Who Shares Your Birth Day?

I bet you have looked up who shares your birth day. And if you have done that in some almanac or online, I suspect you looked to see if there was some connection to your birthmates.

As a kid, I was told that my birthday was the same as Mickey Mantle and growing up in northern New Jersey that made being a Yankees fan required.

In my guitar-playing I-want-to-be-a-rock-star days, it was comforting to read that I shared a birth day AND year with Tom Petty.

My more mature poet self likes that I share a day with Rimbaud and, fellow Jersey boy, Robert Pinsky.

I guess we want to believe that there is some cosmic connection to our birth day - the horoscope you say you don't believe.

Want to know about your day? Wikipedia will actually give you births, deaths, historic events etc. - just type in a date like October 20 and check it out.

A book by Adam Gopnik, called Angels and Ages: Lincoln, Darwin, and the Birth of the Modern Age , looks at two famous men who have a shared birth day - February 12, 1809.

Two births, one in America, one in England; one in a Kentucky log cabin and one in an English country estate.

Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin.

Gopnik's book looks at the two men as family men and social climbers, ambitious manipulators and courageous adventurers.

It tries to reconcile Lincoln, the good man we know, with the hardened commander who wittingly sent tens of thousands of young soldiers to certain death

It looks at how relentlessly rational Darwin delayed publishing his “Great Idea” for almost twenty years because they clashed with his religious views.

Both men shared inconsolable grief at the loss of a beloved child. It changed both men.

1 comment:

  1. Mickey Mantle, Tom Petty and Rimbuad?

    I have Sherman Helmsley. Let me go see if my anniversary fares any better.