ON THIS DAY: April 20, 2018

April 20th is

UN Chinese Language Day *

International Cli-Fi Day *

Cheddar Fries Day

Pot Smokers (420) Day

Pineapple Upside Down Cake Day


MORE! Joan Miró, Frances Ames and Jin Xiang, click



Austria – Vienna:
Impericon Music Festival

Bhutan – National Council Elections

Canada – Montréal QC:
Bagel Burlesque Expo

Cuba – Victoria de Playa Girón
(Bay of Pigs Invasion battle)


On This Day in HISTORY

1303 – Sapienza, Università di Roma is instituted by Pope Boniface VIII, who is noted for declaring that both spiritual and temporal power are under the pope’s jurisdiction, and kings are subordinate to the pontiff; also feuds with Dante Alighieri, who places him in the Eighth Circle of Hell in his Divine Comedy

1494 – Johann Agricola born, German Lutheran reformer; helped bring Lutheranism to Frankfurt, but opposed Luther on the issue of the binding obligation of the Law and the Prophets on Christians

1534 – Jacques Cartier begins his first voyage to what is today the east coast of Canada, now Newfoundland and Labrador

1535 – The sun dog phenomenon observed over Stockholm and depicted in the famous painting Vädersolstavlan

Vädersolstavlan, 17th century copy 

1653 – Oliver Cromwell dissolves the Rump Parliament, those who remained after the Long Parliament had been purged of all who opposed trying King Charles I for treason

1657 – Freedom of religion is granted to the Jews of New Amsterdam (now NYC)

1775 – The British Siege of Boston begins, following battles at Lexington and Concord

1826 – Dinah M. Craik born, English novelist and poet; The Ogilivies; John Halifax, Gentleman; A Life for a Life

1836 – Wisconsin becomes a U.S. territory

1840 – Odilon Redon born, French painter, lithographer and etcher

1850 – Daniel Chester French born, American sculptor; Lincoln’s Memorial

1860 – Charles G. Curtis born, American inventor; worked on steam turbines

1889 – Adolf Hitler born, Nazi dictator of Germany, leading the country into WWII and responsible for the deaths of 12 million Jews and another 12-13 million other civilians

1893 – Joan Miró born, Spanish Abstract and Surrealist artist

1902 – Scientists Marie and Pierre Curie isolated the radioactive element radium.

1907 – William Dollar born, one of the first American danseurs nobles, choreographer (The Duel), and ballet master

William Dollar, with Daphne Vane and
Lew Christiensen, in Orpheus at the NYC Ballet

1908 – In Denmark, women win the right to vote in municipal elections, but can’t vote in national elections until June 1915

1920 – Frances R. Ames born, South African neurologist, psychiatrist and human rights activist; the first woman to receive a Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Cape Town in 1964; studied the effects of cannabis, and became a proponent of the therapeutic benefits of cannabis, particularly for people with multiple sclerosis (MS); most notable for leading a medical ethics inquiry into the 1977 death of Steven Biko, who was severely beaten in police custody, but the doctor who examined him said there was no evidence of injury. After examination by two other doctors, he was transported 740 miles (1190 km) to Pretoria’s prison hospital, unattended by medical personnel, and died there of a massive brain hemorrhage. The official investigations afterwards resulted in no charges against neither the police officers or the doctors involved, so Ames, helped by five others, raised funds to fight what became an eight-year battle against the medical establishment, risking her career and personal safety, all the way to the South African Supreme Court, where she finally won the case in 1985

1923 – Irene Lieblich born in Poland, Jewish painter, poet and illustrator for the books of Isaac Bashevis Singer, Holocaust survivor

1931 – Louis Armstrong records “When It’s Sleepy Time Down South”

1935 – Jin Xiang born, Chinese composer and conductor, whose career was seriously disrupted by the Cultural Revolution, but he was able to return to music, leading the Beijing Symphony Orchestra from 1979 to 1984, when he came to the U.S. as composer-in-residence at the Washington National Opera; Art Director of the China Performing Administration Centre of the Ministry of Culture 1994-1995, founder-president of the East-West Music Exchange in 1996

1939 – Billie Holiday records the Civil Rights song “Strange Fruit”  withwords from a poem written by Abel Meeropol exposing racism and lynching of black Americans


1940 – RCA has a public demonstration of its new electron microscope

1947 – Rita Dionne-Marsolais born, Canadian economist and politician from Quebec

1959 – Dolly Parton’s first single, “Puppy Love,” is released

1965 – The People’s Republic China offers North Vietnam military aid

1971 – U.S. Supreme Court upholds use of busing to end racial segregation in schools

1972 – NASA’s manned lunar module from Apollo 16 lands on the moon

1980 – The first Cubans of the massive Mariel boatlift arrive in the U.S.

1999 – Columbine: two male students storm their suburban high school in Littleton CO at lunch time with guns and explosives, killing 13 and wounding dozens more in what was at the time the nation’s deadliest school massacre

2010 – An explosion on BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil platform kills eleven workers and spews 200 million gallons of crude into the Gulf of Mexico for nearly three months

2010 – UN Chinese Language Day * is proclaimed by UNESCO to celebrate one of the six official working languages of the United Nations

2013 – NPR does a five-minute segment about “clifi” which launches International Cli-Fi Day * – a term coined by Dan Bloom of the Cli-Fi Report to describe ‘climate fiction’ books and movies

About wordcloud9

Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for the past 50 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband.
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