Saturday

Feb. 28, 1998

The Tap of Angry Reins

by Walter McDonald

SATURDAY 2/28

Today's Reading: "The Tap of Angry Reins" by Walter McDonald from COUNTING SURVIVORS, published by University of Pittsburgh Press (1995).

Twelve years ago today, in 1986, Sweden's Prime Minister, OLOF PALME, was assassinated while walking home from a movie in Stockholm with his wife. A man named Carl Petterson was convicted of the crime but later acquitted on an appeal. Swedish prosecutors want to bring him back to trial one more time.

It's the birthday of cancer researcher DENIS BURKITT, born in Northern Ireland in 1911. It was Dr. Burkitt who changed the way many people eat when he discovered that a diet of too much sugar and not enough high-fiber foods like bran and vegetables was causing colon cancer.

It's the birthday in London, 1909, of poet STEPHEN SPENDER, who began writing at the age of nine after hikes through the hills in the Lake District of northwestern England while his father read Wordsworth aloud to him. Spender witnessed both world wars and the Spanish Civil War in the 30s and much of his poetry is about war.

It's the birthday in 1894 of writer BEN HECHT, born in New York but brought up in Racine, Wisconsin. He was a child prodigy on violin, started playing concerts at 10, but didn't care much for it and spent his summers as a circus acrobat, then ran away to Chicago when he was 16 to try newspaper reporting. He is best known for his play in 1928 that made his name, "The Front Page."

It's the birthday in 1797, in Buckland, Massachusetts, of MARY LYON, the pioneer in women's education who founded Mount Holyoke Female Seminary, which became Mount Holyoke College. The school opened in 1837 and had 80 women its first term.

Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®

 









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