Tuesday, September 15, 2015

It's Felt Hat Day

According to fashion arbiters from days gone by - you should not we wearing your straw hats any longer this season -

In the early 20th Century, tradition held that a man switch from straw hats to felt ones on September 15th. If he wore “the taboo headgear” after that date, hooligans were free to smash it to bits.

In 1922, a group of men and boy, 1,000 strong from Five Points sparked a bizarre riot that shook New York City from the Battery to the Bronx, as they prowled the city, beating men, who refused to remove their straw hats.

September 15, 1949 -
what you mean we, white man? ...

The Lone Ranger, the masked hero rode onto the fledgling ABC network for the first time on this date

The Lone Ranger is never captured or held for very long by lawmen or outlaws in order to avoid the chance of him being unmasked.

September 15, 1965 -
This was an incredibly busy day in TV History:

The Big Valley premiered on this date.

This was the only western to be built around a strong, female lead character.

Green Acres premiered on this date.

There was a false rumor going around that the Green Acres cast had a luau on the final day of filming and ate Arnold the Pig. In an interview for a TV Land Special, Tom Lester revealed that he made the story up, because he got tired of people asking him whatever happened to Arnold the Pig.

Danger Will Robinson, danger. Dr. Smith is attempting to inappropriately stimulate your bulbous young nether region!

The Robinson Family gets Lost in Space for the first time on CBS-TV on this date.

And last, but not least, the first American television drama to feature an African-American actor in a lead role, I Spy, starring Bill Cosby and Roger Culp, premiered on NBC-TV on this date.

Culp and Cosby improvised most of their banter. They also ended up rewriting much of their dialogue as they were often dissatisfied with the scripts.

September 15, 1967 -
The Star Trek episode Amok Time aired on this date.  In the episode, Kirk and Spock are pitted in a fight to the death against each other by Spock’s wife-to-be when Spock suffers his first pon farr (the Vulcan time of mating).

The episode is the first in which Spock uses either the phrase “live long and prosper” and makes the “Vulcan salute” gesture for the first time.

September 15, 1971 -
Just one more thing...

The first episode of the Columbo series premiered on NBC-TV on this date.

The very first episode, was directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Steven Bochco. Spielberg was never again involved with the series, through Bochco wrote several other episodes.

September 15, 1986 –
Los Angeles
law firm McKenzie, Brackman, Chaney and Kuzak first opened their doors to television viewer when LA Law premiered on NBC-TV on this date.

Series co-creator Terry Louise Fisher, former deputy district attorney for Los Angeles County, former entertainment lawyer for 20th Century Fox, and producer-writer for Cagney & Lacey, composed a form letter she was thinking of sending to lawyers who complained about the show: "Dear So-and-so: If I were a good lawyer, I'd still be practicing law. Instead, I'm stuck in Hollywood, making 10 times as much money. I hope you are as conscientious about your clients as you are about our show. Thank for your writing."

Today in History:
September 15, 1776
The British, led by General Howe, occupied Manhattan, capturing Kip's Bay, on this date.

Outraged by the rents, discouraged by the lack of parking and homesick for bubble and squeak and spotted dick, however, they left shortly afterwards, leaving only drunken journalists behind.

September 15, 1830 -
British MP William Huskisson was chatting amiably with the Duke of Wellington at the grand opening of the Liverpool & Manchester Railway, when all at once the right honorable gentleman distinguished himself for posterity by becoming the first human being in history to be run over by a train.

Apparently, Mr. Huskisson number was up.

(The Duke of Wellington, on the other hand, is remembered for his Beef.)

September 15, 1864 -
Thirty-four years later, on this date, another hardy British soul, the explorer John Speke, distinguished himself by becoming the first European to see Africa's Lake Victoria, and then accidentally shooting and killing himself while hunting partridges.

(conveniently, the day before he was to debate his finding with his famous exploration partner, Richard  Burton - no, not that Richard Burton, the other one, the famous self circumciser, and translator of 1001 Arabian Nights and the Kama Sutra.)

September 15, 1885 -

P.T. Barnum's prize elephant Jumbo was struck dead by a freight train in St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada. It took 150 men to haul the carcass up an embankment, from whence it is taken to a taxidermist.

The stuffed Jumbo became a featured attraction in Barnum's circus.

Goodbye Jumbo.

September 15, 1890 -
It's the birthday of Agatha Christie (Vanessa Redgrave), born in Devon, England. She was a Red Cross nurse during World War I. She started reading detective novels because she found they took her mind off her troubles (her husband couldn't help sleeping with other women) and soon after, started writing her own.

Her big breakthrough book was her novel The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, which came out in 1926. It was the same year in which Christie had a fight with her husband, fled her own home, and was missing for ten days. There was a nationwide search. It was on the front pages of all the papers. And when she finally turned up, she was famous and all of her books were best-sellers.

September 15, 1928 -
Scottish bacteriologist and noted slob Alexander Fleming accidentally discovered that the mold penicillin had an antibiotic effect, on this date. Had he cleaned his laboratory every night and put all his things away like a good little boy, he never would have discovered penicillin, and half of us would be dead right now.

As I am deathly allergic to penicillin, his discovery has done little for me but I pass this along to you all.

September 15, 1954 -
In front of thousands of spectating New Yorkers at 51st and Lexington, Marilyn Monroe performed the now-famous skirt blowing scene during filming for The Seven Year Itch. The event basically boils down to a publicity stunt, as the whole thing was reshot later on a Hollywood soundstage.

Unfortunately, this event is the final straw in the Monroe - Dimaggio marriage and it soon comes undone.

September 15, 1963 -
In Birmingham, Alabama, Bobby Frank Cherry, Thomas Blanton, Herman Frank Cash and Robert Chambliss planted 15 dynamite sticks in the basement of the 16th Street Baptist Church, below the womens restroom. When the dynamite exploded, four little girls in the bathroom and were killed (Addie Mae Collins, Denise McNair, Carole Robertson and Cynthia Wesley); more than 20 other parishioners also were injured.

Chambliss was later tried and convicted of murder; he was sentenced to life in prison in 1977. Two of his accomplices also were later sentenced to life in prison (Herman Cash died in 1994 without having been charged.)

September 15, 1972 -

Indictments were brought against the seven Watergate conspirators: James McCord, Frank Sturgis, Bernard L. Barker, Eugenio R. Martinez, Virgilio R. Gonzales, E. Howard Hunt (noted spy, novelist and possible Kennedy assassin, rumored to have been the man on the grassy knoll) and G. Gordon Liddy (noted rat connoisseur), on this date.

And so it goes

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