Friday, August 31, 2007

So Long, And Thanks For All The Fish

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Don't forget - Birthday Contest for Steve – November 22, 1967. Send in an alternate birthday for him for us to post!

A Final Note From Robbie: This is it – my last posting as your Alternate Historian. From today forward, I will be a Visiting Professor Emeritus, at most, while Steve will take over the daily duties here at the Academy as its chief Alternate Historian.

I naturally want to thank everyone who's read me regularly over the last 3 years for sticking with TIAH, and I hope you'll give RATMANifesto a look – but not till after the Labor Day weekend, because I'm going on vacation for the next 3 days. That's something that I've been a little reluctant to do since I started this page; it's going to be odd to be able to sleep late. I'll miss the routine of having a set schedule to post – but not getting up in the morning 2 hours before the crack of dawn to do it.

I hope that you will take it easy on Steve as he begins his tenure as the AH – save the hard knocks till after he's had a couple of months to acclimate himself (just kidding, Steve!) He has a lot of great ideas and will be attempting to push TIAH further than it's ever gone before, and I will certainly be following him on this journey. I hope that you will, too.

Appropriately enough, for my last posting I have an alternate history entry. Today is my sister's birthday, and I'm going to use my last day as the Big Man On Campus to send out a happy birthday to her.

So, good luck, Steve, and thanks to everybody! My entry follows this, the limey line (used for the last time here) follows that, and then Steve takes over. You will be able to reach him at - he inherits the email from me. I am keeping the hotmail account, though, so you can reach me with your goodbyes at And now, farewell, so long, auf Wiedersehen, goodbye.

in 1959, Gari Lynn Taylor was born in Houston, Texas, the last child of the Reverend W.D. and Peggy Taylor. A heart attack brought the reverend to an end when Gari Lynn was 2, and she grew up without a father figure. Some critics have speculated that this tragedy is what forged the strength of character that Ms. Taylor showed in her journalism and opinion writing, and the self-reliance she learned from her childhood stood her in good stead when she began her own publishing company, Slap Upside The Head, Inc. Today, Ms. Taylor's advice books on everything from child-rearing to alternative energy sources routinely top the bestseller lists, and she is a regular fixture on talk shows, famous for her earthy, home-spun wisdom.

In 1997, a telephone call was placed to the Hôtel Ritz in Paris. Codewords spoken that trigged deep-mind instructions, programmed under hypnosis by agents of the Security Services of France. An ex-pilot consumed a large amount of alcohol from a hotel mini-bar. Chauffeured two young people in a 1994 Mercedes-Benz S280 sedan (registration no. 688 LTV 75). Went into seizure as agents on motorcycles flashed bright lights into the vehicle. Crashed into the thirteenth pillar of the Pont de l'Alma road tunnel. Stole a beacon of light from a world of need.

~ entry by Co-Historian Steve Payne

In 2026, the editorial team set down the key themes for The World in 2027. Put simply, could the Center of International Research for the Continuance of Life on Earth (CIRCLE) solve the myriad of problems threatening humanity with extinction?

~ variant from Steve Payne: extensive use of original content has been made to celebrate the author's genius.

In 1947, the Indian Hockey team withdrew from the Games of the XIV Olympiad to be held in London, England the following year. The decision had been prompted by the Indian Emergency, after Winston Churchill's reneged on a promise to grant Independence to the Subcontinent, preferring instead to announce Dominion Status. The withdrawal was a deep source of embarrassment to the British Government. The Indian Hockey Team had won the Gold Medal in every Olympics since 1928, and in a moment, a feeling of British pride had been transformed into shame. Churchill himself was disturbed greatly by the protest. He desperately needed the Indian Divisions of the British Army to maintain Great Power status, and now he feared that he could not longer depend upon the loyalty of these fine troops.

~ variant from Steve Payne: extensive use of original content has been made to celebrate the author's genius.

In 1975, in Richard Matheson's I am Legend the bombings had spread the vampiris bacteria, killing everyone including Robert Neville's wife and daughter. The survivors of the war were the vampires, the infected, and Neville himself, trapped inside his fortified home.

~ variant from Steve Payne: extensive use of original content has been made to celebrate the author's genius.

In 1997, Diana, Princess of Wales, died in a car crash in Paris. Controversy raged for many years over the culpability of paparazzi on motorbikes who had shone bright lights into the vehicle for flash photography. Newspaper refused to publish the pictures taken after the crash. Those photographs finally emerged in 2015. They showed Diana very composed, not injured at all.

~ variant from Steve Payne: extensive use of original content has been made to celebrate the author's genius.

Master Tubby Bear
Master Tubby
In 2003, Master Tubby Bear was arrested in Toy Town for breach of the peace. Miss Pink had "reported a loud 'orrid noise" to PC Plod, who was unable to hear what she was saying because of a "loud 'orrid noise". In his defence, Master Tubby had stated "My Uncle Tubby bought me this drum set. Its my birthday, I'll do what I like."
The case continues.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

Cary Grant
Cary Grant
In 1943, on Broadway reporters ask the British actor Cary Grant how he feels about the events since the premier of “Castle Bonny” in which he played the part of Dick Blaine. The final scene shows Dick, Laszlo and a detachment of Free British soldiers on a ship, to incorporate the Allies' 1943 invasion of England. In ..
.. the real world that invasion had succeeded just the day before. "Everyone wants to be Cary Grant; even I want to be Cary Grant" quipped the actor.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

In 2127/2003, a dramatic scene is played out in a deep cell of Paddington Green Police .. Paddington Green
Paddington Green..
.. Station. Being interviewed are twenty-second century fugitive Brent and first Asian QC Kim Hollis. Urgent investigations are being pursued in relation to the apparent suicide of the Attorney General Lord Peter Goldsmith. To a disbelieving audience, Hollis says the world of 2127 is most definitely not a Newt Gingrich pipe dream. First nations have risen up in Jihad after the Second Gulf War, and theyrule the roost.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

In 1997, the Prince of Wales and his lover Camilla Parker-Bowles die in a car crash in Paris. Conspiracy theories on the internet abound for the next fifteen years, including the most scandalous of all. The event was no accident, but a deliberate assassination organised by the British State to prevent the Heir to the Throne ..
.. from besmirching the Royal Family at a crucial moment in its long history. The Prince had seen no reason, often being smuggled out of Palaces in the boots of cars to meet with Camilla. Republicanism was rife, the British public simply could not understand this adultery from “the Queen of Hearts”, Princess Diana who was universally adored throughout the nation and Commonwealth. The facts were never proven, yet the fires of republicanism died down as Diana and her sons occupied the thrown and ushered in a new era of change for the Royal Household.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

In 1939, on this day the terminally ill British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain resigned. The popular figure Anthony Eden succeeded him, a move which had been widely anticipated since he had architected the Munich Settlement two years before. “Friction between the Great Powers was understandable,” said Eden in his .. Chamberlain
.. maiden speech “ but there was a larger picture. European powers had a shared interest and gathering forces outside the continent would, if unchecked, become a major problem in ten to twenty years time.” Actually, Eden had suffered a terrible dream in which his beloved son Simon died in a future war. As the leader of the nation, he would not suffer such a personal tragedy, he had seen what it had done to Asquith during the great war.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

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