October 29 is a notorious day in the history of American finance. In 1929, the stock market crashed on what became known as "Black Tuesday" and sent the United States spiraling into the Great Depression, which not only ended the boom of the 1920s but kept Americans struggling through the 1930s. Only the shift in international relations, President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal and the manufacturing boom that came out of World War II helped the country out of it. Though the country has faced economic downturns since then (including right now), nothing has ever compared to the sort of devastation that was brought on by the Crash of '29.
That being said, October 29 doesn't have to be a downer. On this day in 1998, John Glenn returned to space 36 years after he became the first man to explore the stars. In 1948, boxer Sandy Saddler out-punched Willie Pep (largely considered to be the greatest featherweight of all time) in their first of three fights at Madison Square Garden. And a handful of excellent people celebrate birthdays on October 29, including "American Idol" judge Randy Jackson, actress Gabrielle Union, alternative icon Winona Ryder, Olympic swimmer Amanda Beard, voice actor Dan Castellaneta (also known as Homer Simpson) and former pro wrestler "Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff. But the birthday that we're actually celebrating today is that of Ryan Anderson, who turns 25 today. He's a legendary pitcher for the Accu-Rite Red Sox, guard for Somethin' Serious and a regulator at East Hartford Middle School. And he's also my brother. I'm not sure what he's been cranking in his Cadillac recently, but I've always considered Lloyd Banks' "I'm So Fly" to be his theme song.