Today is a day, when smarty, crafty people roll out of bed, scratch their little noggins, and proclaim, “By golly. Today is the day.”
Yes, I think. It is plainly in sight. This August 12th must be some sort of party sparkler on the path of the Universe.
Just think where we would be without this marvelous feast of days.
Back in 1851, a man named Isaac Singer, walked down to the Patent Office, papers in hand. It was on the corner of Wiltshire Street, and Magellan. So he stopped at Prayner’s Bakery on his way there and got a pumpernickel bagel with extra cream cheese. Which, almost wrecked the whole idea, because there was cream cheese smeared on page 4 of the application form. Obviously, it worked out okay. Ms. Matterson, who worked as the receiving secretary of the Patent Office had a wad of cloth napkins in her purse. She had been to a party the night before, a baby shower, for Mabel Kingsley, who was having her eighth child. Ugh. So Ethel Matterson wiped the cream cheese from lines 21 through lines 36 on page four and saved the day for Isaac. Singer. Who was there to Patent his Sewing Machine.
About 60 years later, in 1908, another young man decided today was the day. Henry Ford ate a strong breakfast of Eggs, English Muffin, and Oatmeal. Which might be the most profound breakfast combination in history. Then promptly at 6:30 a.m., he made his way to his garage. Right after he fed the good chickens some scratch. He rolled up his sleeves and began wrenching, and socketing away. A wire here, a sprocket there. This spot calls for an entire line of wingnuts. His best friend, Bobby Shipper came by just before noon, and asked Henry to go fishing. Henry nearly went, but he was covered in oil and thought he might leave a mark in the stream. So back to work he went. Finally, just after 8:45 that night, a shiny silver horn with a black rubber bulb was attached to the front fender. And young Mr. Ford had built his first Model T.
Jump forward another 70 years, and we land in 1981. Gary Neidmeyer stood in line at the Radio Shack Store. He brought his Aunt Gretchen Neidmeyer with him, because she owned a very nice Chevy pick-up truck. Bright red. She had canceled her weekly Poker game with the girls, in order to help him. The game was supposed to be at her house, and had just made a fresh batch of Chex Scrabble Mix. So, she waited in the truck, snacking on mostly the Rice Chex and the peanuts. And there Gary stood by himself, in line. Then finally, he saw it. He came to retrieve his very first Personal Computer. An IBM. Yes, the first Personal Computer was on the market that day. It likely weighed 200 pounds and was the size of a refrigerator. But the PC arrived in the stores, there in 1981. Another first. And away they went. Aunt Gretchen, Gary, and the IBM, moving on down the highway, in that bright red truck.
Glimpsing back, intermittently, on this August 12, we have many great “inventions” and “firsts” in our lives. A sewing machine, a car, a computer. Almost thwarted by cream cheese, fishing, and a poker game.
How this world of ours works.
Heaven only knows what else. Scads of scientists, writers, musicians, and philosophers were born on this date. They all started on an August 12, which means their ideas started this date too. Take 1867. Edith Hamilton was born. (August 12, 1867 – May 31, 1963). She was an American educator and internationally-known author. Good old Edith, spinster Edith, was one of the most renowned classicists of her era. But get this. She was sixty-two years old when her first book, The Greek Way, was published in 1930. It was a huge and immediate success for her. And low and behold, it even made the Book-of-the-Month Club in 1957. What a thing.
So to all of this, these fine folks said: “Today is the Day.”
And who knows what is in each one of us. Right this very Here. Right this very Now.
Maybe, WE should say — Today is the Day.
“It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.”
― Herman Melville
“Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it.”
― Salvador Dalí
“The only time you fail is when you fall down and stay down.”
― Stephen Richards, Cosmic Ordering: You can be successful