The almanac

By United Press International
Subscribe | UPI Odd Newsletter

Today is Sunday, May 12, the 132nd day of 2013 with 233 to follow.

This is Mother's Day in the United States.


The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Neptune and Uranus. Evening stars are Jupiter and Saturn.

Those born on this date are under the sign of Taurus. They include Edward Lear, an English painter and writer of limericks and nonsense poems, in 1812; nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale in 1820; French composer Jules Emile Massenet in 1842; lawmaker and author Henry Cabot Lodge in 1850; novelist Philip Wylie in 1902; actor Katharine Hepburn in 1907; orchestra leader Gordon Jenkins and jazz trombonist Jack Jenney, both in 1910; newscaster Howard K. Smith in 1914; businesswoman Mary Kay Ash in 1918; convicted spy Julius Rosenberg in 1918 (executed with his wife on June 19, 1953); baseball Hall of Fame member Yogi Berra in 1925 (age 88); composer Burt Bacharach in 1928 (age 85); TV personality Tom Snyder and artist Frank Stella (age 77), both in 1936; comedian George Carlin in 1937; musician Steve Winwood in 1948 (age 65); political commentator Paul Begala in 1961 (age 52); skateboarder Tony Hawk in 1968 (age 45); and actors Gabriel Byrne and Bruce Boxleitner in 1950 (age 63), Ving Rhames in 1959 (age 54), Emilio Estevez in 1962 (age 51), Stephen Baldwin in 1966 (age 47), Kim Fields in 1969 (age 44) and Jason Biggs in 1978 (age 35).


On this date in history:

In 1922, the magazine "Radio Broadcast" commented, "The rate of increase in the number who spend at least part of an evening listening to radio is almost incomprehensible."

In 1937, George VI was crowned king of England, succeeding his brother Edward, who abdicated to marry U.S. divorcee Wallis Simpson.

In 1949, Soviet authorities announced the end of a land blockade of Berlin. The blockade lasted 328 days but was neutralized by the Allies' Berlin airlift.

In 1975, a Cambodian gunboat fired on the U.S. cargo ship Mayaguez and forced it into a Cambodian port. All 39 crewmen aboard were freed but a number of U.S. servicemen died during a rescue mission two days later.

In 2002, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter began a visit to Cuba. He was the first president, in or out of office, to visit the island since communists took over in 1959.

In 2004, a Massachusetts Roman Catholic order was sued by nine former students of one of its schools, the Boston School for the Deaf, for alleged abuse as far back as 60 years ago.

In 2007, about 100,000 people attended a "Family Day" rally in Rome to protest a move that would grant more rights to same-sex and unmarried couples in Italy.


In 2008, a magnitude-8 earthquake, China's deadliest in three decades, killed more than 69,000 people, with nearly 18,000 missing and millions homeless.

Also in 2008, U.S. immigration agents raided a meatpacking plant in Postville, Iowa, arresting 389 immigration workers. Federal officers said it was the biggest immigration enforcement operation ever at a single U.S. workplace.

In 2009, the European Commission fined U.S. company Intel, the world's largest computer chip maker, $1.4 billion for alleged "illegal anti-competitive practices."

In 2010, a man armed with a meat cleaver stormed into a central China kindergarten classroom and slaughtered seven children, a teacher and her mother before taking his own life. Seventeen people died and about 100 wounded in five attacks in Chinese schools in a 2-month period.

Also in 2010, Britain set up its first coalition government since World War II, with the victorious Conservatives sharing control with the ideologically opposed Liberal Democrats after none of the competing parties won enough votes in the general election to avoid a parliamentary deadlock.

In 2011, a German court sentenced John Demjanjuk, 91, to five years in prison for his role in killing 28,060 Jews as a World War II Nazi concentration camp guard in Poland. Demjanjuk, a Ukrainian, had worked for decades at a U.S. auto plant.


In 2012, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said in a commencement speech at Liberty University in Virginia that marriage is a "relationship between one man and one woman." His comment came three days after U.S. President Barack Obama expressed support for legalizing same-sex marriage.

A thought for the day: Mark Twain remarked, "I never let schooling interfere with my education."

Latest Headlines