Saturday

Jun. 10, 2000

Broadcast Date: SATURDAY: June 10, 2000

Poem: "Leisure," by W.H. Davies (1871-1940).

On this day in 1943, the ballpoint pen was patented by the Hungarian inventor Laszlo Biro, in Argentina, where he had gone to escape the Nazis. In many countries the word for ballpoint pen is still simply "Biro."



It's the birthday of journalist and novelist Philip Caputo, born in Chicago (1941)—best known for A Rumor of War (1977), an account of his time as a Marine lieutenant in Vietnam in the mid-sixties.



It's the birthday of children's book writer and illustrator Maurice Sendak, born in Brooklyn (1928). A sickly child, he suffered measles and pneumonia at 2, scarlet fever at 4, and spent much of his childhood drawing pictures of life he saw outside his window. At 9 he hand-lettered and drew pictures for his stories on shirt cardboards bound with tape. He wrote and illustrated Where the Wild Things Are (1963), In the Night Kitchen (1970), and many other books. He said,

"It is my involvement with the inescapable fact of childhood—the awful vulnerability of children, and their struggle to make themselves King of all Wild Things—that gives my work whatever truth and passion it may have."



It's the birthday of novelist James Salter, born in New York City (1925), author of Dusk: And Other Stories (1988), The Hunters (1957), A Sport and a Pastime (1967), Light Years (1976). His recent memoir is called Burning the Days (1998).



It's the birthday of journalist and novelist Nat(han Irving) Hentoff, born in Boston (1925).



Today is the birthday of Judy Garland (Frances Ethel Gumm), born in Grand Rapids, Minnesota (1922). She and her sisters changed their stage name to Garland; she took her new first name from the Hoagy Carmichael song "Judy."



It's the birthday of novelist http://www.english.upenn.edu/~afilreis/50s/bellow-on-ellison .html title="Review of Invisible Man>Saul Bellow, born in Lachine, near Montreal (1915). His novels include Humboldt's Gift (1975 Pulitzer Prize), The Dean's December (1982), More Die of Heartbreak (1987), A Case of Love (1992), and The Actual (1997). He was the first novelist to win the National Book Award 3 times, for The Adventures of Augue March (1953), Herzog (1964), and Mr. Sammler's Planet (1971). He won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1976.



It's the birthday of playwright Sir Terence Rattigan, born in London (1911)master of what is called the 'well-made play.' His father agreed to support him in a trial period of play-writing—after which, if he failed, he was to go into banking or the diplomatic service. Shortly before the trial period expired, he wrote a farce, French Without Tears (1936), which enjoyed one of the longest runs in the history of British theater.

"A novelist may lose his reader for a few pages—a playwright never dares lose his audience for a minute."



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

 









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