insists he was not aware of the government’s actions. The Dutch Parliament conducted an inquiry and verified that the prince’s father-in-law-to-be was being truthful. However, remaining pressure from the public prevented Maxima’s father from attending the wedding.

By the way, the couple met in Spain in 1999 at the Seville Spring Fair. The prince introduced himself simply as “Alexander” and did not tell Maxima that he was a prince until later. She thought he was joking.

11. 10/10/10 (October 10, 2010): The Netherlands Antilles were dissolved.

So, the Netherlands Antilles used to be an autonomous Caribbean country that was a part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. It was made up of Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, Sint Eustatius, Saba, Sint Maarten, and two other groups of small islands. Aruba became a separate country under the Kingdom of the Netherlands umbrella in 1986 and sparked a lengthy series of referendums for the rest of the Antilles, who had to decide whether they wanted to have closer ties with the Netherlands, autonomy within the Netherlands kingdom, independence, or maintenance of the status quo.

After a speedy 24 years of deliberations, the Netherlands Antilles were dissolved in 2010. Curacao and Sint Maarten became constituent countries within the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the other islands became “special municipalities.” If we have any readers in said special municipalities who can explain what that term means, we'd love to hear from you.

I'm a sucker for "what ______ was almost called" trivia, from movies to books to search engines. So leave us your favorite almost-names in the comments!

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30 Memorable Quotes from Carrie Fisher
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Just days after suffering a heart attack aboard a flight en route to Los Angeles, beloved actress, author, and screenwriter Carrie Fisher passed away at the age of 60 on December 27, 2016. Though she’ll always be most closely associated with her role as Princess Leia in Star Wars, Fisher’s life was like something out of its own Hollywood movie. Born in Beverly Hills on this day in 1956, Fisher was born into show business royalty as the daughter of singer Eddie Fisher and actress Debbie Reynolds.

In addition to her work in front of the camera, Fisher built up an impressive resume behind the scenes, too, most notably as a writer; in addition to several memoirs and semi-autobiographical novels, including Wishful Drinking, Surrender the Pink, Delusions of Grandma, The Best Awful, Postcards from the Edge, and The Princess Diarist (which was released last month), she was also an in-demand script doctor who counted Sister Act, Hook, Lethal Weapon 3, and The Wedding Singer among her credits.

Though she struggled with alcoholism, drug addiction, and mental illness, Fisher always maintained a sense of humor—as evidenced by the 30 memorable quotes below.

ON GROWING UP IN HOLLYWOOD

“I am truly a product of Hollywood in-breeding. When two celebrities mate, someone like me is the result.”

“I was born into big celebrity. It could only diminish.”

“At a certain point in my early twenties, my mother started to become worried about my obviously ever-increasing drug ingestion. So she ended up doing what any concerned parent would do. She called Cary Grant.”

“I was street smart, but unfortunately the street was Rodeo Drive.”

“If anything, my mother taught me how to sur-thrive. That's my word for it.”

ON AGING

“As you get older, the pickings get slimmer, but the people don't.”

ON INSTANT GRATIFICATION

“Instant gratification takes too long.”

ON THE LEGACY OF STAR WARS

“People are still asking me if I knew Star Wars was going to be that big of a hit. Yes, we all knew. The only one who didn't know was George.”

“Leia follows me like a vague smell.”

“I signed my likeness away. Every time I look in the mirror, I have to send Lucas a couple of bucks.”

“People see me and they squeal like tropical birds or seals stranded on the beach.”

“You're not really famous until you’re a Pez dispenser.”

ON THE FLEETING NATURE OF SUCCESS

“There is no point at which you can say, 'Well, I'm successful now. I might as well take a nap.'”

ON DEALING WITH MENTAL ILLNESS

“I'm very sane about how crazy I am.”

ON RESENTMENT

“Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die."

ON LOVE

“Someone has to stand still for you to love them. My choices are always on the run.”

“I've got to stop getting obsessed with human beings and fall in love with a chair. Chairs have everything human beings have to offer, and less, which is obviously what I need. Less emotional feedback, less warmth, less approval, less patience, and less response. The less the merrier. Chairs it is. I must furnish my heart with feelings for furniture.”

“I don’t hate hardly ever, and when I love, I love for miles and miles. A love so big it should either be outlawed or it should have a capital and its own currency.”

ON EMOTIONS

“The only thing worse than being hurt is everyone knowing that you're hurt.”

ON RELATIONSHIPS

“I envy people who have the capacity to sit with another human being and find them endlessly interesting, I would rather watch TV. Of course this becomes eventually known to the other person.”

ON HOLLYWOOD

“Acting engenders and harbors qualities that are best left way behind in adolescence.”

“You can't find any true closeness in Hollywood, because everybody does the fake closeness so well.”

“It's a man's world and show business is a man's meal, with women generously sprinkled through it like overqualified spice.”

ON FEAR

“Stay afraid, but do it anyway. What’s important is the action. You don’t have to wait to be confident. Just do it and eventually the confidence will follow.”

ON LIFE

“I don’t want life to imitate art. I want life to be art.”

“No motive is pure. No one is good or bad-but a hearty mix of both. And sometimes life actually gives to you by taking away.”

“If my life wasn't funny it would just be true, and that is unacceptable.”

“I shot through my twenties like a luminous thread through a dark needle, blazing toward my destination: Nowhere.”

“My life is like a lone, forgotten Q-Tip in the second-to-last drawer.”

ON DEATH

“You know what's funny about death? I mean other than absolutely nothing at all? You'd think we could remember finding out we weren't immortal. Sometimes I see children sobbing at airports and I think, 'Aww. They've just been told.'”

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Get This Weekend's Best Amazon Deals Now
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As a recurring feature, our team combs the Web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, October 21.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers, including Amazon, and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Good luck deal hunting!

GADGETS, TOYS, AND MEDIA

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Cord Organizer, Earbud Holder, Leather Cord Organizer, Leather Cable Holder, Earphone Holder, Cable Organizer, Genuine Leather Cord Organizer (3 in 1 Packaging) SPECIAL OFFER for $6.99 (list price $19.99)

VicTsing Bluetooth FM Transmitter, Wireless In-Car Radio Transmitter Adapter /w USB Car Charger AUX Input 1.44 Inch Display TF Card Slot - Black for $18.99 (list price $39.99)

[Upgraded to 6700mAh] Anker Astro E1 Candy-Bar Sized Ultra Compact Portable Charger, External Battery Power Bank, with High-Speed Charging PowerIQ Technology (Black) for $16.99 (list price $59.99)

iphone Cable, Pecosso Lightning Cable : 3 Pack (10ft/6ft/3ft) Lightning to USB Fast Charging Cable, Nylon Braided Sync Cord Combination for iPhone 7/7plus/6s/6s plus/6/5s/iPad/iPod/Beats Pill - Black for $6.49 (list price $11.10)

iClever Quiet 7 Color Backlit Rechargeable Portable Bluetooth Keyboard for PCs, Tablets, Smartphones for $21.99 (list price $39.99)

Walcase Apple Watch Band 42mm, Fully Magnetic Closure Clasp Mesh Loop Milanese Stainless Steel iWatch Band for Apple Watch Series 3 Series 2 Series 1 Sport and Edition - Black for $11.99 (list price $32.99)

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iPhone 8, 7, 6S, 6 Screen Protector Glass, amFilm Tempered Glass Screen Protector for Apple iPhone 8, 7, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6 [4.7"inch] 2017 2016, 2015 (2-Pack) for $6.99 (list price $29.99)

Energizer AA Batteries, Double A Battery Max Alkaline (24 Count) E91BP-24 for $13.99 (list price $28.61)

KITCHEN

ThermoPro TP03A Digital Food Cooking Thermometer Instant Read Meat Thermometer for Kitchen BBQ Grill Smoker for $11.99 (list price $29.99)

Miusco 5 Piece Silicone Cooking Utensil Set with Natural Acacia Hard Wood Handle for $20.99 (list price $49.99)

Utopia Kitchen Premium Class Stainless-Steel 12 Knife Set with Acrylic Stand for $35.69 (list price $299.99)

[20 Pack] 3 Compartment Meal Prep Containers BPA Free Portion Control Bento Boxes (39 Oz.) for $17.99 (list price $39.99)

Rubbermaid LunchBox Sandwich Kit, Food Storage Container, Green for $6.79 (list price $39.00)

Spiral Slicer Spiralizer Complete Bundle - Vegetable Spiralizer and Cutter - Zucchini Pasta Noodle Spaghetti Maker for $14.84 (list price $39.99)

Pre Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet (12.5 inch) by Utopia Kitchen for $30.99 (list price $99.99)

Cuisinart CTG-00-3MS Set of 3 Fine Mesh Stainless Steel Strainers for $19.90 (list price $22.00)

Vremi 5 Piece Cheese Grater Set with Container - Microplane Zester Parmesan Cheese Shredder Vegetable Slicer Cheese Graters - Fine and Coarse Metal Hand Cheese Grater Adjustable Hard Cheese Slicer for $8.99 (list price $34.99)

ROCKSHEAT Pizza Stone Made of Cordierite for Pizza & Bread Baking Grilling. Perfect for Oven or Grill. Innovative Unique Double - faced Built - in 4 Handles Design (Rectangular 12"x15"x0.63") for $23.99 (list price $60.00)

Home-it Stainless Steel Bread Box for kitchen, bread bin, bread storage Bread holder 16.5x10x8 for $19.99 (list price $49.99)

Set of 9 Grey Beverage Chilling Stones [Chill Rocks] Whiskey Stones for Whiskey and other Beverages - in Gift Box with Velvet Carrying Pouch - Made of 100% Pure Soapstone - by Quiseen for $7.95 (list price $18.99)

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TasteLife 105 GSM Deep Pocket Bed Sheet Set Brushed Hypoallergenic Microfiber 1800 Bedding Sheets Wrinkle, Fade, Stain Resistant - 4 Piece(White,Queen) for $14.90 (list price $119.90)

Zober Premium Quality Space Saving Velvet Hangers Strong and Durable Hold Up To 10 Lbs - 360 Degree Chrome Swivel Hook - Ultra Thin Non Slip Suit Hangers, Black - 50 pack for $22.95 (list price $39.99)

Cr Sleep Ventilated Memory Foam Bed Pillow with AirCell Technology, Standard, 1-Pack for $25.49 (list price $89.99)

StorageManiac Foldable Pop-Up Mesh Laundry Hamper with Reinforced Carry Handles, 2-Pack for $16.99 (list price $39.99)

Monkey Hook Picture Hanger Home and Office Pack, 30 pc set for $11.24 (list price $19.75)

Syntus Himalayan Salt Lamp Natural Crystal Salt Light Glow Hand Carved Night Lights Wall light with UL Listed Plug for Lighting, Decoration and Air Purifying for $12.99 (list price $21.99)

LED String Lights 33 ft with 100 LEDs, TaoTronics Waterproof Decorative Lights for Bedroom, Patio, Parties ( Copper Wire Lights, Warm White ) for $14.49 (list price $29.99)

Whitmor Supreme Wide Stacking Shelf, Chrome for $15.35 (list price $32.02)

Hoover FH50251PC Power Scrub Elite Pet Carpet Cleaner for $169.99 (list price $189.00)

HEALTH AND BEAUTY

Activated Charcoal Natural Teeth Whitening Powder by Pro Teeth Whitening Co® | High Quality Grey Charcoal (non abrasive and proven safe for enamel) From Coconut Shells | Manufactured in England for $12.99 (list price $29.99)

TheraFlow Dual Foot Massager Roller (Large) - Relieve Plantar Fasciitis, Heel, Foot Arch Pain & Stress - Foot Chart & Instructions Included - Acupressure/ Reflexology Tool - Perfect Gift for $16.95 (list price $49.99)

Apple Cider Vinegar - Pills for Weight Loss - Includes: Vitamin B6, Spirulina, Lecithin & Kelp - Helps Support Detox, Digestion & Circulation, 350 mg, 90 Capsules for $18.92 (list price $28.59)

B.I.G. Natural Pre Shave Oil, 60 ml for $12.95 (list price $25.00)

Pure Body Naturals Essential Oils Gift Set, Lavender/Tea Tree/Eucalyptus/Lemongrass/Orange/Peppermint, 6 count - 10 ml for $14.95 (list price $17.95)

Colgate Max Fresh Wisp Disposable Travel Toothbrush, Peppermint - 24 Count for $4.99 (list price $7.99)

Nano Towel Makeup Remover Face Cloth. Remove Cosmetics FAST and Chemical Free. Wipes Away Facial Dirt and Oil Like An Eraser. Great for Sensitive Skin, Acne, Exfoliating, Mascara, etc. 7 x 16" for $14.97 (list price $29.99)

CCS Blackhead Remover Pimple Extractor with Instructions for Acne Comedone Whitehead Blemish Zit Removal Tool Kit for $6.97 (list price $49.97)

Oneleaf 2PCS Professional Pedicure Rasp Foot File Cracked Skin Corns Callus Remover for Extra Smooth and Beauty Foot for $9.99 (list price $19.99)

OUTDOORS, GARDEN, AND SPORTS

Wilson Championship Extra Duty Tennis Ball (4-Pack), Yellow for $15.16 (list price $20.18)

Anker Ultra-Bright Tactical Flashlight with 1300 Lumens, Rechargeable(26650 Battery Included), IP67 Water-Resistant, Bolder LC130 LED with 5 Light Modes For Camping, Security, Emergency Use for $45.99 (list price $112.00)

Enkeeo Foldable Fishing Net Triangular Landing Net with Aluminum Pole and Nylon Mesh, 14.6" Wide for $19.99 (list price $39.99)

G4Free 12x25 Compact Binoculars(BAK4,Green Lens),Large Eyepiece Super High-Powered Field Surveillance Binoculars for $24.99 (list price $39.99)

Stansport Canteen, 4-Quart for $7.97 (list price $10.49)

HEIMDALL Safety Whistle with lanyard (2 pack) for Boating Camping Hiking Hunting Emergency Survival Rescue Signaling for $8.95 (list price $10.99)

Veegul Stylish Doctor Style Canvas School Backpack Functional Travel Bag for Men Women Semizipper Pocket x Black VG for $39.99 (list price $74.50)

Enkeeo Foam Roller 13” × 6” EVA with Grid Design Muscle Rollers for Deep Tissue Myofascial Release, Sports Massage and Recovery, Trigger Point Therapy, Pilates & Yoga, Black for $16.99 (list price $29.99)

TOOLS

Pumie Toilet Bowl Ring Remover #TBR-6 for $9.15 (list price $14.33)

Gorilla 7700104 Super Glue Gel, 20g for $5.97 (list price $14.89)

Worthington 336737 WT2301 Trigger Start Propane Torch for $16.97 (list price $19.99)

Bosch T4021 Screwdriver Bit Set, Blue, 21-Piece for $8.17 (list price $14.99)

DEWALT DW1361 Titanium Pilot Point Drill Bit Set, 21-Piece for $19.99 (list price $25.99)

Tire Inflator, 3-in-1 Inflation Gun, with Gun, Locking Chuck and 2-inch Gauge, ¼” NPT and Flexible Hose (Campbell Hausfeld MP600000AV) for $9.94 (list price $13.49)

Stanley 84-056 3-Piece Bi-Material Pliers Set for $13.18 (list price $18.29)

Stanley 55-525 15-inch Super Wonder Bar Pry Bar for $9.89 (list price $13.29)

Picture Hanging Kit Asst for $9.99 (list price $12.99)

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