Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Famous rejections:

As a colt, Seabiscuit had dreamed of being a performing horse in the circus. After being rejected as "too mangy," he met up with Red Pollard, who had just been rejected from the army for being "too Irish." The two solved crimes for a time as beloved, itinerant detectives -- they were given the honor of pulling the switches on Sacco and Vanzetti -- before hitting the horseracing circuit...and, well, you know the rest.

In 1933, Albert Einstein traveled to California for a screen test with Daryl F. Zanuck. Zanuck criticized his "intellectual mien" and screamed, "no more eggheads" before casting Maurice Chevalier in "The Man from Folies Bergère." Beside himself, Einstein fell back on his second love: painting. After being rejected from the same Austrian art school as Hitler, he fell in with a group of theoretical physicists...and, well, you know the rest.

Growing up in Havana, Fidel Castro had always wanted to be a competitive eater, and traveled to New York for the 1939 World's Fair. After eating his weight in Cracker Jack, he was refused the grand prize -- a trip to Adam Smith's birthplace -- because of his beardedness. Distraught, he turned his attention to the free prize in one of his empty Cracker Jack boxes: a miniature version of Das Kapital...and, well, you know the rest.

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