Don’t Ask Why

ORIGINALLY WRITTEN DAVID VOGEL
We don’t really have history class in seventh grade. We have a geography class two or three times a week, but still, we don’t talk much about history-in fact, I think we get a little more history in math and science than we do in geography.

I was sorting through some old papers when I found a bunch of interesting stuff that a friend had let me borrow…last year.

Friend, (1) I hope you don’t mind me sharing this; and (2) I’m sorry I haven’t returned this yet.

So here’s a little bit of weird history. Read on!

What happens when a president gets elected in a year with a “0” at the end?

1840: William Henry Harrison (that’s almost a tongue twister) died in office.

1860: Abraham Lincoln, assassinated.

1880: James A. Garfield, assassinated

1900: William McKinley, assassinated.

1920: Warren G. Harding, died in office .

1940: Franklin D. Roosevelt, died in office.

1960: John F. Kennedy, assassinated.

1980: Ronald Reagan, survived assassination attempt.

2000: George W. Bush-oh dear.

With the war on terrorism-and terrorism itself…. Nah, we can beat it, and break this record of horribility. (I hope you like that word…I just made it up!)

Also notice how all this happened in increments of 20 years.

But wait-there’s more history!

Abraham Lincoln was elected to Congress in 1846, and John F. Kennedy was elected to Congress in 1946. Lincoln was elected president in 1860, and Kennedy was elected president in 1960.

Both of their wives lost children while living in the White House, and both presidents were concerned with civil rights.

Both Presidents were shot on a Friday and in the head. Lincoln’s secretary was named Kennedy, and Kennedy’s secretary was named Lincoln.

Both were assassinated by southerners. Both were succeeded by southerners named Johnson. Andrew Johnson, who succeeded Lincoln, was born in 1808, while Lyndon Johnson, who succeeded Kennedy, was born in 1908.

John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated Lincoln, was born in 1839, while Lee Harvey Oswald, who assassinated Kennedy, was born in 1939. Both assassins were know by their three names, both consisting of 15 letters.

Lincoln was shot at the theater called “Ford,” and Kennedy was shot in a car named “Lincoln” made by Ford. Booth ran from a theater and was caught in a warehouse, and Oswald ran from a warehouse and was caught in a theater. Booth and Oswald were both assassinated before their trials.

And last but not least, a week before Lincoln was shot, he was in Monroe, Maryland, and a week before Kennedy was shot, he was with Marilyn Monroe.

Wow, I’m sure this is one history lesson you didn’t mind reading.

* * *

OK, now that it’s getting close to Christmas time, I guess I should write a little about Christmas….

“Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer, had a very shiny nose. And if you ever saw it, you would even say it glows.”

I’ve always wondered about that. It said Rudolph has a shiny nose, and it says that you would say it glowed. It doesn’t say that the nose actually glows. It says that there’s a reindeer with a shiny red nose.

So why do we always portray it in movies with a lighted-up nose?

Oh well, I’ll let you dwell on that for a while.

Don’t ask why!

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