Wednesday, September 21, 2016

PARACULTURAL CALENDAR FOR SEPTEMBER 21


On this day in 1792, a month after imprisoning King Louis XIV and his wife, Marie Antoinette, the chief architects of the revolutionary movement in France declare the monarchy to be over and done with. Soon, despite sky-high constitutional promises of democracy, liberties and property rights for the common Frenchman, heads begin rolling down the streets in great numbers as the Terror begins.

Contemplating the hideous fate of the French monarchy got yer old pal Jerky thinking... which would be worse? To be obliterated in one of history's greatest bloody rebellions? Or, as has happened in England, to devolve into a kind of living soap opera for dullards, stripped of all power, and basically allowed to exist because they help keep British people's minds off the fact that their Empire crumbled more than half a century ago?

Yer old pal Jerky would like to be able to say that he'd stride defiantly towards the guillotine, giving future biographers and historians something to write about. However, being a comfort-loving coward, I'm afraid I'd eventually have to settle on the latter option, wherein posing for postcards, waving at idiots and dodging the occasional paparazzo would be the hardest I'd ever have to work for the rest of my fucking life.

And speaking of overthrowing monarchy, it was on this day in 1776, American patriot Nathan Hale uttered the immortal words: "I only regret I have but one life to live for my country," before being hanged for spying against the British. He was 21 years old.

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On this day in 1937, J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit is published.

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On this day in 1977, a nuclear non-proliferation pact is signed by 15 countries, including the United States and the Soviet Union.

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On this day in 1981, Sandra Day O'Connor is unanimously approved by the U.S. Senate as the first female Supreme Court justice.

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On this day in 1991, Armenia is granted independence from Soviet Union.

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On this day in 1993, Russian President Boris Yeltsin suspends parliament and scraps the then-functioning constitution, thus triggering the Russian constitutional crisis of 1993.

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On this day in 2001, America: A Tribute to Heroes is broadcast by over 35 network and cable channels, raising over $200 million for the September 11 attack victims.

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