As we celebrate the most American of holidays with made-in-China fireworks, Mexican beer and sausages named after German cities, by way of wishing our readers happy, happy, happy, we publish an updated version of our annual 4th of July message honoring the Calbuzz Pantheon of Not-So-Great Presidents. Bonus: Complete web junkie holiday guide!
On this, the 235th anniversary of our nation’s breakaway, Calbuzz gives a big shout out to Calvin Coolidge, the only president born on the Fourth of July.
Sure, Cal (July 4, 1872-Jan. 4, 1933) had his share of controversies, what with calling out the militia to smash a police strike in Boston, vetoing anti-Prohibition legislation and that whole usher-in-the-Depression laissez faire government thing.
But how you can dis a guy whose biographer says he “represents the genius of the average,” who was both the first president to deliver a speech on radio and the first to appear in a film with sound, and who also held more press conferences – 529 – than any president before or since.
All that multi-media stuff belies his reputation as “Silent Cal,” as do historic reports of his pretty good sense of humor.
As the story goes, the satirist and professional smart ass Dorothy Parker once sat next to him at a dinner, and announced, “Mr. Coolidge, I’ve made a bet against a fellow who said it was impossible to get more than two words out of you.” To which our guy famously replied: “You lose.”
Parker got back at Coolidge a few years later, though, when a reporter asked for her reaction to the news that he had died: “How can they tell?” she said.
Happy Independence Day from Calbuzz.
A reading list for the Fourth of July (there’s a quiz on Tuesday)
A way-cool guide to knowing your fireworks.
Big bomb squad explosion, for all the towns that cancelled fireworks.
Do you know where your kids are? (Probably the ER).
This year’s national hot dog count: 150 million.
Why we celebrate with hamburgers and hot dogs instead of turtle soup.
Spot the space station high above the fireworks.
How atheists celebrate the Fourth of July.
Why Flash Fleischman really loves the 4th.
Leave it to bankers to find the buzzkill.
What editors in Provo, Utah consider “fun facts” for the Fourth.
How to protect Sparky, Fluffy and Rex this holiday weekend.
Our Department of Humbug and Misanthropy: Working all day, every day.
Above all else, avoid the roads in Montana (but check out Irina!).