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Aceasta zi in istorie - This day in history

The disco craze was relatively short-lived, beginning in the mid-1970s and fading by the 1980s, yet it had a lasting influence on the music scene. A beat-driven style of dance music, disco got its name from the "discotheque," the type of nightclub where it originated. No discotheque was more central to disco than Studio 54, the Manhattan club famous for its mix of celebrities, beautiful people, and hedonism. The club paralleled disco's demise and closed in 1980. What is the space used for today? Discuss
During his 61-year rule as monarch, King Sobhuza II of Swaziland had 210 children by at least 70 wives. When Sobhuza died in 1982, one of his sons, Prince Makhosetive Dlamini, was selected as his successor. Four years later, Dlamini was crowned King Mswati III—just months before he was scheduled to take his final exams at his private English boarding school. Mswati's power as monarch is nearly absolute, and he has been criticized for abuses of his rule and for what personal indulgences? Discuss
The Triple Six Fix was a plot to rig the Pennsylvania Lottery. Masterminded by Nick Perry, the lottery's television announcer, the scheme focused on the Daily Number game, in which players pay to select a three-digit number in hopes of matching theirs to the one drawn from a container of numbered ping-pong balls. The balls are selected by a vacuum, so Perry planned to cheat the game by weighting all but two of the balls—numbers four and six—and buying combinations of those numbers. Did it work? Discuss
One of the most well-known examples of meteoric success on the Internet, the highly popular video sharing website YouTube was founded by Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim in 2005. The next year, it was acquired by Google for $1.65 billion. Within a few years, more than 25 quadrillion bytes of videos were being streamed from the site each month from myriad sources, amateur and professional alike. However, it all started with a single video, uploaded in April 2005, titled what? Discuss
In late 1999, 5-year-old Elián González and his mother left Cuba on a boat with a dozen other people seeking asylum in the US. Elián's mother and several others died during the voyage, and Elián was found on an inner tube by fishermen off the coast of Florida. He was released into the custody of his uncle in Miami, but his father in Cuba pressed for his return. The custody dispute ended in an armed raid on the Miami house, and Elián returned to Cuba with his father. What has he said since? Discuss
In the late 1960s, Australian farmer Leonard Casley protested government wheat quotas he considered unfair. Unsuccessful, he turned to Commonwealth law and styled himself a monarch—His Majesty Prince Leonard I of Hutt—and founded The Principality of Hutt River. His pronouncement of sovereignty was never successfully challenged by the Australian government, and he is now considered a non-resident of Australia for income tax purposes. What legal quirks allowed him to start his own micronation? Discuss
In the spring of 1914, the Colorado National Guard machine-gunned and torched a tent colony in Ludlow, where striking coal miners and their families had been living after being evicted from their company-owned homes some months earlier. Nineteen people, most of them women and children, were killed. For the next 10 days, the strikers attacked nearby mines and battled mine guards and militia. Federal troops were needed to put an end to the violence. Which side eventually prevailed in the strike? Discuss
In 1926, American actress Mae West, mistress of the double entendre, began to write, produce, and star in her own Broadway plays, the first of which was the sensation-creating Sex. The notorious production did not go over well with city officials, who prosecuted West on morals charges. She served eight days of her 10-day sentence, getting off two days for good behavior. Still, the punishment did not deter her from tackling taboo subjects, as evidenced by her next play, named what? Discuss
American patriot Paul Revere was a member of the Sons of Liberty and a participant in the Boston Tea Party, but he is chiefly remembered for his late-night horseback ride to warn the Massachusetts colonists that British soldiers were setting forth on the mission that, as it turned out, began the American Revolution. Two others also rode out with the news, but it is Revere who is celebrated as the midnight rider, despite having been captured before reaching his final destination. Why is this? Discuss
Introduced at a relatively affordable $2,368, the Ford Mustang took the American auto market by storm. The initial sales projection of 100,000 units in the first year was surpassed within months, and a record 418,000 were on the road within the year. That year, the Mustang was featured in the James Bond film Goldfinger and appeared as the pace car at the Indianapolis 500, helping secure its iconic status. The original pony car, the very first Mustang model has what unusual designation? Discuss
A week and a half after a mysterious event left the entire 70-man crew of the Chinese Ming-class submarine No. 361 dead at their posts, the stricken vessel was spotted by fishermen and towed to shore. The official explanation for the disaster is that the crew suffocated when diesel engines failed to shut down while the vessel was submerged. What had allowed the crippled submarine to drift for over a week without raising concern? Discuss
One of the first battles in which cannons played a pivotal, if not decisive, role, the Battle of Formigny was a major French victory toward the end of the Hundred Years' War. The English were dealt a significant blow—thousands of troops were killed, injured, or captured—and, as there were no other significant English forces in Normandy, the entire region quickly fell to the French. The battle had raged for several hours before the tides turned in favor of the French. What brought this about? Discuss
The SS Fort Stikine sailed from England in late February 1944 and made stops in Gibraltar, Egypt, and Pakistan before reaching Bombay, India, laden with a cargo of cotton bales, gold, explosives, and munitions. While the ship was berthed there, a fire broke out on board. Attempts to extinguish the fire failed, and a massive explosion soon tore the ship apart, sinking nearby vessels as well and igniting a massive blaze in the surrounding area. How many people were killed in the disaster? Discuss
The source of the water pouring into the basements of buildings in the Chicago Loop area had not yet been identified when reports of live fish in the water began surfacing. This helped lead a reporter to the source of the flood—a leak in an old tunnel that ran underneath the Chicago River. It turned out that the leak had been discovered months earlier, but the city had failed to repair it in a timely fashion, allowing it to worsen and eventually inundate the area with how much river water? Discuss
Spam is now a ubiquitous part of the Internet, but that was not always the case. Early in the Internet age, two enterprising immigration lawyers—Laurence Canter and Martha Siegel—opened the floodgates of unwanted online commercial solicitation when they posted an ad for their services on thousands of Usenet newsgroups. Though not the first Usenet spam, the "Green Card Lottery" notice was the first to be commercial in nature and ushered in the modern era of Internet spam. What became of the duo? Discuss
Lasting from 1701 to 1714, the War of the Spanish Succession was brought to a close with two series of treaties signed in the Dutch city of Utrecht. The first series was signed between France and other European powers, specifically Britain, the Dutch Republic, Prussia, Portugal, and Savoy. Among other concessions, France agreed to cede various territories and recognize Queen Anne as the British sovereign. After concluding these treaties, France still remained at war with what empire? Discuss
By 1944, transports were arriving daily at Auschwitz, carrying thousands of Jews destined for the gas chambers and crematoria. Prisoners Rudolf Vrba and Alfréd Wetzler knew that someone had to warn the Jews about what was happening to their deported brethren and alert the world to the atrocities being committed, so they mounted a daring escape and made their way to Slovakia, where they presented a detailed report on the concentration camp to Jewish officials. How did they break out of the camp? Discuss
The 2005 wedding of Prince Charles to Camilla Parker Bowles capped off a decades-long romance that began in the 1970s, while both were single, and continued through both of their marriages—his to Diana Spencer, hers to Andrew Parker Bowles—as well as their respective divorces. The scandal of their affair tainted public perceptions of the pair and mired their union in controversy. When they finally wed, it was in a civil rather than religious ceremony. Why was the wedding postponed for one day? Discuss
Part of US President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal program, the Works Progress—later Projects—Administration aimed to stimulate the economy during the Great Depression and preserve the skills and self-respect of unemployed persons by providing them useful work. By the time it was terminated in 1943, the WPA had employed 8.5 million people and funded the construction of roads, buildings, bridges, parks, and airports—as well as the production of art. What did critics pejoratively call the WPA? Discuss
Based on James Michener's Pulitzer Prize-winning book Tales of the South Pacific, Rodgers & Hammerstein's South Pacific opened on Broadway to great acclaim. Set on a Pacific island during WWII, the musical relates two parallel love stories that are threatened by prejudice and war. The play's first run earned 10 Tony Awards, and its 2008 Broadway revival earned seven. When it was awarded the 1950 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, who notoriously failed to receive credit for coauthoring it? Discuss
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