www.whyville.net Jul 5, 2001 Weekly Issue

Staff Writer

What's On!

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What's On!

Times Writer

Space travel, spiders, and chickens, oh my!

Friday, July 6th
    From the Earth to the Moon
    Lance Armstrong: Racing for His Life
    U.S. Mints: Money Machines

Saturday, July 7th
    Science and Technology Week
    The Fire Next Time

Sunday, July 8th
    CNN Presents: Gridlock
    America's Wildest Rides

Monday, July 9th
    The Ultimate Guide - Spiders

Tuesday, July 10th
    Classic Geographic: Rain Forest
    African Queen

Wednesday, July 11th
    The Natural History of the Chicken

Thursday, July 12th
    Expedition Journal: Into the Blue

Friday, July 6th

"From the Earth To the Moon" (HBO 3:30-4:30 p.m. ET, 12:30-1:30 p.m. PT) This is the episode in HBO's drama series about the Apollo Missions where Frank Boorman and Jim Lovell made it to the moon and back (without landing) on a non-stop trip. The success of this scientific effort raised America's spirits in that infamous year of riots, fires and the murders of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy.

"Lance Armstrong: Racing For His Life" (A&E Network 8-9 p.m. E/P) This is a documentary about goal-setting. When doctors diagnosed this young American with cancer and gave him a 50/50 chance of surviving treatment, he resolved not only to fight the disease (we learn a lot about the process) but resume training as competitive cyclist, winning the Tour de France race. Twice. AND he's competing in this year's Tour de France RIGHT NOW.

"U.S. Mints: Money Machines" (History Channel 10-11 p.m. E/P) This is a documentary about how to make money, literally, with metal stamping machines and printing presses. But don't try this at home! It's only legal to do it if you work at the U.S. Bureau of Printing and Engraving.

Saturday, July 7

"Science and Technology Week" (CNN , 1:30-2 p.m. ET, 10:30-11 a.m. PT) This week's main story is a report on what happens to the ecosystem of a marsh when a bridge is built over it.

"The Fire Next Time" (Odyssey Network, 2-6 p.m. E/P) Here are both parts of a TV miniseries about what might happen in the next decade if we do nothing about global warming. This is not a documentary; it's a a family drama (TV rating PG) about people in search of somewhere free of pollution and severe weather extremes. The special effects showing what they encounter along the way are impressive.

Sunday, July 8

"CNN Presents" (CNN, 10-11 p.m. ET, 7-8 p.m. PT) This documentary, entitled "Gridlock", presents various fixes for airline flight delays and their causes. But what do you do about people? There are just more and more of them wanting to get on more and more airplanes. Any ideas, you Whyvillians?

"America's Wildest Rides" (Travel Channel, 9-10 p.m. E/P) There seems to be an endless appetite for new thrill-rides at amusement parks, equaled only by the appetite for documentaries about them. Anyway, this provides a continuous supply of interesting examples for studying velocity, gravitational and centrifugal forces and even biological processes such as blood circulation. This documentary describes the extreme rides now available in Las Vegas.

Monday, July 9

"The Ultimate Guide - Spiders" (Discovery Channel, 9-10 p.m. E/P) Here's a spider documentary that lives up to its name. One type of these 'watchful assassins' weighs just 4/100 oz but has half-inch fangs, sharp enough to pierce a toenail and give you a dose of the most toxic spider venom known to man. Most other kinds of spiders can't do people any harm, though, so it's not frightening to watch the parts of the show where they're seen up close doing their spinning, trapping and courting.

Tuesday, July 10

"Classic Geographic: Rain Forest" (National Geographic Channel, 2-3 p.m. E/P) If your local cable company doesn't yet carry this channel, you can still see this show by renting it from a well-stocked video store. This particular documentary, which vividly presents flora and fauna that make preserving the rain forest an important thing for us to do, was filmed in Costa Rica and captures the mystical beauty of the ecosystem there. By getting a copy and offering it to your teacher you can score points because it's something he or she can use in class to teach about the enviromnent.

"African Queen" (American Movie Classics, 8-10 p.m. ET, 5-7 p.m. PT) Here's one of the best movies ever made. The fact-packed story was written by C.S. Forester, who used to read encycolpedias for fun when he was a kid. And it's not only the leeches and other things portrayed in the film that make life rough in the jungle. There's also the WWI warfare between British colonists and German sailors hunting one another down on African rivers. This little-known contest actually took place thousands of miles from the ocean and involved dragging dismantled battleship guns and other naval armaments overland to inland lakes. Sunday, July 15 from 5-6 p.m. E/P the National Geographic Channel will also carry an historical documentary in this topic.

Wednesday, July 11

Just to let you know that I spend my time thinking about the really important issues of our times... "The Natural History Of The Chicken" (PBS, 9-10 p.m. ET, 8-9 p.m. PT) Chickens have many virtues and a complex, but not widely known evolutionary history. This documentary takes a serious scientific look at them. How serious? Well, the titles of the filmmaker's last two documentaries were "Cane Toads: An Unnatural History" and "Rats".

Thursday, July 12

"Expedition Journal: Into The Blue" (National Geographic Channel, 6-7 p.m. E/P) In this documentary about flight, Americans figure out a way to fly over the Sierras in motorless aircraft and Britons set out to cross the English Channel in kites.



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