Ridley's Believe It Or Not—November 21, 2014: Posted Friday morning a Thanksgiving poem for your enjoyment. http://alaskanpoet.blogspot.com/2014/11/thanksgiving-thoughts-end-black-friday.html Trust your Friday is going well as you near the weekend and Thanksgiving; and as always I hope you enjoy the holidays and observances, factoids and quotes from General Westmoreland, with a smile on your sunscreened face, looking forward to enjoying a few slices of gingerbread, blessed with a positive attitude even though you know you will have to wade through tons of spam in your inbox, and secure in the knowledge that if you want to find a gift for a memorable event or the coming Christmas, you know that the Alaskanpoet can provide you with a unique customized poem at a great price tailored to the event and the recipient. You need only contact me for details.
1. International Television Day—established by the UN in 1996 to either promote and encourage the expansion of TV or to bemoan its less than stellar programming depending on your point of view.
2. No Music Day (Unofficial)—proposed by Bill Drumond to protest the cheapening and degrading of music and celebrated on the eve of the Feast of St. Cecilia, the patron saint of music—I might agree especially in the case of rap, but whatever notes float one’s boat is up to the person, even if it is no Johnny Horton’s classic North to Alaska.
3. Sock It To Me Day—celebrating not the desire of masochists to be beaten but the birthday of Goldie Hawn on this day in 1945 who always uttered that line wearing a flowered bikini on the Rowan and Martin Show in the late 60’s who went own to a successful film career and ironically established the Hawn Foundation to teach children Buddhists’ techniques to lessen aggression.
4. Baby Love—commemorating the number one song on this day in 1964 Baby Love by Diana Ross and the Supremes, one of Motown’s better groups.
5. National Run Fast Day—celebrating not all those sprinters but Gingerbread and the Gingerbread Man whom no one could catch.
On this day in
a. 1967 less than two months before the Tet Offensive, General Westmoreland proudly proclaimed to the press that “I am absolutely certain that whereas in 1965 I am absolutely certain the enemy was winning; today he is certainly losing.” Talk about a press conference you would have liked to have had a mulligan on.
b. 1969 the first permanent ARPANET link between UCLA and the Stanford Research Institute was established and the world as we know it has never been the same.
c. 1984 National Security Member Colonel Oliver North and his secretary started illegally shredding documents linking them to the sale of arms to Iran and channeling the funds to the Contra rebels in Nicaragua—has a quasi Fast and Furious ring to it.
d. 2002 NATO invited 7 Eastern European countries on Russia’s doorstep to become members of NATO three of which were the Baltic Republics that accepted and become members in 2004 and are believed to be Putin’s next target which means we are living in an increasingly dangerous world.
Reflections on television and the Vietnam War: “Television is an instrument that can paralyze this country…it was the first war we’ve ever fought on the television screen and the first war our country ever fought in which the media had full reign…without censorship things get terribly confused in the public mind.” General William Westmoreland, commander of U.S. troops in Vietnam. Unfortunately, from the attacks that may not have occurred in the Gulf of Tonkin to the revelations in the Pentagon Papers we were deceived and dragged into a conflict that became very difficult to honorably disengage. The one group of people who were not confused were the over 58,282 names etched in the granite of the Vietnam War Memorial—God bless them all, each and every one.
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© November 21, 2014 Michael P. Ridley aka the Alaskanpoet
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