Monday, February 7, 2011

Let the countdown begin

Mardi Gras in 29 days away

February 7, 1908 - Buster Crabbe, Olympic swimmer and actor, was born on this date.

Crabbe is the only actor who played Tarzan, Flash Gordon, and Buck Rogers — the top three comic strip heroes of the 1930s.

We can only assume that he didn't smoke dope.

February 7, 1914 - Charlie Chaplin first appears as The Tramp, as his first film Kid Auto Races at Venice is released at Keystone Studios. The Tramp, as portrayed by Chaplin, is a bumbling but usually good-hearted character who is most famously presented as a vagrant who endeavors to behave with the manners and dignity of a gentleman despite his actual social status.

However, while he is ready to take what paying work that is available, he also uses his cunning to get what he needs to survive and escape the authority figures who will not tolerate his antics.

February 7, 1962 -
Edward John "Eddie" Izzard, stand-up comedian, dramatic actor and until recently an executive transvestite, was born on this date.

Long time readers of this silliness may have realized that I am very partial to Mr Izzard, Executive Transvestite.

February 7, 1965 -
Chris Rock
, stand-up comedian, actor and not an executive transvestite.

February 7, 1974 - Mel Brooks' Blazing Saddles opened on this date. Teen age boys everywhere celebrate by telling fart jokes.

The role of Bart was intended for Richard Pryor, but due to the controversial nature of Pryor's stand-up routines of the day and his background, Mel Brooks couldn't secure financing for the project with Pryor in that role. So Pryor was made a co-writer of the script, and Cleavon Little played Bart.

Today in History:
February 7, 1964 -
It was 47 years ago today, The Beatles arrive at JFK International Airport to begin their first tour of the United States. They helped bring about a social revolution whose effects can be felt to this day.

The Beatles came from Britain, sometimes known as England, a little island in the North Atlantic from which many people have come to the United States over the years, some of them without guitars.

The British (or English), like so many other Europeans, have a long and storied history. Although it took the French to perfect the guillotine, the English (or British) made up for in zeal what they lacked in technological savvy, and next week is the anniversary of three British (or English) queens having their heads hewn from their shoulders.

On February 8, 1587, after nineteen years in prison, Mary Queen of Scots was beheaded.

On February 12, 1554, Lady Jane Grey, Queen for nine days in 1553, was beheaded.

On February 13, 1542, Catherine Howard, Henry VIII's Vth wife, was beheaded.

If you can get to an English (or British) pub next week, order a beer with extra head and see if they get the joke. Be prudent, however, as people will sometimes react in unexpected ways when asked for any kind of head at all.)

February 7, 1845 -
An 'intemperate' vandal, William Lloyd, entered the British Museum and smashes the irreplaceable Portland Vase into over 200 pieces. The elaborate glass amphora was created when Augustus was Caesar and is about ten inches high.

It takes a lot of crazy glue and months to repair.

On February 7, 1898, the trial of Emile Zola began in Paris. He lost, but then eventually he won. He accused someone of something. Somehow, the actor Paul Muni is involved. Or vice-versa. Long story.

It all began in the backwoods of Illinois... no, that was Lincoln. Never mind

February 7, 1940 -
Walt Disney's second feature-length movie, Pinocchio, premiered at the Center Theatre in Manhattan on this date.

The first animated film to win an Academy Award in a competitive category. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs won an honorary Oscar two years earlier.

February 7, 1968 -
It became necessary to destroy the town to save it. --

This was a quote attributed by Peter Arnett (written on this date.) to an anonymous American major speaking about the town of Ben Tre, the main town in Ben Tre province, Vietnam, after the Americans had heavily bombarded it.

February 7, 1990 -
The Soviet Union's Communist Party agreed to let opposition political parties compete for control of the country, thereby giving up its monopoly on power.

They were forced to sell of most of their properties on Baltic Avenue.

Oh yeah I guess there was a Football game last night.

And so it goes.

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