June gloom must have warped my mind this year because I blew it big time in last week's column.
Last week I reviewed a sampling of holidays and celebrations that take place in June. In everything I mentioned (from Father's Day to Donald Duck Day, from Applesauce Day to Corn on the Cob Day) I failed to include one extremely important event: June 6th, D-Day. I completely missed this one I'm embarrassed to say, and I humbly apologize for it.
Of course the D-Day invasion of Normandy 72 years ago helped turn the tide of World War II for the Allies and bring about the defeat of Hitler's Nazi Germany. About 160,000 Allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy, France, to fight Nazi soldiers on June 6, 1944. General Dwight D. Eisenhower called the operation a crusade in which "we will accept nothing less than full victory."
More than 5,000 ships and 13,000 aircraft supported the D-Day invasion, and by the end of the day, the troops gained a foot- hold in Normandy. Thousands of soldiers lost their lives, but thousands more trekked across Europe to end the war. The invasion is one of history's most significant military attacks.
The surviving veterans of that invasion are in their nineties now and their numbers grow fewer with each passing year. However, our respect and gratitude to these brave men does not diminish with time, we honor and remember all of them, the vets and the fallen warriors who gave their lives for freedom and their country. Their sacrifices for all Americans, including those of us who were not yet born, will never be forgotten (except by me last week). May G0D bless them all.
By the way, in case you've ever wondered what the "D" in D-Day stands for, it does not stand for anything. The "D" is derived from the word "Day." "D-Day" means the day on which a military operation begins. The term "D-Day" has been used for many different operations, but it is now generally only used to refer to the Allied landings in Normandy on 6 June 1944. Now you know.
Just as April showers bring May flowers, June gloom tends to bring out depressing thoughts. A good example of which occurred to me this week after listening to Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, and Donald Trump make their speeches following Tuesday's primaries. Putting politics aside, these three people have the most annoying voices I think I've ever heard emanating from presidential candidates. I don't know if it's just me, but the thought of having to hear any one of them speaking for the next eight years is enough to make me wish I could "mute" my ears until 2024.
Bernie's got that Brooklyn rasp sound that feels like a bumblebee is inside my head and can't find it's way out. All those soft "r's" accompanied by the shouting and spitting reminds me less of a president and more like some guy at the deli counter losing it because the counterman skipped his number and waited on someone else. "Hey, I'm ovah heah! Don't wait on hah, I'm next!"
Then we've got the Hillary cackle, which sounds like the Wicked Witch of the West meets Lil Abner. If she's elected let's pray that nothing ever strikes her funny. When she's not cackling she's screeching, and when she's not screeching she's coughing. And when she tries to rev up the crowd she goes into that harpy shriek of hers like the civil service employee who caught you trying to cut in line and wants to make an example of you in front of the entire room. "Unpleasant" is the kindest adjective I can use to describe her voice.
Sad to say, folks, but we're going to be stuck with one of those voices for years to come. Buy stock in an earplug company.