From the days of the telegram

July 29, 2015 at 4:35 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Before there was email, there was over 150 years of telegraph service

Now the telegram has gone the same way as the smoke signal and the carrier pigeon so, for old times’ sake, here are a few celebrated exchanges from the golden age.

Famously, the editor of a magazine, keen to verify copy, sent a telegram to Cary Grant’s agent:


The star replied in person:


When some Oxford undergraduates discovered that Rudyard Kipling earned ten shillings for every word he wrote they posted him ten shillings asking for one of his very best words in reply. Back came a telegram from Kipling reading simply: THANKS.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes, claimed to have telegrammed the same message to a dozen distinguished men. It read:


According to Conan Doyle, all 12 had fled the country within 24 hours.

Another story goes that the actor Peter Sellers was at home working in his study when the doorbell rang. It was answered by his wife, Anne, who was handed a telegram which read:





Odd news from around the world

The tasteless two: “It’s not hard for Geoffrey Edelsten and Gabi Grecko to stand out from the crowd. But on Tuesday the colourful couple appeared to be on fire when they were spotted looking lost in Sydney wearing spectacularly clashing outfits. Perhaps the businessman, 72, was celebrating Christmas in July as he stepped out for supper in a shiny red suit and bejewelled shirt, while Gabi, 26, wore flaming orange hair and a matching dress. The unconventional man and wife duo are in town filming segments for Celebrity Apprentice and had stumbled off the set for a bite to eat after a long day shooting. Former medic Geoffrey’s questionable attire could be mistaken for the late American singer Liberace’s flamboyant taste for exaggerated collars, cuffs and knuckle dusters. For her part Maxim model flame-haired Gabi was co-ordinated, to say the least , in an orange pencil skirt slit to the thigh and matching top. She had painted her nails a garish shade of orange, too, and wore shiny boots to match Geoffrey’s gleaming shoes.”

Waging war on peeing in public: Wall coating uses nanotechnology to repel urine: “Late night revellers and heavy drinkers may think nothing of relieving themselves in public. But now walls are fighting back against the disgusting habit. Walls in San Francisco have been coated with water-repellent paint so that desperate drinkers get a nasty surprise if they urinate on them. Nine walls around the Mission and Soma districts have been treated with hydrophobic Ultra-Ever Dry paint, so that if someone wees on them, their urine sprays back over their legs and shoes, hopefully deterring them from urinating in public again. The nanotechnology spray can be applied to almost any material. The coating costs several hundred dollars per wall, The San Francisco Chronicle reported, leading some people to comment (above) that more public toilets are a better solution to the dirty problem”

Cheers! Surprise for passengers at London City Airport as crates of BEER emerge on the luggage carousel: “Passengers arriving at London City Airport got a shock when their luggage was replaced with crates of beer. But there hadn’t been a mix up with the delivery – it was a marketing stunt from beer giant Carlsberg. As passengers waited to collect their suitcases, secret filming captured the shock and delight of the giveaway. Then, as crates of Carlsberg began to circle around, passengers’ confusion is clear – some seem genuinely worried as to where their luggage is, while others begin to smile. Then, as people catch on to the message on the top of the boxes, that reads ‘take me I’m yours,’ passengers lean forward to grab a prize. Thankfully, their luggage soon followed.”

British Keystone Kops appeal to find the villains who broke two brooms: “A police appeal to find the culprits responsible for breaking into a cricket club’s storage container and breaking two brooms has swept the internet. The brooms were broken after vandals forced open the outdoors storage space in the rural village of Eyam, Derbyshire, last week. Police immediately launched an appeal for information – but few people appeared to be taking the investigation seriously, cracking jokes about it on social media. On Facebook, Simon Crossett wrote: ‘I believe the police are sweeping the area for clues.’ Joanna Carter said: ‘Whoever is doing this should expect a brush with the law soon.’ Shane Connor commented: ‘South Yorkshire crime has really got out of hand. The police really need to ‘sweep’ these criminals off the streets!’ Others said the appeal was a waste of time, saying the police should be prioritising more serious crimes ahead of broken brooms.”

How pendulum clocks ‘SPEAK’ to each other: “It is a mystery that has puzzled scientists for nearly 350 years, but now researchers claim to have solved what causes pendulum clocks to synchronise their swings. A team of physicists and mathematicians say sound from the ticking clocks transfers energy between them and eventually causes the pendulums to move in time. In effect the clocks ‘communicate’ with each other and over several days or even hours they begin to nudge each other until their swing matches. However, the researchers found the synchronisation would only occur if the clocks were both connected to a beam capable of transferring the energy between them. No matter when the clocks were started, they would eventually start to move into synchronisation over the course of around 18 hours.”

And don’t forget to catch up with all the Strange Justice before you go.


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