Jennifer D. Wade Journal

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Blog posts October 2010

On My List

Here we are in late October. Election Day is less than one week away, and I am up to my neck in work-related preparations.

But, never mind that now. It's time to get my picks in for Death Pool 2010-2011. The current season ends on Halloween and, unless about 15 of the people on my list suddenly drop dead, it will go down as one of Lady Macbeth's worst season's ever. Only two people on my list (Robert Byrd and John Wooden) passed away, earning me a grand total of just six points.

Of course, that leaves plenty of leftovers who are clearly living on borrowed time. So, with just a couple of tweaks, here is Lady Macbeth's list:

  • 20. Zsa Zsa Gabor
  • 19. Billy Graham
  • 18. Nancy Reagan
  • 17. Betty Ford
  • 16. Kirk Douglas
  • 15. Michael Douglas
  • 14. Ariel Sharon
  • 13. Kim Jong Il
  • 12. Jerry Lewis
  • 11. Louis Farrakhan
  • 10. Stephen Hawking
  • 9. George H.W. Bush
  • 8. Ernest Borgnine
  • 7. Olivia De Havilland
  • 6. Abe Vigoda
  • 5. Mickey Rooney
  • 4. Margaret Thatcher
  • 3. Phyllis Diller
  • 2. Helen Thomas
  • 1. Nicole Polizzi (Snookie from “Jersey Shore”)

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Did Someone Say, "Titanic?"

One of the reasons - perhaps the main reason - I don't post very much anymore is because I now spend the majority of my online time on Facebook. It's not like I spend hours and hours playing in one 'ville or another. In fact, I utilize very few apps. And, I don't obsessively check the pages of all of my 400+ FB friends. But, much as my cell phone is always on, I do stay logged in to FB for hours at a time, so it may appear that I'm on there more than I really am.

The availability and convenience of FB makes it easier for me to post a quick thought or two there than it is to sit down and write a lengthy blog entry. And, once it's on Facebook, the desire to put it in my blog dissipates rather quickly.

But, in this case, I'm making an exception. So, what follows is an expanded version of a note I posted on FB a few days ago. Here goes.

Up until a couple months ago, I had never heard of a book called "A Night to Remember." Why, I can't say. (However, I can speculate that all those mystery novels I read were a contributing factor) The book is considered a classic but, for one reason or another, it never crossed my path or showed up on any assigned reading list.

"A Night to Remember," published by Walter Lord in 1955, chronicles the final hours of the Titanic before she sank and the desperate hours that followed as hundreds of passengers struggled to survive. Lord interviewed about 60 survivors and incorporated their recollections into his narrative.

Up until this past summer, I had never heard of this book (or seen the movie). But then, in early August, I went with a friend to check out the Titanic exhibit that was on display at Whitaker Center in Harrisburg. The exhibit was fascinating, and the book was on sale in the gift shop. I didn't buy it then. I did, however, buy it a few days later and set about reading it. As I said, it's considered a classic (for good reason, as I now know).

Several weeks later, in mid-September (before I had actually finished the book, I'm ashamed to say), the book was erroneously referenced in a news script that I was looking over. The script concerned a new mystery novel written by the granddaughter of an officer on board the Titanic. She weaved into the plot elements of a story that she says her grandfather told her grandmother but no one else. As she tells it, her grandfather claimed that the Titanic hit the iceberg because the person at the helm misunderstood a command and initially steered the ship in the wrong direction.

According to our script (which was based on what, in my opinion, was a rather unclearly written network script), the title of this new novel was "A Night to Remember." I read that and thought, "What? She gave her novel the same title as the classic book?" So, I did a little checking. The network script referenced a clip from the movie "A Night to Remember," but it never actually mentioned the name of the new novel (did I mention that the network script was unclear?). I poked around on the Internet and discovered that the novel is called "GOOD AS GOLD." I was able to correct the script before it hit air.

I finally got around to finishing the book in late September, right about the time that GLORIA STUART died. Remember her? She played Old Rose in James Cameron's 1997 blockbuster, "Titanic."

Then, earlier this week came word that the guy who directed the MOVIE based on the book "A Night to Remember" had died at the age of 93.

Weird how now I can't seem to get away from something that I only recently encountered.

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