September 28, A Day That Will Live In Infamy

A Geezer’s Notebook, By Jim Foster

Back on September 28th I was half-watching the CBC news channel and half-reading a book at the same time, and as you might expect learning nothing from either one of them, when one of the news commentators said something I found a trifle odd. He had been running on about something current and then he said that most Canadians were not paying attention to the news of the day but were reliving the glory of Paul Henderson’s winning goal against the Soviets 50 years ago. Really!

I am not anti-Canadian, nor anti-hockey, nor anti-Paul Henderson and if he bought me a beer I would gladly sit with him, but no, dear sir, most Canadians were not reliving that goal, only the CBC was reliving it. I am not denying that it certainly was a glorious moment in the history of sports in Canada but there are a few more things that happened on the 28th of September that need mentioning. I think we have been celebrating Paul’s goal about twice a day for the past 50 years. I hate to suggest it but perhaps we should give it a rest.

Let us go back a year or two in history and relive some great moments that happened on that date. Not many of us were around at the time, but on September 28 in the year 935, St. Wenceslas was murdered by his brother, Boleslaus 1 of Bohemia. Well, I guess the day was hardly considered great by Wenceslas. In fact he was probably quite annoyed over the whole thing since he never talked about it afterwards.

To make matters even worse, the Tin Pan Alley writers of the day failed to mention it in the lyrics of his Christmas carol, Good King Wenceslas. Instead they sang about the old geezer’s chance meeting with a peasant out gathering winter fuel. Myself I think his getting bumped off was a set-up from the word go. Granted the peasant, Vito (The Enforcer) Macaroni, was wandering around in the forest where the snow lay round about and the frost was cruel, but doesn’t it seem odd to you that Macaroni should pick that particular time to be out there?  Now I think you know that I am not from Fox News and spreading fake news is not my thing, but let’s re-examine the murder.

It doesn’t take too many brains to deduce the peasant knew Wenceslas would be out there. Everyone in the realm knew the King went for a walk at that time every day to get away from Mrs. Wenceslas, who was a bit of a nag. They had not been getting along for some time. Possibly because she as 19 and he was 76 and this was centuries before Viagra,

Vito also knew that Boleslaus, who was his brother-in-law by the way although it wasn’t mentioned in the carol, was hiding behind a tree with a sawed-off shotgun. Mary and I watch FBI every day and they would have arrested his sorry bum within minutes and by the weekend he would be sitting in a chair wondering why his feet were smoking.

Just as a matter of interest, in 995, same day 60 years later, Boleslaus’ son, Boleslaus the Pious, murdered Spytimir, Pobraslav, Porej and Caslav, all members of Slavnik’s dynasty. (They all had funny accents over their names but I’m not going to try to put them in. I didn’t even know the bozos.)

But that isn’t all that happened on the 28th. On that very same day in 48 BC, Pompey the Great was assassinated. From what I heard, Pompey was out in the forest gathering winter… well you know the story.

In 1904, again the same day in September, a woman was arrested in New York City for smoking a cigarette in a car on 5th Avenue. The Internet didn’t say whether she got the death penalty or a just long stint in jail. I will try to find out and get back to you.

Now I’m not saying that something bad is going to happen but if I were you I would stick close to home September 28, 2023 and make sure your life insurance premiums are up to date. And no more smart-ass remarks about your wife’s bum, she’s only looking for an excuse.

Oh, one more piece of advice and this is important, should you ever run into someone named Boleslaus never let him get behind you.

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