Frankly, I miss these space missions. They made us so proud!
Sunday, January 31, 2010
Frankly, I miss these space missions. They made us so proud!
On this day in 1965, the US House passed the 13th Amendment. It was sent to the states for ratification and approved in November.
It was a great movie!
The great Ernie Banks was born in Dallas, Texas, on this day in 1931. He died in 2014.
My guess is that most people don't know much about his younger days in Dallas, Texas.
Over the years, I've seen some great players in person and TV. Sadly, I never got to see Ernie Banks in person but do recall hearing #500 on WGN radio.
We remember Jackie Robinson, who was born in Cairo, Georgia, on this day in 1919. He died October 24, 1972.
Robinson was one of the biggest sports stories of the 20th century, as we see in this biography from his Hall of Fame page:
He retired with a .311 career batting average plus 137 HR & 734 RBI in 1,382 games.At the end of his first season, Robinson was named the Rookie of the Year. He was named the NL MVP just two years later in 1949, when he led the league in hitting with a .342 average and steals with 37, while also notching a career-high 124 RBI. The Dodgers won six pennants in Robinson’s 10 seasons, but his contributions clearly extended far beyond the field.
Saturday, January 30, 2010
On the ground, US troops won but the media coverage was totally negative and useless. On the political front, the biggest loser was President Johnson who chose not to run for reelection in 1968.
As I learned, the show started on the radio many years ago. In 2010, I heard some of these old radio shows and they were great.
Friday, January 29, 2010
Today, Kansas is a prosperous state and reliably Republican vote. It has a population of 3 million people and a strong economy.
Did you love Peter, Paul & Mary's voices and their many wonderful songs?
We remember today that Peter Paul & Mary signed their first contract with Warner Bros.
Well....and the rest is musical history.
I love the music of Peter, Paul & Mary. I've collected their songs for years and a part of my personal soundtrack. They remind me of so many moments in my life.
Mary Travers died in 2009. We posted a couple of times about her death.
Peter & Paul rarely perform anymore. However, they left us a musical legacy of beautiful tunes.
P.S. Their music is now available in a digital format. And there is this wonderful songbook of guitar chords and lyrics!
It started on this day in 1936. The first class selected to the Baseball Hall of Fame included Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Matthewson and Walter Johnson. Quite a class to say the least!
Cobb retired as the all time hits leaders (4,189) and a .366 lifetime batting average. Pete Rose broke his record in 1985.
Ruth hit 714 HRs, set the single season record with 60 HR in 1927 and retired with a .342 career BA. Henry Aaron and Barry Bonds passed him in 1974 and 2007 respectively. Roger Maris hit 61 in 1961. Barry Bonds hit 71 in 2001!
Wagner had 3,420 hits and a .328 career BA.
Mattewson won 373 games.
Johnson won 424 games, pitched 110 shutouts and had a lifetime 2.17 ERA. How did he lose 279 games with an ERA like that? He also had 3,509 Ks!
On this day in 1964, a very strange movie opened in the US.
It was: Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb! It was based on a rogue officer who decides to use nuclear weapons against the old USSR.
This is what Roger Ebert wrote about the movie:
"Dr. Strangelove" (1964) is filled with great comic performances, and just as well, because there's so little else in the movie apart from faces, bodies and words. Kubrick shot it on four principal locations (an office, the perimeter of an Air Force base, the "War Room," and the interior of a B-52 bomber). His special effects are competent but not dazzling (we are obviously looking at model planes over Russia). The War Room, one of the most memorable of movie interiors, was created by Ken Adam out of a circular desk, a ring of lights, some back-projected maps, and darkness. The headquarters of Gen. Jack D. Ripper, the haywire Air Force general, is just a room with some office furniture in it.Frankly, it was very strange!
Yet out of these rudimentary physical props and a brilliant screenplay (which Kubrick and Terry Southern based on a novel by Peter George), Kubrick made what is arguably the best political satire of the century, a film that pulled the rug out from under the Cold War by arguing that if a "nuclear deterrent" destroys all life on Earth, it is hard to say exactly what it has deterred.
"Dr. Strangelove's" humor is generated by a basic comic principle: People trying to be funny are never as funny as people trying to be serious and failing. The laughs have to seem forced on unwilling characters by the logic of events. A man wearing a funny hat is not funny. But a man who doesn't know he's wearing a funny hat ... ah, now you've got something.
Dr Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb by Peter ... https://t.co/TNooiKMBox via @amazon— Silvio Canto, Jr. (@SCantojr) January 29, 2017
Dr. Strangelove Or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb Amazon In... https://t.co/dR8LDzxp84 via @amazon— Silvio Canto, Jr. (@SCantojr) January 29, 2017
On this day in 1958, Roy Campanella was involved in a career ending car accident. And so ended Campy's career. He never played again.
The injury happened a few months after the Dodgers had played their last game in Brooklyn.
Campy was selected to The Hall of Fame in 1969. He died in 1993. Campanella was the catcher & 3-time NL MVP on the 1955 Brooklyn team that won the World Series.
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Jose Marti was born in Cuba on this day in 1853. His parents were Spanish and settled on the island. At the time, Cuba was a Spanish colony and Marti's generation played a major role in the long and very costly Cuban War of Independence. My father's grandfather was part of that generation and stood up to Spain in the second half of the 19th century. My grandmother’s cousin actually fought in that conflict.
Marti was more of an intellectual than a warrior. His poetry and books are read in every university all over the world. In 1966, one of his poems or "versos sencillos" became the lyrics for "Guantanamera" the pop song recorded by The Sandpipers. ("Yo soy un hombre sincero de donde crece la palma" or "I am a truthfull man from the land of palm trees")
Marti was killed in 1895 in a confrontation with Spanish troops. It happened a couple of years before the Maine exploded in Havana's harbor and the U.S. intervened.
From our early days in the U.S., my father had a picture of Jose Marti on the wall of his home office where he'd play chess. It was next to a pre-Castro "peso bill" with Marti's picture framed on the wall. It was nostalgia and a reminder that the pre-Castro peso actually had the same value as a dollar. My father was a banker in Cuba, so he knew a thing or two about the exchange rates.
Marti's picture was a part of our family pictures on the wall. It was there between our First Communion photos, my parents' wedding, the grandparents and other souvenirs from Cuba. My guess is that most Cuban families have a picture of Marti on their walls too.
My parents also had a Marti quote on their wall:
"Nunca son más bellas las playas del destierro que cuando se les dice adiós."
It loosely translates to “The beaches of the exile are never more beautiful that when you wave good-bye to them.” It's a reminder that many Cubans came to the U.S. hoping for a return to a free Cuba. As my mother used to say, the quote took her back to a beautiful and lovely place called Cuba.
So we remember Jose Marti today and all of those conversations that I had with my late father about the man he called "The Apostle of Cuban independence."
Jose Marti was born on a day like this in 1853. He died in 1895 during a confrontation with Spanish troops in the long and very costly Cuban War of Independence.
Back in 2013, we chatted with Jorge Ponce, a Cuban American who left the island as a youngster with his parents, and Alfredo Cespero from Miami. They joined me for a discussion of Jose Marti's life and what it means for those of us who grew up in the US.
The fighting did not stop because both sides accused the other of violations. The "cease fire" did allow the US to finish its mission and get the POW's out of North Vietnam.
The "cease fire" quickly fell apart in late 1974 when the North invaded much of the South without consequences. In other words, the US did not use its air power to support the South.
South Vietnam collapsed in May 1975. Wonder who would have believed that on this day in 1973?
Years later, President Nixon wrote a great book about the war and how it ended:
And I want to say something to the schoolchildren of America who were watching the live coverage of the shuttle’s takeoff. I know it is hard to understand, but sometimes painful things like this happen. It’s all part of the process of exploration and discovery. It’s all part of taking a chance and expanding man’s horizons. The future doesn’t belong to the fainthearted; it belongs to the brave. The Challenger crew was pulling us into the future, and we’ll continue to follow them.
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
They were Veronica (Ronnie) Bennett, her sister Estelle, and their cousin Nedra Talley. They grew up in New York City's Washington Heights.
The Ronettes, one of the great "girl groups" of pop!
"Laverne and Shirely" made its debut on this day in 1976 and quickly became one of the most popular TV shows of its time.
It was the story of Laverne DeFazio (Penny Marshall) and Shirley Feeney (Cindy Williams). They were a couple of 1950's young women working in a brewery in Milwaukee.
Some may remember that the girls first appeared on a "Happy Days" episode. They eventually landed their own show.
Very funny show!
We discussed Hitler's decision to invade the USSR with Barry Jacobsen:
Nine months later, the Society started publishing the magazine that we grew up reading.
The men killed that day were Virgil "Gus" Grissom, Edward H White and Roger B Chafee. They died in capsule fire a few weeks before their launch date.
The tragedy was a great loss for NASA.
At the same time, the "bench" was so deep that other men stepped up and Apollo 11 landed on the moon in July 1969.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
The Beatles were officially still a working band but John Lennon was already on his own.....his 3rd solo single was "Instant Karma" .....written on this day in 1970 and released a few weeks later......The Beatles officially broke up in April 1970 or 3 months later...
"INSTANT KARMA" John Lennon: http://t.co/JPgjCRhgsC via @YouTube
— Silvio Canto, Jr. (@SCantojr) January 27, 2015
He became one of the top movie stars of the 20th century, from "Somebody Up There Likes Me" (1956) to "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof' (1958) to "Exodus" (1960) to "The Hustler" (1961) to "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" (1969) to "The sting" (1974).
It was a long and successful career. Newman died in 2008.
He graduated from West Point in 1903 and went on to serve in World War I. In World War II, McArthur was the commander of Allied forces in the Pacific. In 1951, President Truman dismissed him for differences over the Korean War. The general died in 1964.
We wish all of our friends in Australia a happy Australia Day.
Back in 1788, a group of British ships landed in what we now call Australia.
Today, Australia is one of the most stable democracies and economies in the world. So that's another reason to say Happy Australia Day!