The Thing About Today – June 8

June 8, 2020
Day 160 of 366


June 8th is the 160th day of the year. It is World Brain Tumor Day, an international commemoration of brain tumor patients and their families.

In the United States, today is “celebrated” as National Best Friends Day, National Name Your Poison Day, and National Upsy Daisy Day.


Historical items of note:

  • In 1783, the Laki volcano in Iceland began an eight-month eruption that killed over 9,000 people and started a seven-year famine.
  • In 1789, James Madison introduced twelve proposed amendments to the United States Constitution in Congress. Of those proposed amendments, ten were ratified as the Bill of Rights on December 15, 1791. Another became the Twenty-Seventh Amendment (dealing with Congressional salary changes) on May 5, 1992. The last one, concerning Congressional apportionment, is still pending before the states with an indefinite time limit.
  • In 1860, Irish-English mathematician and theorist Alicia Boole Stott was born.
  • In 1867, architect Frank Lloyd Wright was born. He designed the Price Tower and Fallingwater.
  • In 1887, Herman Hollerith applied for United States patent #395,781 for the “Art of Compiling Statistics”, which was his punched card calculator.
  • In 1906, Theodore Roosevelt signed the Antiquities Act into law. This authorized the President to restrict the use of certain parcels of public land with historical or conservation value.
  • In 1912, Carl Laemmle incorporated Universal Pictures.
  • In 1918, Air Force captain, actor, and singer Robert Preston was born.
  • In 1933, comedian, actress, and television host Joan Rivers was born.
  • In 1936, actor and singer James Darren was born.
  • In 1940, singer and actor Nancy Sinatra was born.
  • In 1943, Sixth Doctor (Doctor Who) Colin Baker was born.
  • In 1949, George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four was published.
  • In 1953, the United States Supreme Court ruled in District of Columbia v. John R. Thompson Co. that restaurants in Washington, D.C., cannot refuse to serve black patrons.
  • In 1959, USS Barbero (SS-317) and the United States Postal Service attempted the delivery of mail via Missile Mail. The cost of continued service could not be justified.
  • In 1966, an F-104 Starfighter collided with XB-70 Valkyrie prototype number 2, destroying both aircraft during a photo shoot near Edwards Air Force Base. Joseph A. Walker, a NASA test pilot, and Carl Cross, a United States Air Force test pilot, were both killed.
  • Also in 1966, actress Julianna Margulies was born.
  • In 1972, nine-year-old Phan Thị Kim Phúc was burned by napalm, an event captured by Associated Press photographer Nick Ut moments later while the young girl was seen running down a road. The resulting photograph would become an iconic, Pulitzer Prize-winner.
  • In 1973, model and actress Lexa Doig was born.
  • In 1984, homosexuality was declared legal in the Australian state of New South Wales.
  • Also in 1984, the original Ghostbusters was released.
  • Also in 1984, Gremlins was released.


In 1992, the first World Oceans Day was celebrated. It coincided with the Earth Summit held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

World Oceans Day was officially recognized by the United Nations in 2008. The international day supports the implementation of worldwide Sustainability Development Goals and fosters public interest in the management of the ocean and its resources. The day is marked in a variety of ways, including information campaigns and initiatives, special events at aquariums and zoos, outdoor explorations, aquatic and beach cleanups, educational and conservation action programs, art contests, film festivals, and sustainable seafood events.


The Thing About Today is an effort to look at each day of 2020 with respect to its historical context.

For more creativity with a critical eye, visit Creative Criticality.




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