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This Day In History – April 5th.


On this very day, the 5th of April. All the way back in the year of 1650. A momentous thing happened in human history, nay, world history. One of the most important advances in mankind occurred, a very special device was invented that we couldn’t imagine living without today. Few people know about this day in history, so here I am to tell you all about it.

. . .

An German gentleman of the eccentric type by the name of Otto Von Guericke was traipsing around Paris drunk one night yelling at random people “I’m going to be somebody one day, just you wait and see!” People thought he was a lost cause, but Otto was determined to show them wrong. Otto was a notorious drunkard who was quite well known around town for his antics. In the mid-morning of April 5th, Otto woke up and immediately pounded three quarters of a goblet of Absinthe, old Absinthe with the hallucinogenic wormwood extract in it. Otto was off his tits by lunch time and decided to climb up onto the roof of the building he lived in because he wanted to get the best view possible of the city of love. He carried up onto the roof with him a foldable wooden chair, and a foldable small metal table to rest his booze and pipe on.

Otto got progressively more drunk as he sat atop his roof. He got up, with his brandy drink in hand to take a pee. As he shuffled along the roof, he slipped and almost fell off the roof, but he hung on just before going over the gutter. The thing is, he spilled all of his drink down an open drain pipe that was right next to him.

Otto, not wanting to waste ANY amount of alcohol needed to come up with a way of getting his brandy up and out of the drainpipe. Immediately something ingenious came to mind. He remembered that whenever he would hold his hand over his smoking pipe and puffed on it, when he lifted his hand off, much much more smoke would come out of the pipe. He applied this same logic to the drainpipe.

He fashioned a lever and spring contraption out of the wooden chair legs and the metal hinges of the table. He pumped a huge amount of air down into the drainpipe, and then slowly let the pump device off the top of the drainpipe. LO AND BEHOLD, the brandy come slowly up the drainpipe, he got a bucket ready and caught all of the booze and the dirty water that came spilling up out of the drainpipe. He caught all of it.

The next problem that needed to be solved was filtering the dirty water from the booze. In a drunken moment of brilliance, he took his cotton shirt off and put it over the top of the bucket, then poured the filtered booze into several different goblets. It worked a charm.

vacuum pump

On this day in history, a German alcoholic invented both the modern vacuum pump AND the coffee filter. Coffee didn’t make it to Europe until a couple years later, but when it arrived, Otto was finally revered as the true visionary genius he was!

. . .

Isn’t history fun!?






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