Elephants

How long do elephant pregnancies last?

Gioacchino Rossini

The William Tell Overture, overture to the opera William Tell, was composed by Gioachino Rossini. The opera premiered in 1829 and was the last of Rossini’s 39 operas.

Alexander Hamilton

“Who talks most about freedom and equality? Is it not those who hold the bill of rights in one hand and a whip for affrighted slaves in the other?”

William Tell

Which composer composed the “William Tell, Overture”?

Memorial Day

Memorial Day is celebrated on the last Monday of each May in the United States and began as “Decoration Day” after four years of Civil War in the United States, in which more than 600,000 men died. Although it eventually become known as “Memorial Day,” it was not until 1968, with the passage of the Uniform Monday Holiday Act that it become an official Federal holiday.

It seems that in May of 1868, John Logan, a veteran of the Civil War and head of the Union veterans organization the Grand Army of the Republic, established May 30th as “Decoration Day.” A day when people would be encouraged to put flowers on graves of family, friends and comrades who perished in the war. On May 30, 1868, General Ulysses S. Grant presided over the first official National Decoration Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery. After World War I, Decoration Day evolved into a day or remembrance for all soldiers who died during the country’s wars.

Memorial Day also has its own tradition with respect to flying the US flag.  The protocol is to raise the flag to full-staff at sunrise and then slowly lower the flag to half-staff.  At noon, the flag should again be raised to full-staff to honor all those who have served.  At 3:00 p.m. local time every Memorial Day, Americans are asked to stop what they are doing for 1 minute of silence to pay tribute to those American soldiers who have fallen in service to their country.  This tradition was memorialized in 2000 with the passage of The National Moment of Remembrance Act.

You can learn more about the history of Memorial Day here.

President John F. Kennedy

“When written in Chinese, the word crisis is composed of two characters – one represents danger and the other represents opportunity.”

Volleyball

Volleyball has numerous terms and slang phrases of which dump, floater, joust and wipe are only a handful. Volleyball is played with six team members in two rows, three in front and three in back.

Dump: A surprise attack usually executed by a front row setter to catch the defense off guard and aimed at the donut (area 4) on the volleyball court. (Note: the setter is the player who sends the ball into the opponent’s portion of the volleyball court by doing a ‘dump’ on the second touch of the ball – only three are allowed per side.)

Floater:  A serve in which the ball follows an erratic path since it has no spin.

Joust: The situation where the ball is landing right on top of the net and one player one from each side jumps up and pushes against it, trying to push it on to the opponent’s side.

Wipe (also known as a tool): When a player deliberately spikes the ball off an opponent, sending it out of bounds.

I found a few sites that had lists of the different terms and phrases used in Volleyball (Wikipedia: Volleyball Jargon; Gold Medal Squared; Facts.net) and I’m guessing those knowledgeable in the sport are likely to know even more of them!

 

Jim Rohn

“If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.”