Strangely Enough (updated to clear things up)
By: Mark W Adams

Here's an exercise in the serendipity of the universe. Most of the day, between the drone of lost climbers and ineffective Commanders-in-Chiefs doing their best Hamlet impersonation ("to escalate or not to escalate"), the news carried the story of Time's Person of the Year -- YOU!

Following Ara's instructions, I played along with his game and grabbed that book closest to me. By shear coincidence, today of all days, the nearest book on my shelf, which happened to boast the grim face of Adolf Hitler. All day I've been hearing the excuse that Time Magazine not only made Der Fuhrer Man of the Year, but also put Joe Stalin on the cover, twice.

Sitting closest to my desk is Time's Time Capsule/1936, only because I haven't put it away on the bookshelf after moving around some furniture. {UPDATE: Hitler is on the cover and was Time's Man of the Year, that year. Vehrstadt?]

Well, this is my task, and I'm calling on Cindy at AsOhioGoes, Bill Callahan at Cleveland Diary (note to self: update blogroll link for Bill), and Newshound Paul to try their hand at this:

  1. Grab the book closest to you.
  2. Open to page 123, go down to the 4th sentence.
  3. Post the text of the following 3 sentences on your blog.
  4. Name of the book and the author.
  5. Tag three people of your own.
Page 123 of the Time Capsule/1936, edited by Henry R. Luce, you ask? Even weirder than you can imagine:
Late one night [British ally, 23 year old Iraqi King] Ghazi set out from the royal palace in Bagdad in an open sports car. He was on his way to Harthiyah Palace, a few miles from town. As he zoomed past a crossing, he lost control of the car, shot off the road smack into an electric light pole.
I think I'm going to give this book another look. The next paragraph speaks of unrest in Mosul, the "juicy" oil-rich area, as the "natives" were led to believe the Brits had a hand in their King's untimely demise.

Just as it was a chance undertaking that had me looking at that particular page at this particular time, chance played it's part 70 years ago in changing a history we can trace right up to the present day.

Thanks a lot Ara. If I can't sleep tonight, it's your fault.

1 Comment:

Bill Callahan said...