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Zbyněk Kapoun

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Williamina P. Fleming

Died 21 May 1911 at age 54 (born 15 May 1857).Williamina Paton Stevens Fleming was a Scottish-American astronomer (née Stevens) who pioneered in the classification of stellar spectra and the first to discover stars called “white dwarfs.” She emigrated to Boston at age 21. Prof. Edward Pickering, director of the Harvard Observatory first employed Fleming as a maid, but in 1881 hired her to do clerical work and some mathematical calculations at the Observatory. She further proved capable of doing science. After devising her system of classifying stars by their spectra, she cataloged over 10,000 stars within the next nine years. Her duties were expanded and she was put in charge of dozens of young women hired to do mathematical computations (as now done by computers).

A Heavenly Welcome

A contractor dies in a car accident on his 40th birthday and finds himself at the Pearly Gates. A brass band is playing, the angels are singing a beautiful hymn, there is a huge crowd cheering and shouting his name, and absolutely everyone wants to shake his hand. Just when he thinks things can't possibly get any better, Saint Peter himself runs over, apologizes for not greeting him personally at the Pearly Gates, shakes his hand, and says, "Congratulations son, we've been waiting a long time for you." Totally confused and a little embarrassed, the contractor sheepishly looks at Saint Peter and says "Saint Peter, I tried to lead a God-fearing life, I loved my family, I tried to obey the 10 Commandments, but congratulations for what? I honestly don't remember doing anything really special when I was alive.""Congratulations for what?" says Saint Peter, totally amazed at the man's modesty. "We're celebrating the fact that you lived to be 160 years old! God himself wants to see you!" The contractor is awestruck and can only look at Saint Peter with his mouth wide open. When he regains his power of speech, he looks up at Saint Peter and says "Saint Peter, I lived my life in the eternal hope that when I died I would be judged by God and be found to be worthy, but I only lived to be forty." "That's simply impossible son," says Saint Peter. "We've added up your time sheets."
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