46


46 years ago yesterday, President Richard Nixon delivered what became known as his “I am not a crook” speech.  This went down as a key moment in the downfall of his presidency, and Nixon would resign less than 9 months later.

There are a couple of things that fascinates me about this historical event.  One, it took place at Walt Disney World, specifically the Contemporary Resort where the monorail passes through, which strikes me as a strange place for a president to deny his crimes.  Two, on a more personal level, I was born the next day so the headlines of the newspapers on the day I was born were all about the “I am not a crook” speech.

Here’s a couple of examples from New York Newsday and the New York Times:

 

After looking back to a highly-relevant past, I also look towards the future.  I have high hopes for 46 in more ways than one.

As always, happy birthday to my November 18th fam: Mickey Mouse, Steven Moffat, David Ortiz, and Chloë Sevigny!

Related Posts:

Bonny and blithe, and good and gay


On this date, in 1973, at 9:34 am, I was born. Which makes today my 45th birthday. Like today, it was a Sunday, so that makes me a Sabbath child.

This means I’m halfway to 90, and since most people don’t live until 90, it means I’ve most likely lived more years in the past than I will have to live in the future.

Speaking of 90, today is the 90th birthday of Mickey Mouse, which means we’re at a point where half of Mickey Mouse’s life was before I was born, and half of Mickey Mouse’s life coincides with my own.

Other notable birthdays on November 18 include David Ortiz, Chloë Sevigny, and Steven Moffat.  Happy birthday gang!

Five years ago I published my 40 for the Forties list. I’ve updated if you want to see what progress I’ve made.

I also wrote birthday posts for my 34th, 35th, 36th, and 43rd birthdays, if you feel like reminiscing.

The November 18th All-Stars


As a child growing up rooting for the Mets, I knew that Dwight Gooden (then Mets’ ace and arguably the 2nd-greatest Met of all time) celebrated his birthday on November 16 and the all-time greatest Met, The Franchise, Tom Seaver, celebrated his birthday on November 17.  With my birthday on November 18, I was a natural for future Met great.  There was one problem, I had no baseball talent.

I’m now 43, past retirement age for baseball, although as long as the ageless Bartolo Colon continues to pitch there will still be an active major leaguer older than me.   For fun, here is the all-time all-star roster for players born on November 18.

C – Deacon McGuire – known as a gentleman who played 26 seasons at the most demanding position
1B – Roy Sievers – hit nine career walkoff homeruns
2B – Gene Mauch – can also be the team’s manager
SS – Kermit Wahl – finding a shortstop for the team was tough,  could move over Sheffield and seek out another third baseman?
3B – Gary Sheffield – Doc Gooden’s nephew!  Wonder if they celebrated their birthdays together?
LF – Steve Henderson – his walkoff homerun at Shea Stadium in 1980 is one of the defining moments of my baseball fandom
CF – Les Mann – regular centerfielders were also hard to find, but Mann played a key role for the Miracle Braves of 1914
RF – Dante Bichette – I remember him being called “Bionic Fat” which was inspiring to us men of large girth
DH – David Ortiz – Big Papi is  without question the greatest November 18th baseball player of all time

SP – Jamie Moyer – pitched until he was 49!
SP – Jack Coombs – won 31 games for the Athletics in 1910
SP – Allen Watson – was born in Queens and was briefly a Met in 1999
SP – Jay Hook – pitcher of record for the Mets’ first ever franchise win in 1962
SP – Cal Koonce – a reliever for the 1969 Miracle Mets although he was a starter earlier in his career with the Cubs

CLOSER – Tom Gordon – the Red Sox star of the late 90s had a Stephen King book named after him
RP – C.J. Wilson – a 2011 All-Star
RP – Shawn Camp – was the 500th selection in the 1997 draft
RP – Mark Petkovsek – had his best season in 1996 working as starter and long reliever for the Cardinals
RP – Matt Wise – appeared in 8 games for the 2008 Mets

 

Happy birthday to all of the November 18th All-Stars!

40 for the Forties


Today is my fortieth birthday. As I prepare for my next decade, here are forty things I’d like to accomplish in my forties. UPDATED on November 18, 2018.

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Me, forty years ago.

In no particular order:

  1. Become certified in First Aid and CPR √ (I couldn’t find a First Aid course that wasn’t targeted toward EMTs, but I am recently CPR certified)
  2. Donate blood 6 times (the maximum) per year (so far so good)
  3. Visit Yellowstone National Park  and/or Grand Canyon with my family (hoping to pull this off in the next few years)
  4. Travel to at least 5 states I’ve never been to before (none so far, but completing #3 would help)
  5. Attend games at least 5 MLB ballparks I’ve never been to before (1 down, 4 to go)
  6. Visit two foreign countries I’ve never been to before (Ha! Seeming increasingly unlikely)
  7. Write a book (perhaps even try to get it published)
  8. Participate in Walk for Hunger  and/or Bikes Not Bombs Bike-A-Thon every year (Bikes Not Bombs Bike-A-Thon is annual tradition)
  9. Audition (and hopefully perform) for the Revels again (Not sure if I want to do this anymore)
  10. Enter (and hopefully win) USS Constitution turnaround lottery (This wasn’t available while the Constitution was undergoing renovation & I’m not sure if they’re doing it all now)
  11. Ride in an open-cockpit biplane and/or a hot air balloon (someone needs to make this happen)
  12. Take up birding (I got a bird app, not much else progress)
  13. Read a classic Russian novel (Maybe next year)
  14. Try singing with a barbershop quartet
  15. Participate in an atlas-based road rally √ (I did this, had a lot of fun, and got a terrible score)
  16. Perform karaoke (who wants to take me out)
  17. Take a martial arts class (scheduling difficulties are a major barrier)
  18. Paddle on the Charles River (more like a doggy paddle)
  19. Play croquet in strange places (not sure what I was thinking of with this one)
  20. Volunteer with Bikes Not Bombs and/or Boston Bicyclists Union (still something I could do)
  21. Try rock climbing √ (tried a climbing wall, did NOT enjoy it)
  22. Visit the Great Dismal Swamp (driven past, stopped at the visitors center/rest area, does that count)
  23. Write in my journal more regularly √ (I have and I haven’t)
  24. Climb to the highest points in each of the New England states and complete hiking up all the 4000 footers in New England (increasingly unlikely to happen)
  25. Serve in a ministry in our church community √    
  26. Walk inside the Mapparium √
  27. Take the tour at the Sam Adams Brewery √
  28. Become a patron of the arts by getting a subscription to a symphony, dance, or theatre series (I have been to more performances that in my 30s, but far from being a regular)
  29. Through hike the AT (maybe when I retire?)
  30. See the reenactment on Lexington Green on Patriots Day (after 20 years in the Boston year, it’s time to make it happen)
  31. Go to a drive-in movie for the first time (still waiting)
  32. Take kids to the  balloon parade in Stamford, CT (no, but we’ve been to the  Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in NYC twice!)
  33. Complete my Around the World for a Good Book project (still a long way to go)
  34. Build a new playhouse for the kids in the backyard (got overruled)
  35. Take a storytelling class and perform a story to a live audience (going to try an online course soon)
  36. Attend 2015 Women’s World Cup in Canada (proved to be logistically challenging, so we watched it on tv)
  37. Visit maritime Canada (not sure this will happen in the near future)
  38. Play curling (there should be more urban curling opportunities)
  39. Visit Susan’s Michigan (someday)
  40. Get an SLR camera and learn how to take photos √ (yes, much fun!)

If you have any suggestions for anything else I should try, let me know in the comments.

30 For The Thirties


Today is the last day of my thirties, so I thought I’d look back at thirty accomplishments and memorable events of the last decade.

The Most Important Things:

1. Married my wife Susan in 2005 with a lovely reception on a Boston Harbor Island.
2. The birth of my son Peter in 2007.
3. The birth of my daughter Kay in 2011.
4. Moved to Jamaica Plain in 2007 (and became homeowners!).

Professional:

5. Earned masters degree in Library & Information Science from Simmons College (2005)
6. Participated with my union as part of team in contract negotiation (2007)
7. Started a new position at my library in records management and archives (2008)
8. Promoted to a professional library position as Processing Archivist (2011)

Singing:

9. Participated in choral singing for the first time in my church’s Advent-Christmas concert (2005, & again in 2007)
10 . Took voice instruction courses (2006)
11. Performed in the Christmas Revels (2009)
12. Sang with my family in the SingPositive, JP band and chorus (2012-2013)
13. Helped bring Beck’s Song Reader to life as part of a 50 voice chorus (2013)

Sports:

14. Hiked to the summit of several tall mountains in New Hampshire and Vermont including: Washington (2004), Adams (2005), Monroe (2004), Madison (2005), Eisenhower (2004), Carrigain (2006), Osceola (2006), Pierce (2004), East Peak Osceola (2004), Cannon (2004), Camel’s Hump (2004), Hale (2004), Tecumseh (2006), Sandwich (2005), and NE Peak Cannonballs (2004)
15. Played on an adult kickball team (2004-2005)
16. Witnessed the Red Sox first World Series victory in 86 years (2004) and then two more (2007, 2013)
17. Shared my love of biking with my children through regular bike commuting and events like Hub on Wheels and the Bikes Not Bombs Bike-A-Thon (2010-2013)
18. Coached my son’s childrens’ soccer team (2011)
19. Introduced Peter to the love of baseball and attended numerous games over the past three seasons (2011-2013)

Travel:

20. Visited Chicago and saw games at Wrigley Field and Comiskey Park (2004)
21. Acted as a sight guide for my good friend Anthony on a holiday to Cambridge, Oxford, and London in England (2004)
22. Honeymooned in Venice and the Dolomites Alps (2005)
23. Traveled to Milwaukee exploring museums, the library, Miller Field, and drinking lots of beer … not to mention winning a bet on a sausage race (2006)
24. Made a car-free journey to Southern California with side trip to Tijuana, visiting San Diego and Los Angeles, exploring museums and architecture, and taking in games at Petco Field and Dodger Stadium (2007)
25. Won a traveling fellowship to explore Amsterdam on foot with my wife and son (2010)
26. Experienced the joy of family camp in New Hampshire (2013)

Other things I can’t find a category for:

27. Started a blog (2006) and still write in it fairly regularly (I also have a bike commuter blog and a Tumblr blog).
28. Created lists of my favorite books of all time, my favorite albums of all time, and cataloged every book I’ve ever read
29. Researched and wrote manuals for two Boston By Foot Walking Tours Avenue of the Arts (2010) and Davis Square (2011), not to mention serving as co-chair of the Tour of the Month committee (2006-2007),  and leading several great tours such as Waterfront, Charles River BasinLittle Feet, and South End.
30. Found a new spiritual home at Hope Central Church (2013). 

There are things I’m proud of that I know I’m leaving off the list, and probably some things of great importance I’m sure I’ve forgotten.  Oh well, that’ what the comments are for.

To a great decade gone by, and another that is to come!