Friday, April 12, 2013

April 13 is Scrabble Day but...

Almost everything on Saturday has to do with birthdays, really.

Scrabble was invented in 1938 by American architect Alfred Mosher Butts and most of the Usual Suspects agree that April 13 will be Scrabble Day.

But why celebrate Scrabble on April 13? Usual Suspect Holiday Insights candidly acknowledges that it could not figure that out.

For once, however, our crack research staff came through: Alfred Mosher Butts was born in Poughkeepsie, New York on April 13, 1899. (Of course, all the research staff did was look up Butts' bio in Wikipedia.)

And the Usual Suspects also offer Thomas Jefferson Day as an alternative celebration for April 13. Why?

Well, here again, Mr. Jefferson was born April 13, 1743. Let's see... Saturday would be his 270th birthday.

Butch Cassidy, as in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, was born on April 13, 1866 and -- would you believe it? -- the late Don Adams was born 90 years ago, on April 13, 1923.

If you insist on non-birthday related observances... well, Constantinople did fall before 1453 -- on April 13, 1204, to be exact, before the rampaging soldiers of the Fourth Crusade.

King Henry IV of France issued the Edict of Nantes on April 13, 1598, an event that would be a bigger milestone in the history of religious toleration but for the fact that it would be repealed by Henry's grandson, Louis XIV, in 1685.

The explosion that darn near killed the crew of Apollo XIII took place on April 13, 1970. It was very scary to watch at the time; we can barely imagine what it must have been like to live through -- even after repeated viewing of the Ron Howard movie.

Samuel Argall kidnapped Native American princess Pocahontas in Passapatanzy, Virginia on April 13, 1613, exactly 400 years ago. Disney left out a lot of stuff.

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