O.J. Simpson wins parole, stays in jail

A couple of days ago, I asked “whatever happened to O.J. Simpson.” Found out he was trying to win parole. USA Today says he did — sort of:

O.J. Simpson won parole Wednesday on some of the charges that have kept him in a Nevada prison for almost five years, but still faces at least four more years behind bars.

The Nevada Board of Parole Commissioners order says the decision relates to two kidnapping and two robbery convictions and one conviction for burglary with a firearm. But Simpson, 66, will continue to be held for related convictions for which he is not yet eligible for parole.

So, O.J. got some time knocked off his sentence. But he’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

Time Machine: The guy who scored the NBA’s first basket died

I usually go back 100 years for a Time Machine entry, but this is a piece of sports history from 67 years ago that’s worth seeing (via BlacktopXchange.com):

Today we learned the first [NBA] bucket was scored by Ossie Schectman, and we know that because it was announced yesterday that he died at the age of 94.

That first basket (in the video above) came on Nov. 1, 1946 for the New York Knicks, who were playing in the first game of the Basketball Association of America (now the NBA). Schectman opened the scoring with a lay-up, and the Knicks went on to beat the Toronto Huskies, 68-66.

Schectman, a native New Yorker, won a college national championship in 1941 while playing for Long Island University.

Like I said, it’s not classic Time Machine, but it is history.

Good news for caffeine fiends

For those of us who avoid caffeine, this is depressing news (from Time):

According to a study performed by the Harvard School of Public Health and published this month in The World Journal of Biological Psychiatry, people who drink two to four cups of java each day are less likely to commit suicide than those who don’t drink coffee, drink decaf, or drink fewer than two cups each day. The study followed over 200,000 people for at least 16 years. And it’s not just a weak link: the researchers found that the suicide risk was cut by around 50 percent for caffeine fiends….

A 2011 study found that women who drink coffee cut their risk of depression by 15 percent compared to those who don’t. Michel Lucas, the head researcher of the most recent study, told The Huffington Post that coffee addicts can thank caffeine for the good news. The drug may actually act like a mild anti-depressant by tweaking levels of happy hormones like serotonin and dopamine.

Depressing news, but I’m not going to kill myself over it. And I’m not going to start going on a caffeine binge either. I can do without the insomnia and the shaking hands.


Drones are nothing new. Ask Marilyn Monroe.

We read a lot about high tech drones (actually fully operational airplanes that don’t require pilots and are operated remotely). But drones have been a part of the U.S. military for decades.

For example, here’s a factory worker from 1944, whose job was to paint drones before they went into service:


According to Gozmodo’s Paleofuture, her name is Norma Jean Dougherty and she worked in a factory in Van Nuys, Calif. The drone she was working on was a:

OQ-2 radioplane, (sometimes called the RP-5A, TDD-l or the “Dennymite” for its designer Reginald Denny), which was the first mass produced unmanned aerial vehicle in the world….

The nearly 15,000 OQ-2 radioplanes that were produced during WWII were relatively primitive and only used for target practice by the Americans. But they were quite useful, in that they simulated a more realistic target for the U.S. Army and Navy. It wasn’t until the Vietnam War that UAVs would find use as reconnaissance planes, which would be their primary use by the American military until they became more frequently weaponized in the 21st century.

The cute factory worker above was finished with drone technology around 1948, though. Here’s a photo of her in the mid-1950s.


That’s right: Marilyn Monroe was linked to drone warfare.

You know what they say: Gentlemen prefer bombs.


A concise explanation of GOP policy on women

Two things to consider concerning the Republican Party and women’s health issues.

This is what conservatives are doing today:

And this is what they want the future to be:

The above are “fantasy.” Here’s reality (from the Associated Press):

Abortion opponents have stopped handing out toy fetuses at the North Dakota State Fair.

State Fair General Manager Renee Korslein tells the Forum newspaper that fair officials were not aware that North Dakota Right to Life and other local chapters planned to hand out the toys during the fair parade on July 20 and later at fair booths.

Korslein says parade organizers may create an application for exhibitors to list what they’ll hand out for next year’s parade. She wouldn’t say whether North Dakota Right to Life would have been allowed to pass out the dolls this year if it had asked.

A federal judge earlier this week halted a law passed by the North Dakota Legislature that would have banned abortions as early as six weeks into pregnancy.

JFK on the warpath over a bed

Back in 1963, the Air Force bought a $5,000 bed to be available if a pregnant Jackie Kennedy went to labor.

President John F. Kennedy was not amused:

That’s the first time I’ve heard a recording of JFK swearing. Sounds like he was pretty good at it.

Whatever happened to O.J. Simpson?

Speaking of people who got away with murder, where is O.J. Simpson these days?

O.J. Simpson is 66 and has spent nearly all of his seventh decade in a Nevada prison after his conviction on kidnapping, armed robbery and other charges for busting into a Las Vegas casino to try to reclaim items he felt were rightfully his.

And he’s had enough.

His nearly five years in custody “have been somewhat illuminating at times and painful a lot of times,” Simpson told two Nevada parole board members Thursday via closed-circuit TV from prison.

“I missed my two younger kids who worked hard getting through high school, I missed their college graduations,” he said, seemingly emotional as he talked. “I missed my sister’s funeral. I missed all the birthdays.”

The football legend could learn whether he’ll have less time to spend in prison in two weeks, when the parole board comes back with its decision.

O.J.’s not in jail for the crime people believe he really did:

He’s in jail because he knew he got away with murder, so he figured he could get away with kidnapping, robbery and holding a guy at gunpoint over memorabilia.

“The difference between all of their crimes and mine is that they were trying to steal other people’s property, they were trying to steal other people’s money,” the pro football hall-of-famer argued. “My crime was trying to retrieve, for my family, my own property.”

A Nevada jury, however, didn’t see it that way. They convicted him on October 3, 2008 — the 13th anniversary of his controversial acquittal in the 1994 killings of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and Ronald Goldman.

The former Heisman Trophy winner, record-setting NFL running back and movie actor had enlisted the help of Clarence “C.J.” Stewart and four others to get sports memorabilia that Simpson claimed belonged to him from dealers Bruce Fromong and Al Beardsley.

The six men confronted the dealers in a room at Las Vegas’ Palace Station Hotel and Casino on September 13, 2007, brandishing weapons but not firing them.

Four of those men testified against Simpson — each getting probation in exchange for his testimony — while Stewart stood trial alongside him.

And the end result, 13 years after he was acquitted for the murders:

A lesson to anyone who does get away with murder, then commits another crime. And in terms of getting out of jail any time sooner? Don’t count on it.