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1. ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
18th October 1867
The U.S.A. formally takes possession of Alaska after purchasing the territory from Russia for $7.2 million
The Alaska purchase comprised 586,412 square miles, about twice the size of Texas, and was championed by William Henry Seward, the enthusiastically expansionist secretary of state under President Andrew Johnson. At less than 2 cents an acre, he considered the purchase a "bargain" and was proved right.
Russia wanted to sell its Alaska territory, which was remote, sparsely populated and difficult to defend, to the U.S. rather than risk losing it in battle with a rival such as Great Britain. Negotiations between Seward (1801-1872) and the Russian minister to the U.S., Eduard de Stoeckl, began in early March 1867, and a purchase agreement was signed on March 30th. However, the American public at the time believed the land to be barren and worthless and dubbed the purchase “Seward’s Folly” and “Andrew Johnson’s Polar Bear Garden,” among other derogatory names.
Public opinion of the purchase turned more favorable when gold was discovered in a tributary of Alaska’s Klondike River in 1896, sparking a gold rush. Alaska became the 49th state on January 3, 1959, and has turned out to have vast natural resources. Today, 25 percent of America’s oil and over 50 percent of its seafood come from Alaska.
2. TODAY IN MY LIFE
The Milk Run
Twitter Followers = 2,023 (up 1)
Non-followed eliminated = 1
Unfollowers eliminated = 0
New Followers followed back =0
Spammers not followed back = 2
3. TODAY'S SELF-OBSERVATION
And of course, when my focus does become perfectly controlled, I would then require another challenge. To have a challenge is I have discovered essential to fulfilment and wellbeing. Like stress, there is an optimum level - you don't want so much as to be overwhelming, and not so little that life becomes dull and without purpose.
This is my Golden Age! Never before have the circumstances been so benevolent or my self-understanding so clear. As all things pass, I must make the most of the situation by making the maximum difference, to self, others and the environment. I'm on it!
4. TODAY'S QUESTION FOR YOU
How well do you understand yourself, your life and its purpose?
5. TODAY'S WEATHER IN BRADFORD
Dry and cloudy throughout with a moderate north-easterly wind
Max Temp = 10 degC at 2pm
Min Temp = 9 degC at midnight
Sunrise at: 07:39
Sunset at: 18:04
Weathertrack: An anticyclone over Britain will keep the country dry
Air Pressure: 1023 millibars and rising slightly
6. TODAY'S ONELINER
My kids are very optimistic - every glass they leave sitting around the house is at least half full
7. NOW THAT'S FUNNY!
Historically, tea has been viewed as a health drink. Recent studies suggest that tea, especially green tea, helps reduce some forms of cancer, helps bad breath, reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, reduces blood pressure, helps with weight control, kills bacteria and virus, acts as an anti-inflammatory, and has neuroprotective power.
9. ZEN WISDOM
A truly beautiful person is one who appreciates rather than seeks to possess beauty