Every year to mark St. Andrew's Day, England's Eton College holds the Eton Wall Game, in which scholarship students square off against non-scholarship holders. In this unusual type of rugby with rules so complex and mysterious that spectators are often confused, players try to win goals by getting the ball into the opposing team's "calx," designated by a chalk line on a wall at one end of the field and by a mark on a tree at the other. Goals are extremely rare. When was the last one scored?
Back in the day
In 1973, 16-year-old John Paul Getty III—grandson of oil tycoon J. Paul Getty—was kidnapped in Rome. His family initially dismissed a $17-million ransom demand as a joke by the rebellious teen, but a second note convinced his father to ask J. Paul to pay it. He refused. The frustrated kidnappers then cut off John's ear and sent it along with a note saying he would "arrive in little pieces" if their demands were not met. At this, the elder Getty relented, paying over $2 million on what condition?
Born on a day like today
Born and raised in Bialystok, a city on the Polish-Russian border populated by Poles, Germans, and Belarusians, Zamenhof was profoundly affected by the ethnic conflict he witnessed all around him. In his estimation, the primary cause of such conflict was mutual misunderstanding. Thus, he reasoned, removing communication barriers would foster peace. To this end, the young doctor and linguist devoted himself to developing an international language called "Esperanto," which means what?