Category Archives: On This Day

Happy Birthday, Charles Dickens

DICKENS MISCELLANIA: QUOTES AND APPRECIATIONS Charles Dickens, “Hunted Down”: I have known a vast quantity of nonsense talked about bad men not looking you in the face. Don’t trust that conventional idea. Dishonesty will stare honesty out of countenance, any … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Laura Ingalls Wilder

Beloved American author, Laura Ingalls Wilder, was born on February 7, 1867. Her books are so much a part of my childhood that they don’t even feel like books, they feel like actual memories. I was 7, 8, 9 when … Continue reading

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February 3, 1959: The Day the Music Died

Buddy Holly was #13 on Rolling Stones’ 100 Greatest Artists list, and John Mellencamp wrote a very touching couple of paragraphs about Buddy Holly as the ultimate hillbilly, and how important that was: I was just a little kid when … Continue reading

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On This Day: February 2, 1882/1922

February 2, 1882: James Joyce was born in Rathgar, Ireland. February 2, 1922: Joyce’s Ulysses was published by Shakespeare & Co. I was on the platform, my heart going like the locomotive, as the train from Dijon came slowly to … Continue reading

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Happy birthday, Langston Hughes

The Blues always impressed me as being very sad, sadder even than the Spirituals, because their sadness is not softened with tears, but hardened with laughter … of a sadness where there is no god to appeal to. — Langston … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Talullah Bankhead

That very well may be my favorite image in Image History. It’s from a scene in the extremely disturbing (even by modern standards) 1931 film The Cheat. Her character takes an upsetting phone-call during a costume party, where she un-ironically … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Anton Chekhov

“Describe at least one rehearsal of Three Sisters for me. Isn’t there anything which needs adding or subtracting? Are you acting well, my darling? But watch out now! Don’t pull a sad face in the first act. Serious, yes, but … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Paul Newman

Today is the great Paul Newman’s birthday. I am so glad that I grew up in a time when Paul Newman was still a leading man (and he was a leading man up until the very end). So I got … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday to “the Ploughman Poet” of Scotland

In other words: Robert Burns. Or perhaps I should say “Rahbbie Barrrrrrrrns.” Right now in Scotland, and around the world, wherever the Scottish gather, people are standing up and proclaiming his verses into crowded pubs, everybody chanting along in unison. … Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Lord Byron

Lord Byron’s epitaph to his dog: One who possessed beauty without vanity, strength without insolence, courage without ferocity, and all the virtues of man, without his vices. This praise would be unmeaning flattery if inscribed over human ashes, is but … Continue reading

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