Archive for September 2013

Robinson Crusoe: The Prototypical Survivor

Born today was Robinson Crusoe. Haven’t read Defoe? Please do so. Based on the tale of a real shipwreck, His survival, you might say, was real low-tech. “I know not what to call this, nor will I urge that it is a secret, overruling decree, that hurries us on to be the instruments of our own... Read more »

Miguel Cervantes: The Spanish Shakespeare

Today’s birthday is  Miguel Cervantes’s Who wrote of Quixote and his fantasies. Made mad by chivalrous romances The Don would tilt at windmills with his lances. “Just then they came in sight of thirty or forty windmills that rise from that plain. And no sooner did Don Quixote see them that he said to his... Read more »

Al Capp: Comic Genius with a Dark Side

Today’s birthday? Al Capp’s. You may have heard of him perhaps. He drew Li’l Abner who lived at his Pap’s With Daisy Mae Scragg, his marital match, And Sadie Hawkins who was looking for a catch, And the dark -clouded Btfsplk in Li’l Dogpatch. “Although the dark side wasn’t their primary focus—Schumacher and Kitchen were adamant about... Read more »

Thomas Nast: The Father of the Modern Political Cartoon

Born today was Thomas Nast, Political cartoonist in the distant past. A donkey and elephant through his eyes we see That  symbolize the Democrats and the  GOP.     ” Cartoonist Thomas  Nast is  credited with making the donkey the recognized symbol  of the Democratic  Party.   It first appeared in a cartoon in Harper’s Weekly   in 1870, and was supposed to represent an... Read more »

Theodore Gericault: "The First Great Visual Critic of the Industrial Revolution"

Today’s birthday is Gericault’s Who lived with passion and intensity. “The Raft of the Medusa” shows His skill and this propensity.     Based on an actual shipwreck  in 1818 of a French ship en route to Senegal, “The Raft of the Medusa” has been described as a metaphor of man’s inhumanity to man. Gericault,... Read more »

Johnny Sain: His Pitching Was Poetry

Born today was Johnny Sain Who hurled  a bit before my time. But “Spahn and Sain and Pray for Rain” Preserves his memory in rhyme. “It’s not so much my pitching people know, but that little poem about me and Johnny Sain with the forty-eight Braves.” – Warren Spahn

F. Scott Fitzgerald: The Gold Standard of American Fiction

Born today was Scott Fitzgerald. His “Great Gatsby” the critics all herald. Its protagonist, whose first name’s Jay, Is a mystery in an enigma, as Churchill might say. “If personality is an unbroken series of successful gestures, then there was something gorgeous about him, some heightened sensitivity to the promise of life, as if he were related to one... Read more »

Kublai Khan: Only the British Empire Eclipsed the Size of His

Born today was Kublai Khan Whom Coleridge did write upon.* He led his martial Mongol horde And conquered China with the sword. * “In Xanadu did Kubla Khan A stately pleasure-dome decree: Where Alph, the sacred river, ran Through caverns measureless to man Down to a sunless sea. So twice five miles of fertile ground... Read more »

Michael Faraday: In Physics and Chemistry Few Hold a Candle to Him

Today’s birthday is Michael Faraday’s. Probed into electric- magnetic interplays. Also he got us in lectures   a  handle On the enlightening  combustion of a candle. “There is no better, there is no more open door by which you can enter into the study of natural philosophy than by considering the physical phenomenon of a candle.” [Michael... Read more »

H.G. Wells: Visionary Writer of Sci-Fi

Born today was H.G. Wells Who knew that science-fiction sells. And so he wrote “The Time Machine” And made himself a lot of green. Tag Line: “We were making the future, he said, and hardly any of us troubled to think what kind we were making. And here it is.”