April 17

It’s the day you’ve all been waiting for and finally the hour is upon us. Today, the Magical History Tour celebrates our sixth installment, which, given our unseemly obsession with numbers, actually does mean something. It means that the column has not yet been canceled. Aside from this, we will be celebrating the anniversary of the Bay of Pigs invasion and the birth of J.P. Morgan. It is unclear, at press time, whether these two incidents were related. But stay with us for developing information about the connection.

April 17, 1837
Famed American financier J.P. Morgan is born. The stock market peaks.

Best paired with: “Money Honey” by Elvis Presley off of Elvis Presley (1956). The song, which weaves a delightful little narrative about financial dependency – though that may be complicating the matter a bit – is a perfect fit for Morgan, whose hefty gold reserves helped the U.S. weather the Panic of 1893.

April 17, 1961
1,500 CIA-trained Cuban exiles stormed the Bay of Pigs in an effort to depose Fidel Castro. Let’s just say it, uh, didn’t work out.

Best paired with: “Mambo No. 8” by Perez Prado
This is just a sneaky way to get Perez Prado, the king of Cuban mambo music, into the column. It’s unlikely that these Cuban exiles would have had a serious affinity for mambo music. They were way too caught up in the revolution to care about sexy, Havana rhythms.

April 17, 1790
Benjamin Franklin, American statesman and winner/sole entrant in the purposely-get-struck-by-lightning contest.

Best paired with: “She’s Electric” by Oasis on (What’s the Story) Morning Glory? (1995)
Let’s be straight. We don’t much care for Oasis, what with their brotherly bickering and tired charades. However, no one can argue with a good song where the narrator mentions that he “quite fancies” – leave it to Oasis – his lady love’s mother. Notoriously randy Ben Franklin would be proud.

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