Daily Update: October 16, 2011

Hedwig and Margaret Mary Alacoque

Today is the Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time. We honor Saint Hedwig, Religious (died 1243) and Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, Virgin (died 1690).

Born in 1174 in Castle Andechs, Bavaria, Saint Hedwig was the daughter of Berthold IV, Duke of Merania, and the aunt of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary. She was married to Prince Henry I the Bearded of Silesia and Poland in 1186 at age 12, and was the mother of seven children. She cared for the sick both personally and by founding hospitals. Upon her husband’s death in 1238 she gave away her fortune and entered the monastery at Trebnitz where her daughter was abbess. She is the Patron Saint of Bavaria and of widows. We also honor Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, Virgin (died 1690). Born in 1647 at L’Hautecourt, Burgundy, she was healed from a crippling disorder by a vision of the Blessed Virgin, which prompted her to give her life to God. After receiving a vision of Christ fresh from the Scourging, she was moved to join the Order of the Visitation at Paray-le-Monial in 1671. In 1675 she received a revelation from Our Lord, which included 12 promises to her and to those who practiced a true to devotion to His Sacred Heart, whose crown of thorns represent his sacrifices. The devotion encountered violent opposition, especially in Jansenist areas, but has become widespread and popular, especially in the First Friday devotion, in which the faithful attend Mass and receive Communion on the first Friday of each month for nine months. She was canonized in 1920, and is the Patron Saint of devotees to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

We awoke at 7:00 am at the Holiday inn Express in Centerville, Ohio. We checked out, and I bought and we read the Dayton Sunday paper while eating the Continental Breakfast. We got on the road at 8:15 am; I did my Devotional Reading, played my daily trivia games, and we entered Kentucky at 9:15 am.

At a stop for gas, Richard called the Red Roof Inn in Jessup, Maryland back, and found that they did indeed have my camera bag. We then started listening again to Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell. We returned to the Central Time Zone at 12:00 pm EDT, and stopped for lunch just north of the Tennessee line at a McDonald’s at 12:00 pm CDT. We entered Tennessee at 12:30 pm, and stopped at a Federal Express store to arrange to get the camera bag sent to our house in SouthWestCentral Louisiana from the Red Roof Inn in Jessup, Maryland.

We arrived at Nedra’s house in Hermitage, Tennessee at 2:00 pm. We gave the bottle of Steen’s cane syrup to her husband Shelby, and visited with them. Nedra is in a wheelchair, and still full of pins and splints on her left side from being dragged 185 feet by the diesel truck in her motorcycle accident on September 11. (I did not get the messages and voice mails from Nedra’s family after the accident; much as I love my BlackBerry, I think it’s time to get an Iphone or Droid.) We did not want to wear her out, and left at 3:15 pm for Chattanooga.

In the college football polls, LSU remains #1 in the AP poll (as they were last week), and is #2 in the Coaches Poll (as they were last week). Richard and I finished listening to Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell, and I posted my book review to my weblog and to my Goodreads and Facebook accounts.

We entered Georgia at 5:15 pm, but also entered the Eastern Time Zone again, which made it 6:15 pm. Seven minutes later we re-entered Tennessee, and checked into the Super 8 in Chattanooga, Tennessee at 6:30 pm, in time to watch the end of the game between the New Orleans Saints and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Fox. Alas, our Saints lost the game, with the score of 20 to 26; they are now 4-2, and 1-1 in the NFC West division. We left at 7:45 pm and ate at Sticky Fingers Smokehouse downtown, next to a very promising used book store. In the initial BCS polls, LSU is #1 by .0003 points over Alabama. We got back to our room after a very good meal at 9:00 pm, and I am ready to go to bed.

In the Tropics, a large low pressure area near the Yucatan Peninsula may be reforming just to the east of Cozumel, and has a 50 percent chance of developing into a Tropical Cyclone during the next 48 hours. An area of low pressure located about 1,500 miles east of the Windward Islands has a 10 percent chance of developing into a Tropical Cyclone during the next 48 hours.

Tomorrow we will see Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, then head for Alabama to see Russell Cave National Monument and Little River Canyon National Preserve.

Our Parting Quote on this Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time comes to us from Barbara Billingsley, American actress. Born as Barbara Combes in 1915 in Los Angeles, California, her father was a patrolman; her parents divorced sometime before her fourth birthday, and her mother went to work as a forelady in a knitting mill. She fell in love with drama in the second grade and performed in all the school plays in high school before being voted “Class Clown” and graduating in 1934. After attending Los Angeles Junior College for one year she traveled to Broadway, when Straw Hat, a revue in which she was appearing, attracted enough attention to send it to New York. When, after five days, the show closed, she took an apartment on 57th Street and went to work as a $60–a–week fashion model. In 1941 she married her first husband, Glenn Billingsley, and used her new married name as her stage name. She landed a contract with MGM Studios in 1945, and was in several movies in uncredited roles until her first credited role in The Argle Secrets in 1948. Meanwhile, she and her husband had divorced in 1957, and she raised their two sons. Billingsley was in Three Guys Named Mike (1951), opposite Jane Wyman, The Bad and the Beautiful (1952), and the science fiction film Invaders from Mars (1953). She married British director Roy Kellino in 1953; he died three years later, in 1956. Her film experience led to appearances with David Niven on his television anthology series Four Star Playhouse in 1953 and 1955, and in the television comedies Professional Father in 1955 (with Stephen Dunne and Beverly Washburn) and The Brothers in 1956 and 1957 (with Gale Gordon and Bob Sweeney). In 1957 she co–starred opposite Dean Stockwell and Natalie Trundy in The Careless Years, which was her first and only major role in film. After Billingsley signed a contract with Universal Studios in 1957, she made her mark on TV as everyday mother June Cleaver on Leave It to Beaver,. The show debuted on CBS in 1957 to mediocre ratings and was soon cancelled. However, the show moved to ABC the following year and stayed there for the next five seasons. Also starring on Beaver were Hugh Beaumont, in the role of Ward Cleaver, June’s husband and the kids’ father, as well as child actors Tony Dow in the role of Wally Cleaver and Jerry Mathers as Theodore “Beaver” Cleaver. In the show Billingsley often could be seen doing household chores wearing pearls and earrings. The pearls, which in real-life were Billingsley’s trademark, were in turn her idea to have her alter ego wear on television. The actress had what she termed “a hollow” on her neck and thought that wearing a strand of white pearls would lighten it up for the cameras. In later seasons, she started wearing high heels to compensate for the fact that the actors who played her sons were growing up and getting taller than she was. So associated was the pearl necklace with the character that an entire episode of the sequel series dealt with the necklace becoming lost. During the show’s run Billingsley married her third and last husband in 1959.  She had one regret about the show’s lasting success: residual payments ended after six reruns in standard 1950s actors’ contracts. After six seasons and 234 episodes, the popular series was canceled due to the cast’s desire to move on to other projects, especially Mathers, who retired from acting to enter his freshman year in high school. When production of the show ended in 1963 Billingsley had become typecast as saccharine sweet and had trouble obtaining acting jobs for years. She traveled extensively abroad until the late 1970s. After an absence of 17 years from the public eye (other than appearing in two episodes of The F.B.I. in 1971), Billingsley spoofed her wholesome image with a brief appearance in the comedy Airplane! (1980), as a passenger who could “speak jive”. Her third husband died in 1981. Billingsley appeared with Robin Williams and Pam Dawber in a 1982 episode of Mork & Mindy, and  became the voice of Nanny and The Little Train on Muppet Babies from 1984 to 1991. She appeared in a Leave It to Beaver reunion television movie entitled Still the Beaver in 1983; Hugh Beaumont had died the year before of a heart attack, so she she was a widow in the movie. She also appeared in the subsequent revival of the series, The New Leave It to Beaver (1985–1989). In the 1997 film version of Leave It to Beaver, her last film, Billingsley played the character of Aunt Martha. In 1995 she appeared with other “TV Moms” on Roseanne. In 1998 she appeared on Candid Camera, along with June Lockhart and Isabel Sanford, as audience members in a spoof seminar on motherhood. On October 4, 2007, she and her surviving castmates, Jerry Mathers, Tony Dow, Ken Osmond and Frank Bank, were reunited on ABC’s Good Morning America, to celebrate Leave It to Beaver’s 50th anniversary. On May 6, 2008, hospitalized at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, she was unable to attend the Academy Leonard Goldenson Theatre in North Hollywood, California, where the Academy of Television Arts & Science presented “A Salute to TV Moms” (died 2010): “Good grief, I think everybody would like a family like that. Wouldn’t it be nice if you came home from school and there was Mom standing there with her little apron and cooking waiting?”

Categories: Daily Updates | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Daily Update: October 16, 2011

  1. Linda

    The iphone is great. I love mine’s. You ought to look into it.

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