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Monday, August 4, 2008

Richard Belzer, originally a stand-up comic who became an actor.
He is perhaps best known as Detective John Munch on “Law & Order,”
born August 4, 1944, Bridgeport, CT.


Classified Ads---Controller
    Gary Shivers is Back!!!!
        Sale of S-W to Main Street Nat. Bank
CIT and Silver State Helicopter
    Top Stories --July 28-August 1
        Cartoon—Specialties of the House
            Classified Ads---Help Wanted
                New Hires---Promotions
Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
Accounting Changes
    IE History—Improve Performance
        Leasing Technology-Enabling Growth
27 WBC leasing franchises/56 territories
    Florida bank closed by FDIC
        FDIC warns four US banks over liquidity
    Silver State Bank replaces CEO, wide loss
U.S. Vehicle Sales Fall 13.2%
    Higher Car Payments for Leases
        Ford backing out of leasing, too
    News Briefs---
Yosemite Blaze to be contained today
    You May have Missed---
        "Gimme that Wine"
    Calendar Events
Snapple Real Facts
    Today's Top Event in History
        This Day in American History
Baseball Poem
        Daily Puzzle
    Weather, USA or specific area
        Traffic Live----
News on Line---Internet Newspapers
Newport Beach, Costa Mesa, California

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release”


Classified Ads---Controller

Boca Raton, FL
CPA w/ Sarbanes Oxley/ 15 years management exp. as CFO/ Controller/5 yrs w/ PWC Extensive exp providing accounting/ tax guidance for the equipment lease industry. Willing to relocate.
Chicago, IL
experienced in lease accounting, operations, management, and Sarbanes-Oxley. Seeking position with equipment lessor. Would consider contract assignments or relocating.
Southeastern, MI
Controller & Management experience w/ equip lessors &broker. MBA, CPA w/ extensive accounting, management, securitization experience with public and private companies. Willing to relocate.
West Palm Beach, FL
CPA/CFO/Controller/Due Diligence Officer/SOX Lead seeking position.

For a full listing of all “job wanted” ads, please go to:

Leasing Recruiters:

To place a free “job wanted” ad here, please go to:



Gary Shivers is Back!!!!

by Christopher Menkin

Leasing News will have an exclusive interview with the deposed ex-president of Marlin Business Services, Gary Shivers on Wednesday. The small ticket leasing business is about to change.

“Under the Separation Agreement, Mr. Shivers' employment with the Company will terminate on January 31, 2007 (the “Separation Date”). Mr. Shivers is subject to confidentiality provisions, an 18 month non-competition period, and a 24 month non-solicitation and no-hire period under the Separation Agreement. “

There are others as talented, who built the culture, and left earlier. Marlin has become a “Wrong Way Corrigan” company, entering and as quickly exiting the factoring business, starting a bank through an industrial bank venture in Utah, and two months ago announced it was jumping with two feet into vehicle leasing with better rates and residuals than their competitors.

If you are a leasing company watching this company, the advice is to do the opposite as their timing has been pretty poor since Gary Shivers “resigned.”

Recently Marlin laid off 51 employees and their service was affected. Perhaps not as much as the loss of Gary Shivers and the following:

Gary Kester, former VP of credit services.
Mike Bennie, former VP in charge of broker services.
Mike Witt, former director of legal.
Mark King, former director of credit.
Brian Cornell, former director of sales.
John Forsyth, former jack of all trades.
(Sales, syndications, major accounts, etc)
Marcel Gilbert, former VP of IT (considered one of the best in the business)
Dominic Janney, former VP in charge of retail sales.
Tom Mancini, former VP in charge of copier sales and residuals.

Look for a new small ticket leasing company to begin on February 1st.
Shivers has a six month window to choose a location, get software, furniture, computers, businesses plan, and make a list of hiring a staff, talk to those in the industry again, as long as he does not “solicit” or “hire” them. He can start “soliciting” and “hiring” on February 1, 2009. His track record at Advanta and Marlin is outstanding. His abilities, integrity, and energy is beyond question

Perhaps in anticipation of this, Marlin Business Service stock (mrln)
hit a new closing low on Friday: $6.12

Closing Price ($): 6.12
Change ($): -0.13
Change (%): -2.08
One Day Volume: 30,422
Day's High: 6.35
Day's Low: 6.11
Previous Close: 6.25
Exchange: NASDAQ

Marlin is about to issues its second quarter earnings. It will have its second quarter 2008 earnings conference call set for Tuesday, August 5 at 10:00 am eastern time.

“ Date: August 5, 2008
Time: 10:00 AM ET
Listen via Internet:

“Schedule this webcast into MS-Outlook calendar (click open when prompted):

“Toll-free: 877-419-6600
International: 719-325-4856

“If you are unable to participate during the live conference call and webcast, the call will be archived in the Investor Relations section at for approximately 90 days.
A written transcript will also be available on the website.”
Marlin Business Service web site

12/21/06 Marlin Announcement about “Shiver’s Resignation:”



Sale of Studebaker-Worthington to Main Street National Bank

State Bancorp (stbc), parent of State Bank of Long Island filed their second quarter showing earnings of $961 thousand versus $930 thousand a year ago.

Their performance highlights noted, “On June 2, 2008, the Bank completed the sale of substantially all of the assets of its leasing subsidiary, SB Equipment Leasing Corp. ("SB Equipment") (formerly known as Studebaker-Worthington Leasing Corp.), to Main Street Bank of Kingwood, Texas.”

The SEC filing also stated, “The Company recorded net loan and lease charge-offs in the second quarter of 2008 of $2.1 million versus $229 thousand in the second quarter of 2007 and net recoveries of $100 thousand in the first quarter of 2008.”

The sale price of Studebaker-Worthington was not disclosed, but in a May 12, 2008 filing noted:

“An agreement has been signed with Main Street Bank of Kingwood, Texas for the sale of substantially all of the assets of the Bank’s leasing subsidiary, SWLC, at an amount that approximates tangible book value. The sale, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2008. We anticipate that the sale will result in a decrease in net interest income on an annualized basis of approximately $4 million, an annual operating expense savings to the Company of approximately $3 million and an improved operating efficiency ratio. The sale proceeds will be utilized to fund growth in the Company’s commercial loan and commercial mortgage portfolios.”

Perhaps as interesting, as it indicates what other banks are doing by going to the Fed for borrowing, and its result to the marketplace are very revealing as to what is happening to the banking industry which funds the leasing and finance industry and in turn reacts in a similar manner, is revealed in the “Liquidity Section.”

Note how cheaper funds have changed going to the marketplace, and perhaps the appetite for new business. While is apparent the purpose is to help out past “problems,” it appears to be creating new ones as well:

“The Company’s primary uses of funds are for the origination of loans and the purchase of investment securities. During the first quarter of 2008 and 2007, the Company originated new loans totaling $31 million and $8 million, respectively, net of principal pay downs. The Company did not purchase any loans during the first quarter of 2008 or 2007. The Company purchased securities available for sale totaling $98 million and $112 million during the first quarter of 2008 and 2007, respectively. The Company’s outstanding FHLB borrowings as of March 31, 2008 were primarily used to support the funding of these assets. At March 31, 2008, total deposits were $1.3 billion, a decrease of $55 million or 4% when compared to December 31, 2007. The decline in deposits primarily reflects the Company’s decision to use more attractively priced borrowings to fund asset growth rather than offer high rates to raise deposits in a highly competitive environment.”



CIT and Silver State Helicopter

There are three class action suits now against CIT regarding its student loans to Silver State Helicopter based in Las Vegas, Nevada. Their basis is not full disclosure of the problems here. Leasing News originally noted in its April 9th edition that in the over 60 day column, CIT has delinquencies in its $11.6 billion in student loans (as do most of the other student loan lenders.) Leasing News observed in their SEC filing before they made the announcement why they should exit the government student loans program.

While these loans are guaranteed by the federal government, there are cash flow difficulties connected that are costly, as well as problems, such as the $196 million CIT most likely will write off in student loans to a Las Vegas based operator of flight training schools. The school has declared bankruptcy and a good number of the student body never finished training and others never received a certificate of completing training. The New York Attorney General also believes there was fraud involved by the operators of the flight school. It is reported only $17 million of the loans are being serviced.

In, in reaction to the Leasing News story, this is what appeared on their message board:

Jul 28 11:39 AM
RIGHT ON!! I am so glad to see that action is being taken against the fraudulent lending practices. AES, SLX and key Bank all did the same thing as CIT did. They never checked the records or demanded that SSH report on % of graduates, % of graduates completed, where the money was going, etc... Had they been doing this, me and thousands of other hopeful pilots wouldn't be stuck with $70,000 in UNSECURED (not federally backed) student loans.

Jul 28 11:41 AM
We are 375 Students in Florida and we are organized to fight the same fight against AES, SLX and Key bank. The FBI is investigating Jerry Airola (CEO of SSH) and the lenders. The new investment group, EOS, that took over SSH needs to be investigated too!
Paul Boudreaux

Jul 28 01:24 PM
When we sat in class the first day, they asked us this: Why do you want to be a pilot? We all stated pretty much the same thing: we wanted to fly, it was our dream. For my part, I was holding down a full time job, studying during lunch breaks, late nights, and still made my flight blocks even though A LOT were cancelled on me (aprox. 65%). All this while sill being daddy to my kids and husband to my wife. I made a tremendous amount of sacrifices as well as the sacrifices of my family. What did I get for my trouble..... NOTHING!!!.... How many sacrifices did you the stockholders make? It seams we ALL were suckered into selling off our dreams...shame!!!

Aaron Hutch
Jul 28 01:42 PM
This sucks for everyone. It has affected a lot of families by crushing loved ones dreams and putting most of them into a financial pinch when they were already living tight. There is no way that we can live comfortably knowing that we have to pay for these loans (that paid for hummers and houses) without receiving our proper and full training. It is stealing.

Jul 28 08:45 PM
I hope that the attorney general and FBI and any other officials that have been approached by ex SSH students or employees will look more seriously at our situation now. Knowing that we are not just a bunch of students trying to get out of loan responsibilities, but have a justified legal issue about the way we have been dealt with by Student loan Xpress, Silverstate helicopters, EOS and any other companies involved in our recruitment, training and management of our student loans. It's good to know we aren't the only ones who have a problem with these companies.

Jul 28 11:32 PM
I'm mother of one of Glendale students. Like many of others my son dream to became a helicopter pilot has been taken from him. All theses students never complained that they were paying too much to achieve their dreams. They are definitely making theirs voice heard because this dream has been taken from them leaving them only with a debt to pay and nothing worthy to show for.

The SSH scandal involved more than we can see on the surface. It has been clear to anyone that the school was using the student’s tuition as base to open another school in different states. The method is know as Ponzi scam. The banks was providing the loan without even investigating the school in how they are proceeding with the training and just release the payment with few days that the students were enroll.

Why EOS bought a flight training school? It was not the type of company they invest in. The follow words was in a business blog posted on 2/21" probably bought out only the assets to create Silver State Services Corp with $75 million in capital leaving Silver State Helicopters with only debt. This will probably be bundled into a hedge fund and dumped onto unsuspecting investors”.

There is so much on this....

I don't want to sound silly but I still believe in justice. I stand up strong knowing that all those that has step in to assist on this matter such as the Florida and the NY Attorney generals, lawyers that are representing SSH students or the ones that filled a class suit against the banks , XS loan , AES...please don't give up the fight.

Jul 29 12:26 PM
I am a former student of the SSH/JAX flight school, I live in GA, which was 150 mile round trip for every class, meeting, flight block etc...I did this on average about 2 or 3 times a week from 11/06 thru 2/08. Despite all the time spent in school and training I still fell short of acquiring ANY of my certificates that were promised if I applied myself (which I did). I recall many times hearing the words "You just do YOUR part and we will do ours" or "you'll get out of it what you put into it". I guess that could have been interpreted as "we aren't going to do anything" and that would have been more accurate. The reasons that almost everyone in the JAX location was unable to get the training promised to them was due to the fact that Silverstate did not supply the means to do so. Those of us in the first class didn't see a helicopter for the first 4 months and then it was only 1 of which 50 people were supposed to fly 3 times a week each. with only 3 instructors allowed to fly 4 times a day 6 days a week. You do the math. Needless to say the numbers don't add up. It was impossible for them to provide the services they promised with the resources they provided, and we were told "IT will all work out, just concentrate on your studies and your training and Silverstate will do its part". Now I'm $80,000 in debt (that’s the $69,900 plus accrued interest) not to mention the fuel costs to attend the school, I like Paul, have NOTHING to show for it, I have a business to run and a family with 7 kids ages ranging from 18 to 9 mo. so trying to finish my training with no money or place etc... is impossible at the moment. I'm not here to "cry" about my situation, I was more than willing to make what ever sacrifices I needed to. But I expected the same from Silverstate.



Top Stories --July 28-August 1

Here are the top ten stories most “opened” by readers last week:

(1) Worried Banks Sharply Reduce Business Loans

(2) Mechanics Bank enters equipment leasing fray

(3) No longer available/”We Know Who You Are…”

(4) Two New CIT Class Action Suits

(5) Feds Close a Nevada and California Bank

(6) New Google Feature—Good, Bad, and the…

(7) Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP

(8) Sales makes it Happen—by Charlie Lester
"The Receptionist"

(9) Banks stepping down in vehicle leasing

(10) Last Dance for EAEL???



Cartoon—Specialties of the House



Leasing Industry Help Wanted

National Account Manager

* California * Illinois * Minnesota

SINCE 1995
National Account Manager

60% commission. APP only to $ 250,000. No industry/geo restrictions. Tremendous flexibility/freedom: your home office or our regional offices. 

Vendor Sales Specialists


Like selling vendor programs and large transactions?
Enjoy international financing programs?
Prefer the advantages of a commission only environment with the security of health and welfare benefits?

CLICK HERE to find out how to have fun again.


About the company: Located on the water in
beautiful Newport Beach, California.The environment is positive.

  Growing vendor based equipment leasing company
  Learn our value proposition
  2 Years Sales or Related Exp.
  College Degree Preferred
  You will work with people
that you can trust and respect
  Click here to learn more

Please see our Job Wanted section for possible new employees.



New Hires---Promotions

Chad Carroll named vice president of information technology at Five Point Capital, San Diego. He was previously Director of IT at Asset Marketing Systems. He also consulted at Pfzier, Allianz/Pimco Oppenheimer Capital, and Invensys designing their data centers.

Dean Dawson has been hired by US Bank Equipment Finance as relationship manager for its machine tool finance group. His territory is northern Texas and Oklahoma. Prior he was regional sales manager for Financial Federal Credit, senior product manager for BancBoston Leasing.



Leasing 102

by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP

Accounting Changes

The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation in their volume 26, Number 2, spring 2008 has an excellent article on the proposed new approach to accounting for leases: A call for a legal and economic analysis of U.S. Equipment Leases by Rodney W. Hurd and Don L. Weaver . A must read for all accountants involved in equipment leasing. You can obtain a free copy by going to the foundations web site.

They report that the FASB board currently expects to issue an important milestone document in the first half of 2009, referred to as a “preliminary views” document (PV) by the FASB and a “discussion paper” (DP) by the IASB.

I cannot begin to report in a short format the discussion presented in their article but I will try and summarize some of the important parts. But if you care about the leasing industry you owe it to yourself to get involved and you can begin by reading this Article.

I quote: “Depending on the nature and extent of the comments to the milestone document, the Boards would likely issue an exposure draft within approximately a year thereafter, most likely in 2010. Again depending on the comments, the boards may roll out the new standard in late 2010 or early 2011. Allowing for slippage and transition, the new standard appears destined to go live in 2013.

“What is the “New Approach”? The new approach is a ‘rights and obligations’ approach that would replace the current “risks and rewards” approach. For financial accounting purposes, the relevant question would change from ‘does the lease transfer all or substantially all the benefits and risks incident to ownership’ to ‘Which promises exchanged in the lease contract give rise to rights and obligations qualifying as assets and liabilities under the FASB’s Conceptual Framework definitions of such elements?’

“’As a possible outcome, the existing overlap among the various disciplines-commercial law, tax law, and financial accounting- may be lost.’”

We will have to wait for the position papers to see how these thoughts are manifested in procedures. But it is clear that “rights” are going to be an important part of the conclusion. Also there is continuing concern on the Lessor retaining a meaningful residual position and remaining useful life will be one of the determining factors. I suggest you begin using an equipment description and use form at once.

To date only the ELFA through its Legal Committee and Finance Accounting Committee submitted a legal paper titled “legal Principles of Equipment Leasing” dated September 25, 2007 and on March 29, 2007, one of the industry working group members provided the FASB staff with a presentation on lease pricing. My question is where the other leasing trade associations are and why have they not provided information to the FASB board. If they represent their members they have to get involved.

We need to have an industry wide approach and show the FASB board the depth and impact of our lease financing on American business to make sure that they understand the implications of the changes they are planning to suggest. Now is the time to bombard them with the truth. Let’s not wait until they have their minds made up.

Please approach your favorite leasing trade association and get involved. If you do not think your dues were buying you anything…well here it is. Join a leasing trade association and join in the fight and make sure we retain our differences from lending.

Mr. Terry Winders, CLP, has been a teacher, consultant, expert witness for the leasing industry for thirty years and can be reached at or 502-327-8666.
He invites your questions and queries.

Previous #102 Columns:

(This ad is a “trade” for the writing of this column. Opinions
contained in the column are those of Mr. Terry Winders, CLP)



IE History—Improve Performance

Other browsers are eating into Microsoft Explorer as it has gotten too slow and overburdened. While it has more improvements in video, audio, networking and other features, the original design has not changed since the inception. Also you need to visit Mozilla Firefox and Opera, too, as they have defaults you may not be happy with.

While there are abilities to save web sites off line, or to sort by date or alphabet, one of the most outdated is the browser “history folder.” As a user, you may have fallen into slower performance by the size saved and more importantly, the days chosen to save sites you have visited.

When this was designed, there was no flash, large visual sites, so many searches or places visited. All these are saved, often up-dated, and the process slows down your speed, plus can affect what you are viewing and you may not even be aware of it. An active searcher many not be aware of how many and how large those temporary internet files have become.

Launch Internet Explorer, choose Tools, then Internet Options.
In Browsing history, click on “settings.” Note the recommendation section. This indicates that you are to save a large portion, particularly if your “history” is long. Look at the “history.” How many days
do you want to keep all the information you have viewed as temporary files? I suggest two days.

This means not only the sites themselves, but their graphics, flash, video, audio, are all here. If you are thinking more than four to five days, they don’t belong here. If you are going to continually go back to sites, put it in your “favorites.” Here only the url is saved, not all the information in it. Especially if you want the current information, as every time you open in “favorites,” you get the current information.
(You can also collect favorites into folders by your own category, if you have many of them.)

This Microsoft Explorer “history” was designed before Netscape, let alone YouTube or all the video and graphics now passed along. Yes, there have been improvements, but if you are not a new user, your approach may be outdated, too.

Keep history short. More space will be created, Explorer will move faster, and you will experience a performance increase. If you have sites in history you visit all the time, put in “favorites” or bookmark it on your desk top. My real favorites, such as “Leasing News” are bookmarked on my desk top, with an icon, too.

Mozilla FireFox is more serious as the “default” has history for 90 days. There is no size limit. Again, I recommend you change this to two days. Also look at the cookie section below, as it default to accepting third party cookies. Many are “spy” and “advertiser” paid cookies. I keep cookies open, but use a program like Web Root “Spy Catcher.” To find this page, go to “tools,” “options,” then “privacy.” Click off “third party-cookies” and click on “always clear my private data.”

In Opera, go to “tools,” then “references,” then “advanced,” and check “empty” on exit as they have no time reference, only size to save. Click okay.

If you are an experienced user, gone to school or taken classes, or at least read a book about the use of these programs, you may have a different attitude. For most users, don’t let these program
view your private history, slow your performance down, or take up un-wanted space.

I also recommend you clear history from time-to-time yourself, manually.

Kit Menkin

(This is a free “ad” for our good friends the Bateman’s,
proprietors of Thunder Mountain Kona coffee)



Leasing Technology-Enabling Growth

(This is a great opportunity to learn how to make your operation more efficient, cut down on expenses, learn from others in the field, and have a serious discussion with experts and
other users. Editor)

IT Conference, August 20-21, Chicago

Focusing on the theme, “Combating Margin Compression,” speakers will represent industry consultancies, technology providers and equipment leasing and finance companies. Discussion and system exploration will provide a range of information from broad business and strategic viewpoints to technical nuts and bolts. The conference is designed for COOs, CFOs, CIOs, IT managers, risk managers, portfolio/equipment managers, conversion specialists, auditors and quality teams. The Chicago location makes it easy for executives from both coasts to meet face to face,

The cost to attend is $1,295 for participants who have paid registration fees by July 20; $1,495 after that date. Persons interested in registering for the conference can call Kaye Reeder at 801-322-4499 or email For more information, visit



News Briefs----

27 Wirth Business Credit franchises in 56 territories

Florida bank closed by FDIC

FDIC warns four US banks over liquidity

Silver State Bank replaces CEO, reports wide loss

U.S. Vehicle Sales Fall 13.2% Amid High Gas Prices and Tight Credit

Detroit's Losses Mean Higher Car Payments for Leases

Ford backing out of leasing, too

GE Capital adds $13.2B to acquisition
(includes CitiCapital's Healthcare Finance, Private Label Equipment Finance Group, Material Handling, Franchise Finance, Construction Equipment Finance, Bankers Leasing Group businesses and CitiCapital Canada.)

Fed unlikely to change rates this week

Housing Lenders Fear Bigger Wave of Loan Defaults

A battle of computer chips

Dallas: Today's temp tops 10-year record at 107



Fire News

Yosemite Blaze to be contained today

Big Sur:



You May have Missed--

Don't Fall for the Mortgage Rip-Offs



“Gimme that Wine”

Let the crush begin/Sonoma County

Sonoma Photo's Grape Harvest Begins

Napa Plus Hollywood Equals Bottle Shock,1197,4520,00.html

Review: 'The Billionaire's Vinegar'

Wine Prices by vintage
US/International Wine Events
Winery Atlas
Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page
The London International Vintners Exchange (Liv-ex) is an electronic exchange for fine wine.



Calendar Events This Day


Antigua and Barbuda: August Monday
The first Monday in August and the day following form the August Monday Public Holiday.

Australia: Picnic Day
The first Monday in August is a bank holiday in New South Wales and Picnic Day in Northern Territory, Australia.

Bahamas: Emancipation Day
Public holiday in Bahamas. Annually, the first Monday in August. Commemorates the emancipation of slaves by the British in 1834.

Canada: Civic Holiday
The first Monday in August is observed as a holiday in seven of Canada’s 10 provinces. Civil holiday in Manitoba, New Brunswick, Northwest Territories, Ontario and Saskatchewan. British Columbia
and Heritage Day in Alberta

Coast Guard day
Celebrates anniversary of founding of the Revenue Cutter Service in 1790, which merged with the Life Savings Service in 1915 to become the US Coast Guard.

Colorado Day
Annually, the first Monday in August. Commemorates Admission Day, August 1, 1876, when Colorado became the 38th state.

Grenada: Emancipation Day
Grenada observes a public holiday annually on the first Monday in August. Commemorates the emancipation of slaves by the British in 1834.

Iceland, August Holiday
National holiday. The fist Monday in august, commemorates Iceland’s constitution of 1874.

Jamaica: Independence Day
National holiday observing achievement of Jamaican independence from Britain August 6, 1962.

National Lasagna Day

Scotland: Summer Bank Holiday
Bank and public holiday in Scotland. The first Monday in August.

Zambia: Youth Day
National holiday. Youth activities are the order of the day. The focal point is Lusaka’s Independence Stadium. Annually, the fist Monday in August.

Saint feast Days



Brown eggs come from hens with red feathers and red ear lobes; white eggs come from hens with white feathers and white ear lobes. Shell color is determined by the breed of hen and has no effect on its quality, nutrients or flavor.



Today's Top Event in History

1900-Louis Armstrong, Jazz musician extraordinaire born at New Orleans, LA. For years, he had told reporters that he was born on July 4th, but actual records show August 4, which he realized later in life, noting his orphan home had told him otherwise. Died at New York, NY, July 6, 1971. Perhaps the greatest jazz trumpet player who ever lived. Asked to define jazz, Armstrong reportedly replied, "Man, if you gotta ask, you'll never know." The trumpet player was also known as Satchmo. He appeared in many films. Popular singles included "What a Wonderful World" and "Hello, Dolly" (with Barbra Streisand) and “High Society.” Two of my favorite albums are “Armstrong Plays W.C. Handy” and “Ella and Louis.”
Best Louis Armstrong Vocal:

My favorite single Armstrong Album:


This Day in American History

    1693 - It is believed that a monk named Dom Perignon invented champagne at the Benedictine Abbey of Hautvillers in the region of Champagne, northern France. He made the first champagne by re-fermenting a certain wine in the spring and then placing it in strong, sealed bottles so that the wine would become sparkling. Dom Perignon was the Cellar master for 47 years until his death in 1715. The sparkling wine was crude and perhaps the first one to produce what we drink today was Mme. Nicole-Barbe Clicquot, who developed the sur pointe process that clarified the sediment out of sparkling wines. She was also an astute business person, especially in a day that women did not run business. Nicole Barbe Clinquot was the daughter of the mauor of Reims who at 20 was widowed with a daughter after three years of marriage to a vintner. She vowed to carry on her husband's business. She developed the process of remuage (moving) in which the bottles of wine are stored upside down (on their corks or sur pointe) and then the bottles are shaken periodically and then rotated to force the sediments in the wine to settle down on the cork. After a certain period, the cork is quickly removed, the sediment is expelled by the wine gases and then the bottle is quickly re-corked. The widow Clinquot also invented pink champagne. My favorite in Louis Roederer, but a Grand Madame Clinquot, now that is a fine sparkling wine! Here is a secret. You can serve “Champagne” with everything. If you cannot match a wine to a food, serve “Champagne.” Next, a very good beer. Don’t laugh, some fine beer goes with everything ( especially if it is “fresh.”) Now what does this have to do with American History? Nothing, but thought you would like to know more about sparkling beverages.
    1735 - Freedom of the press was established in the United States when John Peter Zenger, publisher of the New York Weekly Journal, won an acquittal of the libel charges placed by Gov. William Crosby. The royal governor had tried to censor Zenger's attacks on the British crown.
    1753 - George Washington became a Master Mason.
    1790-U.S.Coast Guard founded.
    1810-Birthday of abolitionist Robert Purvis. He ran all the Underground Railroads from his home and was the founder of the American Leasing Anti-Slavery Society.
    1830- Plans for the city of Chicago laid out.
    1838-Emancipation of slaves in the Bahama’s and Grenada this day by the British . A rumor started in the South that salves would try to escape to the Bahama’s and fear of this lead to stricter attitudes and positions of slavery, especially by the many large slave owner who relied on the “free” labor at their farms, called plantations.
    1873- While protecting a railroad survey party in Montana, Custer and his 7th Cavalry clash for the first time with the Sioux Indians, who will defeat them three years later at Little Big Horn. During the previous two years, Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer and his 7th Cavalry had not fought a single battle against the hostile Indians of the western Plains. Hungry for action, Custer was pleased when the 7th Cavalry was ordered to help protect a party of surveyors laying out the route for the proposed Northern Pacific Railroad. The new transcontinental railroad (the third in the United States) was to pass through territory controlled by hostile Sioux Indians. Custer was optimistic that the assignment would give him a chance to improve his reputation as an Indian fighter. Initially, the military escort saw little action. The hostile Indians seemed to be avoiding or ignoring the survey party. For Custer, the mission turned into something of a lark. He spent much of his time shooting buffalo, antelope, elk, and other animals. To find good hunting, he often led the 7th Cavalry far away from the survey party and the main body of the military escort.
On this day in 1873, Custer was far ahead of the rest of the force, camping along the Tongue River in southeastern Montana. Suddenly, a large band of Sioux warriors appeared on the horizon and attacked. The Indians were led by Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull, but the young braves seemed to have attacked impetuously and with little planning. Custer, who had been taking an afternoon nap, reacted quickly and mounted an effective defense. After a brief skirmish, the Indians withdrew. Since only one soldier and one Indian were killed in the skirmish, Custer's short battle along the Tongue River seemed relatively insignificant at the time. However, Custer's easy escape in his first encounter with Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse may have given him a dangerously scornful view of their fighting abilities. It helped to confirm his belief that the Plains warriors tended to flee rather than fight. As a result, when Custer again encountered Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse at the Little Big Horn River three years later, his greatest fear was that they would withdraw before he could attack, and he rushed in without proper reconnaissance. That time, though, the Indians stood and fought, leaving Custer and more than 200 of his men dead.
    1874 -Methodist clergyman John H. Vincent (1832-1920) and Ohio manufacturer Lewis Miller established the Chautauqua Assembly in northwest New York state a summer retreat center combining recreational activities with the training of Sunday School teachers and other church workers.
    1875 - The first Convention of Colored Newspapermen was held in Cincinnati, Ohio. The convention's aim was to promote the establishment of United States newspapers that would focus on the African American community.
    1881- 122ø F (50ø C), Seville, Spain (European record)
    1882 - A vivid aurora was visible from Oregon to Maine, down the east coast as far as Mayport, FL, and inland as far as Wellington KS. Observers at Louisville KY noted "merry dancers" across the sky, and observers at Saint Vincent, MN, noted it was probably the most brilliant ever seen at that location.
    1897-Blackman Henry Rucker appointed Collector of Internal Revenue for Georgia
    1900-Louis Armstrong, Jazz musician extraordinaire born at New Orleans, LA. For years, he had told reporters that he was born on July 4th, but actual records show August 4, which he realized later in life, noting his orphan home had told him otherwise. Died at New York, NY, July 6, 1971. Perhaps the greatest jazz trumpet player who ever lived. Asked to define jazz, Armstrong reportedly replied, "Man, if you gotta ask, you'll never know." The trumpet player was also known as Satchmo. He appeared in many films. Popular singles included "What a Wonderful World" and "Hello, Dolly" (with Barbra Streisand) and “High Society.” Two of my favorite albums are “Armstrong Plays W.C. Handy” and “Ella and Louis.”
Best Louis Armstrong Vocal:

My favorite single Armstrong Album:

1904-Trumpet player Bill Coleman birthday, Centreville, KY1904-pianist/alto sax/trumpet player Kenneth Anderson born Pittsburgh, PA
(see the list: )
    1905- Piano player Joseph Louis “Red” Cayou born New Orleans, LA", LA Died May 12, 1994.
    1910-Birthday of American composer William Howard Schuman who won the first Pulitzer Prize for composition and founded the Juilliard School of Music, born at New York. His compositions include American Festival Overture, New England Triptych, the baseball opera The Mighty Casey and On Freedom's Ground, written for the centennial of the Statue of Liberty in 1986. He was instrumental in the conception of the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and served as its first president. In 1985 he was awarded a special Pulitzer Prize for his contributions. He also received a National Medal of Arts in 1985 and a Kennedy Center Honor in 1989. Schuman died at New York City, Feb 15, 1992.
    1916 - Denmark agreed to cede the Danish West Indies, including the Virgin Islands, to the United States for $25 million. The deal took effect the following March 31.
    1919-Birthday of Glenn Clarence Cunningham, the "Kansas Ironman," American track athlete and 1934-37 world record holder for the mile, member of the US Olympic teams in 1932 and 1936, was born at Atlanta, KS. On June 16, 1934, at Princeton, NJ, Cunningham set a world record for the mile (4:06.7 min). Cunningham died at Menifee, AR, Mar 10, 1988.
    1920- Birthday of Helen Thomas - U.S. journalist.. One of nine children of Lebanese immigrants who arrived in the U.S. with $17, she worked her way through college. Her parents ran a grocery store. Her parents kept the accounts in their heads because they could not read or write. Like typical immigrants who wanted a better life for their children, they encouraged Helen Thomas and all of her sisters and brothers to get an education She went to Washington, DC got a job for the-then United Press (later United Press International) to write women things for radio but her ambition and willingness to work on her own enabled her to move up to covering the Justice Department, various government agencies, even Congress. After covering, mostly on her own, the newly elected John Kennedy, she began attending White House press conferences, also on her own. She was promoted to White House correspondent in 1970 just in time for the Watergate scandals. She was the only member of the print media to accompany President Nixon on his noted trip to China in 1972. She became bureau chief in 1974, the first woman to ever hold such a post with any news service. She made friends with Martha Mitchell, the wife of Nixon's attorney general John N. Mitchell who was jailed for his involvement in the Watergate break-in cover-up. Martha Mitchell, in late night phone conversations, confided to her suspicions and outrage over the Watergate incident and attempts to hide it.
A determined feminist, she forced the National Press Club to "allow" women journalists to attend the luncheon that would be address by visiting Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev. Thomas later became an officer with the Press club and would become president of the Gridiron Club, an exclusive press organization.
Her questioning of presidents, demanding that they be held accountable made her many enemies, but she was seen as one of the most reliable reporters in Washington. Because of her Lebanese ethniticity, she was accused of being pro-Arab, which she was not. Such as charge of prejudice was never made towards any male reporter no matter what their religion, ethnic background, or social connections were. Because of her seniority, she had the singular honor of being the regular whose dignified "Thank you, Mr. President" signaled the end of White House press conferences. But before the honored phrase, she was known to ask devastating and perceptive questions of all eight of the presidents she reported on. She was tough, shrewd, and always fair gaining respect from all of the eight presidents she made squirm with her no nonsense questions. She was one of the few reporters who sought answers rather than positioning themselves for promotions. When UPI was sold in May 2000 to a communications corporation with ties to the Unification Church that owns a right-wing newspaper, MT, 79, said she'd step down. She said she intends to write a book, may syndicate a column, and give speeches. "Presidents come and go, but Helen's been here for 40 years now, covering eight presidents and doubtless showing the ropes to countless young reporters and, I might add, more than a few press secretaries," President Clinton said at her retirement. "Whatever she decides to do, I'll feel a little better about my country if know she'll still be spending some time around here at the White House. After all, without her saying, 'thank you, Mr. President,' at least some o us might never have ended our news conferences," he said.
"Even though she has her own opinion, her reporting is straight down the middle and it's all hard news - none of this analysis and chin-stroking that goes on in journalism today," former White House press secretary Mike McCurry said.
    1921-guitarist Herb Ellis born McKinley, Texas
    1927 - The General Electric Station in Schenectady, New York, station 2XAG which was later named WGY, began experimenting with operations from a 100,000-watt transmitter. The FCC would later regulate the power of AM radio stations to not go over 50,000 watts on "clear channels" where few stations would interfere with each other.
    1927 - For Victor Records in Bristol, Tennessee, singer Jimmie Rodgers recorded his first songs. On the record he sang "Sleep Baby Sleep" and "Soldier’s Sweetheart".
    1930 - The temperature at Moorefield, WV, soared to 112 degrees to establish a state record, having reached 110 degrees the previous day. Widespread drought after April of that year caused some towns to haul water for domestic use, and many manufacturing plants were barely operational.
    1933-Sax player Sonny Simmons born Sicily Island, Louisiana.,,493395,00.html?artist=Sonny+Simmons
    1934 - The first major league baseball player to score 6 runs in one game became Mel Ott today.
    1936-"Long" John Woodruff wins an Olympic gold medal in the 800-meter run
    1940 - "Crime Doctor" introduced a new radio hero. CBS radio presented Dr. Benjamin Ordway, the show’s main character, as an amnesia victim. A former criminal, he got hit on the head, and began to work as a crime fighter.
    1944 - Nazi police found Anne Frank and her family, hiding in secret rooms above her father’s factory in Amsterdam, Holland. Anne was 15 years old at this time and had kept a diary during the two years of hiding from the Nazis. After the arrest, Anne and her sister were taken to a concentration camp. Anne Frank would die at Bergen- Belsen. Later Anne's diary was found and has since been translated into 30 languages, and adapted as both a play and a Hollywood film.
    1944 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Swinging on a Star," Bing Crosby.
    1947---Top Hits
Peg o’ My Heart - The Harmonicats
That’s My Desire - The Sammy Kaye Orchestra (vocal: Don Cornell)
I Wonder, I Wonder, I Wonder - Eddy Howard
Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! (That Cigarette) - Tex Williams
    1953-drummer Jeff Hamilton born Richmond, Indiana
    1954 - In Saskatchewan, Canada, the uranium rush began.
    1954 - Alfred Hitchcock's Rear Window had its world premier at New York's Rivoli Theater.
    1954 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Sh-Boom," The Crew-Cuts.
    1955---Top Hits
Rock Around the Clock - Bill Haley & His Comets
Ain’t That a Shame - Fats Domino
Learnin’ the Blues - Frank Sinatra
I Don’t Care - Webb Pierce
    1955 - To Catch a Thief, starring Cary Grant and Grace Kelly and directed by Alfred Hitchcock, debuted in New York on this date. The film later received an Oscar for Best Color Cinematography.
    1956 - at Wendover, Utah, Wilhelm Herz was clocked at 210 miles per hour, making him the first person to race a motorcycle over 200 miles-per-hour.
    1957 - A world record was set by Florence Chadwick who swam the English Channel in 6 hours, 7 minutes.
    1957 - Juan Fangio won his last car race, winning the world auto driving championship for the fifth consecutive year.
    1957---The Everly Brothers make their second appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show and introduce their upcoming single, "Wake Up Little Susie," a song which would go on to cause some major controversy and be banned from some radio stations
    1958- Billboard magazine introduces its "Hot 100" chart, a list of the 100 best-selling pop singles in the country. This list replaced multiple charts the magazine had previously published, including Best Sellers in Stores and Most Played in Juke Boxes. The first song to top the Hot 100 list was "Poor Little Fool" by Ricky Nelson.
    1958- Dumont TV Network crumbles. My father was a producer/writer/director for the Dumont network, creating among shows such as “Harlem Detective,” “Captain Video,” “Hands of Murder.” He met often with Dr. Dumont,
who he once gave one of the exploding cigars I put in his pocket as a kid. Dumont was a scientist and not a “showman,” losing Jackie Gleason among others. My father worked right under Ted Bergman, who I remember my father respected, but Dr. Dumont was not a businessman ( nor was my father. )
    1961- 108ø F, Spokane, WA (record)
    1962-Jamaica Independence Day. National holiday observing achievement of Jamaican independence form Britain August 6, 1962. Annually the first Monday in August.
    1963---Top Hits
So Much in Love - The Tymes
Fingertips - Pt 2 - Little Stevie Wonder
(You’re the) Devil in Disguise - Elvis Presley
Ring of Fire - Johnny Cash
    1963- In his first at-bat in two months after breaking his left foot, Mickey Mantle slams a pinch-hit home run in the ninth inning to beat the Orioles, 11-10.
    1964-After disappearing on June 21, three civil rights workers were found murdered and buried in an earthen dam outside Philadelphia, MS. The three young men were workers on the Mississippi Summer Project organized by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) to increase black voter registration. Prior to their disappearance, James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner were detained by Neshoba County police on charges of speeding. When their car was found, burned, on June 23, President Johnson ordered an FBI search for the men.
    1964 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "A Hard Day's Night," The Beatles.
    1971---Top Hits
You’ve Got a Friend - James Taylor
Mr. Big Stuff - Jean Knight
Draggin’ the Line - Tommy James
I’m Just Me - Charley Pride
    1972 - Superfly, starring Ron O'Neal, opened in theaters. Starring Ron O'Neal and directed by Gordon Parks, Jr., Superfly's success at the box office and unexpected acclaim prompted two sequels. The plot centers on a Harlem drug dealer who wants to retire. Curtis Mayfield's dynamic soundtrack set it apart from similar low-budget films.
    1974- Paul Simon's "Love Me Like A Rock" is released.
    1974 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Feel Like Makin' Love," Roberta Flack.
    1979---Top Hits
Bad Girls - Donna Summer
Good Times - Chic
Ring My Bell - Anita Ward
You’re the Only One - Dolly Parton
    1980 - A record forty-two consecutive days of 100 degree heat finally came to an end at the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport. July 1980 proved to be the hottest month of record with a mean temperature of 92 degrees. There was just one day of rain in July, and there was no measurable rain in August. There were 18 more days of 100 degree heat in August, and four in September. Hot weather that summer contributed to the deaths of 1200 people nationally, and losses from the heat across the country were estimated at twenty billion dollars.
    1981 - A United States court ordered striking air traffic controllers back to work and fined their union $2.4 million a day for the duration of the strike. 1983 - During warm-ups, New York Yankee outfielder Dave Winfield threw a baseball and accidentally killed a seagull. When the game was over, Toronto police surrounded the batter and arrested him for "causing unnecessary suffering to an animal."
    1987---Top Hits
Shakedown - Bob Seger
I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For - U2
I Want Your Sex - George Michael
Snap Your Fingers - Ronnie Milsap
    1988-Congress votes $20,000 to each Japanese-American interned in WW II.
    1989 - Thunderstorms produced severe weather from eastern Nebraska and northeastern Kansas to the Great Lakes Region, with 150 reports of large hail or damaging winds during the afternoon, evening, and nighttime hours. Thunderstorms produced tennis ball size hail at Claremont, MN, and wind gusts to 75 mph at Milwaukee, WI. Thunderstorms representing what once was Hurricane Chantal produced five inches of rain at Grant, MI, and deluged Chicago, IL, with more than three inches of rain in three hours
    1995- Long time coach Jimmie Reese, whose 23 years in an Angels uniform equals longest in club history is inducted into the Angels' Hall of Fame. The former roommate of Babe Ruth began his career as a batboy for the Pacific Coast League's Los Angeles Angels in 1917.
    1995 - Babe, the charming sleeper hit about a pig who learns to be a sheep dog, debuted in United States movie theaters. The gentle film, with state-of-the-art computer technology, thrilled audiences young and old, and the film garnered many awards and nominations, including the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture - Comedy/ Musical, and it was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. Veteran actor James Cromwell received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Farmer Hoggett, and director Chris Noonan received the New York Film Critics Circle Awards for Best New Director. The National Society of Film Critics declared it Best Film of the Year. Christine Cavanaugh supplied the voice of the hero pig, and Roscoe Lee Browne was a moving narrator. Babe was based on the book "The Sheep-Pig" by Dick King- Smith.
    1997 - The world's oldest person, Jeanne Calment, died aged 122 years and 164 days in Arles, France.
    1998 -Yankees' slugger Darryl Strawberry hits a game-tying pinch-hit grand slam in the ninth inning of New York's 10-5 win becoming the second major leaguer to hit two pinch-hit grand slams in one season.
    2000-- With 32 home games remaining, the Astros, who moved from the pitcher-friendly Astrodome to homer-haven Enron Field this season, set a franchise-record by already hitting 83 homers at home this season.
    2001--Top Hits
Bootylicious -Destiny's Child
Loverboy -Mariah Carey Featuring Cameo
Let Me Blow Ya Mind -Eve Featuring Gwen Stefani
Hit 'Em Up Style (Oops!) -Blu Cantrell



Baseball Poem

Your 95 MPH Fastball Won’t Get You In The
Draft Anymore

Like a 1400 on your SAT won’t get you into Harvard
And American Express will continually turn you down
Because your salary goes up slower than their

Who will get through the traffic jam?
Who will grow the nerves to win the new game?
Who will sop up the spoils, raise a toast in the ruins?

Let me write one tremendously long line like the
horizontal bar at the high jump pit---
See how I fail, even at this?
But my failure is merely a failure of margins,
And your 95 MPH fastball is nothing more than a
These days.

Tim Peeler in “Waiting for Godot’s
First Pitch” More Poems from Baseball
published by McFarland and Company




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