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Tuesday, July 02, 2013

July 2, 1986

We are officially at the halfway mark in the year 2013. It seems hard to believe that 2013 is half gone! It's true what they say. The older you get, the faster time flies by. Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives. And, it's kind of scary to realize that time flows so quickly.

I think that's one reason why I love doing the Tuesday Timeline so much. It allows me to go back to a time in which I remember time flowing by ever so slowly...when the only things I had to worry about was deciding whether to use forest green or jungle green to finish colouring my pictures. Or, it allows me to go back in time to a period before I was born, and learning about all of the cool discoveries and pop culture trends that were in vogue back then.

So, let's take a look at what was going on in the world throughout history on this, the second day of July.

1698 – Thomas Savery patents the first steam engine

1776 – The Continental Congress adopts a resolution severing ties with Great Britain; Declaration of Independence would follow two days later

1777 – Vermont becomes the first American territory to abolish slavery

1881 – President James Garfield is shot by Charles J. Guiteau; succumbs to an infection two months later on September 19

1897 – Italian scientist Guglielmo Marconi obtains a patent for the radio in London

1900 – The very first zeppelin flight takes place near Friedrichshafen, Germany at Lake Constance

1932 – Dave Thomas, founder of Wendy's, is born in Atlantic City, New Jersey

1937 – Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan go missing on Earhart's mission to be the first pilot to go around the world; their bodies are never found

1950 – Kyoto, Japan's “Golden Pavilion” at Kinkaku-ji burns to the ground

1962 – The first Walmart store opens up in Rogers, Arkansas

1964 – Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Civil Rights Act of 1964

1976 – The Fall of the Republic of Vietnam

1993 – Actor Fred Gwynne dies at the age of 66 from pancreatic cancer

1995 – Krissy Taylor, the sister of model Niki Taylor, is found dead in Pembroke Pines, Florida at the age of 17

1999 – Mario Puzo, author of “The Godfather”, dies at the age of 78

2002 – Steve Fossett becomes the first person to fly a non stop solo flight around the world in a hot air balloon

We also have a list of celebrities who are celebrating a birthday today. Among them are Pierre Cardin, Polly Holliday, Richard Petty, Larry David, Saul Rubinek, Pete Briquette (The Boomtown Rats), Jerry Hall, Bret Hart, Jose Canseco, Ozzie Canseco, Monie Love, Troy Brown, Michelle Branch, Ashley Tisdale, Dev, Margot Robbie, and James Forde.

There's also one more celebrity birthday that I want to discuss, and it happens to be someone who has recently been in the news for all the wrong reasons. And, I just want to preface that this blog has never been one that likes take advantage of other people's misfortune, so if you're expecting a piece where I rake someone over the coals, it won't be happening here. While I will be talking about some of this person's bad choices, it won't be in a sneering tone. It will just be stated matter-of-factly. I want to try and keep this blog as positive a mood as I can.

So with that, I will state that this person was born on July 2, 1986.

And, I will also state that this person happens to be the troubled actress/singer Lindsay Lohan.

Now, for this edition of the Tuesday Timeline, I will be trying to do one of those “looking at the bright side” entries. I believe that for every mistake a person makes in their lives, there is an equal positive to counteract the negative...and in Lindsay Lohan's case, I will hope to showcase that for every negative action, there can also be a positive action. So, with that, on with the Tuesday Timeline.

You already know the basics about Lindsay Lohan. You know that she was born twenty-seven years ago in New York City to Michael and Dina Lohan. She's the oldest of four children (her younger siblings Michael Jr., Ali, and Dakota also dabbled in modelling or acting when they were children as well), and she began her career at the age of three, appearing in ads for Calvin Klein Kids, Jell-O, Wendy's, and Pizza Hut. When Lohan was just ten years old, she appeared in the NBC soap opera “Another World” for one year playing the role of Alexandra Fowler. She left the series in late 1997 to appear in Disney's remake of the 1961 classic “The Parent Trap”, and Lohan's performance was rewarded with a Young Artist Award in 1998, as well as a three-film contract from Disney. And, so, at the tender age of twelve, Lindsay Lohan was well on her way to becoming the next Shirley Temple or Hayley Mills.

So, what happened? Well, a lot of things.

Lindsay's parents were incredibly angry and volatile towards each other during their whole marriage. Although they had split up several times during Lindsay's childhood, their divorce was finalized by 2007. But with reports of Michael Lohan being incredibly abusive, and having been thrown in jail numerous times, and Dina Lohan starting up a reality show to put Lindsay's sister Ali in the spotlight, is it any wonder why Lindsay would end up hitting rock bottom on a couple of occasions? If I grew up in a family like that, I don't think I would be nearly as well adjusted. It certainly would explain such instances as the infamous theft of a necklace, the instances in which she has checked herself into rehab, and going from one of the most sought after actresses in Hollywood to being barely unemployable.

I mean, yes...Lindsay is a grown woman now, and she is capable of making her own choices and facing her own consequences. And, I am most certainly not excusing her bad behaviour, and whatever consequences that come from that bad behaviour are whatever she has to endure in order to hopefully save her from herself. But back in the late 1990s and early 2000s when she was just a child...I don't know. I have to give her a lot of credit for having to go through that drama at such a young age. And, you know, I suppose in some ways, I can probably consider her to be a kindred spirit of sorts because she handles her frustration with things the same way I kind of do. In my case, I sometimes use this blog as a soundboard for what is going through my mind, and in most cases, it makes me feel a lot better. And, in Lindsay's case, she wrote a song about it.

ARTIST: Lindsay Lohan
SONG: Confessions of a Broken Heart (Daughter to Father)
ALBUM: A Little More Personal (Raw)
DATE RELEASED: October 18, 2005

Okay, so the song only peaked at #57, and was given mediocre reviews from critics. But I thought it was a necessary thing for Lindsay to do at the time. Clearly, she had a lot of anger towards the situation that she was in, and she needed a way to vent that frustration out. Hence came this single. I have to think that after she released this single, she probably felt better about herself for getting that anger out.

Like I said, this blog entry will be focusing on more of the positive aspects of Lindsay Lohan's career, as well as looking at the brighter side of things. I'm a positive person (mostly), and I always try to see the good in everything.

For instance, it seems hard to believe nowadays with her portrayal of Elizabeth Taylor in the 2012 television film “Liz & Dick” getting slammed by critics that at one time, Lindsay Lohan was a really wonderful actress – a budding ingenue who was expected to do great things with her life. And before it all began to spiral out of control, she was exactly that.

Her role in 1998's “The Parent Trap” was merely the first of many film projects that earned Lohan rave reviews. She appeared in another remake film, 2003's “Freaky Friday”, which also earned much praise from critics and fans. It also remains the most commercially successful film she has ever starred in.

But what was the most critically acclaimed film that Lindsay Lohan was a part of? Well, that would be 2004's “Mean Girls”, in which Lindsay was awarded the 2004 Teen Choice Award for Breakout Movie Star. But more importantly, critics applauded Lohan's performance in the film for showing “plenty of charm, verve, and deft comic timing”.

Of course, she has other success stories in film as well. “Confessions of a Teen Drama Queen”, “Herbie: Fully Loaded”, and “A Prairie Home Companion” were also well received, and cemented Lohan's status as the next 'it' girl.

But it was right around this time the the first of Lohan's problems began to be broadcast. She had had a couple of high-profile break-ups with “That 70s Show” star Wilmer Valderrama and restaurant owner Harry Morton, and she had begun to miss filming shoots because of constant illness. It certainly caused problems on the set of 2007's “Georgia Rule”, where the director of the film was so annoyed by Lindsay's demeanor that he actually wrote her a scathing letter which was made for public view, calling her out on her “excessive partying” and her unprofessional behaviour.

Though, again...looking at the bright side, Lohan's performance in “Georgia Rule” was such that I personally didn't know that there WAS so much turmoil behind the scenes. I guess that could be partly due to the strength of the cast that appeared in the film, which included Jane Fonda and Felicity Huffman.

And, I'm pretty sure that Lindsay Lohan should probably never drive a vehicle ever again, as I have probably lost count of how many car accidents that she has sustained in her entire life.

And, yet, she managed to drive Herbie in “Herbie: Fully Loaded” with the slightest of ease. Go figure.

But, I suppose again, looking at the bright side of things...she hasn't killed or seriously injured anyone else.

(I'm really trying to keep this positive...believe me, I am.)

I guess if there's one thing that all of us can learn from the rise and fall of Lindsay Lohan, it is this. All of us are human beings, and for the most part, most of us never hit rock bottom in that we are left completely out of control of our own lives and have no idea of how to get out of it. But, I'm here to tell you that it is so easy to have that happen, and many times, we are caught off guard when it does.

And, I suppose that if I do have an ounce of sympathy for Lindsay Lohan, it's because I know how it feels to hit rock bottom. Okay, so maybe I've never been to rehab. Maybe I haven't smashed several cars. And, the closest that I've ever gotten to a jail cell was in sixth grade when my class went on a field trip to the local police station. But, I know how it feels to be completely and totally alone, without any support, feeling as though the world is against you. I know what it's like to have no prospects for the future because of the inability to handle your own problems. And while my definition of rock bottom is completely different from Lindsay Lohan's situation, I have felt as though I've hit rock bottom in some format. And, it's taken me a long time to claw my way out.

And, I think that it's going to take an extremely long time for Lindsay to do the same. But, she's already taking steps to try and repair her damaged credibility by staying out of the tabloid spotlight, and she's slowly taking on more acting roles in television to improve her image.

Here's hoping that as Lindsay Lohan turns 27, she will find a shovel and start digging upward.

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