Nov. 29, 1998


by Lucien Stryk

SUNDAY 11/29

Poem: "Exterminator," by Lucien Stryk, from COLLECTED POEMS 1953-1983 (Ohio University Press, 1985).

It was on this day in 1963 that President Lyndon B. Johnson appointed Chief Justice Earl Warren to head a commission to investigate the assassination of John F. Kennedy, one week after Kennedy's death. THE WARREN COMMISSION concluded that 24-year-old Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in shooting Kennedy, but no motive was established.

It was on this day in 1929 that the American aviator and explorer, COMMANDER RICHARD BYRD, made the first flight over the South Pole.

It's the birthday of writer and theologian C.S. LEWIS, born in Belfast, Ireland, in 1898. He taught at Oxford and Cambridge for nearly 40 years and became famous during the Second World War for his religious talks on the BBC, and for his 40 books, especially his children's books, the best known of them, The Chronicles of Narnia.

It's the birthday of LOUISA MAY ALCOTT, born in 1832, in Germantown, Pennsylvania, author in 1868 of the autobiographical novel, Little Women. During the Civil War she served as a nurse, but contracted typhoid and was sent home and was never really well again for the rest of her life. Three years after the war she was desperate for money and wrote Little Women. It made her famous all across America.

It's the birthday in Salzburg, Austria, 1803, of physicist CHRISTIAN DOPPLER, who discovered why the sound of a train whistle appears to rise and fall as the train passes. This is the Doppler Effect. As the train approaches, the whistle's sound waves are crowded together so that the listener receives more waves in the same time than if the train had been standing still. This makes the pitch seem higher. And when the train passes by, the waves spread farther apart; fewer of them reach the listener, and that makes the pitch seem lower.

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




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