Discover more from Okay History
We celebrate a popular television show nobody we know watches and rank the following two states!
General Hospital debuted on April 1, 1963, and is the second long-running daytime soap opera in American television history. Congratulations! We can't think of ever watching an episode. We were Days of Our Lives and Santa Barbara fans (because of Robin Wright).
It blows my mind that General Hospital is still on. Do you know of anyone who still watches it? Is there a message board for diehard fans that exists somewhere on the internet machine, where people discuss the drama of a place called General Hospital? If so, can you send us the link?
Like most soap operas, General Hospital is a place where famous actors used to stroll the hallways. Demi Moore, John Stamos, and Mark Hamill all made stops on the set. You can imagine how difficult it is to make a living as an actor/actress, so gaining steady work on daytime television ( one you have no clue if anyone watches) is a minor miracle. Imagine turning that gig into world fame and retirement by 50!
Why has General Hospital outlived other shows like All My Children? Or Another World, which we also watched. We can't remember any characters' names, although we are likely to remember them if you pass along their faces. We can't recall how to do algebra, but pretty confident about who slept with who back in the late 80s, if you jog our memories.
Generally speaking, soap operas are hilarious. This leads us to today’s lesson -the following two states are also funny, but not in a good way.
Let's dive into the next round of ranking the states!
44: South Carolina
Founded: May 23, 1788
Do we know the state capital off the top of our head? Yep. Columbia
Have we been there? Yes.
Do we want to go back? Sure!
Okay, our friends think it's weird that we're not a huge fan of South Carolina, specifically Charleston. We spent the second half of 2019 living in Charleston for work. It was a busy, stressful time, running up and down I-95 meanwhile the ceiling in our apartment in D.C. decided to cave in, so we were a bit distracted.
We did enjoy some things. The beaches are beautiful, and the food is awesome. There - we admitted something nice about South Carolina.
John Calhoun. South Carolina's favorite son was Andrew Jackson's Vice President. I'm sure he liked the job. But he LOVED being a South Carolinian so much that he resigned the position over nullification.
Nullification, of course, was the idea that South Carolina could decide if it wanted to follow federal law or not. Calhoun valued states' rights so much, he wanted to tell the federal government to buzz off whenever he felt like.
Born between North and South Carolina, Jackson responded that he would be happy to march the U.S. Army down I-95 and do worse damage to their houses than the dishwasher in the house above my apartment did that summer three years ago. South Carolina relented, and John Calhoun resigned like the baby he was. Eventually, South Carolina's pipes burst over slavery and told the federal government to buzz off, only this time with cannons. We know how that turned out.
I once got into an interesting conversation with a historian at a talk when he tried to tell the audience how great Calhoun was. Perhaps I'll share that at another time.
South Carolina put the Confederate battle flag into their state flag in 1961. That's not a typo. I do not mean 1861. I mean 1961.
Then years later, on June 17, 2015, Dylan Roof walked into the Emanual African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston and gunned down nine people who had invited him into a prayer group.
It came to light that Roof loved posing with the Confederate flag. Also, at his arrest, the officers bought him a cheeseburger.
Why did we rank it here?
What is South Carolina's deal? They are like Texas, with the extra exceptional bravado about being South Carolina, only without Texas's large landmass. The attitude of independence from this state drives me bonkers.
On the other hand, it takes about four hours to drive from one end of the state to the other, which has to be positive.
Plus, the people I met were friendly.
Founded: December 14, 1819
Do we know the state capital off the top of our head? Yes. Montgomery
Have we been there? Yes.
Do we want to go back? Yes. But only to Mobile. We might go to Auburn just to check it out.
The state produces astronauts like I churn out mediocre history takes. The Yellowhammer State gives us an overabundance, whether we asked for them or not.
We think there is nine astronauts total, with Auburn University producing the most. Who knew?
Everything. Alabama ranks in the top five of every lousy measurement. Obesity, drunk driving death, public education system, teenage pregnancy, the list goes on and on. Alabama goes out every day and tries to be bad at everything except football.
Speaking of football, once in 2010, a zealous Alabama fan Harvey Updike Jr. traveled to Auburn intending to inflict physical and emotional damage. Why? Because Auburn beat Alabama in a darn football game.
After wins, Auburn fans do this weird thing: they throw toilet paper on oak trees that sit in Toomer's Corner. I think they cover the trees with toilet paper for other events, but the point is it's a very Auburn thing to do. They love these trees, and as fellow tree lovers, we love this wild tradition.
Well, Updike decided he was going to poison these trees. And he succeeded. Auburn eventually removed and replaced the oaks, Updike went to jail, and everyone has moved on.
But was this necessary to murder 80-year old trees over a football rivalry? Do you think something like this would happen in Michigan?
Why did we rank it here?
Our brother's family lived in Huntsville for a few years, and we had the chance to go down there when the twins received their First Communion. It's a nice place.
But we have written about Alabama's ugly past. Frankly, we'd rather not go into another rant here, but we feel like we are being surprisingly generous ranking them above, say, Rhode Island. Right, Aunt Joan?
Since it's award season and our main lesson focused on a television show, we feel the need to chime in on the incident at the Academy Awards this past week. Hey, everyone else is doing it; why not us?
So here it is - award shows are stupid.
We were talking to a reader about this the other day. Award shows are self-congratulatory ego events meant to justify millionaire salaries.
Will Smith makes about $20 million a film. Now that he has won an award by channeling his inner violent temperament, he can add it to the old resume and make more money.
Our employer gives out an award to the top person on the team each year. We doubt anyone has been able to add that to their resume and have another institution hire them based on that.
Did you know Kyle won the Craig Drakes Award at Awesome Consulting in 2018? We are so lucky to have such a talented person on our team. HE'S A CRAIG DRAKES AWARD WINNER!
No, we have not won the award. We are not sure why you would ask that question. But if we did, we would add it to every memo we send to a client:
Christopher Dake – Vice President, Awesome Consulting, 2022 Craig Drakes Award Winner
A housekeeping note:
We continue to move all the posts from the old site to this platform. We love Substack, by the way, it's so easy to use. We hope you enjoy it too.
We ask if it's possible to go back and like any of the previous lessons when you have some time. We would love to let people who land on the site and don't know us to know that we have a community here.
Finally, on Monday we will have another important announcement.
We love you all. The Tens of Tens! Thanks!