Showing 1 - 10 of 11 posts found matching keyword: independence day

Superman celebrates Independence Day the same way I do: watching 1776. He just has a better seat.

Not a dream! Not an imaginary story!

That's the opening splash panel from "Die Now, Live Later" in Action Comics #463, published in the summer of 1976 with a nod to the nation's bicentennial. This might blow your mind, but this Superman comic book is not a 100% accurate depiction of the events of July 4, 1776.

I'll run my quill pen through it!

See what I mean? Everyone knows that Franklin had retired from day-to-day publishing pursuits in the 1740s and had divested all ownership of the Pennsylvania Gazette by 1766!

In addition to the occupation of Old Man Franklin (who in July of 1776 was a Medicare-eligible 70 years old — two years younger than our current Chief Executive), there is one other bit of historical inaccuracy presented herein. See if you can spot it:

No, it's not that the room is only 3/5th full of men

Both Franklin and the narration in this panel are correct. While Congress agreed on independence on July 2, the text of the declaration of that independence vote was indeed approved on the 4th. (We're really celebrating bureaucracy and paperwork today, not independence.) But that declaration wasn't signed on July 4th! The Declaration of Independence as we know it wasn't signed by John Hancock or anyone else until August 2, 1776.

Besides those tiny gaffes, I assume the rest of this comic book can be treated as a historical document suitable for elementary school classrooms. Superman himself explains how he became involved in this previously unknown bit of American history, and Superman would never lie to us.

Everything is clear now--Karb-Brak sent me back in time...after he used his psi-machine to erase my memory of being Superman! Then he programmed me... and everyone else here... to believe I was a reporter who lived in 1776! I've been wearing my Superman costume all along--which means my colonial outfit was only a hypnotic illusion projected by the psi-machine--an illusion which vanished when I regained my memory!

An alien named Karb-Brak? Yeah, that sounds legit.

Happy Birthday, America!

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What a great price for artificial flavors

Note that there aren't two shades of white

Of course its the white one that thinks it's so good

Happy Birthday, 'Murica.

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The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America.

I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.

— Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 3 July 1776 (masshist.org)

Happy Great Anniversary Festival, everybody!

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#ShitMyJeffersonSays

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She spent the fourth hiding under my desk

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From Hark! A Vagrant:

America! Fuck yeah!

It's funny because it's true. Sad, but true.

By the way, this is just one panel of Kate Beaton's whole strip. Click on the image above to see other scenes from "Founding Fathers (in a Mall)."

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There are 2 things I do every Independence Day:

  1. Watch 1776.
  2. Watch the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest.

One thing I do not do is eat hot dogs. After you watch a stage full of guys swallow 50+ hot dogs in 10 minutes, they just aren't that appetizing anymore. I'll have peanut butter and jelly for lunch, thank you.

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Just in time to send Superman and Advertising Month out with a bang, I received an advertising flyer in the mail this week for fireworks. Specifically, this ad promotes Phantom Fireworks, which has been advertising very aggressively this season. In addition to stuffing my mailbox, they have billboards on Interstate 85 in Atlanta and even commercials on local cable television. Too bad that the products they are promoting are illegal to possess here in Georgia.

It's not uncommon to see ads in Atlanta for casinos and dog-racing tracks in nearby Alabama and North Carolina. However, the sinful activities taking place within those locations don't extend beyond their own boundaries. Phantom doesn't explicitly tell us to take our fireworks across state lines, but their advertising slyly points out how their stores are just over the state line, wink, wink. I suspect that they would be irritated if I tried to shoot my new fireworks in their parking lot.

Georgia legalized fireworks about 6 years ago. Specifically, Georgia legalized sparklers and noisemakers, but not rockets of any sort. That means that despite Phantom's fantastic "Buy One Get One Free!" offer, I can't really buy anything. No 6-shot Mighty Mite's Mortars, no 12-shot Def-Con Alerts, no 30-shot Blue Brocade Barrages, and certainly no 100-shot Saturn Batteries.

No, no Phantom Fireworks for us here in Georgia. Thanks to the Georgia legislature, we're stuck with only Wolf Pack Snaps and Morning Glory Sparklers sold in the seasonal, appropriately-named Acme Fireworks tents. Because even children know that if there's any place to buy explosives of any sort, it's not from a company named Acme!

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I'm sure I've mentioned before that I love the Independence Day holiday more than all others. It's a secular holiday that everyone celebrates their own way, a triumph of rational individualism with a healthy side of slavish deification of a bunch of old people in wigs. Who doesn't love that?

Yes, this panel was published in 1943. No, that doesn't make it any less insane.

Ah, George Washington. Is there anything he can't do?

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Another Independence Day come and gone. July 4th is without a doubt my favorite holiday, though I don't care for picnics, fireworks, or parades. Ironic? I don't think so. If others enjoy their crowded public places, I'll stay in my own suddenly quiet neighborhood. Everybody wins.

My brother and his girl were disgusted by my favorite Independence Day activity: watching the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest. Sure, it's gross, but it's much more entertaining than, say, Easter Sunrise Mass or a Christmas Day NBA double-header. (While it's not quite Thanksgiving Day NFL football, the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Competition only takes 10 minutes, barring overtime, and I'm not forced to watch this with the very same extended family that I try to avoid for the rest of the year.) How can you not love a competition that was cancelled by promoters in 1971 to protest "the reign of free love"? And I'm not alone in my appreciation of this grand event: it's estimated that nearly as many people showed up just to watch this year's contest as ran in Atlanta's Peachtree Road Race earlier the same day.

Maybe all of this success is because of the unique nature of the competition as a quintessentially American event complete with hot dogs, gluttony, and red, white, and blue bunting. When asked why he competes annually in this contest, 2007-08 champion Joey Chestnut summed it all up, "I love to eat. I love the competition. And... it's Fourth of July, and you can get away with it on this day, push your body this hard over something silly like this." Damn straight, Joey. It sure beats running a 10K.

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To be continued...

 

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