Has anyone ever threatened to read you the “Riot Act?”

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MULLETT OVER BY JAMES WHITEHas anyone ever threatened to read you the “Riot Act?” There really was a Riot Act. It was penned in 1786 by the former insurgent Samuel Adams. Adams had been a leader of several colonial uprisings during the American Revolution (1775-1783). However, by 1786 Samuel had become an integral part of the “establishment” and possessed freshly formed views involving the citizenry protesting during Shay’s Rebellion. Adams drew up his famous Riot Act to include legalized incarceration sans any trial and death by hanging as an option for punishment.

When exposed to stomach acid, some “smart” pills send signals to special nearby receivers which relay information to hospitals, medical offices, etc. One advantage is that health professionals can monitor patients to verify that vital medications have been ingested.

Some scholars maintain that the famous (infamous?) Henry VIII wrote the words and music to “Greensleeves” in an effort to woo Anne Boleyn. Other researchers maintain the documentation supporting H-8 as a composer is decidedly weak. To me, the melody has certain similarities to the Christmas carol “What Child is This?” I feel I should point out I have never been accused of possessing a “fine ear” for music.

In June of 1861, a balloon enthusiast (Thaddeus Lowe) went aloft in an inflatable canvas/silk apparatus near Washington, D.C. and sent Abraham Lincoln a telegraph message through a wire running from the balloon to the ground. Most of those present saw the act as a humorous stunt, but Lincoln immediately saw the setup as an invaluable intelligence-gathering device. That very night, the president had Lowe move his craft and tether it to stakes in the White House lawn.  Numerous hot air balloons were employed during the subsequent war years to gather information. Members of the Confederacy also lofted numerous varieties of hot air conveyance/data-collecting paraphernalia while the Civil War continued.

Recently, a convenience store clerk confronted a man who was stuffing pastries under his T-shirt. As the perpetrator struggled to break free and run, his shirt was completely ripped from his body. He sped out a front door and into the parking lot where an incoming car bumped him. He jumped up and ran into the street where a minivan hit him. He got up again and limped about 200 feet before being blocked by policemen who had been summoned to the scene. The would-be thief surrendered. Well, remember to take your prescribed medications – and have a great week.

James White is a retired mathematics teacher who enjoys sharing fascinating trivia. He can be reached at