Today’s posting has no less than three Popes, two feature in the next paragraph but we also start the births one with Pope Alexander VIII, (or Pietro Vito Ottoboni as he was then), who started off in white linen in 1610 before graduating to ermine in 1689. Founder of London’s first police force and writer of book about Tom Jones (not too sure whether it’s the creosoted wiry haired medallion wearing singer’s ghost biographer with the big nose), Henry Fielding won the lottery of life in 1707. Philosopher immortalised in Eric Idle’s song, Immanuel Kant gave great thought to be being born in 1724. Leading red member Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov, or just Lenin, didn’t quite revolutionise the world when born in 1870. Theoretical physicist who’s also dubbed ‘father of the atomic bomb’, Julius Robert Oppenheimer was definitely born in 1904. Having mentioned Yehudi Menuhin on 12th March when he died, here he is again given he dropped his bow for the first time in 1916. Aaron Spelling, the television/film producer responsible for classic 70’s programmes Charlie’s Angels and Starsky & Hutch, along with some not quite so classic programmes through the proceeding decades, (Fantasy Island, Dynasty and Beverley Hills 90210 being three such cases), was centre of attention in 1923. English actor George Cole had nearly as many teeth when born in 1925 as he did when he died in 2015. Country singer Glen Travis Campbell found he will never pass this way again after being born in 1936. Actor with the menacing grin, John Joseph ‘Jack’ Nicholson found how good it can get in 1937. World record holder who liked balloons, Steve Fossett flew solo from 1944. Wine glugger with the big glasses, Jancis Robinson was uncorked in 1950. Also born that year is first rock singer to feature, Peter Kenneth Frampton didn’t have to be shown the way. Second singer – Paul Melvyn Carrack started the living years in 1951. Ex-Polish Prime Minister who jumped on the gravy train when he became President of the European Council, Donald Franciszek Tusk bagged his place in 1957. Spiky haired ex-celebrity chef Gary Rhodes will probably bake himself a cake in honour of his 56th birthday. Comedian Sean Lock joined the circuit in 1963. Actress from Twin Peaks, Sheryl Lynn Lee had her fall time in 1967. Whilst we’re not famous (or infamous), my twin brother and myself celebrate our birthday today! Previous frontman to Australian band Silverchair Daniel Paul Johns had the greatest view in 1979. Bi-sexual dog smuggling ex-wife to Johnny Depp, actress Amber Heard was out in 1986.
There aren’t that many deaths to report on today, but as mentioned above, there are two Popes – the first of which Pope Caius had to get some elderly Cardinals carry his coffin in the Vatican back in 296. Next up is Pope Agapetus I who didn’t get to hear, ‘Extra omnes!’ in 536. James Hargreaves inventor of the Spinning Jenny started spinning in his grave from 1778. Fellow inventor Richard Trevithick who was mentioned on 13 April in the top paragraph gets his second mench in just over a week given he’s been permanently underground since 1833. Person said to have coined the phrase alcoholism, along with defining it as we know today, physicist Magnus Huss rather ironically had people toast him at his wake in 1890. Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman, British Prime Minister for the Liberal party found himself somewhat more conservative from 1908. One half of car manufacturer and aeroplane engine maker Rolls Royce, Sir Frederick Henry Royce didn’t die, he just ‘came to the end of his journey’ in 1933. William Aughe Ghere or Will Gere who played Grandpa Zebulon Tyler Walton in dull 1970’s series ‘The Waltons’, found he didn’t have to say, ‘Night John Boy’ again after 1978. Nearly impeached 37th President of the United States of America, Richard Milhous Nixon didn’t get to answer the red telephone from 1994. Finally, founder of 99c stores in America, Dave Gold didn’t manage to find a coffin for under a dollar in 2013.