Thursday, July 31, 2008

Michael Harrington died today – 19 years ago

Author (of Socialism: Past & Future - read Ludwig von Mises’s Socialism: An Economic and Sociological Analysis and this for a better analysis) Edward Michael Harrington was born on February 24, 1928 in St. Louis, Missouri. He said, “Clothes make the poor invisible. America has the best-dressed poverty the world has ever known." [The term "poor" is relative, but people can become wealthier by following Murray N. Rothbard's Man, Economy, and State.]... Mr. Harrington died on July 31, 1989 in Larchmont, New York.

Bobby Van died today – 28 years ago

Actor (in Kiss Me Kate and Lost Horizon) Bobby Van was born as Robert Jack Stein on December 6, 1928 in the Bronx, New York City, New York. Mr. Van died of brain cancer on July 31, 1980 in Los Angeles, California.

Jim Reeves died today – 44 years ago

Singer (of Welcome to My World) James Travis “Jim” Reeves was born on August 20, 1923 in Galloway, Texas. Mr. Reeves died in an airplane crash on July 31, 1964 in Williamson County, Tennessee.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Buffalo Bob Smith died today – 10 years ago

TV show host (of the Howdy Doody show) Buffalo Bob Smith was born as Robert Emil Schmidt on November 27, 1917 in Buffalo, New York. He said, “Say kids, What time is it?!” [And they said, “In what time zone?”]... Mr. Smith died on July 30, 1998 in Hendersonville, North Carolina.

Claudette Colbert died today – 12 years ago

Actress (in Imitation of Life and The Egg and I) Claudette Colbert was born as Émilie Claudette Chauchoin on September 13, 1903 in Saint-Mandé, Seine, France. She said, “Men don't get smarter when they grow older. They just lose their hair." [And that leaves more room for knowledge, doesn’t it?]... Ms. Colbert died on July 30, 1996 in Speightstown, Barbados.

Howard Dietz died today – 25 years ago

Lyricist (of Dancing in the Dark) Howard Dietz was born on September 8, 1896 in New York City, New York. He said, “Composers shouldn't think too much—it interferes with their plagiarism." [Just because I use the same notes, doesn’t mean that I copy. After all, there are only so many of them.]... Mr. Dietz died on July 30, 1983 in New York City, New York.

William Penn died today – 290 years ago

Founder (of the Province of Pennsylvania) William Penn was born on October 14, 1644 in London, England. He said, “A good End cannot sanctify evil Means; nor must we ever do Evil, that Good may come of it." [Amen. Amen!]... Mr. Penn died on July 30, 1718 in Berkshire, England.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Tom Snyder died today – 1 year ago

Talk show host (of The Tomorrow Show and The Late Late Show) Tom Snyder was born on May 12, 1936 Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He said, “When everything is coming your way, you're probably in the wrong lane.” [How about if it’s just a little?]... Mr. Snyder died on July 29, 2007 in San Francisco, California.

Hildegarde died today – 3 years ago

Singer Hildegarde Loretta Sell was born on February 1, 1906 in Adell, Wisconsin. She said, “Darling, Je Vous Aime Beaucoup.” [Je t'aime.]... Hildegarde died on July 29, 2005 in New York.

Fred Waring died today – 24 years ago

Bandleader (with Waring’s Pennsylvanians), TV show host (on The Fred Waring Show), and financial backer (of the Waring Blendor) Fredrick Malcolm was born on June 9, 1900 in Tyrone, Pennsylvania. He said, “Be on your toes tonight - or I'll be on yours tomorrow.” [Not if I run faster than you run.]... Mr. Waring died on July 29, 1984 in State College, Pennsylvania.

Raymond Massey died today – 25 years ago

Actor (in The Scarlet Pimpernel and The Fountainhead) Raymond Hart Massey was born on August 30, 1896 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Mr. Massey died on July 29, 1983 in Los Angeles, California.

David Niven died today – 25 years ago

Actor (in Around the World in Eighty Days and Please Don’t Eat the Daisies) James David Graham Niven was born on March 1, 1910 in London, England. He said, “Keep the circus going inside you, keep it going, don't take anything too seriously, it'll all work out in the end." [And if not, you can just join another sideshow.]... Mr. Niven died on July 29, 1983 in Château-d'Oex, Switzerland.

“Mama" Cass Elliot died today – 34 years ago

Singer (in The Mamas & the Papas) Cass Elliot was born as Ellen Naomi Cohen on September 19, 1941 in Baltimore, Maryland. She said, “I would say the world's in terrible shape, but I'm afraid the world would say, 'Look who's talking!'” [So let's change it all.]... Ms. Elliot died on July 29, 1974 in London, England.

Vincent van Gogh died today – 118 years ago

Painter (of Starry Night Over the Rhone and many more) Vincent Willem van Gogh was born on March 30, 1853 in Zundert, The Netherlands. He said, “One may have a blazing hearth in one's soul and yet no one ever come to sit by it. Passersby see only a wisp of smoke from the chimney and continue on the way." [We need to DO IT!]... Mr. van Gogh died on July 29, 1890 in Auvers-sur-Oise, France.

Robert Schumann died today – 152 years ago

Composer (of MANY works) Robert Schumann was born on June 8, 1810 in Zwickau, Saxony, Germany. He said, “People compose for many reasons: to become immortal; because the pianoforte happens to be open; because they want to become a millionaire; because of the praise of friends; because they have looked into a pair of beautiful eyes; for no reason whatsoever." [You think that he covered them all?]... Mr. Schumann died on July 29, 1856 in Endenich, Prussia, Germany.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Francis Crick died today – 4 years ago

Biologist (co-discovering DNA molecule structure) Francis Harry Compton Crick was born on June 8, 1916 in Weston Favell, Northamptonshire, England. He said, “Let’s do the twist.” [Well, he might have,... eventually.]... Mr. Crick died on July 28, 2004 in San Diego, California.

Jerome Smith died today – 8 years ago

Guitarist (in KC and the Sunshine Band) Jerome Smith was born on June 18, 1953 in Hialeah, Florida. He said, "This guitar has six... whoops, make that five strings." [Well, it happens... sometimes more than once.]... Mr. Smith died on July 28, 2000 in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Roger Tory Peterson died today – 12 years ago

Ornithologist, author (of Peterson Field Guides), and developer (of the Peterson Identification System) Roger Tory Peterson was born on August 28, 1908 in Jamestown, New York. He said, "I never saw a bird that I couldn't classify." [Because he developed the system.]... Mr. Peterson died on July 28, 1996 in Old Lyme, Connecticut.

William James Mayo died today – 69 years ago

Physician (co-founding the Mayo Clinic) William James Mayo was born on June 29, 1861 in Le Sueur, Minnesota. He said, “The examining physician often hesitates to make the necessary examination because it involves soiling the finger." [Ewwwwww!]... Mr. Mayo died on July 28, 1939 in Rochester, Minnesota.

Johann Sebastian Bach died today – 258 years ago

Composer (of MANY works) Johann Sebastian Bach was born on March 21, 1685 in Eisenach, Saxe-Eisenach. He said, “It's easy to play any musical instrument: all you have to do is touch the right key at the right time and the instrument will play itself." [What about the keys that are left?]... Mr. Bach died on July 28, 1750 in Leipzig, Germany.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Bob Hope died today – 5 years ago

Actor (in My Favorite Brunette) Bob Hope was born as Leslie Townes Hope on May 29, 1903 in Eltham, London, England. He said, “You know you are getting old when the candles cost more than the cake." [You just need a bigger cake.]... Mr. Hope died on July 27, 2003 in Toluca Lake, Los Angeles, California.

Miklós Rózsa died today – 13 years ago

Composer (of the film scores for Spellbound and Ben Hur) Miklós Rózsa was born on April 18, 1907 in Budapest, Hungary. Mr. Rózsa died on July 27, 1995 in Los Angeles, California.

Frank Zamboni died today – 20 years ago

Inventor (of the ice resurfacer) Frank Joseph Zamboni, Jr. was born on January 16, 1901 in Eureka, Utah. He said, “Let there be smooth ice.” [You know that he did.]… Mr. Zamboni died on July 27, 1988.

James Mason died today – 24 years ago

Actor (in Ivanhoe) James Neville Mason was born on May 15, 1909 in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, England. (That's close to Holmfirth, the setting of Last of the Summer Wine.)... Mr. Mason died on July 27, 1984 in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Gertrude Stein died today – 62 years ago

Author (of Three Lives) and librettist (for the opera Four Saints in Three Acts) Gertrude Stein was born on February 3, 1874 in Allegheny, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She said, “There ain't no answer. There ain't going to be any answer. There never has been an answer. That's the answer." [Just what was that question again?]... Ms. Stein died on July 27, 1946 in Paris, France.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

John Tukey died today – 8 years ago

John Wilder Tukey was born on June 16, 1915 in New Bedford, Massachusetts. He coined the words “bit” and “software”. Mr. Tukey said, “Far better an approximate answer to the right question, which is often vague, than an exact answer to the wrong question, which can always be made precise.” [OK.]... Mr. Tukey died on July 26, 2000 in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

Mary Wells died today – 16 years ago

Singer (of My Guy) Mary Esther Wells was born on May 13, 1943 in Detroit, Michigan. Ms. Wells died on July 26, 1992 in Los Angeles, California.

George H. Gallup died today – 24 years ago

Inventor (of the Gallup poll) George Horace Gallup was born on November 18, 1901 in Jefferson, Iowa. He said, “Polling is merely an instrument for gauging public opinion. When a president or any other leader pays attention to poll results, he is, in effect, paying attention to the views of the people. Any other interpretation is nonsense.” [What other interpretation would there be? That they’d make ethical decisions based upon the polls? Surely not... Anyway, try this poll.]... Mr. Gallup died on July 26, 1984 in Tschingel, Switzerland.

Diane Arbus died today – 37 years ago

Photographer (of Identical Twins, Roselle, New Jersey, 1967) Diane Arbus was born as Diane Nemerov on March 14, 1923 in New York City, New York. She said, “I never have taken a picture I've intended. They're always better or worse." [Just point and click and hope for the best.]... Ms. Arbus died on July 26, 1971 in Greenwich Village, New York City, New York.

Frank Loesser died today – 39 years ago

Composer/lyricist (of the musicals Guys and Dolls and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying and the songs Baby, It’s Cold Outside and Inchworm) and lyricist (of Heart and Soul) Frank Henry Loesser was born on June 29, 1910 in New York City, New York. He said, ... Well, check it out... Mr. Loesser died on July 26, 1969 in New York City, New York.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Charlie Rich died today – 13 years ago

Singer (of Behind Closed Doors) Charlie Rich was born on December 14, 1932 in Colt, Arkansas. He said, “At first I didn't dig country.” [It can grow on one.]... Mr. Rich died on July 25, 1995 in Hammond, Louisiana.

Vincente Minnelli died today – 22 years ago

Director (of Brigadoon, Kismet, Gigi, The Sandpiper, and On A Clear Day You Can See Forever) Vincente Minnelli was born as Lester Anthony Minnelli on February 28, 1903 in Chicago, Illinois. He said, “I learn new things all the time.” [Great. Here are some more.]... Mr. Minnelli died on July 25, 1986 in Beverly Hills, California.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge died today – 174 years ago

Author (of the poems The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Christabel, and Kubla Khan, or a Vision in a Dream. A Fragment) Samuel Taylor Coleridge was born on October 21, 1772 in Devonshire, England. He said, “Advice is like snow - the softer it falls, the longer it dwells upon, and the deeper in sinks into the mind." [Try this good advice.]... Mr. Coleridge died on July 25, 1834 in Highgate, England.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Kay Kyser died today – 23 years ago

Bandleader and singer (on Kay Kyser's Kollege of Musical Knowledge) James Kern “Kay” Kyser was born on June 18, 1905 in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. He said, “That’s right—you’re wrong.” [And sometimes they were.]… Mr. Kyser died on July 24, 1985 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Peter Sellers died today – 28 years ago

Actor (in The Pink Panther films) Peter Sellers was born as Richard Henry Sellers on September 8, 1925 in Portsmouth, England. He said, “There used to be a me behind the mask, but I had it surgically removed." [You can alter yours with The Positivity Blog.]... Mr. Sellers died on July 24, 1980 in London, England.

Barbara Colby died today – 33 years ago

Actress (on Phyllis) Barbara Colby was born on July 2, 1940 in New York City, New York. Ms. Colby died on July 24, 1975 in Venice, California.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Myron Floren died today – 3 years ago

Accordionist (on The Lawrence Welk Show) Myron Floren was born on November 5, 1919 in Roslyn, South Dakota. Mr. Floren died on July 23, 2005 in Rolling Hills, California.

Eudora Welty died today – 7 years ago

Author (of The Optimist’s Daughter) Eudora Alice Welty was born on April 13, 1909 in Jackson, Mississippi. She said, “Never think you've seen the last of anything." [A lot of people just don’t learn from history. Here’s a great place to start.]... Ms. Welty died from pneumonia on July 23, 2001 in Jackson, Mississippi.

Montgomery Clift died today – 42 years ago

Actor (in Freud) Edward Montgomery Clift was born on October 17, 1920 in Omaha, Nebraska. He said, “The only line that's wrong in Shakespeare is 'holding a mirror up to nature.' You hold a magnifying glass up to nature. As an actor you just enlarge it enough so that your audience can identify with the situation. If it were a mirror, we would have no art." [People'd just be looking at themselves... Scary!]... Mr. Clift died from heart failure on July 23, 1966 in New York City, New York.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Estelle Getty died today

Actress (in Mannequin and The Golden Girls) Estelle Getty was born as Estelle Scher on July 25, 1923 in New York City, New York. She said, "If love means never having to say you're sorry, then marriage means always having to say everything twice." [Huh?]... Ms. Getty died on July 22, 2008 in Los Angeles, California.

Carl Sandburg died today – 41 years ago

Author (of the Rootabaga Stories) Carl August Sandburg was born on January 6, 1878 in Galesburg, Illinois. He said, “Here is the difference between Dante, Milton, and me. They wrote about hell and never saw the place. I wrote about Chicago after looking the town over for years and years." [But what about the thermodynamics of hell and Chicago?]... Mr. Sandburg died on July 22, 1967 in Flat Rock, North Carolina.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Jerry Goldsmith died today – 4 years ago

Composer (for the films Planet of the Apes, Papillon, The Reincarnation of Peter Proud, Logan’s Run, Poltergeist, Innerspace, The River Wild, and many, many others) Jerrald King “Jerry” Goldsmith was born on February 10, 1929 in Los Angeles, California. He said, “If our music survives, which I have no doubt it will, then it will because it is good." [Or, because, as he said, “My wife has them all in a vault... a copy of every album.”]... Mr. Goldsmith died on July 21, 2004 in Beverly Hills, California.

Robert Young died today – 10 years ago

Actor (in Father Knows Best and Marcus Welby, M.D.) Robert George Young was born on February 22, 1907 in Chicago, Illinois. He said, “People are terrified about a lot of things that will never happen to them.” [Well, we do watch the “news” when we could be watching John Stossel.]... Mr. Young died on July 21, 1998 in Westlake Village, California.

Herb Edelman died today – 12 years ago

Actor (in The Golden Girls) Herbert "Herb" Edelman was born on November 5, 1933 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York. He said, “Hello Sophia, you're looking younger every day.” Then Sophia said, “Hi Stan, and that's a beautiful toupee you're wearing. Great, now we're both liars.” [She just HAD to tell the truth, didn’t she?]... Mr. Edelman died on July 21, 1996 in Woodland Hills, California.

Robert G. Ingersoll died today – 109 years ago

Orator and author (of How To Reform Mankind and other works) Robert Green Ingersoll was born on August 11, 1833 in Dresden, New York. He said, “Give to every human being every right that you claim for yourself." [And then some.]... Mr. Ingersoll died on July 21, 1899 in Walston, Dobbs Ferry-on-Hudson, New York.

Robert Burns died today – 212 years ago

Author (of the poems Auld Lang Syne, Scots Wha Hae, and A Red, Red Rose) Robert Burns was born on January 25, 1759 in Alloway, Ayrshire, Scotland. He said, “Man's inhumanity to man makes countless thousands mourn!" [So let’s change it.]... Mr. Burns died on July 21, 1796 in Dumfries, Scotland.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Tammy Faye Bakker died today – 1 year ago

Tamara "Tammy" Faye Bakker Messner was born as Tamara Faye LaValley on March 7, 1942 in International Falls, Minnesota. She said, “You don't have to be dowdy to be a Christian.” [And she wasn’t.]... Ms. Messner died of cancer on July 20, 2007 in Loch Lloyd, Missouri.

James Doohan died today – 3 years ago

Actor (in Star Trek and Star Trek) James Montgomery Doohan was born on March 3, 1920 in Vancouver, British Columbia. He said, “Space, the final frontier.” [Well, not necessarily.]... Mr. Doohan died on July 20, 2005 in Redmond, Washington.

Sandra Gould died today – 9 years ago

Actress (in Bewitched) Sandra Gould was born on July 23, 1916 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York. She said, "Ab-ner!" [Many times.]... Ms. Gould died on July 20, 1999 in Burbank, California.

Vince Foster died today – 15 years ago

Vincent Walker Foster, Jr. was born on January 15, 1945 in Hope, Arkansas. Mr. Foster died on July 20, 1993 in Fairfax County, Virginia.

Bruce Lee died today – 35 years ago

Actor (in Enter the Dragon) Bruce Lee was born on November 27, 1940 in San Francisco, California. He said, “A goal is not always meant to be reached, it often serves simply as something to aim at.” [Be sure to aim high.]... Mr. Lee died on July 20, 1973 in Hong Kong.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Jack Warden died today – 2 years ago

Actor (in Crazy Like a Fox) Jack Warden was born as John H. Lebzelter on September 18, 1920 in Newark, New Jersey. He said, “Life is a state of mind.” [Just be in a positive state of mind.],,. Mr. Warden died on July 19, 2006 in New York City, New York.

Lefty Frizzell died today – 33 years ago

Singer (of Blue Yodel #6), songwriter, and guitarist William Orville “Lefty” Frizzell was born on March 31, 1928 in Corsicana, Texas. He said, “When I sing, to me every word has a feeling about it. I had to linger, had to hold it, I didn't want to let go of it. I want to hold one word through a whole line of melody." [I think that I’d at least except the “a”’s and the “an”’s and the “the”’s.]... Mr. Frizzell died on July 19, 1975 in Nashville, Tennessee.

Joe Flynn died today – 34 years ago

Actor (in McHale’s Navy) Joe Flynn was born on November 8, 1924 in Youngstown, Ohio. Mr. Flynn died on July 19, 1974 in Los Angeles, California.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Karl A. Menninger died today – 18 years ago

Psychiatrist Karl Augustus Menninger was born on July 22, 1893 in Topeka, Kansas. He thought that insanity might be caused by... demons. [Yep. Check it out. Then see Thomas Szasz’s thoughts.]... Mr. Menninger died on July 18, 1990.

Jane Austen died today – 191 years ago

Author (of Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, and Emma) Jane Austen was born on December 16, 1775 in Steventon, Hampshire, England. She said, “One man's style must not be the rule of another's." [And that ain’t negative.]... Ms. Austen died on July 18, 1817 in Winchester, England.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Billie Holiday died today – 49 years ago

Singer and composer (of Lady Sings the Blues) Billie Holiday was born as Eleanora Fagan on April 7, 1915 in Baltimore, Maryland. She said, “I never hurt nobody but myself and that's nobody's business but my own." [That sounds like this book.]... Ms. Holiday died on July 17, 1959 in New York City, New York.

James McNeil Whistler died today – 105 years ago

Painter (of an “Arrangement in Gray and Black: Portrait of the Artist's Mother”, otherwise known as Whistler’s Mother) James Abbott McNeil Whistler was born on July 14, 1834 in Lowell, Massachusetts. He said, “You should not say it is not good. You should say you do not like it; and then, you know, you're perfectly safe." [Well, some stuff is just ridiculous, even if I don’t like it.]... Mr. Whistler died on July 17, 1903 in London, England.

Adam Smith died today – 218 years ago

Philosopher, economist, and author (of The Theory of Moral Sentiments and An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations) Adam Smith was born on June 5, 1723 in Kirkcaldy, Scotland. He said, “On the road from the City of Skepticism, I had to pass through the Valley of Ambiguity." [Then on to the Mountain of Certainty.]... Mr. Smith died on July 17, 1790 in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Celia Cruz died today – 5 years ago

Singer (of many songs) Celia Cruz was born as Úrsula Hilaria Celia Caridad Cruz Alfonso on October 21, 1925 in Havana, Cuba. She said, "I always clean before the cleaning lady comes. If not, when I come home, I can't find anything. Cleaning ladies are always hiding things you leave out." [Or moving the furniture around so that you trip over it if it's dark when you come home.]... Ms. Cruz died on July 16, 2003 in Fort Lee, New Jersey.

Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy died today – 9 years ago

Carolyn Jeanne Bessette-Kennedy was born on January 7, 1966 in White Plains, Westchester County, New York. She was the wife of John F. Kennedy, Jr... Mrs. Bessette-Kennedy died in an airplane crash in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Martha's Vineyard on July 16, 1999.

John F. Kennedy, Jr. died today – 9 years ago

Publisher (of the magazine George) John F. Kennedy, Jr. was born on November 25, 1960 in Washington, D.C. Mr. Kennedy died in an airplane crash in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Martha's Vineyard on July 16, 1999.

Harry Chapin died today – 27 years ago

Singer and songwriter (of Cat’s in the Cradle) Harry Forster Chapin was born on December 7, 1942 in New York City, New York. He said, “When you're going nowhere, anywhere's a better place to be." [Unless it’s worse than “nowhere”.]... Mr. Chapin died from an automobile crash on July 16, 1981 on the Long Island Expressway, Jericho, New York.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Gianni Versace died today – 11 years ago

Clothing designer (founding Gianni Versace S.p.A.) Gianni Versace was born on December 2, 1946 in Reggio Calabria, Italy. He said, “I try to contrast; life today is full of contrast... We have to change.” [Let's start by learning what we should have been taught.]... Mr. Versace was killed on July 15, 1997 in Miami Beach, Florida.

Dana Hill died today – 12 years ago

Actress (in European Vacation) Dana Hill was born as Dana Lynne Goetz on May 6, 1964 in Los Angeles, California. Ms. Hill died from a stroke from diabetes complications on July 15, 1996 in Burbank, California.

Bert Convy died today – 17 years ago

Game show host (on Tattletales and Win, Lose or Draw) and singer (in The Cheers) Bernard Whalen "Bert" Convy was born on July 23, 1933 in St. Louis, Missouri. Mr. Convy died from a brain tumor on July 15, 1991 in Los Angeles, California.

Paul Gallico died today – 32 years ago

Author (of The Poseidon Adventure) Paul William Gallico was born on July 26, 1897 in New York City, New York. He said, “If there is any larceny in a man, golf will bring it out.” [Oh, my!]... Mr. Gallico died on July 15, 1976 in Antibes.

Anton Chekhov died today – 104 years ago

Author (of the plays The Seagull and Three Sisters) Anton Pavlovich Chekhov was born on January 29, 1860 in Taganrog, Russian Empire. He said, “The world perishes not from bandits and fires, but from hatred, hostility, and all these petty squabbles." [And all of that negativity.]... Mr. Chekhov died from heart failure on July 15, 1904 in Badenweiler, German Empire.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Meredith MacRae died today – 8 years ago

Actress (in Petticoat Junction) Meredith MacRae was born on May 30, 1944 in Houston, Texas. Her father was Gordon MacRae. Ms. MacRae died from brain cancer on July 14, 2000 in Manhattan Beach, California.

George DeWitt died today – 29 years ago

Singer (in Name That Tune) George DeWitt was born as George Florentine on December 30, 1922 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Mr. DeWitt died from a heart attack on July 14, 1979 in Miami, Florida.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Red Buttons died today – 2 years ago

Comedian, singer, and actor (in The Poseidon Adventure) Red Buttons was born as Aaron Chwatt on February 5, 1919 in New York City, New York. He said, “Dinah Shore? Wonderful woman. Dinah formed a foundation to locate missing senior citizens by putting their pictures on prune juice bottles." [It was better than baby jars. That might've caused too many tears.]... Mr. Buttons died on July 13, 2006 in Century City, Los Angeles, California.

Frida Kahlo died today – 54 years ago

Painter (of her self-portrait) Frida Kahlo was born as Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo y Calderón on July 6, 1907 in Coyoacán, Mexico. She said, “I paint self-portraits because I am so often alone, because I am the person I know best." [What do you know best?]... Ms. Kahlo died from respiratory failure on July 13, 1954 in Coyoacán, Mexico.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Jimmy Driftwood died today – 10 years ago

Singer and composer (of The Battle of New Orleans) Jimmy Driftwood was born as James Corbitt Morris on June 20, 1907 in Mountain View, Arkansas. Mr. Driftwood died on July 12, 1998 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Minnie Riperton died today – 29 years ago

Singer (of Lovin’ You) Minnie Julia Riperton was born on November 8, 1947 in Chicago, Illinois. Ms. Riperton died from breast cancer on July 12, 1979 in Los Angeles, California.

Ted Mack died today – 32 years ago

Host (of The Original Amateur Hour) Ted Mack was born as William Edward Maguiness on February 12, 1904 in Greeley, Colorado. Mr. Mack died on July 12, 1976 in North Tarrytown, New York.

Lon Chaney, Jr. died today – 35 years ago

Actor (in 16 Fathoms Deep) Lon Chaney, Jr. was born as Creighton Tull Chaney on February 10, 1906 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Mr. Chaney died on July 12, 1973 in San Clemente, California.

Desiderius Erasmus died today – 472 years ago

Author (of The Praise of Folly) Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus was born on October 27, 1466 or 1469 in Rotterdam. He said, “No one respects a talent that is concealed." [So get out there and show it.]... Mr. Erasmus died on July 12, 1536 in Basel.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Bernard Hughes died today – 2 years ago

Actor (in Blossom) Bernard Aloysius Kiernan “Barnard” Hughes was born on July 16, 1915 in Bedford Hills, New York. Mr. Hughes died on July 11, 2006 in New York City, New York.

Laurence Olivier died today – 19 years ago

Actor (in Wuthering Heights) Laurence Kerr Olivier was born on May 22, 1907 in Dorking, Surrey, England. He said, “I take a simple view of life: keep your eyes open and get on with it." [And do it.]... Mr. Olivier died on July 11, 1989 in Steyning, West Sussex, England.

George Gershwin died today – 71 years ago

Composer (of Rhapsody in Blue and An American in Paris) George Gershwin was born as Jacob Gershowitz on September 26, 1898 in Brooklyn, New York. He said, “Life is a lot like jazz... it's best when you improvise." [So let’s get the freedom to be jazz-y.]... Mr. Gershwin died from brain cancer on July 11, 1937 in Hollywood, California.

Alexander Hamilton died today – 204 years ago

Author (of the Federalist Papers) Alexander Hamilton was born on January 11, 1755 or 1757 in Nevis, Carribean. He said, “A national debt, if it is not excessive, will be to us a national blessing." [Oh, well. Maybe it can just be cancelled.]... Mr. Hamilton died on July 12, 1804 in New York City, New York.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Mel Blanc died today – 19 years ago

Voice artist (of Bugs Bunny) Melvin "Mel" Jerome Blanc was born on May 30, 1908 in San Francisco, California. He said, “That's all folks!" [And eventually, it was.]... Mr. Blanc died on July 10, 1989 in Los Angeles, California.

Arthur Fiedler died today – 29 years ago

Conductor (of the Boston Pops Orchestra) Arthur Fiedler was born on December 17, 1894 in Boston, Massachusetts. He said, “Give me a one and a two and a...” [Oh, wait. I think that was him.]... Mr. Fiedler died on July 10, 1979 in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Jelly Roll Morton died today – 67 years ago

Pianist and composer (of Pontchartrain) Jelly Roll Morton was born as Ferdinand Joseph Lamothe on September 20, 1885 or October 20, 1890 in New Orleans, Louisiana. He said, “Get up from that piano. You hurtin' its feelings." [He certainly wasn’t talking about Arthur Rubinstein or Sergei Rachmaninoff.]... Mr. Morton died from heart failure on July 10, 1941 in Los Angeles, Califonia.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Charles Lane died today – 1 year ago

Actor (in Dear Phoebe, Dennis the Menace, Petticoat Junction, The Beverly Hillbillies, Bewitched, Maude, and Soap) Charles Gerstle Lane was born on January 26, 1905 in San Francisco, California. He said, “Oh, Great Scott!” [Well, he probably thought it, when he said it.]... Mr. Lane died on July 9, 2007 in Santa Monica, California.

Isabel Sanford died today – 4 years ago

Actress (in All in the Family and The Jeffersons) Isabel Sanford was born as Eloise Gwendolyn Sanford on August 29, 1917 in New York City, New York. She said, (about her Hollywood Walk of Fame's star), “Here with stars in my eyes - something that I dreamed about when I was 9 years old. There are others that deserve it, but let everybody get their own.” [I know that I’m still waiting for mine. How about you?]... Ms. Sanford died on July 9, 2004 in Los Angeles, California.

Rod Steiger died today – 6 years ago

Actor (in W.C. Fields and Me and Doctor Zhivago) Rodney Stephen “Rod” Steiger was born on April 14, 1925 in Westhampton, New York. He said, “We come. We go. And in between we try to understand." [I'll assume that he wasn’t referring to some movies.]... Mr. Steiger died on July 9, 2002 in Los Angeles, California.

Eric Sevareid died today – 16 years ago

News journalist Arnold Eric Sevareid was born on November 26, 1912 in Velva, North Dakota. He said, “I have never quite grasped the worry about the power of the press. After all, it speaks with a thousand voices, in constant dissonance.” [It's probably more in the millions, now... Yeah!]... Mr. Sevareid died on July 9, 1992 in Washington, D.C.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

June Allyson died today – 2 years ago

Actress (in The Glenn Miller Story) June Allyson was born as Eleanor Geisman on October 7, 1917 in the Bronx, New York City, New York. She said, "Wear things that are dependable." [Well, she said something like that.],,, Ms. Allyson died on July 8, 2006 in Ojai, California.

Dick Sargent died today – 14 years ago

Actor (in Bewitched) Dick Sargent was born as Richard Stanford Cox on April 19, 1930 in Carmel, California. Mr. Sargent died on July 8, 1994 in Los Angeles, California.

Robert E. Lee died today – 14 years ago

Playwright (of Auntie Mame) and lyricist (of Shangri-La) Robert Edwin Lee was born on October 15, 1918. Mr. Lee died on July 8, 1994.

James Franciscus died today – 17 years ago

Actor (in Beneath the Planet of the Apes and Longstreet) James Grover Franciscus was born on January 31, 1934 in Clayton, Missouri. Mr. Franciscus died on July 8, 1991 in North Hollywood, California.

Howard Duff died today – 18 years ago

Actor (in Flamingo Road and Knots Landing) Howard Green Duff was born on November 24, 1913 in Charleston, Washington. Mr. Duff died on July 8, 1990 in Santa Barbara, California.

Havelock Ellis died today – 69 years ago

Author (of these works) Henry Havelock Ellis was born on February 2, 1859 in Croydon, London, England. He said, “The more rapidly a civilization progresses, the sooner it dies for another to rise in its place." [How long do we have?]... Mr. Ellis died on July 8, 1939 in Hintlesham, Suffolk, England.

Percy Bysshe Shelley died today – 186 years ago

Author (of the poems Ozymandias and Ode to the West Wind and the play Prometheus Unbound)) Percy Bysshe Shelley was born on August 4, 1792 in Horsham, England. He said, “Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought." [Check that one out.]... Mr. Shelley died on July 8, 1822 in Livorno, Italy.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Veronica Lake died today – 35 years ago

Actress (in the Lux Video Theatre) Veronica Lake was born as Constance Frances Marie Ockelman on November 14, 1922 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York. She said, “You could put all the talent I had into your left eye and still not suffer from impaired vision." [Oh, but what eyes those could be.]... Ms. Lake died on July 7, 1973 in Burlington, Vermont.

Arthur Conan Doyle died today – 78 years ago

Creator (of Sherlock Holmes) and author (of The Hound of the Baskervilles) Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle was born on May 22, 1859 in Edinburgh, Scotland. He said, “From a drop of water a logician could infer the possibility of an Atlantic or a Niagara without having seen or heard of one or the other." [But it helps.]... Mr. Doyle died on July 7, 1930 in Crowborough, Sussex, England.

Johanna Spyri died today – 107 years ago

Author (of Heidi) Johanna Spyri was born as Johanna Louise Heusser on June 12, 1827 in Hirzel, Switzerland. She said, “Anger has overpowered him, and driven him to a revenge which was rather a stupid one, I must acknowledge, but anger makes us all stupid." [Probably so.]... Ms. Spyri died on July 7, 1901 in Zürich, Switzerland.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Buddy Ebsen died today – 5 years ago

Dancer and actor (in The Beverly Hillbillies and Barnaby Jones) Buddy Ebsen was born as Christian Rudolph Ebsen, Jr. on April 2, 1908 in Belleville, Illinois. He said, “Writing fiction, there are no limits to what you write as long as it increases the value of the paper you are writing on." [Well, there's a lot of wasted paper.]... Mr. Ebsen died on July 6, 2003 in Torrance, California.