Google honors 123rd anniversary of closed Yosemite National Park

Bethan Owen Contributor
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The 123rd anniversary doesn’t sound especially prominent. The year doesn’t end in a zero or five, and the hierarchy of precious metals tops out at “moonstone” for the 85th anniversary.

Nevertheless, search giant Google took the opportunity of the government shutdown to wish Yosemite National Park a happy 123rd birthday with a main-page doodle.

Google seems to have been alone in marking this none-too-memorable occasion. Yosemite, along with all 401 U.S. national parks, has been closed indefinitely due to the government shutdown and will presumably be spending its special day sitting by the phone, pretending that its feelings aren’t hurt and that being alone is totally fine.

Park officials have explained that parks will be shut down in two phases. During phase one, which is expected to take about a day and a half, “day visitors” will be instructed to leave the park immediately. Overnight visitors such as campers and RV users will be asked to leave during phase two. Commercial services will also be cancelled during phase two. The process is expected to be finished within four days.

Yosemite was created by an act of Congress during the administration of Hoosier President Benjamin Harrison.

Google told the New York Daily News the choice of its extremely obscure doodle is “an unfortunate coincidence,” but the site has a history of political doodle decisions. On Easter this year, for example, Google opted to ignore Christianity’s foundational holiday in order to honor left-wing labor leader Cesar Chavez. (Related: Google honors Cesar Chavez on Easter [VIDEO])

In an even bigger snub to both American culture and believers in resurrection, Google is ignoring the 45th (Sapphire) anniversary of the modern flesh-eating zombie. Forty-five years ago today, George A. Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead” premiered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, launching one of the most durable and beloved genres in movie history. The Internet Movie Database lists 1,951 zombie films, and more are being made every day — none of them using federal dollars.