Not your birthday? There are plenty of others

Last week the candle factory burned down. Everyone just stood around and sang Happy Birthday.

-- Stephen Wright

Today is Oct. 12. Nothing much I know has happened on this, the 285th day of the year, except: I have six friends who celebrate birthdays today. So what's up with that?

Is it coincidence, synchronicity, the magnetic properties of the time-space continuum?

Upon review there are a couple of dates floating around in my life's calendar that are loaded down with the birth dates of acquaintances. Sept. 21 is one. Oct. 3 is in there. Feb. 20, too. And I bet you have something like this, as well -- a couple of dates circled numerous times on your kitchen calendar.

What causes it to happen?

It seems too much to blame it all on the law of averages, and I cannot explain it.

But I can explain this.

After observing and assessing the behavior and personalities of different people born the same day, I can assure you that astrology and newspaper horoscopes are unreliable indicators of anything.

AIKEN HISTORY: I had a nice visit at the Aiken Historical Museum Saturday night.

Aiken Regional Medical Centers was helping celebrate the city's 175th birthday by dedicating copies of a full-color book telling the stories of Aiken's past.

The book and an accompanying CD are available at the museum, and sales benefit its work.

It doesn't cost that much.

I bought one. It's very nice. I'm sure the museum will sell you one, too.

SPEAKING OF HISTORY: My Our Town blog on Augusta history tells of the time in 1907 when a great plague of gnats descended on Augusta so thickly they quit running the street cars.

TODAY'S JOKE: Linda Fournier shares this explanation of why the country's in trouble:

One day a florist went to a barber for a haircut. After the cut, he asked about his bill, and the barber replied, "I cannot accept money from you. I'm doing community service this week." The florist was pleased and left the shop. When the barber went to open his shop the next morning, there was a thank you card and a dozen roses waiting for him at his door.

Later, a cop came in for a haircut, and when he tried to pay his bill, the barber again replied, "I cannot accept money from you. I'm doing community service this week." The cop was happy and left the shop. The next morning when the barber went to open up, there was a thank you card and a dozen doughnuts waiting for him at his door.

Then a congressman came in for a haircut, and when he went to pay his bill, the barber again replied, "I cannot accept money from you. I'm doing community service this week." The congressman was very happy and left the shop. The next morning, when the barber went to open up, a dozen congressmen were lined up waiting for a free haircut.

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