The Pop Quiz
Helga R Hughes was the pseudonym used by bogus Howard Hughes
biographer Clifford Irving's wife to cash the publisher's
check made out to "H R Hughes".
Philip Bleiberg was the first heart transplant patient, who
only lived for a few days. The second patient, (Joseph Warshansky?),
lived for more than a year. Both operations were done by Doctor
Dita Beard was a key witness in the ITT scandal, (just
before Watergate showed us what a real scandal is!). As soon as she
was accused of bribery, she took sick, but was forced to give
testimony from her Denver hospital bed.
Congressman John Jenrette took money from FBI undercover
agents in the AbScam sting operation. His wife, Rita Jenrette,
then remorsefully posed for Playboy and claimed that they had once
made love on the Capitol steps.
Marina Oswald was Lee Harvey Oswald's wife.
Officer Tippett was shot by Oswald after he had fled the
Eric Starvo Galt (or was that "Stavro"?) was one of
the pseudonyms used by James Earl Ray during his flight
through Canada to London after shooting Martin Luther King.
Once NASA realized that there was no point in space exploration,
it was reduced to shooting celebrities out of a cannon in order
to keep its engineers employed. One day, they blew up the
first teacher in space, Christine McAuliffe, as well as
Judith Resnik and others.
Commandante Cinque was the sobriquet of the leader of the
Symbionese Liberation Army, who kidnapped Patty Hearst from the
clutches of her hapless boyfriend Stephen Weed. After
being renamed "Tanya", robbing a bank, getting rescued, arrested,
tried, convicted, and pardoned, she married her bodyguard and
showed up in a movie by John Waters.
Washed-up tennis player Bobby Riggs played against
heavily hyped Billy Jean King in the tennis
"battle of the sexes" - and became famous because he lost.
Greta Rideout sued John Rideout for marital rape,
establishing another milestone of American jurisprudence.
Lance Loud and Pat Loud were the son and mother of
the PBS documentary "An American Family".
Nixon's Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz, was like Reagan's
Secretary of the Interior, James Watt. Both became
the regular laughing stock of the press, a trial they did little
to avoid, since they had a talent for embarrassing and inept remarks.
Patricia Krenwinkel was one of Charles Manson's gang who
murdered Sharon Tate, the coffee heiress Abigail Folger,
Samantha Smith, a 7 year old New Englander, wrote a letter to
Mikhail Gorbachev suggesting that peace was a good idea.
This saccharine sentiment hit a resonant frequency of the
jerking knee that is television. Sensing a good publicity moment,
Gorbachev invited her over for a meeting, and the two of them, (and
her pushy father) basked in some meaningless glory. Two years later,
still going around telling the story of her meeting, she was killed
in a plane crash.
Dr Richard Richards was a moderately successful tennis player.
(Remember when tennis was so important?) He then underwent a sex
change operation, and began to play, very successfully, as a women,
Renee Richards. He protested when controversy brought his
career to an end.
Michele Triola sued Lee Marvin for "palimony", and her lawyer
was Marvin Mitchelson. Her case opened the way for anyone to
sue another even if no legal marriage had been contracted.
Louise Brown was the first "test tube baby", born to
parents in England under the supervision of Doctor Patrick
Steptoe on 24 July 1978.
Last revised on 24 July 2003.