What Were You Reading/Watching/Listening to on 24 February 1995?
Turns out that, historically, nothing much of interest was happening on February 24, 1995. The date changed my world – and that of Kathy, Bruce, Jill, and many other people whose lives Eric has brightened – but it was a fairly ho-hum day, otherwise.
According to the website TakeMeBack.to, here’s a brief snapshot of that day in history:
- It was a Friday.
- Bill Clinton was President of the United States.
- “Famous” people born that day include Brittany Raymond and Rachel Levin. (I do not know who either of them is. I googled both, and I still do not know who they are or understand why they are labeled “famous” by TakeMeBack.to.)
- NY Times front page headlines that day: “CARTER RECEIVED COOLY IN HAITI,” “BALANCED BUDGET NEARS 67 VOTES NEEDED IN SENATE,” “Giuliani Seeks To Sell 3 Hospitals And Shrink Public Health System,” “Clinton, in Talk to Canadians, Opposes Quebec Separation,” “Announcing for President: Old News, but Still News,” “Dow Finally Breaks the 4,000 Barrier,” “Ex-Florio Aide Pleads Guilty in Kickback Scheme,” “The Hidden Question: Beyond the Northern Ireland Framework, What Do People in Ulster Want?” (Ah … the good old days.)
- Popular movies showing at the time: Shallow Grave (not a horror fan, so missed this one); Billy Madison (not much of an Adam Sandler fan, so I probably didn’t see this one, either); The Quick and the Dead (caught it on cable many years later); In the Mouth of Madness (more horror, so no); Before Sunrise (the first and best in the trilogy – I loved this movie!)
- Most popular TV show: ER. (According to tvaholics.blogspot.com, the U.S. received only four broadcast networks up until December 1994. Then, in January 1995, WB and UPN debuted with limited schedules, so Eric was literally born at the start of the expansion of TV beyond the three to four channels all of knew till that point. I didn’t realize how recent a phenomenon cable was until uncovering that nugget in my research for this post.)
- #1 song on the U.S. pop music chart: Madonna’s “Take a Bow” (I don’t believe I have ever heard this song.)
- Top magazines: Entertainment Weekly announced its 5th anniversary collectors’ issue; Fidel Castro was on the cover of Time; Czech model Daniela Pestova graced the cover of the 1995 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue
- Top books: Sisters, by Sharon J. Wohlmuth; Accident, by Danielle Steel; Eyes of a Child, by Richard North Patterson; The Death of Common Sense, by Philip K. Howard (I’ve never read any of them.)
Seriously, not a thrilling day. Kind of like when Tony and I saw a taping of the David Letterman Show (right after he made the move from NBC to CBS) and the guests were Mike Lupica and Adam Sandler. Really? No Rod Stewart, who’d appeared the day before, or Johnny Cash, who was on the following week?
A couple of events that occurred during my pregnancy do stand out, though. The first was the infamous OJ Simpson car chase. I had just found out I was pregnant and was holed up in my apartment, hiding from the world. I remember the room being very dark as I watched – inexplicably hypnotized – while the news covered this non-chase “chase.” I was talking to my husband just last night about how I believe that the OJ trial was the beginning of our descent into news as entertainment – and the lowering of the bar for journalists as truth tellers in lieu of them behaving as performers.
Another thing that happened, more personal to Tony and me because we were both big baseball fans, was that the unheard of occurred: the World Series was cancelled that year because of a protracted strike by the players. The strike began in August 1994 and went through to Opening Day of the 1995 season, making it the longest work stoppage in MLB history. We stayed fans – but many people did not. It was thanks only to the 1998 homerun record chase between known steroid users Mark Maguire and Sammy Sosa that baseball ever came back – and even today, it’s considered boring by people who are unaccustomed to a game at any slower a pace than the crazy cuts of a contemporary action movie.
Kathy asked me when I was pregnant with Eric if there was anything, specific, I wanted them to be sure to do with him or teach him. I told her that I wanted her to make sure he noticed the moon. It’s hard to put into words my lifelong fascination with the moon. When I was a little girl, my dad used to refer to the super-waxing or waning moon, when it appears as just a sliver, as the fingernail moon, as in the part you clip off when you trim your nails. I still think of that when I see a tiny crescent moon. And across the years, I would occasionally look up at the moon, wondering – perhaps hoping – whether Eric might be seeing the same exact moon from his corner of the world. We’ve never discussed it – but it would be interesting to ask him whether that was ever a thing for him.
The other thing I mentioned in answer to her question was that it would mean a lot to us if Eric played baseball. Not that we wanted them to force him into it, but that he just be given the opportunity to try it out. I remember being perplexed by Kathy’s response: “We’ll be sure he plays Little League Soccer.” Um … two different sports not remotely similar.
As it turns out, he did play baseball AND soccer – and wasn’t really a fan of either. His sports turned out to be hockey, cross country, and golf. Guess not everything is inherited, eh?
It was kind of interesting to go back and look at the events of the day for February 24, 1995. Might even be interested to try it for my own birthdate. I’m willing to bet things were even more sedate in May 1967.
Laura Orsini is an author, speaker, and consultant who coaches other authors to make and market exceptional books that change the world for the better. She is birthmother to Eric, who is finishing college in Boston this summer. Their adoption has been open for the better part of Eric’s life. She continues to toy with the idea that these posts will one day become a book. In the meantime, you can learn about her novel in progress, Stan Finds Himself on the Other Side of the World.