Monday, August 26, 2013

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder"

Irish novelist Margaret Wolfe Hungerford may be best remembered today for this phrase.

But, as Wikipedia documents, Hungerford was quite a prolific and successful author in the late 1800s.

In the United States, Hungerford's works were issued under the pen name "The Duchess."

Thus, as several of the Usual Suspects attest, Tuesday, August 27 is The Duchess Who Wasn't Day -- because Mrs. Hungerford wasn't actually a duchess. Get it?

We are unable to advise why Tuesday should be The Duchess Who Wasn't Day. There were some online sources that suggested that this was the anniversary of Mrs. Hungerford's birth, but Wikipedia demurs. Wikipedia says Hungerford was born on April 27.

Maybe we should say Tuesday is The Duchess Who Wasn't Day just because. Usual Suspect Holiday Insights offers Just Because Day for your consideration Tuesday. Do something Tuesday for no particular reason -- but just because you want to. That could include celebrating Banana Lovers Day. Usual Suspect says that's what August 27 will be.

Usual Suspect mentions National Petroleum Day as an occasion for celebration Tuesday. But is this a day to celebrate the miracles wrought by the internal combustion engine or to contemplate how we may break free of the chains of gasoline? Our research was inconclusive; you are apparently free to decide for yourself.

Barbara Bach from the movie Caveman.
Did you seriously think we'd go with
a picture of Charles G. Dawes?
Is an oil refinery a beautiful thing? How about a oil shale mine? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I suppose, but a future free of gasoline sounds more beautiful to us.

Actress Barbara Bach -- Mrs. Ringo Starr if we're being formal -- turns 66 on Tuesday.

Before LeBron James appropriated them, the initials LBJ belonged to President Lyndon Baines Johnson. Johnson was born on August 27, 1908.

Former Vice President Charles G. Dawes was born on August 27, 1865. Dawes served as Vice President under Calvin Coolidge. He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1925 and, although he died in 1951, Dawes is credited with a number one hit record that charted in 1958.

No, seriously.

Dawes wrote the melody to Tommy Edwards' big hit, "It's All in the Game," in 1911 or 1912. Dawes originally used the catchy title, "Melody in A Major," but the song enjoyed some popularity even so. Lyrics -- the ones you may remember -- were added by Carl Sigman in 1951. Dawes, according to the linked Wikipedia bio, is the only Vice President of the United States or Nobel Peace Prize winner ever to have a record hit the top of the charts. He was also the last national office holder from the Chicago area until President Barack Obama (the first, and only other, was Adlai Stevenson I).

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