Christmas Day Babies and Bogart

The Honor Society for Leap Year Babies is a free honor society devoted to anyone born on this rare day.  Chances are 1 in 1,461 that you are one of them. I don’t know if there are any official Christmas Honor Societies for babies born on December 25; except, of course, it’s a more distinct honor to share one’s day with the birth of Christ.

There are quite a few websites devoted to complaining that being born on Christmas Day means being eclipsed by the holiday celebration.  The biggest complaint by these whiny ones is that they receive a reduced number of presents.  In their defense, probably all of us have a forgotten December relative.  My niece, Katie, is born on a day close to Christmas, and I admit to conversations with my sister about the proper gift protocol.  It is easy to forget her day in the holiday rush.

In the imaginary Honor Society for Christmas babies, quite a few famous people can boast being members, including Sir Isaac Newton (1642) and Red Cross founder Clara Barton (1821).  Robert Ripley, of Ripley’s Believe it or Not fame was born in 1893.  Twentieth Century Christmas stars are band leader Cab Calloway (1907), Egyptian president Anwar Sadat (1918), singers Jimmy Buffet (1946) and Barbara Mandrell (1949) and acress Sissy Spacek (1949). A more complete list is on christmasbirthday.net.

I like the story of actor Humphrey Bogart’s birthday.  Born on December 25, 1899, he was often referred to as “The Last Century Man” (based on the popular belief that the 19th Century ended in 1899, not 1900 as it really was). The New York Times reported in 2000 that Bogart was really born on January 23, and his birthday was changed to December 25 because it was more glamorous.  According to Encyclopedia Britannica and other sources, this was a false report: Bogart’s birth certificate does say December 25.

Here’s a quirky birthday party, reported on the movie database IMDb. Every year, on his birthday, he watched the Janet Gaynor/Fredric March version of A Star Is Born (1937) because he admired their skill as actors. “Bogart would sit watching the film and weeping. Finally, one year, director Richard Brooks, a long-time friend of Bogart’s asked him why. ‘Because,’ Bogart explained, ‘I expected a lot more of myself. And I’m never going to get it.'”

One comment on “Christmas Day Babies and Bogart

  1. Susan says:

    Did the leap year mess with your count or did you factor it in? I guess it would be Yule Log 364 any other year?

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