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Birthday Meme

Instructions: Go over to Wikipedia and enter the day you were born [such as "Aug 07"] and then pick 3 events, 2 births and 1 holiday that occurred on your birthday.

Events:

(1) 1251 BC - A solar eclipse on this date might mark the birth of legendary Heracles at Thebes, Greece.

I love this! No worries about Julian/Gregorian calendars, just back-date over three thousand years, and for a legendary event.  In the article on solar eclipses, they say that total eclipses are very rare for a given spot, only about every 370 years.  But what's another 370 years (forward or backward) for a legend,?  And the article on 1250s BC (which really should be "BCE" these days) says that 1250 BC is the traditional date for the start of the Trojan War.  With Heracles only a year old?  Um, no.

(2)  1776 - World's first submarine attack: the American submersible craft Turtle attempts to attach a time bomb to the hull of British Admiral Richard Howe's flagship HMS Eagle in New York Harbor.

This is awesome.  The "Turtle" is utter steampunk!  One-man vessel with the first recorded use of a (hand-cranked!) screw propeller, tar-coated wood with steel bands, six small panes of thick plate glass, and lighted inside by bioluminescence (on the advice of Ben Franklin!) when the inventor realized a candle would use up too much oxygen!  And the "time bomb" was a keg of 130 pounds of gunpowder, with a timed fuse.  It's a shame it didn't work.  (Most likely because it was too hard to keep the submersible in place while drilling into the side of a ship.)

(3) 1998 -  Google founded.

My daughter was 8, my son was about to turn 10, and people at work (healthcare information systems) were starting to worry about the Y2K problem.   My favorite search engine was AltaVista.  Poor AltaVista has been Yahoo!ed now.

Births

(1) 1533 - Queen Elizabeth I of England.

My hero!  (no, not "heroine"... let me rant sometime about the use of genderized versions of non-gender-specific nouns)

(2) 1860 - Anna Mary Robertson Moses, aka "Grandma Moses", American painter.

Should probably become my hero.  :-)  She started painting in her 70s, and died at 101.  She was "discovered" at age 77 and her paintings became enormously popular as "primitive" art.  But, she herself is quoted as saying "primitive is what they call amateur art that sells".   Very down-to-earth lady! 

Holiday:

(1) Forefeast of the Nativity of the Theotokos, Eastern Orthodox Church

Doesn't that sound perfect for a fantasy campaign setting?  It's the day of preparation before the main event celebrating the birth of Mary, mother of Jesus, for she is the "theotokos", the "god-bearer."  Of course, since the Orthodox church uses the Julian calendar, even the "forefeast" is really 13 days after my birthday, but the other holidays have much less interesting names.
  

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