The Joan De Arc

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Phoenix, Arizona / Saturday, December 24, 2022
Founded AD 1968 / $10.00

©  2022 by JPB Publishing Ltd.

Avenue Weather: Partly cloudy with possible late afternoon showers. High 67 / Low 41

On the INSIDE: Editorials A2 / Tales from Sahuaro School A3 / Food A4 / Crossword A5




Buekers revive ancient “Happy Unbirthday” family tradition

     The Bueker clan has restored an archaic and eccentric family ritual from the 1960s and 1970s, holding a 2022 “Happy Unbirthday” celebration earlier this year.
     The origins of Happy Unbirthday in Bueker family lore are largely lost to distant Joan De Arc memory, but the tradition is believed to ultimately derive from Carl Bueker’s heartfelt desire to enjoy festive family occasions that entailed little to no travel and zero financial expenditure. The general idea was to select a day in the calendar remote from any family member’s actual birthday and hold an impromptu dinner party complete with festive cake and trivial, humorous gifts for the selected honorary unbirthday boy or girl.
     The 2022 version of the event, thought to be the first Bueker happy unbirthday celebration in over 50 years, was held in March at the Miracle Mile delicatessen in central Phoenix with all four Bueker siblings in attendance: Sue, Barbie, Charles and John. No single family member was designated as the celebrant for this year’s happy unbirthday, and so John Bueker presented a Happy Unbirthday card to the entire family, who then enjoyed tasty cupcakes, each lit with a celebratory candle.
     For his part, Charles Bueker was clearly moved by memories of the old Bueker family tradition: “It was the best possible combination of “un,” “happy,” and “birthday,” he wistfully observed. “An invention created solely to counter the endless boredom of the 1960s.”
     The Bueker family graced Joan De Arc Avenue from 1963 to 1977.


1972 timeline: 50 years ago on Joan De Arc

By J.Bueker

     As 2022 inexorably approaches its appointed end, the Crusader (as is our wont) looks back 50 years to 1972, an exceptionally eventful year on the Avenue and beyond:

 January 1 – At around midnight, as the new year arrives, Carl and Barb Bueker win the Joan De Arc Bridge Cup championship against the visiting Mitchells team.

 January 3 – Don McLean receives a gold record for his hit song “American Pie.”

 February 28 – The Sahuaro School Sabers capture the school’s first Washington School District basketball championship with a victory over Shaw Butte.

 March 22 – US Congress passes the Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution and sends it to the states for ratification. 

 April 3 – Charlie Chaplin returned to the US after a twenty-year absence.

 May 12 – The Rolling Stones release their momentous “Exile on Main Street” LP, which Chuck Bueker would soon bring to Joan De Arc in the new-fangled high-tech cassette format.

 May 30 – The final Bueker kid graduates from Sahuaro School as John Bueker receives his diploma during commencement ceremonies for the Class of 1972.

 June 17 – Five men are arrested for breaking into the Democratic National Committee offices at the Watergate Hotel in Washington DC.

 June 18 – John Bueker celebrates his 14th birthday at John C. Lincoln hospital recuperating from knee surgery.

 July 1 – First issue of Ms. Magazine appears.

 August 4 – Carl, Barb, Chuck and John Bueker pile into Carl’s company car and trek to Fremont, CA for the birth of Sue Bueker Maselli’s first child Camille on August 8.

 September 1 – Bobby Fischer defeats Boris Spassky for the world chess championship.

 September 4 – “The Price is Right” with Bob Barker debuts on CBS. It will run for 35 years.

 September 4 – Mark Spitz wins a record seventh gold medal at the Summer Olympics in Munich.

 September 5 – John Bueker begins matriculation at Moon Valley High School.

 November 7 – Richard Nixon is reelected President of the U.S. over George McGovern by a rather healthy margin.

 December 7 – Apollo 17 lifts off for the sixth and final moon landing of the Apollo program.

 December 21 – The Maselli family arrives at 3219 for a festive Christmas visit.

 December 23 – The “Immaculate Reception” football game is viewed on TVs all up and down the Avenue. Franco Harris’s amazing and controversial catch wins the game for Pittsburgh over Oakland, 13-7.

 December 30 – The Joan De Arc Cowboys win their fourth and final Community Football League championship with a 35-14 win over the Westown Dolphins.

 December 31 – In a resounding upset, the Mitchell team defeats the Buekers and claims the coveted Joan De Arc Bridge Cup for 1972.


On the INSIDE:  Editorials A2 / Tales from Sahuaro School A3 / Food A4 / Crossword A5



Moon Phases:   First Quarter: December 29    Full: January 6     Last Quarter: January 14   New: January 21  

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