March 2

On this day in 1917, residents of Puerto Rico were granted second-class U.S. citizenship.

On this day in 1977, the U.S. House of Representatives adopted a code of ethics stating no member shall accept payoffs in excess of $250,000 for any single vote.

Today's Birthdays:

Theodor Giesel (1904-1991): aka Dr. Seuss, wrote the children's classics "How the Grinch Stole Chanukah," "Green Eggs and Hamlet" and "Yertle the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle."

Mikhail S. Gorbachev, 73: former Soviet president, now pens a weekly advice column called "Ask Gorby."

Tom Wolfe, 73: author, best known for "The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Testicle."

John Irving, 62: author, wrote "Crack House Rules" and "The World According to Garth Brooks."

March 1

On this day in 1961, President Kennedy established the Peace Corps, creating thousands of low-wage jobs in backwater countries.

On this day in 1966, a movement to clean up government in Syria leads to a takeover by the Bubble Ba'ath Party.

Today's Birthdays:

Roger Daltrey, 60: rock singer with the Who, hits include "My Penetration" and "The Kids Are All White."

Ron Howard, 50: actor-director, plans to remake his 1950s hits for the modern era in "Unhappy Daze" and "Anti-American Grafitti."

Catherine Bach, 50: actress, played a radioactive hillbilly sex object in "The Nukes of Hazzard."

February 29

On this day in 1692, the first witches were arrested in Salem, Massachusetts, where police charged them with toadslaughter and assault with a deadly broomstick.

On this day in 1940, Hattie McDaniel became the first African American to win an Oscar. As Mammy in "Gone with the Wind," she uttered the immortal line: "I don't know nothin' 'bout birthin no crack babies."

Today's Birthdays:

Dinah Shore (1916-1994): actress, starred with lover Burt Reynolds in "The Best Little Shore House in Texas."

Aileen Wuornos (1956-2002): beat out the Boston Strangler to win award for Hollywood's favorite serial killer.

Ja Rule, 28: rapper, best known for his hit song "Murder is Kool."

February 28

On this day in 1989, the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. halted production of its experimental "smokeless cigarette" after research showed it was not sufficiently carcinogenic.

On this day in 1951, Sen. Estes Kefauver's committee on organized crime revealed that a reputed mobster known as Uncle Sam was shaking down nearly all U.S. citizens for annual "tax" payoffs.

On this day in 1974, the U.S. and Egypt re-established diplomatic relations after a seven-year trial separation during which they agreed it was OK to see other countries.

Today's Birthdays:

Gavin MacLeod, 74: actor, starred in the popular TV series about romantic hijinks aboard a doomed Naxi submarine, "Das Love Boot."

Bernadette Peters, 56: actress, starred in "Pink Cataract" and "Annie Get Your AK-47."

February 27

On this day in 1970, Simon and Garfunkel won a gold record for the ominous "Bridge Over Troubled Watergate."

On this day in 1922, the Supreme Court guaranteed women the right to vote, but only in local PTA elections.

On this day in 1991, Allied troops led by Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf entered Kuwait to complete "Operation Desert Norm."

Today's Birthdays:

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882): poet, best known for his "Midnight Ride of Paul Revere and the Raiders."

Joanne Woodward, 74: actress, won Oscar for "The Three Faces of Eve Brady."

Elizabeth Taylor, 72: actress, starred in the classic Dr. Seuss movies "Cat in the Hat on a Hot Tin Roof" and "Hop on Cleopatra."

Ralph Nader, 70: political crash-test dummy.

Chelsea Clinton, 24: famous daughter, mom formed a committee to study a possible Chelsea presidential run in 2024.

February 26

On this day in 1951, Congress ratified the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, limiting a president to two major scandals while in office.

On this day in 1919, Congress established Grand Canyon National Park. President Woodrow Wilson posed with a hardhat and shovel in a groundbreaking ceremony as crews began to dig the massive canyon.

On this day in 1848, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels published the Communist Manifesto. The cover depicted a strapping young Communist flogging a "bourgeoisie capitalist pig dog."

Today's Birthdays:

Victor Hugo (1802-1885): author, best known for his epic novel "Les Miserable SOBs."

Levi Strauss (1829-1902): created the first stone-washed, button-fly, flex-buttocks blue jeans for use by California denim miners in 1850.

Jackie Gleason (1916-1987): comedian, played the constant threat of explosive domestic violence to hilarious effect in "The Funnymooners."

Tony Randall, 84: actor, played a meticulous and reverent Christian whose roommate is a slovenly atheist in the popular 1960s sitcom, "The God Couple."

Johnny Cash (1932-2003): singer, hits include "Folgers Coffee Blues" and his duet with A.A. Milne, "A Boy Named Pooh."

February 25

On this day in 1570, Pope Pius V excommunicated England's Queen Elizabeth I for calling him "Dope Pius" behind his back.

On this day in 1836, Samuel Colt received a patent for his new Colt revolver, then placed an ad in Guns & Ammo touting it as "great for gunfights and blowing people's heads clean off."

On this day in 1948, Communists seized power in Czechoslovakia, eliminated the nation's system of checks and balances, then began checking IDs and writing bogus checks.

Today's Birthdays:

Pierre Auguste Renoir (1841-1919): painter, best known for his creative use of Sherwin Williams #436 Teal to cover the exterior trim at the Louvre.

George Harrison (1945-2001): former Beatle, solo hits include "Dark Horse Manure" and "My Sweet Lawsuit."

Sally Jessy Raphael, 61: talk show host, recent themes include "Bisexual Schizophrenics Who Can't Stop Cheating on Themselves."

Sean Astin, 33: actor, starred in the snack food trilogy "Lord of the Ring Dings."

February 24

On this day in 1980, Vanilla Ice led the U.S. hockey team to victory over Finland to win the Olympic gold medal in the so-called "Miracle on Ice Ice Baby."

On this day in 1981, Jean Harris, reportedly enraged at having gained three pounds, was found guilty of murdering "Scarsdale Diet" author Dr. Herman Tarnower.

Today's Birthdays:

Winslow Homer (1836-1910): artist, best known for painting Maine fishermen filling their nets with native North Atlantic sea monkeys.

Joseph Lieberman, 62: U.S. senator, inventor of "Joe-mentum" (opposite of "momentum").

Edward James Olmos, 57: actor, starred as a tough-talking Latino pizza man on TV in "Miami Slice" and on the big screen in "Stand and Deliver the Large Pepperoni."

Paula Zahn, 48: TV newswoman, blew the lid off the Sea Monkeys scam.

February 23

On this day in 1836, traveling coonskin cap salesmen Davy Crockett led a siege on the Alamo Rent-A-Car offices in San Antonio, Texas.

On this day in 1927, President Coolidge signed legislation creating the forerunner of the Federal Communications Commission, with language prohibiting on-air usage of the words "dang" and "fiddlesticks."

On this day in 1997, scientists in Scotland announced they had successfully cloned a lamb named "Dolly." The creature was identical to the original except that it sported gigantic breasts and enjoyed singing country and western tunes.

Today's Birthdays:

George Frederick Handel (1685-1759): composer, one of the few musical geniuses to have his very own "Messiah."

Peter Fonda, 65: actor, starred as the zonked-out Zig Zag Man in the seminal 1960s film "EZ Wider."

February 22

On this day in 1819, disgruntled by the poor play of the Miami Dolphins, Spain signed Florida over to the U.S.

On this day in 1879, Frank Woolworth opened his first five-and-dime in Utica, N.Y., with his famous slogan: "Special on duct tape in aisle six."

On this day in 1987, pop culture artist Andy Warhol died at age 58 in a New York City hospital after 15 minutes of artificial respiration and a bowl of Campbell's tomato soup.

Today's Birthdays:

George Washington (1732-1799): first U.S. president, believed to be the last one who "could not tell a lie."

Edward M. Kennedy, 72: U.S. senator, D-Mass., once sponsored legislation requiring the nation's "hot chicks" to serve him booze and sleep with him.

Jeri Ryan, 36: actress, starred as the alluring 7.9% APR in "Star Trek: Plymouth Voyager."

Drew Barrymore, 28: actress, starred in "E.T.: The Extra Testicle" and the blockbuster silent film "Charlie Chaplin's Angels."

February 21

On this day in 1885, the Washington Monument was dedicated with a plaque proclaiming it to be: "The mother of all phallic symbols."

On this day in 1972, President Richard Nixon began his historic trip to China flanked by two high-ranking pandas, Ling-Ling and Sing-Sing.

On this day in 1975, former White House aide H.R. Puffenstuff was sentenced to eight years in Pee-Wee's Maximum-Security Playhouse for his role in the Watergate coverup.

Today's Birthdays:

Rue McClanahan, 70: actress, starred in the hip TV crime show "Maude Squad."

Tyne Daly, 58: actress, persuaded Hollywood legend James Cagney to dress up as a "broad" for his role in the popular TV crime drama "Cagney and Lacey."

Olympia Snowe, 57: U.S. senator, R-Maine, sponsored legislation shortening Maine winters from five or six months down to three.

Kelsey Grammer, 49: actor, has been playing the character "Frasier" since 1959.

Jennifer Love Hewitt, 25: actress, starred in the horror film "I Know Who You Banged Summer."

February 20

On this day in 1792, President Washington signed an act to establish the U.S. Post Office, but the grand opening ceremony was delayed when the paperwork got lost in the mail.

On this day in 1933, the House of Representatives agreed on action to repeal Prohibition, then celebrated with a toast -- 216 members drank scotch, 216 drank whiskey and 3 abstained.

On this day in 1962, John Glenn became the first U.S. man to orbit the Earth, celebrating with a swig from his flask of vodka and Tang.

Today's Birthdays:

Ansel Adams (1902-1984): photographer, best known for his photos of the animated gunslinger Yosemite Sam shooting Bugs Bunny in the back.

Gloria Vanderbilt, 80: fashion designer, creator of blueberry-flavored jeans and the gazelle lung handbag.

Sidney Poitier, 77: actor, starred in "To Sir Isaac Newton With Love" and "In the Heat of the One-Night Stand."

Patricia Hearst, 50: newspaper heiress, socialite and fashionable and kidnap victim.

Cindy Crawford, 38: model, has appeared in the annual "Sports Illustrated: Swimsuit Porn Issue."

February 19

On this day in 1878, Thomas Edison received a patent for his phonograph and a Grammy for his soulful recording of "Hoochie Coochie Man."

On this day in 1803, Congress voted to admit Ohio into the union, but insisted it stop calling itself "The Bug-Eye State."

On this day in 1881, Kansas became the first state to ban booze after the governor's 16-year-old son came home from a frat party drunk on corn brandy and singing "Louie, Louie."

Today's Birthdays:

Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543): Polish astronomer, theorized that the sun was at the center of the solar system, somewhere near Cleveland.

Smokey Robinson, 64: singer, Motown hits included his salute to an alcoholic circus performer, "Beers of a Clown."

Jeff Daniels, 49: actor, starred in Disney's vicious "101 Pit Bulls" and the X-rated "Hum and Hummer."

Benicio Del Toro, 37: actor, starred in "The Usual Corporate Securities Fraud Suspects."

February 18

On this day in 1972, the California Supreme Court struck down the state's death penalty. All those executed prior to 1972 were "de-electrocuted" and returned to death row.

On this day in 1885, Mark Twain's "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" was published and was immediately banned due to its shocking use of the grammatically incorrect term "ain't."

On this day in 1861, Jefferson Davis became president of the Confederate States of America and named the legendary "Dukes of Hazzard" to his cabinet as Secretaries of Transportation.

Today's Birthdays:

Yoko Ono, 71: singer, best known for her songs "I Am the Banshee" and "All You Need is Screeching."

John Travolta, 50: actor, received Oscar nominations for his role as the charismatic Theodore Cleaver in "Saturday Night Beaver."

Vanna White, 47: host of the sadistic game show "Wheel of Torture."

Matt Dillon, 40: actor, starred in "There's Something About Mary Magdalene."

Molly Ringwald, 36: actress, starred in "Sixteen Cannibals" and "The Flesh-Eating Breakfast Club."

February 17

On this day in 1979, Garrison Keillor launched his radio show about small-town midwestern hookers, "A Prairie Ho Companion."

On this day in 1904, Puccini's opera "Madame Butterfly" was poorly received at its premiere, until it was renamed "Madame Butterfly's Shocking Sex Fantasy."

On this day in 1817, Baltimore became the first city to be illuminated with gas streetlamps, and the first to be hit with gas streetlamp vandalism.

Today's Birthdays:

Alan Bates, 70: actor, starred as acne-ridden, socially inept Zorba in "Zorba the Geek."

Rene Russo, 50: actress, played opposite Joe Pesci's Saddam Hussein in "Lethal Weapon of Mass Destruction."

Michael Jordan, 41: basketball god, hairless leader of a generation of bald men.

Lou Diamond Phillips, 41: actor, starred in the timeless classic about a young Hispanic deer, "La Bambi."

February 16

On this day in 1959, Fidel Castro overthrew Cuban President Batista, who was found in a ditch outside Havana with first-degree cigar burns over 60 percent of his body.

On this day in 1804, a U.S. fleet raided Tripoli Harbor in direct violation of the harbor's strict "Make No Wake" policy.

On this day in 1868, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks was founded by a guy who had been kicked out of a rival club called the Benevolent and Protective Order of Sea Monkeys.

Today's Birthdays:

Edgar Bergen (1903-1978): ventriloquist, best known for making fun of the president with his dummy, Woodrow "Woody" Wilson.

LeVar Burton, 47: actor, played Lt. Kunta Kinte, a former slave who escaped onto a spaceship in "Star Trek: The Roots Generation."

Ice-T, 45: actor-rapper, best known for his violent commercials for Lipton Iced Tea.

February 15

On this day in 2000, Fox aired "Who Wants to Marry a Serial Killer?," a reality-style TV special that drew huge ratings and left only seven dead.

On this day in 1879, President Rutherford B. Hayes signed a bill allowing female attorneys to argue cases before the Supreme Court, as long as they wore a short skirt and high heels.

On this day in 1964, Cassius Clay became the heavyweight boxing champ with a brash, trash-talking victory over loud-mouth couch potato Howard Cosell.

Today's Birthdays:

Galileo Galilei (1564-1642): Italian astronomer, used a telescope to prove his theory that the universe did not revolve around the church.

Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906): American suffragist, born in Adams, Mass., began suffering at age 2 months.

Matt Groening, 50: creator of the knife-wielding cartoon family, "The O.J. Simpsons."

February 14

On this day in 1849, James Polk became the first president to be photographed in office. Polk lost his re-election bid though, having frightened voters with his beaming red eyes.

On this day in 1859, Oregon became the nation's 33rd state, but was put on a six-month probation filled with merciless hazing from some of the older states.

On this day in 1945, Chile, Ecuador, Peru and Paraguay joined the United Nations after agreeing to keep their noses clean and refrain from building atomic bombs.

Today's Birthdays:

Carl Bernstein, 60: journalist, author of "All the President's Menstrual Cramps."

Meg Tilly, 44: actress, played a young nun smitten with a movie monster in "Agnes of Godzilla."

February 13

On this day in 1741, Andrew Bradford of Pennsylvania published the first American magazine, the Colonial Inquirer. Its motto: "Inquiring colonists want to know."

On this day in 1920, the League of Nations allowed Switzerland to claim its perpetual neutrality, but then passed a resolution to block the further spread of "this insidious neutrality plague."

Today's Birthdays:

Grant Wood (1892-1942): artist, depicted a Brazilian couple gripping a pitchfork in his greatest work, "South American Gothic."

Stockard Channing, 60: actress, starred in the critically acclaimed geology film "Six Degrees of Sedimentation."

Jerry Springer, 60: host of the daytime cockfighting show "Lowest Common Denominator."

February 12

On this day in 1733, English settlers led by Captain Crunch founded the city of Battle Creek, Michigan.

On this day in 1999, the Senate voted to acquit President Clinton of perjury and obstruction of justice, but found him guilty of truth-fudging and intern-banging.

Today's Birthdays:

Charles Darwin (1809-1882): many scientists pooh-poohed the theory of evolution he set forth in "On the Origin of Feces."

Abraham Lincoln (1809-1965): 16th president, freed all peoples to have drunken sex in his epic speeches the "Intoxication Proclamation" and the "Fornication Proclamation

Maud Adams, 59: actress, starred in the Woody Allen/James Bond movie, "What's New, Octopussy?"

Christina Ricci, 24: actress, starred in "Clinton Family Values."

February 11

On this day in 1990, Nelson Mandela was freed after spending 27 years in a South African prison. Asked what he would do, Mandela responded, "I'm going to Disney World."

On this day in 1993, President Clinton named Miami prosecutor Janet Reno to be the first female attorney general, despite widespread concern that she might frighten the nation's children.

Today's Birthdays:

Thomas Alva Edison (1847-1931): noted genius, within days of his birth in Ohio he invented the electric pacifier and the solar-powered rattle.

Tina Louise, 70: actress, rumored to have slept with the professor, the skipper and the millionaire on the 1960s reality program "Gilligan's Temptation Island."

Burt Reynolds, 68: actor, revered as a god in Japan for his performance in "Smokey and the Banzai."

Jennifer Aniston, 35: actress, is revered as a god in Japan for her performance in the popular TV sitcom "Tomodachis" ("Friends").

February 10

On this day in 1949, opening on Broadway was Arthur Miller's new play "Death of a Used Car Salesman."

On this day in 1962, Russia traded Francis Gary Powers, a captured American U-2 pilot, for 12 cases of Gordon's Vodka and a Soviet dissident to be named later.

On this day in 1998, the Senate confirmed Dr. David Satcher as surgeon general following Satcher's ominous warning: "Failure to support my nomination could be hazardous to your health."

Today's Birthdays:

Boris Pasternak (1890-1960): Russian author, best known for his classic novel "Dr. Zhivago and Mr. Hyde."

Robert Wagner, 74: actor, starred in "Prince Valium" and "A Piss Before Dying."

Roberta Flack, 65: singer, hit #1 in 1973 with "Killing Me Softly With Arsenic," as a fashion designed popularized the Flack Jacket.

George Stephanopoulos, 43: former White House pretty boy.

February 9

On this day in 1964, The Beatles made their first visit to "The Ed Sullivan Show," where Sullivan ordered the moptopped lads not to sing the song "I Wanna Hold Your Breasts."

On this day in 1950, Sen. Joseph McCarthy warned that the State Department was infested with Communists and presented a photo-copy from Kinkos naming names of prominent Pinkos.

Today's Birthdays:

William Henry Harrison (1773-1841): ninth president, died just 32 days into his term when he was bitten by a rabid Kentucky congressman and had to be put down.

Roger Mudd, 76: newsman who covered the great mudslides of the 20th century.

Joe Pesci, 61: actor, starred in "Goodkillas" and "Raging Pitbull."

Mia Farrow, 59: actress, starred opposite the Devil in "Rosemary's Crack Baby" and Jimi Hendrix in "The Purple Haze of Cairo."