It's the Feast of Saint Nicholas, yes that St. Nick.
Amongst other things, he is the patron saint of children and was known for his generosity. He's also known as the patron saint of sailors, fishermen, merchants, the falsely accused, prostitutes (Huh), repentant thieves, pharmacists and broadcasters.
The biggest gift he ever gave was to a poor man and his three daughters. The man had no dowry to pay for his daughters and was worried that if they never married they would have no choice but to become prostitutes. Hearing this, Saint Nicholas visited the poor man at night and anonymously threw three purses filled with gold through his window. Because of this, he became the patron saint of pawnbrokers. Traditionally, three golden baubles are hung in the window of pawn shops to represent the three purses of money.
So now you know.
Today's Holiday Special - celebrating St. Nick
December 6, 1896 -
Ira Gershwin, lyricist (and major writer of the American Song Book) was born on this date.
They Can't Take That Away From Me
I Can't Get Started
If you're of an age, it part of the music you hear in your head as you walk down the street.
December 6, 1940 -
MGM released the 10th Marx Brothers film, Go West, on this date.
Winston Churchill was informed of Rudolf Hess's capture in Scotland just before he was about to see a private screening of Go West. Spurning a more detailed briefing, Churchill famously commented "Well, Hess or no Hess, I'm off to see the Marx Brothers"
December 6, 1964 -
One of the first neurotic holiday Christmas specials, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, premiered on this date
In the original TV version of the show, Rudolph, Hermey the elf and Yukon Cornelius visit the Island of Misfit Toys and promise to help them, but the Misfits are never mentioned again. After it was shown, the producers were inundated with letters from children complaining that nothing had been done to help the Misfit Toys. In response, Rankin-Bass produced a new short scene at the end of the show in which Santa and his reindeer, led by Rudolph, land on the Island and pick up all the toys to find homes for them, which has ever since been the standard version of the show run during the holidays.
Today in History:
December 6, 1877 -
Thomas Edison records his own recitation of “Mary had a Little Lamb” onto a cylinder wrapped with tin foil using his newly completed prototype hand-cranked phonograph at his Menlo Park Laboratory.
For all intents and purposes, it is the first recording of a human voice. (The clip is from a re-recording in 1927. The original 1877 recording was not saved and no longer exists.)
December 6, 1917 -
On the morning of December 6, the munitions ship Mont Blanc explodes in Halifax harbor after being struck by another ship, the Norwegian ship Imo.
It is the largest explosion before the atomic age. The ship was carrying 200 tons of TNT, 61 tons of gun cotton, 35 tons of Benzyl, and 2,300 tons of picric acid; the explosion destroys 325 acres of the city, leaving 1,900 people dead and injuring over 9,000.
Luckily, Gordon Lightfoot didn't write a damn song about it.
December 6, 1955 -
N.Y. psychologist Dr. Joyce Brothers won the top prize on the TV quiz show The $64,000 Question by correctly answering questions on boxing .
December 6, 1960 -
Domino's Pizza was founded by Thomas S. Monaghan on this date.
And the pizza still sucks.
December 6, 1969 -
A concert by the Rolling Stones at Altamont ends in the death of a fan at the hands of the Hells Angels, who were hired for security. He was a fat hippie anyway. (Pleased to meet you, hope you guessed my name...)
(Contrary to a popular urban legend, Sympathy for the Devil was not playing while Meredith Hunter was being stabbed, rather, the song was Under My Thumb.
December 6, 1973 -
House minority leader Gerald R. Ford was sworn in as the first unelected Vice President, succeeding US Vice President Spiro T. Agnew (under President Richard M. Nixon.)
Agnew, the only VP to resign in disgrace, resigned on October 10, and pleaded no contest to one charge of income tax invasion in return for the dropping of all other charges, and was fined $10,000 and given three year's probation .
December 6, 1989 -
Andy, Opie, come in for dinner boys.
Frances Bavier - "Aunt Bee" on The Andy Griffith show died of heart failure on this date.
And so it goes.