Looming disaster and imminent peril get all the love, but there’s a stack of good news in today’s archives: It was Friday the 13th when Thelonious Monk and Sonny Rollins recorded “Friday the 13th” in 1953. An eerie start: Rollins was delayed by a car accident, and trumpeter Ray Copeland fell sick, so Julius Watkins filled in. The 10-minute jam was written on the spot, and it was one of Rollins’ most fulfilling collaborations. Full track here; Monk’s solo here.
It was Friday the 13th when Evelyn Brier became the first woman to receive an airplane instructor’s license. And Friday the 13th when President Lyndon Johnson signed an executive order banning gender discrimination in federal employment.
And Friday the 13th when Super Mario Bros. entered the world, and Steve Buscemi entered the world. Beyond bloodbaths Fargo, Reservoir Dogs, and The Sopranos, Steve’s good! He was a firefighter in New York City in the ’80s. One day after 9/11, he volunteered with his old firehouse to work 12-hour shifts digging through rubble in search of missing firefighters. “Very few photographs and no interviews exist because he declined them. He wasn’t there for the publicity,” a firefighter community wrote in solidarity. Ten years later, he joined protests against firehouse closures under Mayor Bloomberg and has supported labor rights on a firefighters’ advisory board.
The first dinosaur eggs were discovered on Friday the 13th.
NASA announced water on the moon on Friday the 13th.
World Kindness Day was Friday the 13th last year.
Share a word about kindness shown to you or by you at firstname.lastname@example.org. And if today bellies up and Steve Buscemi knocks at your door, there’s always Saturday the 14th, unless you answer that door.