Daily Update: Friday, August 26th, 2016

08-26 - Women's Equality Day and 08-26 - Hurricane Andrew

With no Saints for us to honor this day, we note that today is Women’s Equality Day. We also turn to the Year of Our Lord 1992, when on this date Hurricane Andrew made landfall in Louisiana. And one year before that, Richard’s grandniece Alyssa was born, the granddaughter of his brother here in town (1991).

Women’s Equality Day is a day proclaimed each year by the United States President to commemorate the granting of the vote to women throughout the country. In 1878 an amendment to the United States Constitution was proposed to give women the right to vote; the 19th Amendment was certified as law on August 26th, 1920. Representative Bella Abzug of New York (died 1998) introduced legislation to remember August 26th of each year as Women’s Equality Day. The resolution passed in 1971, and since 1972 every President has published a proclamation for the day; the proclamation was made for this year’s Women’s Equality Day was made by President Barack Obama on August 25th, 2016. Turning to hurricanes, most people, if they recall Hurricane Andrew, remember that it hit Homestead, Florida with murderous force on August 24th; but before the storm had gone across Florida and into the Gulf of Mexico, those of us in Louisiana were already at the grocery stores buying up hurricane supplies. The storm made landfall near Morgan City, Louisiana and came up through Baton Rouge, where we were living at the time; after the worst of the storm, Richard drove out from our subdivision to see how things were, and came back home somewhat shaken after being narrowly missed by a small tornado. We did not have any damage at our house; earlier in the summer, we had gotten our front-yard trees professionally trimmed, so all the branch detritus in our yard was from our neighbor’s trees. But we were without power for three days (including no air conditioning, which is no fun when your kids are aged five and four), and lost everything in our chest freezer, which at that time held nothing but two or three year’s worth of partially eaten chocolate Easter bunnies. Today is also the birthday of Richard’s grandniece Alyssa, the granddaughter of Richard’s brother here in town (1991).

I did my Book Devotional Reading, and posted to Facebook that today was Women’s Equality Day. On our way to work I did my Internet Devotional Reading and requested The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde and The Man Who Was Thursday by G. K. Chesterton from the Lafayette Public Library. Once we clocked in at work, Richard was on Mini Baccarat, and I was on Three Card Poker; my table had no players at all until past 7:00 am, which was very strange (it’s usually a very popular table). I got a text from Nedra telling me that they had found methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection in her back, and I told her that I would continue with my prayers and candles for her. I also, upon consideration, decided against reading any more in A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin; I have learned when I am very resistent to continuing my reading of a book that I should just abandon it, as that is better for my mental health (such as it is). Instead, I will begin reading (again, because I had started reading it awhile back, and abandoned it) Gilead by Marilynne Robinson; while I did abandon the book, I have a mandate to read it, as it is part of my ongoing project to read all of the Pulitzer Prize winners in fiction (it won in 2005). Richard also told me that Michelle had told him that next month Callie’s mother Lisa will fly to Connecticut, then fly down to South Carolina with the baby; meanwhile, Michelle will fly up to Connecticut, and she and Callie will drive one car (with the cats), with Matthew following them in the other car. They will all meet up in South Carolina, and move Matthew and Callie and the baby and the cats into their new home on the outskirts of Charleston.

On our way home we got gas at the Valero in Kinder, and once in our town we were going to go to the bank to cash the check that Michelle gave us, but there was too long of a line at the drive through window, so we elected to wait until Monday for that. Once home I ate my lunch salad and read the morning paper. I then called my Ob/Gyn again, and was again told that once the doctor has reviewed the report they will call me, and I called Texas again, and left a voicemail (again). And I am now doing my Daily Update for today, as I think I will go to bed early today. (Jeopardy! is in reruns.) Tonight our New Orleans Saints will play their third Pre-Season NFL game at home against the Pittsburgh Steelers; I will report the score of the game in tomorrow’s Daily Update.

Tomorrow is the Memorial of Saint Monica, Widow (died 387). Richard and I will work our eight hours tomorrow at the casino, and I will start reading Gilead by Marilynne Robinson. After lunch I will go to the Adoration Chapel to do my Weekly Hour of Eucharistic Adoration; meanwhile, Richard will pay bills and go to Wal-Mart to do the grocery shopping. When I get home I will do my Daily Update and go to bed.

Our Parting Quote this Friday afternoon comes to us from P. J. Kavanagh, English poet, author, actor, and columnist. Born as Patrick Joseph Kavanagh in 1931 in Worthing, Sussex, his father, Ted Kavanagh, was later a scriptwriter for It’s That Man Again (or, commonly, ITMA), a BBC radio comedy programme which ran from 1939 to 1949. Kavanagh first worked as a Butlin’s Redcoat (a frontline staff position at holiday camps), then as a newsreader for Radiodiffusion Française, in Paris. He attended acting classes but was called up for National Service, and was wounded in the Korean War. Kavanagh attended Merton College, Oxford from 1951 to 1954; there he began to write poetry, and met Sally Philipps, the daughter of novelist Rosamond Lehmann. They married in 1956; two years later she died suddenly, of poliomyelitis, while they were living in Java, where he was teaching for the British Council. He published his first book, One and One, a collection of poetry, in 1959. He had an uncredited role in the 1962 film Lawrence of Arabia. Kavanagh presented Not So Much a Programme, More a Way of Life (1964 – 1965) on BBC1 TV. He married again in 1965, and his memoir about his relationship with Philipps, The Perfect Stranger (1966), won the Richard Hillary Memorial Prize. His next volume of poetry, On the Way to the Depot, was published in 1967. Kavanagh’s first novel, A Song and Dance (1968), was awarded the Guardian Fiction Prize. He was the secret agent Sean Mortimer suffering from drug-induced amnesia in the 1968 episode “The Forget-Me-Knot” of the series The Avengers, the last episode with Diana Rigg in the female leading role. He continued writing novels and collections of poetry; he also wrote children’s books and travel autobiographies. In 1982 he edited the Collected Poems of Ivor GurneyThe Oxford Book of Short Poems (co-editor with James Michie), came out in 1985; the same year he edited The Bodley Head G. K. Chesterton. In 1987 he edited The Essential G. K. Chesterton. He edited A Book of Consolations in 1992; that same year he was given the Cholmondeley Award for poetry. He was a columnist for The Spectator from 1983 to 1996. His last acting role was as the Nazi-memorabilia-collecting Father Seamus Fitzpatrick in the Father Ted episode “Are You Right There, Father Ted?” in 1998. Until 2002 he was a columnist for The Times Literary Supplement. His last volume of poetry, Something About, was published in 2004 (died 2015): “Letting the facts speak for themselves is an immoral principle when we all know that facts and figures can be selected to prove anything.”

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