Today is Friday, July 18, the 199th day of 2003 with 166 to follow.
The moon is waning. The morning stars are Venus, Mars, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune. The evening stars are Mercury, Jupiter and Pluto.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Cancer. They include English novelist William Makepeace Thackeray in 1811; actor Chill Wills in 1903; playwright Clifford Odets in 1906; composer, arranger, pianist Lou Busch (a.k.a. Joe "Fingers" Carr) in 1910; actor Hume Cronyn in 1911; comedian Red Skelton in 1913; actress Harriet Hilliard Nelson in 1914; South African black leader Nelson Mandela in 1918 (age 85); astronaut-turned-Sen. John Glenn, D-Ohio, in 1921 (age 82); journalist/author Hunter S. Thompson and pop singer Dion Di Mucci, both in 1939 (age 64); actor James Brolin in 1941 (age 62); singer Martha Reeves in 1941 (age 62); publisher Steve Forbes in 1947 (age 56); country singer Ricky Skaggs in 1954 (age 49); actress Elizabeth McGovern in 1961 (age 42); and basketball star Anfernee "Penny" Hardaway in 1972 (age 31).
On this date in history:
In 64 A.D. fire destroyed nearly two-thirds of Rome.
In 1936, a nephew of Oscar Mayer invented the "Weinermobile."
In 1977, Vietnam was admitted to the United Nations.
In 1984, a gunman opened fire at a McDonald's restaurant in San Ysidro, Calif., killing 21 people.
In 1991, the first Ibero-American Summit Conference opened in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Also in 1991, the Yugoslav federal presidency began withdrawing troops from Slovenia.
In 1992, youths rampaged for a second night in southwest England following the deaths of two young men on a stolen police motorcycle.
In 1994, a car bombing in Buenos Aires, Argentina, killed some 100 people in or near a building that housed Jewish organizations.
In 2002, Zacarias Moussaoui, the only person charged in connection with the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the U.S., described as the 21st hijacker, told the judge he wanted to plead guilty. The judge refused.
A thought for the day: Fellini said, "All art is autobiographical. The pearl is the oyster's autobiography."