May 2

Check the calendar. It’s today, trust me. It’s the day Tennessee Williams won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Pardon me, today is the day University of Missouri alumnus Tennessee Williams won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. I get a lot grief for my Missouri pride for unabashedly loving a state that has been described to me as “a backwater hellhole,” but I stand by the fact that Missouri, and Missourians, have contributed as much to American culture as any other state, certainly more than the average backwater hellhole. You’d be hard pressed to argue that there are 5 more important American playwrights than Williams and Edward Albee and both were educated at the University of Missouri. The American art scene would certainly be a lot worse off if not for Thomas Hart Benton (Kansas City, MO) who was a great painter on his own right but practically made Jackson Pollock, who perhaps you’ve heard. Three of the uniquely American types of music are Jazz, Ragtime and Rock and Roll and Charlie Parker (KC, MO), Scott Joplin (Sedalia, MO) and Chuck Berry (St. Louis, MO) had more than a small hand in the creation of each. Like peanut butter? George Washington Carver (Diamond, MO). Like winning friends and influencing people? Dale Carnegie (Maryville, MO). Happy to be not speaking Japanese right now? Harry Truman (Lamar, MO). Obviously, every state has its share of contributing sons and daughters, I’m just saying, if you want to reject the Show-Me State, give back all your childhood memories (Walt Disney [Marceline, MO]). And I haven’t even mentioned the greatest American author who just happens to be from Florida. Florida, Missouri.

-Just in case you needed more evidence that working in a mine is probably the worst thing you can do, today in 1972 a fire broke out in an Idaho mine that killed 91, which, as we learned yesterday, is barely a blip on the mine-death radar. 

-A year ago today, somebody paid $120 million dollars for The Scream by Edvard Munch, a world record. That’s great and I’m happy for whatever person can afford to pay $120 million dollars for something that doesn’t even play music or anything but this a piece of art that has been stolen, or as I call it, bought at auction for $0, about a dozen times. Here’s a picture of some people stealing it. No, really.

“Oh shit, guys, we should have parked closer to the museum.”

It’s Flag Day in Poland so wave those źdźbło zboża and have a good time. Given that this is a nation that struggles to change light bulbs, the flag is relatively simple:
Flag of Poland.svg

But it’s much better than this Indonesian bullshit that people get it confused with even though they aren’t the same at all:

However, the Poles use some different variations, like this one which they fly on Sunday day games:

State Flag of Poland.svg

-The great filmmaker Satyajit Ray was born today. The body of Donatella Versace was born today but that body has been largely replaced by silicone and plastic.  Dwayne Johnson, American thespian, was born today as was Neftali Feliz, who threw this pitch, for which I am eternally grateful. 

-Osama bin Laden died two years ago today. His apprehension and death were dramaticized in a movie you might have heard of called The Twilight Saga: Breaking Bad Part 2 (2012).

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