Saturday, October 17, 2009

It's the Sweetest Day (created by a midwestern syndicate)

No, it's not the celebration of the invention of Gin but it is an observance celebrated on the third Saturday in October. While it is not as large or widely observed as Valentine's Day, it is still celebrated in parts of the United States, despite persistent allegations of being a "Hallmark holiday."

I say celebrate by NOT burning down your local Hallmark store (but think it in your mind.)

I can't believe that I nearly forgot -

To those readers who celebrate today's "Festival of Lights",

Happy Dawali.

Today in History:
The Sixth Crusade ended on this date in 1244 after the Saracens ("Infidels") defeated the Franks ("Infidels") at Gaza. But you know after the Fourth Crusade, I just stop counting.

October 17, 1777 -
At one of the turning points of the American Revolution,

British Gen. John Burgoyne surrendered to American Gen. Horatio Gates at Saratoga, N.Y.

October 17, 1967 -
The play Hair, full of dancing naked people, unshaved armpits, and body odor, opens at the 299-seat Anspacher Theater on Broadway. At the time, the musical's depiction of the use of illegal drugs, sexuality, profanity, its irreverence for the American flag, and its nude scene caused much comment and controversy.

The musical broke new ground in musical theatre by defining the genre of the "rock musical", utilizing a racially-integrated cast, and by inviting the audience onstage for a "Be-in" finale.

October 17, 1939 -
In the year that is considered the apex of the Golden age of Hollywood, Frank Capra's contribution, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington was released on this date.

This was the role of a lifetime for Jimmy Steward (at the time) and it cemented his All-American wholesome imagine. I have a different read on his character and perhaps many of Steward's characters. There is something almost psychotic about his determination and ernestness. Go back and watch the film.

October 17, 1944 -
The little known and under appreciated drama directed by Clifford Odets, None But the Lonely Heart, was released on this date.

This was Cary Grant's favorite film role. Unfortunately, the public always typecasting Grant as either the Romantic or Comic lead, didn't buy him in this dramatic role and the film flopped.

October 17, 1979 -
Mother Teresa of Calcutta, a Roman Catholic nun who cared for the sick and poor, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

But what she really wanted to do was direct.

October 17, 1984 -
The New York Times runs an article entitled "CIA Primer Tells Nicaraguan Rebels How to Kill." The story describes the secret manual Psychological Operations in Guerrilla Warfare which the CIA furnished to the Contras in Nicaragua.

The booklet instructed how to kidnap and assassinate civil officials, such as judges and police.

Barnes and Noble no longer sells the primer and you cannnot back order it.


October 17, 1986 -
Congress passed a landmark immigration bill, the first U.S. law authorizing penalties for employers who hire illegal aliens.

Green card, I don't gotta show you no stinking green card.

October 17, 1989 -
The Loma Prieta earthquake strikes the San Francisco Bay Area, killing 67 and causing billions in property damage. The 6.9 magnitude temblor manages to collapse a long section of the double-decker I-880 freeway, smushing motorists between the two layers. Part of the Bay Bridge also collapses.

Worst of all, the quake postpones the third World Series game.

And so it goes

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