Friday, August 21, 2009

August 21st

Today is my birthday, so I thought it would be appropriate to investigate what else happened on this day, and to see, just for fun, if any prominent people breathed their first on August 21st. The answer is absolutely extraordinary, downright breathtaking in its nullity. This day is a great void in the history of humankind, for nothing of consequence, even if we stretch the meaning of consequence, happened on this day. Go to the Wikipedia site for August 21st and feast your eyes on that great inventory of nobodies who were born on this day. Oh, you know, I could single out a couple of noteworthy people, Count Basie, Wilt Chamberlain, sort of, but the pickings really are strikingly, shockingly slim.

I have always had this sense that August 21st was a remarkably ordinary day in history, you know, with the exception of my birthday. Now I know with certainty that it is an uncommonly inconsequential day and since my birthday no longer makes any difference to me, I guess I will just have to join everyone else in accepting it as one of the dullest of those very dull dog days of August.


  1. I don't know, Third, don't sell 8/21 short...
    The birth of Sergey Brin, Google founder
    The death of Leon Trotsky
    Hawaii becomes the 50th state so Obama can be pres
    Ruth's 600th home run
    First baseball All-Star game (won by Ruth with an HR)
    Al Brumby hits the 17th inside the park homer in Oriole history
    Netherlands Independence Day
    La Cage aux Folles opens on Broadway for >1700 performances
    Of course, all these pale in comparison to your birth, but what wouldn't.
    Hope you have a happy day!

  2. What can I say to your last point, but your list only reinforces my point!
    Babe Ruth's 600th homerun! La Cage aux Folles! Al Bumbry! You see, these are a sign that someone is stretching the meaning of an event to fill in the otherwise empty spaces. Hey, I like the one about Obama and Hawaii, though.

  3. Um .. wasn't the first baseball All-Star game on July 6, 1933? Anyway, even though your birthday "no longer makes any difference ...", I hope you don't mind if I wish you a happy birthday.