AnceStories – My Birth

When were you born?
June 22, 1940

What day of the week did your birthday fall on? (If you don’t know, use this perpetual calendar.)

Do you think that the old nursery rhyme about being born on a certain day of the week accurately reflects your personality? Why or why not?
Saturday’s child works hard for his living – not for me. During my younger years women were expected to be stay-at-home moms. Later when I worked I was a secretary and mostly had jobs that were interesting – church secretary, psychical research, etc. Later still, when I had to support myself completely I was fortunate to find multiple jobs that allowed me the flexibility to choose what I did and when. Some might say I worked hard because I was never really off work, but I preferred to work doing things at odd times if it gave me the flexibility to respond to what life needed.

Were you born on a holiday? If so, which one?
No, though years ago the first day of summer fluctuated between June 21 and June 22; now it is always on June 21. That isn’t a non sequitur – I always considered summer a holiday (though in my mind summer was June through August – the months of summer vacation from school).  When my daughter was born, I insisted to my doctor that she be born during the summer and he told me summer wouldn’t be over until September 22. I told him for me summer ended on August 31. He did quite well – Kay was born at 10 minutes until September.

Which famous person do you share your birthday with? What is your opinion of these people?

  • Eric Stretch – 1980 (boys band)
  • Carson Daly – 1973 (TV show host)
  • Kurt Warner – 1971 (quarterback)
  • Amy Brenneman – 1964 (actress, writer)
  • Dan Brown – 1964 (writer)
  • Keith Bauman – 1959 (my fabulous son-in-law)
  • Freddie Prinze – 1954 (TV star)
  • Cyndi Lauper – 1953 (pop singer)
  • Meryl Streep – 1949 (Oscar-winning actress)
  • Lindsay Wagner – 1949 (TV star – Bionic Woman)
  • Todd Rundgren – 1948 (musical innovator)
  • Ed Bradley -1941 (investigative reporter)
  • Kris Kristofferson – 1936 (singer-actor)
  • Joseph Papp- 1921 (Broadway producer)
  • Billy Wilder – 1906 (movie director – specialized in comedies)
  • John Dillinger – 1903 (public enemy/criminal)

I had to look up a few of the names – particularly sports and pop music. The majority of these seem to be actors, pop musicians, writers and producer/directors – all mostly directed toward pop culture. It’s interesting there aren’t any people listed in politics or military or anything really serious – probably the most serious would be Ed Bradley, the investigative reporter and he’s truly just another performer. Do you suppose it means June 22 specializes in mostly frivolous people?

Do you share a birthday with any of your ancestors or relatives? Or is your birthday the same date as an ancestor’s or relative’s date of marriage or death?
None that I know of

What is your astrological sign? Do you think your sign fits you? What about your Chinese sign? Do you believe in astrology?
I am a Cancer and find that though some of the descriptors fit me, many do not. From reading about astrological signs, it is said we tend to move toward the previous sign in traits – that would be Gemini and I probably fit more of those descriptors than the Cancer ones. I tell people that since Gemini is referred to as the Twins, what it means is that as I move more and more into Gemini, I actually become triplets.

The description for Gemini is: Keyword: “I think”. The Gemini person is versatile, inquisitive, intellectual, whimsical, nimble, articulate, lively, active, curious, independent, talkative, sociable, mercurial, and creative. They can also sometimes be restless, scattered, dual or two-faced, inconstant, rash, gullible, gossipy and superficial. Suitable occupations are where constant variety and/or travel are guaranteed; such as commercial traveler, writer, journalist, clerk, teacher, printing and publishing.

For Cancer the keyword is “I feel.” That is actually one of my language pet peeves. People today say “I feel that …” Anytime you have to add the word ‘that’ following ‘feel’ you know you aren’t discussing a feeling at all but are, in fact trying to soften the impact of what you think or believe. The occupations suggested are the more compassionate, caring ones such as nurse or even hairdresser. Ain’t no way!

My Chinese sign is the dragon. I didn’t sense any great affinity for the descriptors of the dragon. I actually found more descriptors that, in my opinion, suit me in the Chinese month that represents my birth – which would be the horse.

Though there have been some times when astrological predictions have been eerily accurate (and mostly humorous), I don’t believe there is any foundation for basing anything on such calculations.

What major events happened on the day you were born? What happened the year you were born?
Apparently France signed an armistice with Germany following their defeat in battle after a month of siege. The majority of the news for 1940 was war related. On some lighter news, both Pinocchio and Fantasia were released by Disney Studios. Franklin Delano Roosevelt won his third term (the only one in history to do so).

Books written in 1940 included Kitty Foyle, For Whom the Bell Tolls, Grapes of Wrath, How Green Was My Valley, Mrs. Miniver, The Nazarene and Adler’s How to Read a Book.

Entertainment was provided mostly by the movie industry and radio, though the FCC developed the rules for commercial television in 1940.

Where were you born?
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Were you born in a hospital, at home, or somewhere else?
I was born in Wesley Hospital, the doctor who delivered me was Dr. Henry Harris. It’s interesting that the newspaper births for June 22 didn’t include one for a girl ‘Willis’ child, but there was a daughter born on that day at Wesley Hospital to Mr. & Mrs. J.T. Harris (J.T. was how daddy was often referred to). I suspect that somehow the doctor’s name got substituted for the family name, although the address listed was 1400 E Park Place while my birth certificate indicates 2112 N Shartel as my parents’ home at the time of my birth

Why were you born where you were? Were your parents living in that town, or somewhere else?
Mother had returned to Oklahoma City from Virginia – though they did live in Wewoka for a time, they all returned to the City when her brother-in-law, Edson, moved back here with his oil business. Mother remained here all the rest of her life, with the exception of a brief sojourn in Texas. Daddy had apparently returned to Oklahoma City after his stint in the Merchant Marines and also lived here except for that same brief time in Texas.

Who was in attendance at your birth?
Besides the hospital staff, I assume Daddy was there. Because Bernita was with mother when Mickey was born, it is possible she was there with mother at my birth as well. I think they took birth seriously after the death of their mother in childbirth.

Is there an interesting story related to your birth?
Nothing I remember hearing – other than that mother really wanted children.

What do you know about the history of the place where you were born?
Oklahoma City was founded on a single day – April 22, 1889 as a part of the land run. It is the capital of Oklahoma, though that was not without controversy since Guthrie had been the territorial capital. Like many of our Oklahoma cities, it literally grew up overnight.

Do you still live in the place where you were born? Why or why not?
I do now live in Oklahoma City, but that has not been consistent – Besides Oklahoma City, I have lived in Altus, Blair, Shawnee, Stillwater and Perry, Oklahoma; Gainesville, Fort Worth, Graham, Odessa, Wichita Falls and El Paso, Texas; Long Beach, California; Cincinnati, Ohio; and Durham, North Carolina. The majority of the years 1959 through 1981 I lived away from Oklahoma City with brief sojourns here in 1963 and 1966.

I enjoy Oklahoma City because we are centrally located in the US and have four full seasons every year. It is a large enough city to provide services I enjoy but not so huge as to feel anonymous to me. I also generally appreciate the Midwestern value system.

See if you have a copy of the earliest photo taken of you, and add it to your journal.
Late 1940/Early 1941

If there are other earlier pictures of me I am unaware of them. This was clearly taken when foliage was gone from the tree and in obviously cooler weather, so I would assume November through February of 1940 to 1941 and most likely the earlier since I don’t appear to be more than six months or so.


One Response

  1. I smiled when I saw that your son-in-law is listed among famous people with whom you share a birthday.

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