The holiday is a parody holiday invented in 1995 by John Baur (Ol' Chumbucket) and Mark Summers (Cap'n Slappy), of Corvallis, Oregon, who proclaimed September 19 each year as the day when everyone in the world should talk like a pirate.
Nothing says Piracy (or the British Navy) more than Rum, The Lash and Sodomy. So remember: keep plenty of rum, leather belts and Crisco handy today.
September 19, 1931 -
Paramount released the Marx Brother's third film, Monkey Business on this date.
Early in the movie, the Marx Brothers - playing stowaways concealed in barrels - harmonize unseen while performing the popular song 'Sweet Adeline.' It is debated whether Harpo was actually singing or not.
September 19, 1970 -
The greatest sitcom every produced, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, premiered on CBS TV on this date.
The shot in the opening credits where Mary Tyler Moore throws her hat into the air was shot at the corner of 7th Street and Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis. The two joggers who pass Mary in the park during the opening credit sequence are producers James L. Brooks and Allan Burns. Also in the credit sequence, the gray-haired man Mary has lunch with and is later seen walking with in the evening is Mary Tyler Moore's then-husband Grant Tinker, the president/co-founder of MTM.
September 19, 1975 -
The British sitcom Fawlty Towers, created by John Cleese, premiered on BBC2 on this date.
As the series progressed, each episode's opening shot of the Fawlty Towers hotel sign shows rearranged and misplaced letters. Variations include: Watery Fowls (with a kid seen adjusting it), Farty Tower, Flay Otters, Fatty Owls, Warty Towels, Flowery Twats and Farty Towels. Production team-member Iain McLean supplied the hotel sign anagrams supposedly left by aggrieved paperboys.
September 19, 1986 -
David Lynch's profoundly unsettling film, Blue Velvet, premiered on this date, (after I saw the movie, I had to go out and have a drink.)
The role of Jeffrey was originally offered to Val Kilmer, who turned it down, describing the script he read as "pornography", although he says he would've done the version that finally made it to the screen.
Today in History:
September 19, 1692 -
Giles Corey was accused of witchcraft in 1692. This put him in a difficult spot. If he pleaded guilty, he'd be burned alive at the stake. If he pleaded not guilty, he'd have to take a lie-detector test.
One of the primary symptoms of demonic possession was immunity to water, so those who survived the process were rewarded with a warm, dry burning at the stake. Those who drowned, on the other hand, were clearly innocent and received a favorable ruling.
Giles Corey wasn't eager to be burned at the stake, but he wasn't keen on posthumous vindication, either. A plea of guilty meant the stake; a plea of not-guilty meant drowning (or the stake, depending on the results of the lie-detector test). Mr. Corey therefore did what any reasonable person might have done: he claimed his Fifth Amendment rights under the Constitution and said nothing.
This was a foolish and costly blunder, as the Constitution had not yet been invented.
September 19, 1881 -
The 20th president of the United States, James A. Garfield, (shot by assassin Charles J. Guiteau,) died of wounds on this date.
Psst - Guiteau didn't kill the President, his doctors did. Several inserted their unsterilized fingers into the wound to probe for the bullet, and one doctor punctured Garfield's liver in doing so. Garfield's doctors had turned a three-inch-deep, harmless wound into a twenty-inch-long contaminated gash stretching from his ribs to his groin and oozing more pus each day. He lingered for eighty days, wasting away from his robust 210 pounds to a mere 130 pounds.
Alexander Graham Bell had made several unsuccessful attempts to remove the assassin’s bullet with a new metal detection device.
September 19, 1931 -
Adolf Hitler's 23-year-old half niece, Geli Raubal, was found dead in her uncle's Munich apartment from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest on this date.
Some allege that she and Adolf had a sexual relationship, which involved Geli urinating on him. Hitler conveniently happens to be out of town at the time of the shooting.
Oh that Hitler, what a wacky Fuhrer.
September 19, 1934 -
Bruno Hauptmann was arrested for the kidnap-murder of the Lindbergh baby on this date.
September 19, 1957 -
The U.S. conducted its first underground nuclear test, code-named Rainier, in the Nevada desert on this date. This caused a major disturbance in the natural order of the fragile desert eco-system,
ultimately resulting in Las Vegas,
and enormous spiders
and oversized seafood.
September 19, 1959 -
In a Cold War setback, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev was annoyed to learn that he would not be permitted to visit Disneyland, due to concerns for his personal safety.
September 19, 1961 -
Betty (Estelle Parsons) and Barney (James Earl Jones) Hill were picked up near Indian Head, New Hampshire and anally probed by five beings in a flying saucer. The couple later describes the craft as being "banana-like, with pointed tips and windows."
Anyway, that's what Barney told Betty what happened.
September 19, 1991 -
A body was found frozen in a glacier in the Alps between Austria and Italy. A German tourist found the body and called the Austrian police. They tried to free the body from the ice with a jackhammer. It was only when an anthropologist showed up to examine the body that they realized it was a very, very old corpse - 5,300 years old, in fact - of a man between 25 and 35 years old. He was five feet, two inches tall, with hair about three inches long. He had tattoos. He wore an unlined fur robe, a woven grass cape, and size six shoes stuffed with grass for warmth.
He came to be called Ötzi the Iceman, and what made him such a remarkable discovery for anthropologists was the fact that he died while he was out walking on an ordinary day wearing ordinary clothing. He carried a copper axe and a fur quiver for his arrows, the only quiver from the Neolithic period that has ever been found. His arrows had sharp flint points and feathers that were affixed at an angle that would cause the arrows to spin. And he carried mushrooms in his bag that scientists speculate were used for medicine.
Who murdered the Iceman. Stay tuned to CSI Austria on your local CBS networks.
September 19, 1995 -
The New York Times and the Washington Post published the Unabomber's rambling, 35,000-word anti-technology screed, Industrial Society And Its Future, on this date.
And so it goes