May Day Challenge – May 21st

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

Kickin’ It

A lot of semi-interesting events took place on May 21st throughout history, however I found myself uninspired by any of them. I’m not saying they were unimportant or even boring, I just find myself sitting here on a Saturday morning thinking of anything and everything else besides writing about this day in history!

But…on my third or fourth review of a website list, I found something which held a special meaning for me.

May 21, 1904 – Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) was founded. Soccer!

I never played organized sports myself as a youth or an adult, but when my son turned four, I decided we both needed to make new friends. So I signed him up for youth soccer in our neighborhood. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Life as we knew it changed at that point. Not only did we make friends and open up a whole new world of social activities, but we also found something we could enjoy together. He loved playing, and I loved watching him, and the routine of weekly practices and matches gave us structure and something to look forward to each week. Of course it didn’t hurt that my son is a natural athlete. He wasn’t necessarily the best, but he had frequent moments of brilliance on the field.

Playing on the field gave way to playing in the virtual world through video games, and to this day, soccer is still a part of my son’s life. Last year when he started his freshman year at college, he stayed local and decided to live at home. He was happy with his choice, but when all of his friends gradually left for out-of-town schools, he went through a phase of disappointment and loneliness.

I suggested he check out the intramural soccer leagues at his school, and he instantly shot down that idea. But as is my motherly duty, I kept mentioning it until one day he texted me saying he stopped by the soccer fields and signed up. The next night he had a scrimmage game and that evening I got another text. My son, wasn’t going to be home for dinner because he was going out with “some new friends from soccer”.

Once again, soccer saved the day!

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May Day Challenge – May 19th

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

Is it Really so Good to be King?

Before I even had a chance to think about what to write today, a friend told me about the following historical event, and it turned out to be exactly what I would have chosen.

May 19, 1536 – Anne Boleyn, the second wife of Henry VIII of England, was beheaded for adultery, treason, and incest.

King Henry VIII had many mistresses while married to his first wife, Catherine, but Anne refused to be simply a mistress. That of course made the king pursue her even harder. The Pope at the time refused to grant King Henry an annulment of his marriage to Catherine, and this is seen as the beginning of the rift between the Catholic Church and the British Monarchy.

On May 23, 1533, newly appointed Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Cranmer declared Henry and Catherine’s marriage null and void; five days later, he declared Henry and Anne’s marriage valid. As Queen of England, Anne gave birth to future Queen Elizabeth I, but failed to give the King a son. That among other things caused the King to lose interest and seek to negate his marriage to Anne. Instead, he had her investigated for high treason and subsequently beheaded. It’s good to be king.

What I find even more interesting is the fact that after Anne’s death, the marriage to Henry VIII was annulled and their daughter Elizabeth was declared illegitimate. Still, Queen Elizabeth I managed an almost fifty year reign in England and the time became know as the Elizabethan Era. The period is famous for the flourishing of English drama, led by playwrights such as William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe, and for the seafaring prowess of English adventurers such as Francis Drake.

Following the coronation of her daughter as Queen, Anne Boleyn was renowned as a martyr and heroine of the English Reformation. Some argued that she saved England from the evils of Roman Catholicism and that God had provided proof of her innocence and virtue by making sure her daughter Elizabeth I ascended the throne. Revenge of the sweetest kind.

May Day Challenge – May 18th

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

B.C. (Before Coco)

May 18, 2013, my little Chihuahua Sara passed away. She was only ten years old and it was a pretty big shock. I just woke up that morning, noticed she was having trouble breathing, and by evening she was gone. It wasn’t the first time I had lost a pet or even a dog, but it was the first time I cried over an animal.

Sara was very special to me. I got her as a tiny pup in November of 2002 (about a month after my mom passed away). At the time, I think I just needed something new in my life. And it needed to be something I could grow to love. Sara was indeed that.

People tried to tell me how mean and unsocial the Chihuahua breed is, but we proved everyone wrong, because Sara was the sweetest most loving animal I had ever come across. Yes, she had a strong attachment to me and the common protective nature. However, she loved when we had company and always made a point of schmoozing with every party guest. She certainly was unique.

And she brought out a side of Austin that was wonderful to see develop. He treated her like his child, caring for her and showering her with love.

So I dedicate today’s post to Sara (a.k.a. sairba, a.k.a. shubbie, a.k.a puppy).

Austin and I love and miss you, and Coco, does too.

May Day Challenge – May 17th

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

Who Cares Who Loves Who

One thing I have noticed throughout this challenge is the striking amount of coincidences. Yesterday, I wrote about several firsts among females in the military and politics, and on previous days, I noticed other similarities between reported events. I have a feeling the phenomenon probably originates with the source of the entries on each day. In other words, someone, somewhere is researching daily historical events and compiling lists. It would stand to reason that there may arise a pattern in the information, as if there may have been a desire to focus on certain topics. Or not. Who knows?

Regardless today presents me with two events that have an interesting connection.

May 17, 1990 – The General Assembly of the World Health Organization (WHO) eliminates homosexuality from the list of psychiatric diseases.

I just recently watched the movie The Danish Girl, set in 1926, and was horrified to see the common practice of declaring homosexuals insane, committing them to institutions, and the even more ghoulish use of lobotomy as a “cure”. But while those historical occurrences were shocking for the era, I have to admit I was even more surprised to learn it took the WHO until 1990 to update its publication, leaving homosexuality on a list with conditions such as psychosis, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other serious mental illnesses almost into the advent of a new millennium.

However, I was then pleased to see that on May 17, 2004, the first legal same-sex marriages in the U.S. were performed in the state of Massachusetts.

I couldn’t find the exact date when the original psychiatric diseases list was first published by the WHO, but research leads me to believe it was some time in the early 1900’s. That means it took well over ninety years for homosexuality to shed the publicly mandated stigma of mental illness, which is ludicrous, but on the bright side, it only took fourteen more years for the same “condition” to be recognized as not only legal but equal.

Coincidence? Maybe, but who cares?

May Day Challenge – May 15th

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

Girl Power!

Lots of interesting firsts for women on May 15th.

For example, on May 15th, 1869, in New York, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton formed the National Woman Suffrage Association. It wasn’t until 1920, though that the 19th amendment was ratified, stating, “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex”.

May 15th, 1942, in the United States, a bill creating the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) was signed into law. A year later it was given full status, the “Auxiliary” designation was removed and it was known as The Women’s Army Corps. Public Law 90-130, signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson, Nov. 8, 1967, removed promotion and retirement restrictions on women officers in the Armed forces. Thereafter, it was possible for more than one woman in each service to hold the rank of colonel and for women to achieve General officer rank.

In 1970, on May 15th, President Richard Nixon appointed Anna Mae Hays and Elizabeth P. Hoisington the first female United States Army Generals. It took until 1976 for women to be fully permitted in all service academies and by 1978 the WAC was disbanded, and all units were integrated with male units.

Around the same time, women were clawing their way to the top in international political arenas as well. In January of 1966, Indira Ghandi became Prime Minister of India, followed in 1969 by Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in 1979.

All these years later, the good old United States of America (land of the free, home of the brave) has yet to even have a female candidate for President. I’m not saying there has been anyone qualified in the past or that there is currently any female who deserves nomination. I just find it hard to believe that we are so far behind the rest of the world, yet we all think we are so far superior to other countries. Maybe that’s true and maybe it’s not, but either way, there is a lesson to be learned…

May Day Challenge – May 12th

MDBC2016 My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

May 12, 1977.

Today is May 12th, the birthday of one of my closest friends, Cherrie, and there is no other event more important for this date (to me). Cherrie is not only a wonderful fellow blogger, but she is also an inspiration to me. I can safely say there is no way I would be writing as much as I am these days, if she hadn’t come into my life. It’s strange because we actually connected through a completely different hobby, and along the way discovered the many things about each other that bond people together in lifelong friendships.

Cherrie is the free-spirit of our group. She cannot be constrained by rules, especially when it comes to creative outlets. She will forever follow her own path even if it takes her far from the borders of commonality. Perhaps one of the things I like best about her is that she constantly pushes me to explore parts of myself that would otherwise remain hidden. She has inspired me to choreograph line dances, write a novel, program websites, and of course create a blogging challenge.

There is no one I would rather spend a Saturday with and very few others I could spend hours with at Starbucks. We never run out of things to talk about, especially when we are supposed to be concentrating! If I were asked to pick one thing about Cherrie that I value the most, it would be the fact that when I am with her, I feel like a better version of myself. But even when I feel like the worst version of myself, I never question her loyalty or faith in me.

Those are the best gifts anyone can give, and on her birthday, my gift to her is this post, which is my way of letting her know that she is important and has made a difference. She is kind and intelligent and honest and good. Which is why I know she will not mention that I skipped yesterday’s posting.

Happy birthday, my friend. My life and this world are better thanks to you.

May Day Challenge – May 10th

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

Major Cliffhanger

May 10th, 1838 was the birth date of John Wilkes Booth, the guy who shot and killed President Abraham Lincoln. The assassination took place in April of 1865 which made Booth a mere twenty-six years old at the time. Booth evaded capture for about two weeks, at which point he was located by Union soldiers. The barn he was hiding in was set on fire when Booth refused to come out and swore he would not be taken alive. That in fact was true because as he fled through the back door of the barn, he was shot in the head by a Union sergeant and died two hours later.

Booth’s main motive lay in the fact that he was angered by a speech made by Lincoln in support of granting citizenship to former slaves. A strong confederate supporter, he was against abolition and vowed on that day to make sure it was Lincoln’s last speech.

There are stories that Lincoln predicted his own death and even had dreamed about it. Advisors cautioned him not to attend the play at Ford’s Theater that night, but Lincoln simply stated that he had promised his wife. Booth, one of the actors made good on Lincoln’s prophetic dreams and carried out the first ever assassination of a U.S. President. Lincoln never saw the end of the play.

May Day Challenge – May 8th

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

 

May 8th, 1945 – the end of the Prague Uprising.

I have long wanted to visit the Czech Republic. It’s not that easy to get there and it’s expensive, but I will do it eventually.

The uprising is interesting to me because they were kicking out the Germans which was pretty common around that time. Also they got help from the Russians. U.S. General Patton was forced to stay away even though we had reconnaissance units twelve miles south of Prague. This was due to the Red Army’s insistence that we adhere to some demarcation line. It all seems kind of crazy to me today, especially since the U.S. butts its nose into everything these days, and every country kind of expects us to. However, it is kind of cool that the whole insurgence was inspired over radio asking the nation to rise up and people in the streets to build barricades. Power to the people!

 

 

May Day Challenge – May 7th

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

The One and Only

May 7th 1946, Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering (later renamed Sony) is founded. This is significant to me not only because I love their products and own many, but also because I love stories of how giant corporations were formed and started out tiny and unknown. They initially had twenty employees and now have well over ten thousand. It makes me feel like anything is possible in this world if we just believe in ourselves. Some of their most famous slogans were “make believe” and “sony the one and only”. Pretty ingenious, especially if you take into account all of the cool things they have developed. I never really thought about why I choose Sony products over other brands, but I do have this perception that they are the best. So for me I guess they really are the one and only. Now if I could find a person who’d be the one and only, then I’d really be a success!

May Day Challenge – May 6th

MDBC2016My friend and I got involved in the April A-Z blogging challenge and it motivated us to post 26 blogs. Now we find ourselves on April 30th worried all of that momentum will go to waste. But fear not, we came up with a great idea, the May Day Blogging Challenge. Check the previous post for details.

Disaster

On May 6th, 1937 the Hindenburg caught fire and was destroyed, killing 35 of the 97 people on board and one crewman on the ground. What I discovered upon reading about the incident is that there are many hypotheses on the cause of the disaster, ranging from sabotage, to chemical mishaps, to acts of nature. Regardless of how it happened, it marked the end of what was a very short-lived “airship era”, and consequently we can’t hop on a blimp these days and head over to Germany. Considering it took three days, I guess that’s not such a big loss after all.