Today is International No Diet Day. Just say no to diet. You know the things that make you gain weight and the things that help you lose. You know the things that you really shouldn’t eat. You need simple rules to guide you, not some complex formula that can confuse you or overbearing rules that make you feel nervous like someone is looking over your shoulder. You don’t need a guilt trip – beware when someone says you should never eat this or that. Never is a guilt trip. And remember your taste buds have to approve the food regimen for it to work. Set yourself free to enjoy eating and living. Just my two cents on this date.

There were three notable governmental actions taken on this date -1 helpful and 2 not so. In 1541 King Henry VIII ordered that English language Bibles be put in every church, using the Great Bible version. Having English language bibles was a shift from the usual Latin versions – because then the common people could read it. But doing that by royal decree rather than popular demand just meant that another monarch – say his daughter Mary (Bloody Mary) could reverse it. In 1882 Congress legalized anti-Asian discrimination by passing the Chinese Exclusion Act, closing the door on Chinese immigrants, even though many of those helped construct the transcontinental railway and helped with vital mining operations.

In contrast in 1935 FDR authorized the Works Progress Administration by executive decree, which provided a multitude of jobs for those out of work, and left a legacy of solidly built buildings in our National Parks and Forests that stand strong today.

In sports news Babe Ruth, then a pitcher with the Boston Red Sox, hit his first home run (of 714) in 1915 and Roger Bannister broke the 4-minute mile barrier in 1954. John Steinbeck was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 19422 for his novel The Grapes of Wrath, chronicling the devastation that was the Great Depression. And in 1937 in Pinehurst New Jersey the German zeppelin Hindenburg burst into flames trying to land and 37 people were killed as the airship was destroyed in just one minute.

The Eiffel Tower officially opened to the public in Paris in 1889 and like today a new British King ascended the throne – George V, upon the death of his father Edward VII, who had ruled just nine years after the death of long-reigning Queen Victoria.

The French politician and revolutionary Maximillian Robespierre strutted onto the world stage in 1758 -to become both a proponent and victim of the French Revolution. Austrian psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud began his way to the couch in 1856 and in the same year, Robert Peary began to explore his world which would take him all the way to the North Pole. In England, future Prime Minister Tony Blair joined us in 1953 and Prince Archie arrived in 2019. While here in the US we were joined by the Silver Bullet Band leader Bob Seger in 1945 and by the Say Hay Kid Willie Mays in 1931.

We marked the passing on this date of American essayist, poet, and philosopher Henry David Thoreau (1862), Wizard of Oz creator L Frank Baum (1919), Italian-Dutch physician and educator Maria Montessori (1952). and Canadian environmentalist and author Farley Mowat(2014) – whose life you can see chronicled in the visually stunning film Never Cry Wolf.