A Sideways Glare at Contemporary Society
1980 – Hermione Granger, Harry Potter`s little friend at Hogwarts. She is also one half of a blossoming romance with Ron Weasley, the other corner of JK Rowling`s schooldays trio. Generally seen as a new generation role model, Hermione has established smart and accomplished as desirable qualities for girls. There is some controversy as to the year of her birth, but remember, people, she`s fictional.
1949 – Lesley Hornby, who, disguised as Twiggy, succeeded Jean Shrimpton as THE supermodel of the 60s. And I`m not going to say anything about what kind of a message her super skinny, mournful waif look sent to the young girls and women of her generation and beyond.
1692 – During the Salem Witch Trials, Giles Corey was accused of the felony of witchcraft, and when he refused to enter a plea, the Tribunal sentenced him to be crushed by heavy stones until he confessed. Unfortunately, Corey, who was probably having trouble breathing under the weight, died before he could change his mind. Ironically, despite 29 convictions, 19 executions and Giles Corey, no witches were harmed during the Salem Witch Trials.
1982 – Scott Fahlman proposed the Emoticons 🙂 and 😦 as a way of distinguishing humorous comments from real on-line discussion, and, in 3 keystrokes, added tone of voice and body language to e-mails. Now in common usage most programs replace them with Happy Faces.
1968 – Chester Carlson who invented the XeroX (original spelling) machine which made document copying a push button away, thus changing history and making him the father of all those hilarious office memos and jokes which circulated everywhere until they were replaced by e-mail.
1995 – Orville Redenbacher, whose passion for popcorn brought that really cool movie theatre popcorn into our homes via the microwave. It`s not quite as good as the stuff we used to munch on at the movies, but it`s quick and easy and the closest thing we`re ever going to get these days.