On a Calendar in the Mail

An unexpected package arrived in the mail today.

“The Hidden History of the United States 2011 Calendar,” courtesy of The Progressive.

I subscribed to The Progressive for a few years, from ’98 to ’02. What soured me on the magazine was Howard Zinn’s response to 9/11, which I seem to remember as a “We brought this upon ourselves” response, though I don’t remember the specifics. It was enough that I let my subscription lapse, and I didn’t really miss The Progressive. I had The American Prospect to keep me company. Daily Kos, too, and Talking Points Memo.

But a few months ago, I began listening to The Progressive‘s “Progressive Point of View” podcast, a little two minute spiel by editor Matthew Rothschild, then at the new year I decided to re-up my subscription. With the Republican Party ready and willing to push the country — and the world economy, for that matter — off the cliff, I decided I needed The Progressive.

Ironically, two days after I mailed off a subscription form, along with a check for $14.97, I received in the mail a letter from The Progressive asking me to subscribe. For the low, low introductory price of $10.00.

Isn’t that the way life goes? :-/

While I’ve yet to receive my first issue, The Progressive sent me their 2011 calendar, and it arrived today. I didn’t expect it, and it’s kind of interesting. Each day has one or two historical facts listed. Today, for instance…

  • 1790 First treaty with Iroquois signed
  • 1937 First United Auto Workers contract, General Motors
  • 1978 300 Native Americans begin “Longest Walk” to protect treaty rights
  • 1990 Nelson Mandela released from prison after 27 years in jail

Honestly? I knew that today was the anniversary of Thomas Edison’s birth, and I only knew that because Garrison Keillor said so on this morning’s “The Writer’s Almanac.” And the first — a treaty with the Iroquois — induces an itch to play Age of Empires III and crush Napoleon beneath my boot…. 😉

I don’t know that I’ll use the calendar. It’s not the prettiest calendar, though it doesn’t have to be; it’s more about being thought-provoking, and less about being a simple regurgitation of dates and holidays.

I’ll keep it, much like I’ve kept the various Colonial Williamsburg calendars they’ve sent me over the years.

Maybe next week, I’ll get my first issue of The Progressive in several years. Maybe.

Published by Allyn

A writer, editor, journalist, sometimes coder, occasional historian, and all-around scholar, Allyn Gibson is the writer for Diamond Comic Distributors' monthly PREVIEWS catalog, used by comic book shops and throughout the comics industry, and the editor for its monthly order forms. In his over ten years in the industry, Allyn has interviewed comics creators and pop culture celebrities, covered conventions, analyzed industry revenue trends, and written copy for comics, toys, and other pop culture merchandise. Allyn is also known for his short fiction (including the Star Trek story "Make-Believe,"the Doctor Who short story "The Spindle of Necessity," and the ReDeus story "The Ginger Kid"). Allyn has been blogging regularly with WordPress since 2004.

One thought on “On a Calendar in the Mail

  1. I recently mailed a check in to the New Yorker to renew my subscription for a year. Cost: $39.95.

    After a month, realizing the check had never been cashed and I was due to stop getting issues in a week or so, I went online and renewed. Probably just got lost in the mail. Online renewal price: $29.95. A bit aggravated, but whatever.

    Two days later they cash my check…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *