Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Wednesday is Buy a Musical Instrument Day, National Maritime Day, Tommy John's birthday

The Usual Suspects don't have a lot to offer for Wednesday, May 22, but they are consistent: Wednesday is Buy a Musical Instrument Day.

Our crack research staff is still checking to see whether an accordion qualifies as a musical instrument. (The preliminary indication is negative.)

We pointed this out last year, and we stand by it: Buy a Musical Instrument Day is different from Toot Your Own Horn Day. Toot Your Own Horn Day is observed every day on LinkedIn.

May 22 is also National Maritime Day, a day to recognize America's maritime industry. According to Wikipedia, there are many more American-owned ships registered, or flagged, in other countries than registered in our own.

Left-handed pitcher Tommy John had a 26-year career, pitching for a number of major league baseball clubs in that time (including our own Chicago White Sox). John's 288 career victories rank seventh all time among southpaw hurlers. Yet Tommy John is probably best remembered today for the surgery he underwent in 1974. Although he missed the entire 1975 season recovering from the arm operation (performed by Dr. Frank Jobe), John would come back to pitch for another 13 years, finally retiring in 1989 after Mark McGwire touched him for a couple of hits.

Of course McGwire got hits from a lot of pitchers, but it bothered John more because, as it happened, Mark McGwire's father was Tommy John's dentist. According to the linked Wikipedia biography, John told reporters, "When your dentist's kid starts hitting you, it's time to retire!"

Tommy John was born May 22, 1943. He turns 70 on Wednesday.

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