People who have/will be celebrating their birthday include, among others, King William III of England, Scotland and Ireland or William of Orange started off in white back in 1650. Inventor of the first commercially viable steamboat, Robert Fulton was firing on all cylinders in 1765. Easel botherer and painter of lily ponds now found on everything from reproduced prints to drinks mats, Oscar-Claude Monet made the right impression in 1840. Leo Henricus Arthur Baekeland inventor of both Volex photographic paper and Bakelite plastic broke the mould in 1863. First Prime Minister of India (and dad to Indira Ghandi), Jawaharlal Nehru, struggled through in 1889. Writer of various children’s books and creator of Shrek! William Steig would have heard his parents say, ‘Listen little man!’ from 1907. Having mentioned a couple of characters from Gilligan’s Island recently, it’s now the turn of its creator, (along with the Brady Bunch), Sherwood Charles Schwartz had his first feature in 1916. Sixth Secretary General of resolution making (whatever good that does) organisation The United Nations, Egyptian with the recurring name Boutros Boutros-Ghali resolved to be born in 1922. Old biddies favourite overweight leotard wearer, wrestler with the woman’s name Shirley Crabtree or ‘Big Daddy’ to give him his stage name found it, ‘easy, easy’ being born in 1929. Fritz Gunter Sachs started documenting his life from 1932. Hussein bin Talal, King of Jordan assumed the position in 1935. Heir apparent to the British monarchy and other Commonwealth realms, Chas, Prince of Wales (his official titles would take up another page), had the millionaires shot in 1948. Former Prime Minister of France, Dominique Marie François René Galouzeau de Villepin was no longer Minister of the interior given he popped out in 1953. 66th United States Secretary of State and right hand woman to George Dubya Bush, Condolezza Rice saw to it that she was born 62 years ago. Talented actor Paul John McGann had his downtime in 1959. Actor Daniel Bernard ‘D.B.’ Sweeney reached the outer limits in 1961. Australian rules football player Martin Pike didn’t tell the man in the white coat his name back in 1972. Professional skateboarder Kareem Campbell performed his first ever 180 degree turnaround in 1973. Norwegian of the day, stage/film actor Nicolai Cleve Broch didn’t need a prompt arriving in 1975.
As for deaths, I’m afraid there aren’t any Popes to report on today, but we kick things off with the mistress of Charles II – Eleanor ‘Nell’ Gwyn, who started having pubs named after her from 1687. Not content with her, he also had Louise de Kérouaille, Duchess of Portsmouth on the go – though she wasn’t so synonymous with pub names but also didn’t survive the day in 1734. King Miguel I of Portugal and the Algarves, was forced from the throne in 1866. Eleventh emperor of the Qing Dynasty, Guangxu Emperor didn’t get to see who succeeded him in 1908. Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives, Martin Dies Jr., lived (or rather died) up to his surname in 1972. Cowboy film actor Johnny (John) ‘Mack’ Brown headed west in 1974. Argentine ball kicker/coach, Juan Carlos Lorenzo received the red card in 2001. Indian actor with the mono name, Augustine took his final bow in 2013. Not the odd singer who attacked chat show host Russell Harty, but false teeth enthusiast and supercentenarian Grace Jones, decided 113 years 342 days was enough for her in 2013. Finally, creator of Battlestar Galactia, Magnum P.I., Knight Rider and various other television programmes, Glen Albert Larson ran out of ideas in 2014.