Issac Newton and Sandy Koufax

Sir Issac Newton was born on Christmas Day 1642 according to the Julian Calendar. Or January 4, 1643 if you use the Gregorian one that we use today.  Olivia Judson proposes to resolve this difficulty by celebrating for 10 days – the Ten Days of Newton  or the Newton Birthday Festival.  She has even written the words to a song celebrating his life and achievements. The tune is, of course, the Twelve Days of Christmas.

On the tenth day of Newton,
My true love gave to me,
Ten drops of genius,
Nine silver co-oins,
Eight circling planets,
Seven shades of li-ight,
Six counterfeiters,
Four telescopes,
Three Laws of Motion,
Two awful feuds,
And the discovery of gravity!

Sandy Koufax was born on December 30, 1935,  He was my first sports hero.  I began following him when the Dodgers were in Brooklyn and continued after the move to LA.  I had an old console radio on which I could, at night, get AM stations from New Jersey (where I grew up) to St. Louis and New Orleans. So in the summertime, I could get the Dodgers playing most of the National League.  Looking back, I think I admired him because he seems to have a life outside of baseball and to be secure in his own person – not that I could  have articulated that as a teenagers.

Koufax was a great pitcher and I’m sure many batters thought he defied the Newtonion Laws of Motion.  It is only right that his birthday comes in the middle of the Newton Festival.