Huzzah, it's Melba Toast Day.
The toast so named for the the Australian Opera singer Nellie Melba by her great admirer (and world famous French chef Auguste Escoffier.)
but folks, get a grip, it's just toast.
March 23, 1910 -
Akira Kurosawa, Japanese film director (Rashomon, The Seven Samurai, Ran), was born in Tokyo, Japan on this date.
Kurosawa worshiped legendary American director John Ford, his primary influence as a filmmaker. When the two met, Ford was uncommonly pleasant to the younger Japanese filmmaker and afterwards Kurosawa dressed in a similar fashion to Ford when on film sets.
March 23, 1963 –
Everyone get ready for a slow dance (remember to leave room for the Holy Spirit): Ruby and the Romantics' song Our Day Will Come hit No. #1 on the Billboard Charts on this date.
Dionne Warwick recorded the original demo of the song for songwriter Bob Hilliard and she told him how much she liked it. Dionne recalls, "It was written during that period of time when I met Bacharach and David. Bob Hilliard wrote the song also and he said: 'I've got a good little song here and there's a new group called 'Ruby and the Romantics' and will you do the demonstration record?' I said: 'Of course. I'd love to. And I did. And I told him then that it was a really pretty song." In 1982 Dionne Warwick included it as her only cover on her 1982 album Heartbreaker.
March 23, 1982 -
The spin-off of the very successful series Happy Days, Joanie Loves Chachi, starring Erin Moran (R.I.P.) and Scott Baio (no comment) premiered on ABC-TV on this date.
Nobody loved this musical disaster, and it was cancelled after 19 episodes.
March 23, 1990 –
Garry Marshall surprise comedy hit Pretty Woman (which at one time was called $3,000,) starring Julia Roberts and Richard Gere premiered in US theatres on this date.
Richard Gere and Julia Roberts had obvious chemistry upon their first meeting. However, Richard was not planning on taking the role. He was on the phone ready to turn down the part when Julia slid him a post-it note with the words "please say yes" written on it. Richard accepted the role right then.
The end of another week in covering Washington DC
Today in History:
March 23, 1369 -
Pedro the Cruel, King and tyrant of Castile and Leon, was murdered on this date. Enrique, the illegitimate son of Alfonso XI of Castile, killed his half brother Pedro I in the Castilian civil war and became King Enrique I the Bastard of Castile.
March 23, 1534 -
Pope Clement VII declared that the marriage between Henry VIII of England and Catherine of Aragon was still valid, even though they'd been divorced the previous year and Henry had already married Anne Boleyn.
March 23, 1840 -
Englishman John William Draper becomes the first person to successfully photograph the Moon.
March 23, 1908 -
I think that the most important thing a woman can have - next to talent, of course - is her hairdresser.
Joan Crawford, actress (both legitimate films and porn), executive and child beater was born on this date.
March 23, 1912 -
Wernher von Braun, German - born rocket pioneer who led the development of the V-2 rocket during World War II was born on this date.
He was deemed one of the The Good Germans we collected as a bonus prize at the end of the war. Von Braun was said to be the preeminent rocket engineer of the 20th century.
March 23, 1919 -
Benito Mussolini founded his own party in Italy on this date. He had tried all the other parties, but he was an awkward young man and had a hard time getting to know people. His Fasci di Combattimento ("Evil Fascist Bastards Party") was extremely popular, however, and even the cool kids came.
It got so crowded that the neighbors started complaining, which ended up starting a big fight, and the rest is history.
March 23, 1925 -
Tennessee Governor Austin Peay signs the Butler Act into law, making illegal the teaching in public school "any theory that denies the story of divine creation of man as taught in the Bible", on this date.
Teacher John Scopes couldn't think of anywhere else to teach evolution, so he ignored the ban and was later prosecuted in what became known as the Scopes Monkey Trial, which resulted in an Oscar for Spencer Tracy.
March 23, 1956 -
The Islamic Republic of Pakistan became an independent republic within the British Commonwealth (from 1947 until 1956, it was referred to as the Dominion of Pakistan,) on this date. Following the fighting in Pakistan and India in 1947, Muslims moved to Pakistan, creating a country where 96% of the population are Muslim.
Pakistan was the first modern nation to call itself an Islamic republic in conjunction with a largely secular constitution. Currently Pakistan has the world's sixth largest population.
March 23, 1961 -
Valentin Bondarenko was a young cosmonaut who had been doing routine medical tests in a pressure chamber as part of an isolation exercise, on this date. He removed some biosensors from his body and used a cotton ball moistened with alcohol to wash the sticky stuff off his skin.
March 23, 1965 -
NASA launched Gemini III, nicknamed the “Molly Brown,” from Cape Canaveral on this date. It was the United State’s first maneuverable two-man mission. The mission was crewed by astronauts Virgil Ivan “Gus” Grissom and John W. Young.
The flight was the first for Young, who breaks quarantine regulations by smuggling a sandwich into orbit to share with Grissom. Before the end of the mission, Young would become the first man to eat a corned beef sandwich in space. Crumbs from the "weightless" sandwich scattered throughout the Gemini 3 spacecraft, posing a potential, if unintentional, flight safety risk. This rules violation caused NASA to clamp down on what astronauts could and could not carry into space.
March 23, 1989 -
A 1000-foot diameter asteroid misses the Earth by only 500,000 miles on this date.
March 23, 1997 -
Five dead bodies were found arranged in a cross formation at the burned Quebec home of Didier Queze. They were members of the Solar Temple cult who in 1994 to 1996 had totaled 69 suicides in Europe and North America.
I believe this is the corollary to Thoreau's 'beware of all enterprises that require new clothes' - NEVER join a cult that requires you to remove your genitals.
And so it goes.
Before I forgot - here are the answers to yesterday's quiz