" I am almost frighted out of my seven senses. "
Miguel de Cervantes

Back in the day


Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger Is Elected Pope

Ordained in 1951, the German-born Ratzinger came to be regarded as the most influential person in the Catholic hierarchy after the pope through his high-profile positions within the church and his uncompromising stance on Catholic teachings. He presided over the funeral of Pope John Paul II as dean of the College of Cardinals and, after just two days and four ballots, was elected pope in one of the fastest papal elections in a century. Why did he pray not to be elected during the papal conclave?



As Slow As Possible

As Slow as Possible is a musical piece by American avant-garde composer John Cage, who deliberately neglected to specify how slowly it should be played. Piano performances of the score usually last from 20 to 70 minutes. However, a performance that began in 2001 at a church in Germany is still going on and is expected to continue until 2640. The church's organ continuously emits the low hum of a chord that began several years ago. When will the next note-change occur?

Born on a day like today


Eliot Ness

Ness was 26 years old when he was hired as a special agent of the US Department of Justice to head its Chicago Prohibition bureau, with the express purpose of breaking up the bootlegging network of Al Capone. He formed a nine-man team of unbribable officers known as "the Untouchables." Numerous attempts were made on his life, and one of his friends was killed, but he eventually helped take down Capone, who was convicted on tax evasion charges. What did Ness do after Prohibition ended?

Last updated on Thursday, 19th April 2012

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