March 15th is considered a cursed day, but some damn good things have happened in the past.
Tomorrow is the Ides of March. As your local library can tell you, it became known as a cursed day when Julius Caesar was betrayed, stabbed, and killed on March 15, 44 B.C. Shakespeare immortalized it in The Tragedy Of Julius Caesar when he used the catchphrase “Beware the Ides of March.”
I did a little investigating into the Ides of March and you know what? Yeah, some bad stuff goes down here and there… but some wonderful stuff has happened on March 15th, too. I chose these 11 events from March 15ths throughout history to show there’s no need to beware the Ides of March. Because, obviously, ya know, you were going to otherwise.
1 | March 15, 1493: Columbus makes his triumphant return to Spain
After discovering (sort of) the New World, Columbus took the Nina back to Spain and arrived back on this day. He brought wonderful, never-before-seen gifts from the New World including tobacco, hammocks, slaves, and, best of all… syphilis! That sound bad on the surface, but ya know what? If you travel internationally and *don’t* come back with an STD, then you’re doing it wrong.
2 | March 15, 1820: Maine becomes the 23rd state
As far as U.S. historical events go, I’ll take this one. Maine is so nice and inoffensive. It’s like the “I’m dating an accountant” of states. Another option for an American historical event was March 15, 1776 when South Carolina became the first colony to declare independence from Great Britain. Yes, this seems wonderful… but the long-term side effect was letting South Carolina learn all the mechanics of secession.
3 | March 15, 1869: The Cincinnati Red Stockings become the first-ever professional baseball team
All the members of the Red Stockings were paid, marking the first-time ever a baseball team was all pros. That season they played club teams and… went 57-0. This season permanently established professional baseball in Cincinnati. (They’re still holding out hope for the establishment of professional football.)
4 | March 15, 1906: Rolls-Royce is founded
Two British gentlemen, Charles Rolls and Henry Royce, established their company in the hopes that they would one day get a barrage of shout-outs by rappers.
5 | March 15, 1963: Bret Michaels is born
Not only did he front one of the most famous hair bands ever. Not only did he do it with diabetes. Not only did he make a sex tape with Pamela Anderson back when that was novel and not just a rock star rite of passage. But when it appeared that VH1 (and their Flavor of Love brand) was bringing back minstrel shows to the 21st century, Michaels stepped in to star in the HerpesFest known as Rock of Love… letting everyone know that VH1 can thoroughly exploit trashy white people, too.
6 | March 15, 1965: The first T.G.I. Friday’s opens
Before this, people never knew the joy of eating a 2,300-calorie meal while gazing at a wall covered in rusty license plates and photos of banjos.
7 | March 15, 1972: The Godfather premieres
According to legend, the studio wanted Ernest Borgnine for the Don Vito role, Robert Redford as Michael, and Steve McQueen for Duvall’s part. I think you could say things worked out right.
Especially because I suspect that had Ernest Borgnine done the Brando role in The Godfather, he would’ve been too big time to go on to star as Ted Denslow in Baseketball.
8 | March 15, 1977: Three’s Company debuts
I have it on good authority that before this day, double entendres actually didn’t exist.
Several other TV shows of various quality made their debuts (all as midseason replacements) on March 15th. Those include some beauties like The Wonder Years and Mr. Belvedere… and some iffy choices like Nashville Star and Raines.
9 | March 15, 1978: Takeru Kobayashi is born in Japan
You think that when he was born, his sweet little Japanese mother said, “One day, I dream he’ll go to New York and eat 52 hot dogs in 12 minutes?”
10 | March 15, 1983: World Consumer Rights Day is established
So… um… maybe you should avoid buying airplane tickets or going to Best Buy today.
11 | March 15, 1985: The first domain name (symbolics.com) is registered
And with that, they ushered in the domain name era. Now, symbolics.com is just a parked page with a crappy animated spinning globe and a bunch of text ads. Somehow that’s just so fitting.