Good afternoon. Today is Tuesday, the 18th day of May. It's the 138th day of the year. This is not a leap year, so there are 227 days remaining in 2021. On the Jewish calendar, today is the 7th day of Sivan in the year 5781. On this day in 1965, Gene Roddenberry suggested 16 names for the Star Trek Captain; they included Kirk.
This website is a demonstration of smart content rendering. The content updates continuously without the help of Internet monkeys. All the information was current at the time you arrived here. If you're looking for information on the technology, it's at the bottom of this page.
Today's History Lesson: Evangelizing Hollywood Style
It was on this day in 1926 that the flamboyant and charismatic radio evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson vanished in Venice California.
She and her secretary were swimming at the beach when Aimee disappeared. The secretary reported the news, suggesting that Aimee had drowned. She was scheduled to preach later in the day, so her mother, a Salvation Army evangelist, stood in for her. Realistically, what mother, assuming her only child had just drowned, could have reacted with such composure? At the very least she could have shed a few Tammy Faye Bakker tears, but instead she stoically announced the suspected drowning and declared that "Sister is with Jesus" and then preached a Hollywood style sermon with fervor. Mama Preacher's handling of the assumed tragedy sparked much skepticism about the incident, although an extensive search for Sister Aimee immediately got underway. It was widely speculated [yet known to several] that Sister Aimee was having an affair with Kenneth Ormiston, an engineer for KFSG, the radio station that aired the live broadcasts of Mrs. McPherson's sermons. He coincidentally disappeared at the same time. On June 23, Sister Aimee stumbled out of the desert in Mexico, just south of the Arizona border. She claimed to have been held captive by a Mexican couple, but managed to escape and embark on a three hour journey through the desert to the town of Agua Prieta, Sonora. The problem was that she was healthy, well groomed, and showed no signs of fatigue. The hunt for her had been a headline story beginning the day she disappeared. Law enforcement and volunteers had expended numerous resources and countless hours searching for her body. Two volunteers had even lost their lives--one to drowning, and the other to exposure.
Investigators soon discovered that Mr. Ormiston had rented a cottage near Carmel-by-the-Sea during the time he and Sister Aimee were missing. Numerous witnesses who lived near the cottage came forward and reported that they had seen the evangelist and her broadcast engineer together in plain sight in public places. A grand jury was convened on July 8, 1926, but adjourned after 12 days citing a lack of solid evidence. After letters in Sister Aimee's handwriting that were dated during her disappearance and written on letterheads from several hotels surfaced, a second grand jury was convened on August 3, 1926. Sister Aimee and Mama Sister were indicted. They were both charged with obstruction of justice. As with Tammy Faye Bakker decades later, there was much public support for evangelists afflicted with the curse of loose morals. Even in matters of the law, the market place rules, so Los Angeles district attorney Asa Keyes, with his eye set on re-election, dropped all charges on January 10, 1927. Subsequently, poetic justice intervened and DA Keyes, who was by no means a choirboy, was found guilty of accepting a bribe from the Julian Petroleum Company and was sentenced to five years' imprisonment. He was pardoned by Governor James Rolph in August 1933.
Footnote: Sister Aimee was widowed once and divorced twice, and was rumored to have had several trysts. Dorothy Parker pretty much got it right in her New Yorker article. Her legendary quote from that article is today's quote (see bottom of page).
Today's Birthday Boys and Girls
Today is the birthday of Omar Khayyam (1048), Wilhelm Steinitz (1836), Oliver Heaviside (1850), Czar Nicholas II (1868), Bertrand Russell (1872), Frank Capra (1897), Meredith Willson (1902), Perry Como (1912), Margot Fonteyn (1919), Pope John Paul II (1920), Pernell Roberts (1930), Warren Rudman (1930), Robert Morse (1931), Dwayne Hickman (1934), Brooks Robinson (1937), Reggie Jackson (1946), George Strait (1952), Chow YunFat (1955), Tina Fey (1970), and Vince Young (1983).
On Wall Street
About the stock numbers: There's no current stock market reporting at the moment because of a snag in the link that retrieves the data and gets it to the screen. The stock market stuff is on the work bench until it's working again.
The New York Stock Exchange is currently closed. At closing today, the NASDAQ was up by to . The S&P500 index closed at , up by .
Note: During trading hours all data is in real time. The data is preserved at the end of the trading day. It remains until the next opening bell. The process of retrieving stock info involves many links between the sources and what you're reading on the screen. At the moment, there's a technical issue up the line with the DJ average. Occasionally, the data appears as random characters. If there's numerical data on the screen, it's accurate. The other indicies are working and accurate.
Earth and All Spheres
The current weather conditions and forecast usually appear in this section. However, there have been technical issues the last few days with the NOAA system, so the data is not always available. Reloading the page will sometimes bring up the info.
We are under a first quarter moon. At the time you accessed this page, its exact age was 7 days, 8 hours, and 26 minutes. We will be under a new moon again on Wednesday, June 9th at 10:12 PM CDT. The moon will reach full luminescence on Wednesday, May 26th at 3:50 AM. For now, Mars, Saturn and Jupiter are visible in the night sky. Mars, seen in the southern sky, is clearly visible and its red glow clearly identifies it. It can be seen beginning at nightfall; it moves slowly in a westerly fashion before disappearing. Mercury can be seen in the eastern sky just before dawn.
We are under the sign of Taurus in the 147th day of winter, which arrived in the Northern Hemisphere on December 21st at 4:02 AM CST with the occurrence of the Winter Equinox. On the date of the Equinox, the sunrise and sunset times were 5:12 AM CDT and 7:23 PM CDT. For today, our sunrise and sunset times (at -96.852/32.847) are 6:19 AM and 8:10 PM, giving us 13 hours and 51 minutes of daylight. For now, we're on Standard Time. We will switch to Daylight Saving Time on Sunday, March 14th at 2:00 AM, following the NIST standard.
This site is a working demonstration of on-demand PHP scripting. The code tightly integrates computed and imported data with text, spewing forth natural-sounding narrative output with flawless syntax. The birthdays, history section and the text below--which all change daily--are from an in-house database. Raw data used in the financial and weather sections is imported at page generation time. All the other data, particularly the celestial stuff, is derived and rendered by several hundred lines of code at the time the page request reaches the server. THIS SITE IS SELF-MAINTAINING. The daily content updates at midnight CDT. The weather target is -96.852/32.847.
Today's vocabulary word is hypocrisy.
Well, Aimee Semple McPherson has written a book. And were you to call it a little peach, you would not be so much as scratching its surface. It is the story of her life, and it is called In the Service of the King, which title is perhaps a bit dangerously suggestive of a romantic novel. It may be that this autobiography is set down in sincerity, frankness and simple effort. It may be, too, that the Statue of Liberty is situated in Lake Ontario.
"Our Lady of the Loudspeaker"
The New Yorker, February 25, 1928
VOX HUMANA DIALOGUS