I’ve mentioned before that I’m rather fascinated (ok, call it addicted if you must) by the entries I frequently scan on “This Date in History” websites. I find irony—lots of irony—along with humor, puzzlement, inspiration, food for thought, and awe.
So naturally, I think if it tickles my imagination, my readers might also be entertained (also known as distracted) by the entries I find especially interesting. I invite you to read and savor these 10 (personally annotated) excerpts. The laundry and dishes can wait (mine did)!
1898 - A new automobile speed record was set at 39 mph. –It was in France, and it was electric.
1912 - The discovery of the Piltdown Man in East Sussex was announced. It was proved to be a hoax in 1953. — It took 41 years to figure out it was a hoax? I imagine it would take about 41 minutes these days.
1915 - U.S. President Wilson, widowed the year before, married Edith Bolling Galt. – He also founded the League of Nations, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Federal Reserve System, besides winning a Nobel Peace Prize for this work helping to end WWI.
1936 - Su-Lin, the first giant panda to come to the U.S. from China, arrived in San Francisco, CA. The bear was sold to the Brookfield Zoo for $8,750. —The name Su-lin translates to: “A little bit of something very cute.”
1944 - The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the wartime relocation of Japanese-Americans, but also stated that undeniably loyal Americans of Japanese ancestry could not be detained. —What was the criteria, and who judged, “undeniably loyal?”
1965 - Kenneth LeBel jumped 17 barrels on ice skates. —THIS is newsworthy?
1970 - Divorce became legal in Italy. —Before that, I think they called it homocide.
1979 - The sound barrier was broken on land for the first time by Stanley Barrett when he drove at 739.6 mph. – Now that’s more like it!
1999 - After living atop an ancient redwood in Humboldt County, CA, for two years, environmental activist Julia “Butterfly” Hill came down, ending her anti-logging protest. — I looked up the whole story. It ends with an agreement with the logging company, a 200-foot buffer around the tree “Luna, ” and Hill becoming a motivational speaker and best selling author…
There’s a moral to the story here about not fiddling around on the computer all day, and getting out to sit in a tree to sell books, but I’ll let you draw your own conclusions…