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Merrell In The Morning Fun You May Have Missed – December 3rd, 2013

Today’s Celebrations

International Day of Persons With Disabilities

 Celebrity Birthdays

1857 – Joseph Conrad (Józef Teodor Konrad Nalecz Korzeniowski) – author: Lord Jim, Heart of Darkness; died Aug 3, 1924

1925 – Ferlin Husky (aka: Simon Crum, Terry Preston) – singer: Gone, A Fallen Star, Wings of a Dove, The Waltz You Saved for Me; died Mar 17, 2011

1927 – Andy (Howard Andrew) Williams – Emmy Award-winning entertainer: The Andy Williams Show [1962-63]; singer: Can’t Get Used to Losing You, [Where Do I Begin] Love Story, Days of Wine and Roses, Canadian Sunset, Moon River, Born Free, Butterfly, I Like Your Kind of Love [w/Peggy Powers], Are You Sincere, Lonely Street, In the Village of St. Bernadette; died Sep 25, 2012

1937 – Bobby Allison (76) – International Motorsports Hall of Famer: Daytona 500 winner [1978, 1982, 1988], oldest Daytona 500 winner [1988]

1948 – Ozzy (John) Osbourne (65) – songwriter, singer: groups: Rare Breed, Black Sabbath: Paranoid; solo: Blizzard of Oz; dead bat-head biter

1951 – Rick Mears (62) – auto racer: Indy 500 winner [1979, 1984, 1988, 1991]; Rookie of the Year [1976]; Roger Penske racing team

1965 – Katarina Witt (48) – Emmy Award-winning performer: Carmen On Ice [1989-90]; Olympic Gold Medalist ice skater

1960 – Daryl Hannah (53) – actress: The Fury, Splash, Steel Magnolias, Blade Runner, The Pope of Greenwich Village, Roxanne, Attack of the 50 Ft. Woman, Grumpier Old Men, Diplomatic Siege, Dancing at the Blue Iguana

1968 – Brendan Fraser (45) – actor: The Mummy, The Mummy Returns, George of the Jungle, Encino Man, The Quiet American

1980 – Anna Chlumsky (33) – actress: My Girl, My Girl 2, A Child’s Wish, Miracle in the Woods

Tabloid News

More Americans Supported King George During the Revolutionary War than Support Today’s Congress


Nasa has announced plans to grow plants on the moon by 2015 in a project designed to further humanity’s chances of successfully colonizing space.  If successful, the Lunar Plant Growth Habitat team will make history by seeding life from Earth on another celestial body for the first time, paving the way for humans to set up more permanent habitation. “If we send plants and they thrive, then we probably can,” says Nasa.  “After landing in late 2015, water will be added to the seeds in the module and their growth will be monitored for 5-10 days and compared to Earth based controls. Seeds will include basil, and turnips”.

The difficulty for the scientists will be encouraging plant growth in the harsh environment of the moon. Partial gravity and lunar radiation will need to be accounted for, although the plants will travel with their own water reservoir and enough air for five days of growth.  Cameras and sensors will monitor the plants and send data back to Earth.

Scientists, contractors and students will work together to create a small 1kg “self-contained habitat” containing seeds and germination material to send to the moon.

To get there Nasa plans to ‘hitchhike’, delivering the payload via the Moon Express lander, a commercial spacecraft enrolled in the Google Lunar X Prize.

“Can humans live and work on the moon? Not just visit for a few days but stay for decades? A first step in long term presence is to send plants,” says Nasa. “They carry genetic material that can be damaged by radiation as can that of humans [and] can test the lunar environment for us, acting as a ‘canary in a coal mine’.”

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