Sunday, October 6, 2013

Joanne's Journal: October 6, 2013

Edition No. 13


October, baptize me with leaves! Swaddle me in corduroy and nurse me with split pea soup. October, tuck tiny candy bars in my pockets and carve my smile into a thousand pumpkins. O autumn! O teakettle! O grace!”   

- Rainbow Rowell
From Attachments


The great English novelist, Charlotte Brontë, published her masterpiece, Jane Eyre, on October 6, 1847. The eldest of the three Brontë sisters who survived childhood, Charlotte was born on April 12, 1816 in Thornton, West Yorkshire, England.  Her sisters, Anne and Emily, were also novelists and their father, Patrick Brontë, was an Anglican cleric.

In June of 1854, Charlotte married Arthur Bell Nicholls, her father's curate.  Soon after the wedding, she became pregnant and her health quickly declined.  She experienced severe nausea and fainted frequently. Charlotte Brontë died with her unborn baby on March 31 1855.  She was 38 years old.

 Charlotte Brontë

Congratulations to country music stars Faith Hill and Tim McGraw as they celebrate their 17th wedding anniversary.  The couple were married in Louisiana on October 6, 1996.  They are the parents of three daughters: Gracie Katherine McGraw, Maggie Elizabeth McGraw and Audrey Caroline McGraw

Faith Hill

Hollywood film star Carole Lombard was born on October 6, 1908 in Fort Wayne, Indiana.  Her real name was Jane Alice Peters.  She is best known for her roles in the screwball comedies of the 1930s and for her marriage to Hollywood leading man Clark Gable.  The couple wed on March 29, 1939 during a break from the filming of Gone with the Wind in which Gable starred as Rhett Butler.

If Lombard were still alive, she would be celebrating her 105th birthday today.  Sadly, she died in a plane crash at the age of 33.  The accident occurred on January 16, 1942 while the actress was en route home to California after attending a World War II rally to raise defence bonds in her home state of Indiana.  Her aircraft crashed into Potosi Mountain in Nevada, 32 statute miles (51 km) southwest of Las Vegas.  All passengers on board were killed, including Carole, her mother, Bessie Peters, and Clark Gable's press agent and friend, Otto Winkler.  After Lombard's death, a distraught Gable enlisted in the United States Army Air Forces.

Carole Lombard

Another Hollywood great, Janet Gaynor, was born on October 6, 1906 in the Germantown neighbourhood of northwest Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Her birth name was Laura Augusta Gainor and she became one of the most popular actors of the silent film era.  In 1928, Gaynor earned the distinction of winning the very first Academy Award for Best Actress for her performances in three films: : Seventh Heaven (1927), Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans(1927) and Street Angel (1928).  She is best known for her starring role in the original 1937 version of A Star is Born opposite Fredric March.

Janet Gaynor was severely injured in a 1982 traffic accident in San Francisco when her taxicab collided with a van driven by a drunk driver.  Gaynor's husband, Paul Gregory, and her friend, actress Mary Martin, were also passengers in the taxicab but were not as seriously injured. Another passenger, Mary Martin's manager Ben Washer, was killed in the crash.  Janet never fully recovered from the accident and died on September 14, 1984 in Palm Springs California at the age of 77.

Janet Gaynor

Famed Victoriann poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson died on October 6, 1892 in Lurgashall, Sussex, England at the age of 83.  Tennyson, the fourth of the twelve children of a clergyman, wrote poetry as a child.  In 1827, he left home in Somersby, Lincolnshire to study at Trinity College, Cambridge University.  At Trinity College, he became involved with an undergraduate literary club called "The Apostles."  The club was led by Arthur Hallum, with whom Tennyson struck up a close friendship.  When Hallam died suddenly of a brain hemorrhage  in 1833, Tennyson was so strongly affected, that he paid tribute to his friend in a lengthy poem called In Memoriam A.H.H.   

In Memoriam A.H.H. was written over a period of 17 years and was completed in 1849.  The poem was a favourite of Queen Victoria and provided great comfort to her after the passing of her husband Prince Albert.  It contains the oft-quoted line, "'Tis better to have loved and lost / Than never to have loved at all."  

In 1850, after the death of William Wordsworth, Tennyson was appointed Poet Laureate of Great Britain and Ireland.   That same year, he married Emily Sellwood and they had two sons, Hallam and Lionel.


Baseball great Cy Young pitched his final game on October 6, 1911 when he was 44, ending his illustrious 22-season career as a member of the Boston Rustlers.  The game took place at Washington Park in Brooklyn, New York and Young lost the game to the Brooklyn Dodgers.  It was his third loss in a row.

During the span of his career, however, the legendary right-hander recorded an impressive 511 wins.  His 511th and final win took place at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh.on September 22, 1911.  He threw a 1-0 shutout against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Cy Young died on November 4, 1955 at the age of 88.  Born Denton True Young on a farm in Gilmore, Ohio, Cy played his first professional game for the Cleveland Spiders on August 6, 1890, leading the Spiders to victory over the Chicago White Sox.  Hie was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1937.

Cy Young

Egyptian President Anwar Sadat was assassinated by Muslim extremists in Cairo on October 6, 1981 at the annual victory commemorate Egypt's crossing of the Suez Canal. Fundamentalist army officers dismounted from a troop truck during the parade and three grenades were thrown at Sadat.  Additional assassins dismounted from the truck  and fired their assault rifles into the stands.

The soldiers were carrying out a fatwa approved by Omar Abdel-Rahman, who was later convicted in the United States for his role in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.  The Egyptian leader was targeted for agreeing to a peace agreement with Israel.

Anwar Sadat won the 1978 Nobel Peace, along with Israel's Prime Minister Menachem Begin, for negotiating peace agreements between the two nations at the U.S. presidential retreat at Camp David just outside of Washington.  The Camp David Accords were signed on September 17, 1978 and witnessed by then-U.S. President Jimmy Carter.

Born on Christmas Day 1918, in Mit Ab al-Kawm, Egypt, Anwar el-Sadat served in the military before participating in the 1952 military coup that led to the overthrow and exile of King Farouk. He held the office vice president of Egypt before becoming the country's president in 1970.


William Keith Kellogg, founder of the W.K. Kellogg Company, the maker of breakfast cereal, died on October 6, 1951.  Kellogg died of heart failure in Battle Creek, Michigan, the place of his birth. He was 91 at the time of his passing.  During the last years of his life, his eyesight failed due to glaucoma.

The son of early Seventh-Day Adventists, young Will quit school at the age of 14 and found employment as a stock boy.  He became a travelling broom salesman in his late teens,  As a young man, he went to work at the Battle Creek Sanitarium (known as the San), where his older brother, John Harvey Kellogg, was physician-in-chief.  Will acted as bookkeeper and manager of the hospital and was in charge of non-medical tasks.

The San was founded on Seventh-Day Adventist principles, one of which is vegetarianism.  For many years, Will assisted his brother in research to improve the vegetarian diet for the patients. One of their goals was to find a digestible substitute for bread.  They accidentally discovered a method of processing cooked grain into flakes when Will, who was experimenting in the San's kitchen, let stand a batch of boiled wheat.  When he returned, the wheat had transformed into flakes.  It was a "eureka" moment.  Wheat flakes and corn flakes were then introduced at the health spa where they proved very popular.

The Kellogg brothers marketed their corn flakes but had a bitter falling out when Will  expressed a desire to add sugar to the flakes to improve their taste.  John Harvey adamantly disagreed because he felt that the sugar was unhealthy.  As a result, the brothers parted ways and Will left the sanitarium at the age of 46.  He entered the cereal business on his own in 1906 when he founded the Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Company. The company initially produced only toasted cornflakes but eventually branched out into other products.

Kellogg,, a philanthropist, established the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in 1930 with millions of dollars of his own money.  The foundation donates large amounts to social causes, particularly child welfare,


ROSE:  To Bob Newhart, one of my favourite television comedians, for winning his first Emmy Award at the age of 84.  After seven nominations spanning 51 years, Bob finally took home the prize in the category of Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series for his performance in an episode of The Big Bang Theory. Congratulations, Mr. Newhart!


THORN: To University of Toronto professor David Gilmour for his remarks during an interview with Hazlitt, an online magazine by Random House Canada. Gilmour told Hazlitt that "I’m not interested in teaching books by women. Virginia Woolf is the only writer that interests me as a woman writer, so I do teach one of her short stories. But once again, when I was given this job I said I would only teach the people that I truly, truly love. Unfortunately, none of those happen to be Chinese, or women."  He also declared that he hasn't found any Canadian literature worth teaching.

Gilmour later apologized for his comments, saying he was joking and that his remarks were taken out of context.  He also claimed that he did not give the interviewer, Emily M. Keele, his full attention because he was talking to a colleague in his office at the same time.  Hazlett, however, has indicated that it stands by Keele's work.

Gilmour's excuses don't cut it.  If he were joking when he made his ridiculous comments, why did he wait until he was under fire to explain and apologize. Furthermore, why would he allow himself to be interviewed while speaking to a colleague at the same time?  The man should know better. He is a Governor General's Awarding-winning author (He won in 2005 prize for English language fiction for his novel A Perfect Night to Go to China).  It is unfortunate that Professor Gilmour has embarrassed both U of T and himself.

THORN: To Texas Senator Ted Cruz and his fellow Tea Party Republicans for leading the disastrous charge to shut down government services in the United States over the debt ceiling. Cruz is on a crusade to prevent Congress from funding the Affordable Health Care Act, which Republicans have dubbed "Obamacare."  Perhaps he and other hard line Tea Partiers are afraid that President Obama's health care initiative will prove to be popular with Americans and that they will not want to give it up.

Cruz, 42, is the son of a Cuban oilman and an American mother, was born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Perhaps he should look to the country of his birth.  He should ask Canadians if they would be willing to give up their provincial health cards, especially those who can't afford to pay for hefty medical bills.  Rest assured that not very many would want to expose themselves to financial ruin if they or or a family member should suffer from a debilitating illness or injury.

Ted Cruz is apparently eyeing a 2016 bid for the presidency.  If he should ever win, our neighbour to the south will find itself in dire straights.

Ted Cruz


What did the bull say to his child as the boy left for school?


Bye, son.


Patrick Roy is sure stirring things up as the new coach of the Colorado Avalanche.  Roy had a tremendous career as a goalie for the Montreal Canadiens and the Avalanche.  If he's going to a successful NHL coach, however, he's going to have to control that legendary temper of  his.  Otherwise, he's going to be facing many fines and suspensions in the future.  The hall of famer doesn't have to give up his passionate nature. He just has to modify his behaviour somewhat.


I only wish the Toronto Blue Jays were in post-season play this year.  It was however, another lost year for my favourite baseball team.  I don't know how the marketing strategists will sell this team for the 2014 season.  Fans feel disappointed and let down.  The Jays have not been in postseason  play since 1993 - 20 long years.

To his credit, GM Alex Anthopoulos tried wheeling and dealing to produce a winning team.  He tossed the dice and threw snake eyes.  I don't question A.A.'s effort.  I question his judgement.  He should be allowed one more season to get it right.  As for his trades last winter, I wish he had stopped after the Miami deal.  The Jays would certainly be a better team with Travis D'Arnaud as their catcher than the newly betrothed J.P. Arencibia.  I wish J.P. the best with his coming marriage to country singer Kimberly Perry but I hope he winds up with another team.  A fresh start closer to his Tennessee home would probably invigorate his career and allow the Blue Jays to find a replacement.

* What's with the long beards on so many baseball players, especially those on the Boston Red Sox?  I guess it's a gimmick or a way to draw attention to themselves.  I can't believe that they genuinely think the Smith Brothers - ZZ Top look is attractive.

* Who do I want to win the World Series this year?  I'm cheering for the Detroit Tigers.  They haven't won the Fall Classic since 1984 under then-manager Sparky Anderson.

*  It's no wonder that Major League Baseball is falling behind in popularity to NFL and college football in the United States.  In order to accommodate television, the postseason games finish so late that children can not stay late enough to watch the later innings of the games.  If there are extra innings, some of the most exciting moments are lost to youngsters.  Baseball may be making a great deal of revenue from television advertising but it is forfeiting the next generation of fans.

- Joanne