Friday Fun: History Trivia & Comment
On this day in …
– 1814, “British forces invaded Washington, D.C., and set fire to the Capitol and the White House,” . . . Ah, those were the good old days when wars were over trade, and terrorism meant impressment – or worse yet we were actually the terrorists in our encroaching upon American Indian settlements (with the “enemy” British defending the latter).
– 1949, “The North Atlantic Treaty went into effect.” … Has anyone else ever wondered – at least geographically in the beginning of one’s thinking about the subject – how Italy, Turkey, and Greece fit into the N-Atlantic-TO vision? You’d think they would’ve at least changed the name.
– 1951, My dad was born. Now this picture of Homer is decidedly not meant to convey that my dad is a yellow, fat, lazy, donut eater. No way! To me it symbolizes the absurdities of fatherhood. Happy birthday Dad!
– 1989, “Baseball Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti banned Pete Rose from the game for gambling.” … I’ve always loved the name: A. Bartlett Giamatti. In light of admittedly stereotypical mob associations, doesn’t it seem like the two actors in this sentence ought to be reversed?
– 1990, “A judge rules that Judas Priest are not responsible for the deaths of two youths who committed suicide after listening to the band’s music.” … I totally forgot about this. Tipper Gore had to be involved in this before switching over to berating the early rappers. … Was anyone else out there as scared as I was, as a kid, of a band called “Judas Priest?” I mean, that’s totally sacrilegious and blasphemous – not to mention ironic.
– 1990, “Sinead O’Connor refuses to perform at the Garden State Arts Plaza in Holmdel, New Jersey if ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ is played before her show, as is customary.” … I don’t know how I missed this one. Can you imagine being Sinead’s mother, having to explain everything your friends?!
– 2006, “The International Astronomical Union declared that Pluto was no longer a planet, demoting it to the status of a ‘dwarf planet.’ ” … Ah, the Scandal of Last Year. In my mind, no planet named after a Disney character ought hold the dignity of planet status. In that way “dwarf planet” still applies.