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Posts Tagged ‘Moscow

Would you like a vodka with that?…

Readers can accompany English Russia on a behind-the-scenes tour of the Baumanskaya station McDonald’s in Moscow…  Manager Aleksander Ostroukhov explains the the operation and provides a step-by-step demonstration of the preparation of that signature delight, “The Royal Deluxe.”

McDonald’s- How it Works

As we muse that this is what became of the Cold War, we might recall that it was on this date in 1904 (as the Library of Congress notes) that the first ice cream cone was served.

On July 23, 1904, according to some accounts, Charles E. Menches conceived the idea of filling a pastry cone with two scoops of ice-cream and thereby invented the ice-cream cone. He is one of several claimants to that honor: Ernest Hamwi, Abe Doumar, Albert and Nick Kabbaz, Arnold Fornachou, and David Avayou all have been touted as the inventor(s) of the first edible cone. Interestingly, these individuals have in common the fact that they all made or sold confections at the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition, known as the St. Louis World’s Fair. It is from the time of the Fair that the edible “cornucopia,” a cone made from a rolled waffle, vaulted into popularity in the United States.

Another claimant, Italo Marchiony, actually received a patent in 1903 for a device to make edible cups with handles. However the patent drawings show the device as a molded container rather than the rolled waffle seen at the Fair. Although paper and metal cones were used by Europeans to hold ice cream and pita bread was used by Middle Easterners to hold sweets, the ice-cream cone seems to have come to America by way of “the Pike” (as the entertainment midway of the St. Louis World’s Fair was called).

Randolph Smith Lyon, Mildred Frances Lyon, Mrs. Montague Lyon (Frances Robnett Smith Lyon), Montague Lyon, Jr., eating ice cream cones at the 1904 World’s Fair. Snapshot photograph, 1904.  (Missouri History Museum)

The 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis: site of the national debuts of peanut butter, the hot dog, Dr Pepper, iced tea, cotton candy– and of course, ice cream cones. (source)

Tres exclusif…

I wouldn’t want to belong to any club that would have me as a member…
– Groucho Marx

From DreyX, “Ten Places You Can’t Go“…  for example:

Since 1967,  Disney’s Exclusive Club 33: Walt Disney felt that he needed a special private place where he could entertain sponsors and other guests. After he had died Disney Land decided to make Club 33 open only to special members and their guests. Located at at the heart of New Orleans Square at Disney Land, it gives the members and their guests exclusive access to the club’s restaurant, and the premises which are not open to the public at large. After Disney’s death Club 33 had opened itself with special limited memberships to the public. As of June 2007, the membership waiting list was 14 years, and membership interest list was closed to new inquiries as of April/May 2007.

Or

Metro-2 in Moscow: Russia has a secret underground metro system which parallels the public Moscow Metro. The length of Metro-2 is rumored to exceed even that of the “civil” (i.e. public) Metro. (It is said to have 4 lines and lie 50 to 200 m deep. It is said to connect the Kremlin with the FSB headquarters, the government airport at Vnukovo-2, and an underground town at Ramenki, in addition to other locations of national importance. In the late 1940s Stalin had created the tunnels in the event of a nuclear war. In 1994, a group of urban diggers had stumbled on to the underground system. Though not much more information is known known to the public about this.

See the other eight– from the Vatican’s Archive to Area 51– here.

As we manage our aspirations, we might frame a close-up of D.W. Griffith, a father of cinema, who arrived in Los Angeles on this date in 1910 in search of a sunny climate and a range of scenery.  With a stock company that he brought with him (including such future luminaries as Mary Pickford and Lillian Gish), Griffith began producing one- and two-reelers for Biograph.  After shooting over 450 shorts for Biograph, Griffith struck out on his own to make his powerfully-influential– but equally-powerfully controversial– Birth of a Nation (1915).  On the heels of the criticism (and in some quarters, riots) that greeted this history of the Civil War and the Ku Klux Klan, Griffith made Intolerance (1916), meant to prove his opposition to racism; at $2.5 million, it was by far the most expensive film ever made– and ruined Griffith financially.  But he rebounded, and in 1919 co-founded United Artists with Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, and Charlie Chaplin.  To this day, the highest honor bestowed by the Directors’ Guild of America is “The D.W. Griffith Award.”

David Llewelyn Wark Griffith

… Oil that is– black gold, Texas tea…

With thanks to Suzanne Lainson for the tip, The Guardian‘s “From extraction to consumption: Oil, an exhibition by Edward Burtynsky.”

As we consider all things crude, we might recall that that on this date in 1781, Cornwallis, after a loss at Yorktown, surrendered to The Continental Army (and the French who’d joined them), effectively ending the Revolutionary War (as it’s known over here)…

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… then, just 31 years later, on this date in 1812, Napoleon threw in the serviette, and began his retreat from Moscow.

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