My son, Badger Forrest-Blincoe, was born on this date in 1991, and although he is not famous in the ways that other people are whose birthdays I celebrate, he’s famous to me, and it’s my blog, so Happy Birthday my dear son. He was born on my sister’s daughter’s birthday so Happy Birthday to Lubna also. In fact 12th October is a special day in many ways, so before I give you a gallery and a recipe to honor Badger, let’s take a quick look at other events on this date.
Probably most famously Christopher Columbus sighted land in the New World on this date in 1492. Eventually the date was celebrated as Columbus Day in the U.S. and elsewhere, but in recent years the focus of the anniversary has shifted from a celebration to something more somber – usually a lament for all the indigenous peoples who were swept aside by Spanish, British, and French colonization. Here are some of the variations in different parts of the Americas outside of the U.S.
Columbus Day (Honduras)
Descubrimiento de América (Mexico)
Día de la Hispanidad or Fiesta Nacional de España (Spain)
Día de la Raza (El Salvador, Uruguay)
Día de la Resistencia Indígena, “Day of Indigenous Resistance” (Venezuela)
Día de las Américas (Belize)
Día de las Culturas, “Day of the Cultures” (Costa Rica)
Día del Respeto a la Diversidad Cultural, “Day of respect for cultural diversity” (Argentina)
Shrewd readers among you will note that I take pains to avoid calling the United States of America by the contraction “America” or calling the citizens “Americans.” The term “America” legitimately covers 2 continents and a host of nations. We are all Americans, not just the people from one country in North America. In Spanish we have the word estadounidense which works as an adjective for the U.S. and its citizens. Pity there is no English equivalent. United Statesians maybe?
This leads me to point out this post https://www.bookofdaystales.com/dia-de-la-raza/ which covers Columbus and the indigenous resistance to celebrating the day. On the other hand today was once a UN holiday celebrating the Spanish language: one of many holidays focusing on world languages – especially those that are prominent within the United Nations: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UN_Spanish_Language_Day
Perhaps on a slightly more mundane level, on this date in 1793 the cornerstone of Old East was laid on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the oldest state university building on the oldest state campus in the U.S. I took my Ph.D. at UNC so it resonates a little – not much. Old East is very near to Alumni Building where the anthropology faculty have their offices plus some classrooms, so I passed it all the time. Now Old East is a much coveted dormitory.
For beer lovers there’s this – https://www.bookofdaystales.com/munich-oktoberfest/ On this date in 1810 Munich held the first Oktoberfest. Modern Oktoberfest is purportedly the world’s largest annual street festival. It is a 16-day festival running from late September to the first weekend in October with more than 6 million people from around the world attending the event every year.
On a sadder note, John Denver died on this date in 1997. He’s one of my all time favorites enlivening the 1970s which otherwise was a fairly dreary time for popular music. Here’s one of the many songs of his I cherish:
Denver’s death was terribly tragic. He was flying an experimental Adrian Davis Long-EZ plane that crashed into Monterey Bay near Pacific Grove, California. After a great deal of evidence was gathered it appears that he crashed the plane while trying to switch fuel tanks. The gauges and toggle lever were positioned behind his head making it very difficult to either read the gauges or switch tanks. The pilot had to turn around to do this causing dangerous movement in the cockpit. I can’t fathom why this situation arose in the first place.
There are a great many birthdays on this date, of course: Henry VIII’s only legitimate son, Edward VI (1537); Ramsay MacDonald (1866), Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, August Horch (1868), German engineer and businessman who founded Audi; and Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872), English composer. There’s others too, of course, but let’s get to my son.
Badger was born at 4:05 pm on 12th October 1991 at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, New York. I remember the event vividly but won’t wear you out with it. The following gallery will hit the high spots. Badger trained as a concert trumpeter and in karate in the Korean tradition of Tang Soo Do – currently he is a 4th dan black belt master and is living in South Korea in order to develop his skills and study Korean. In the photos you’ll also see that he has been a traditional morris dancer and toured the U.S., Europe, and Africa with the Ancient Men. He’s also a (modest) expert in Chinese teas, teaches English as a Foreign Language, and hopes to take a Ph.D. in anthropology. He was married 8th July 2016.
I taught Badger how to cook as part of my home-schooling regimen in his last year before going to college. Sadly he remembers a lot less of it than algebra or Italian gothic novels. He follows in dad’s footsteps in some ways and not in others. Here’s a series of images I took during our cooking lessons. They’ll give the idea.