A Brief History of Time
3050 BCA Sumerian invents the wheel. Within the week, the idea is stolen and duplicated by other Sumerians, thereby establishing the business ethic for all times.
2900 BCWondering why the Egyptians call that new thing a Sphinx becomes the first of the world's Seven Great Wonders.
1850 BCBritons proclaim Operation Stonehenge a success. They've finally gotten those boulders arrange in a sufficiently meaningless pattern to confuse the hell out of scientists for centuries.
1785 BCThe first calendar, composed of a year with 354 days, is introduced by Babylonian scientists.
1768 BCBabylonians realize something is wrong when winter begins in June.
776 BCThe world's first known money appears in Persia, immediately causing the world's first known counterfeiter to appear in Persia the next day.
525 BCThe first Olympics are held, and prove similar to the modern games, except that the Russians don't try to enter a six-footer with a moustache in the women's shot put. However, the Egyptians do!
410 BCRome ends the pracitce of throwing debtors into slavery, thus removing the biggest single obstacle to the development of the credit card.
404 BCThe Peleponnesian war has been going on for 27 years now because neither side can find a treaty writer who knows how to spell Peleponnesian.
214 BCTens of thousands of Chinese labor for a generation to build the 1,500 mile long Great Wall of China. And after all that, it still doesn't keep the neighbor's dog out.
1 BCCalendar manufacturers find themselves in total disagreement over what to call next year.
79 A.D.Buying property in Pompeii turns out to have been a lousy real estate investment.
432St. Patrick introduces Christianity to Ireland, thereby giving the natives something interesting to fight about for the rest of their recorded history.
1000Leif Ericsson discovers America, but decides it's not worth mentioning.
1043Lady Godiva finds a means of demonstrating against high taxes that immediately makes everyone forget what she is demonstrating against.
1125Arabic numerals are introduced to Europe, enabling peasants to sole the most baffiling problem that confronts them: How much tax do you owe on MMMDCCCLX Lira when you're in the XXXVI percent bracket?
1233The Inquisition is set up to torture and kill anyone who disagrees with the Law of the Church. However, the practice is so un-Christian that it is permitted to continue for only 600 years.
1297The world's first stock exchange opens, but no one has the foresight to buy IBM or Xerox.
1433Portugal launches the African slave trade, which just proves what a small, ambitious country can do with a little bit of ingenuity and a whole lot of evil!
1456An English judge reviews Joan of Arc's case and cancels her death sentence. Unfortunately for her, she was put to death in 1431.
1492Columbus proves how lost he really is by landing in the Bahamas, naming the place San Salvador, and calling the people who live there Indians.
1497Amerigo Vespucci becomes the 7th or 8th explorer to become the new world, but the first to think of naming it in honor of himself...the United States of Vespuccia!
1508Michelangelo finally agrees to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, but he still refuses to wash the windows.
1513Ponce de Leon claims he found the Fountain of Youth, but dies of old age trying to remember where it was he found it.
1522Scientists, who know the world is flat, conclude that Magellan made it all the way around by crawling across the bottom.
1568Saddened over the slander of his good name, Ivan the Terrible kills another 100,000 peasants to make them stop calling him Ivan the Terrible.
1607The Indians laugh themself silly as the first European tourist to visit Virginia tries to register as "John Smith".
1618Future Generations are doomed as the English execute Sir Walter Raleigh, but allow his tobacco plants to live.
1642Nine students receive the first Bachelor of Arts degrees conferred in America, and immediately discover there are no jobs open for a kid with a liberal arts education.
1670The pilgrims are too busy burning false witches to observe the golden anniversary of their winning religious freedom.
1755Samuel Johnson issues the first English Dictionary, at last providing young children with a book they can look up dirty words in.
1758New Jersey is chosen as the site of America's first Indian reservation, which should give Indians an idea of the kind of shabby living conditions they can expect from here on out.
1763The French and Indian War ends. The French and Indians both lost.
1770The shooting of three people in the Boston Massacre touches off the Revolution. 200 Years later, three shootings in Boston will be considered just about average for a Saturday Night.
1773Colonists dump tea into Boston Harbor. British call the act "barbaric", noting that no one added milk.
1776Napoleon decides to maintain a position of neutrality in the American Revolution, primarily becasue he is only seven years old.
1779John Paul Jones notifies the British, "I have just begun to fight!" and then feels pretty foolish when he discovers that his ship is sinking.
1793"Let them eat cake!" becomes the most famous thing Marie Antionette ever said. Also, the least diplomatic thing she ever said. Also, the last thing she ever said.
1799Translation of the Rosetta Stone finally enables scholars to learn that Egyptian hieroglyphics don't say anything important. "Dear Ramses, How are you? I am fine."
1805Robert Fulton invents the torpedo.
1807Robert Fulton invents the steamship so he has something to blow up with his torpedo.
1815Post Office policy is established as Andrew Jackson wins the Battle of New Orleans a month after he should have received the letter telling him the War of 1812 is over.
1840William Henry Harrison is elected president in a landslide, proving that the campaign motto, "Tippecanoe and Tyler too" is so meaningless that very few can disagree with it.
1850Henry Clay announces, "I'd rather be right than president," which gets quite a laugh, coming from a guy who has run for president five times without winning.
1859Charles Darwin writes "Origin of the Species". It has the same general plot as "Planet of the Apes", but fails to gross as much money.
1865Union Soldiers face their greatest challenge of the war: getting General Grant sober enough to accept Lee's surrender.
1894Thomas Edison displays the first motion picture, and everybody likes it except the movie critics.
1903The opening of the Trans-Siberian Railway enables passengers from Moscow to reach Vladivostok in eight days, which is a lot sooner than most of them want to get there.
1910The founding of the Boy Scouts of America comes as bad news to old ladies who would rather cross the street by themselves.
1911Roald Amundsen discovers the South Pole and confirms what he's suspected all along: It looks a helluva lot like the North Pole!
1912People with reservations for the second voyage of the Titanic get their money back.
1920The 18th Amendment to the Constitution makes drinking illegal in the U.S. so everyone stops. Except for the 40 million who don't stop!
1924Hitler is released from prison four years early, after convincing the parole board that he is a changed man who won't cause any more trouble.
1928Herbert Hoover promises "a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage," but he neglects to add that most Americans will soon be without pots and garages.
1930Pluto is discovered. Not the dog, stupid; the planet. The dog wasn't discovered until 1938.
1933German housewives begin to realize why that crazy wallpaper hanger with the mustache never came back to finish his work.
1933Hitler establishes the Third Reich, and announces that it will last for a thousand years. As matters develop, he is only 988 years off.
1934John Dillinger is gunned down by police as he leaves a Chicago movie theater. And just to make the evening a complete washout, he didn't enjoy the movie either.
1938Great Britain and Germany sign a peace treaty, thereby averting all possibility of WWII.
1944Hitler's promise of Volkswagens for all Germans as soon as they've won the war doesn't prove to be as strong an incentive as he had hoped.

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