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Ben Franklin's bifocals Sunday, September 25, 2016

Writer William Faulkner    Writer William Faulkner    Writer William Faulkner
[1897 - William Cuthbert Faulkner (Falkner), Nobel Prize-winning writer, novelist, born in New Albany, Mississippi]

Sportswriter Red Smith    Pulitzer Prize-winning Sportswriter Red Smith    Pulitzer Prize-winning Sportswriter Red Smith
[1905 - Walter Wellesley 'Red' Smith, Pulitzer Prize-winning sportswriter, born in Green Bay, Wisconsin]

Dmitri Shostakovich    Composer Dmitri Shostakovich    Composer Dmitri Shostakovich
[1906 - Dmitri Dmitriyevich Shostakovich, composer, born in St. Petersburg, Russia]

Yankee shortstop Phil Riizzuto    Rizzuto Hall of Fame plaque    Yankee Hall of Famer Phil Riizzuto
[1917 - Phil (Philip Francis) 'Scooter' Rizzuto, Hall of Fame Yankee shortstop, born in Brooklyn]

Actor Aldo Ray    Actor Aldo Ray
[1926 - Aldo Ray (DaRe), actor, born in Pen Argyl, Pennsylvania]

Writer Shel Silverstein    Writer Shel Silverstein    Cartoonist Shel Silverstein    Poet Shel Silverstein
[1930 - Sheldon Alan 'Shel' Silverstein, poet, cartoonist, singer, songwriter, born in Chicago]

Piano Virtuoso Glenn Gould    Piano Virtuoso Glenn Gould    Piano Virtuoso Glenn Gould    Piano Virtuoso Glenn Gould
[1932 - Glenn (Herbert) Gould, piano virtuoso, born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada]

Folksinger Erik Darling    Folksinger Erik Darling
[1933 - Erik Darling, folk singer & songwriter, born in Baltimore, Maryland]

Actress Juliet Prowse    Dancer & Actress Juliet Prowse    Dancer Juliet Prowse
[1936 - Juliet Prowse, dancer, actress, born in Bombay, Maharashtra, India]

Actor Christopher Reeve    Christopher Reeve as Superman    Director Christopher Reeve
[1952 - Christopher Reeve, actor, director, producer, writer, born in New York City]

A Little Rock Nine Student with a crowd of her admirers    Little Rock Nine Students with 101st Airborne troops
[1957 - Nine black students enter Central High School, Little Rock, Arkansas, under the protection of the 101st Airborne Division, US Army]

Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor
[1981 - Sandra Day O'Connor, first woman on the U.S. Supreme Court, is sworn in]

Grandpa Moment # 4 - No Limits

Grandpa is reading a bedtime story to grandson (age 3.1). He notices that the child can already recognize individual words in his train book, so he asks:

Can you read?

No, Grandpa; I can read when I am four.

Don't you think that you could read when you are three?

No, Grandpa, you have to be four.

{Grandpa sees an opportunity to conduct a Socratic dialogue with grandson.}

Do you think you could read in one month?

No, Grandpa.

How about two months? Could you read then?

No Grandpa, I think it would take longer.

How about four months, could you read after that long a time?

Yes, Grandpa. I think I could.

But, Zach, in four months you will still be three.


{It would seem that a well-intentioned adult who didn't know him thought to encourage young Zach by telling him he would be able to read when he was four (before he went to kindergarten). Instead, a barrier had been erected.}

William's Whimsical Words:

Take care what you say to children.

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