Famous Foot Gaffe – In the Watergate Scandal


It was dubbed the “Rose Mary Stretch”, and it became an iconic image of truth-stretching in the Watergate era.  Arched awkwardly backward to answer the phone, the ever-loyal Richard Nixon secretary Rose Mary Woods demonstrated to prosecutors how her foot errantly tapped the record button, causing part of a crucial 18 ½-minute gap in an Oval Office tape. 

“I am most dreadfully sorry,” she said. Her epic bend of back and logic made her a national punch-line, and helped push her boss to early retirement less than a year later.  Ms. Woods died in 2005 at 87.  But her infamous Pilates move lives on.  There is an annual award for “worst performance in open government” in her honour, and a play called Stretch (A Fantasia).

Quoting:  Barrie McKenna   ‘A Moment in Time: Nov. 26, 1973’ — “Rose Mary Woods Explains the Tape Gap.”  The Globe and Mail, November 26, 2010




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“Traitors’” Feet in the Air


Branded as turncoats and accused of committing treason, eight men were hung in public view by the British near the end of the War of 1812. This image depicting feet in the air is a part of a mural by Lori Le Mare.  (http://www.pinterest.com/mmrocks/fieldcote-museum-exhibit-by-lori-lemare/)

The Fieldcote Museum in Ancaster Ontario has become a centre of the “Bloody Assize” commemoration.  Apparently, several visitors to the museum have acknowledged a family connection to these infamous Upper Canadian settlers. Mark McNeil (mmcneil@thespec.com) wrote in the Hamilton Spectator: “Time has a way of revising attitudes. Yesterday’s traitor might be seen today as an unfortunate rebel. One man’s turncoat is another man’s hero. And maybe the British army was doing things that deserved disloyalty, such as throwing people out of their homes and eating their food”.


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