Betty White is all the talk today for her 90th birthday, so is Muhammad Ali for turning 70 and Jim Carrey is celebrating 50. However, most of our b'day accolades are for Big Ben Franklin, our most beloved Founding Father.
Ben Franklin was just plain awesome. So what if he had multiple wives and syphilis?
Here are some of the reasons why Ben was so freaking awesome:
List from Ben1776.com
SCIENCE - Noted 18th Century Scientist - Rediscovered Electricty
INVENTOR - Stove, lightning rod, bifocals, snorkles and too many others to list
MEDICINE - Founded 1st U.S. Hospital
BANKING - Well known for maxims on thrift
AGRICULTURE - Introduced several crops to U.S.
PRINTING - Noted Colonial printer - "Patron Saint of Printing"
ELECTRICAL - Experiments and theories
INSURANCE - Started 1st insurance company
HEATING - Franklin stove
COOLING - Had three methods of cooling
EDUCATOR - Involved in founding two colleges
OPTOMETRIC - Bifocal glasses
POSTAL - First postmaster
LIBRARIES - Started 1st circulating library
JOURNALISM - Wrote for several early newspapers
PUBLIC SAFETY - Started 1st police department
PUBLIC SAFETY II - Started 1st fire department
RELIGION - Introduced idea of prayer in Congress
MUSIC - Invented musical instrument - glass armonica
GOVERNMENT - Held numerous positions:
MILITARY - Colonel in Militia
MASONIC - Grand Master of Pennsylvania
DIPLOMAT - Ambassador to England Minister to France
COMMUNITY SERVICE - Street lighting, paving and cleaning
UNIONS - Started Leather Apron Club
BUSINESSMAN - Owned and operated several businesses
PHILOSOPHER - Started American Philosophical Society
ABOLITIONIST - Started Society to Abolish Slavery
SALESMAN - Expert at marketing and sales
MERCHANT - Operated store as part of printshop
HUMORIST - Considered America's 1st writer of humor
TRAVELER - Traveled extensively throughout U.S.
FORECASTER - Published Poor Richards "Almanack"
FUND RAISER - Originated matching contributions idea
SAILING - Designed "sea anchors"
CARTOONIST - Drew 1st cartoon in an American newspaper
LINGUIST - Studied several languages and designed a phonetic alphabet
CARTOGRAPHER - Mapped the Gulf Stream and Routes for the post office
PHILANTHROPIST - Organized fund raising and contributed to many worthwhile causes
MENTOR - Acted as a counselor and guide to many of his contemporaries
He started the first police dept., the first fire dept., the first hospital, the first insurance company, the first library that gave out books! He invented street lighting and was the first ecologist of the modern era - by inventing the Franklin stove that conserved wood!
For the longer more comprehensive list go to: Ben's Wiki Page
Also born January 17th:
Actress Betty White is 90.
Actor James Earl Jones is 81.
Talk-show host Maury Povich is 73.
Rolling Stones guitarist Mick Taylor is 64.
Actor-comedian Steve Harvey is 55.
Singer Susanna Hoffs of The Bangles is 53.
Actor Jim Carrey is 50.
Actor Naveen Andrews of Lost is 43.
Musician Kid Rock is 41.
Actress Zooey Deschanel is 32.
Wow. How much do we love James Earl Jones - Happy 81st James!