Saturday, February 3, 2024

He doesn't age

It's' Elmo's Birthday!

It's nice to know someone, even a puppet gives a damn about you.

And a quick note to Larry - you don't manhandle a superstar on TV and think it will go unnoticed

February 3, 1932 -
Paramount Pictures released Josef von Sternberg's Shanghai Express, starring Marlene Dietrich, Clive Brook and Anna Mae Wong in Los Angeles on this date.

China initially banned the movie, demanding its withdrawal from worldwide circulation. The ban was lifted when Paramount pledged not to make another film involving Chinese politics.

February 3, 1944 -
Robert Stevenson's classic presentation of Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre, starring Orson Wells, and Joan Fontaine, premiered in NYC on this date. (Look for Elizabeth Taylor in an uncredited role in the film.)

After securing the screen rights, David O. Selznick originally approached Orson Welles to play the role of Rochester opposite Selznick contractee Joan Fontaine. He got Aldous Huxley, John Houseman and Robert Stevenson involved. Ultimately, though, he sold the package to Darryl F. Zanuck and Twentieth Century Fox.

February 3, 1945 -
Walt Disney's The Three Caballeros, premiered in the US, on the date.

With the exception of Mickey Mouse's brief appearance with Leopold Stokowski in Fantasia, this was the first time Walt Disney attempted to combine animation with live actors since the Alice Comedies in the 1920s.

February 3, 1951 -
Another great Sylvester cartoon, Canned Feud, premiered on this date.

This cartoon is particularly violent for the series and for a Sylvester cartoon in particular.

February 3, 1960 -
Federico Fellini's La Dolce Vita, starring Marcello Mastroianni and Anita Ekberg premiered in Rome on this date.

The film and especially the final beach scene were inspired by the infamous 1953 Wilma Montesi murder case. Montesi was an Italian woman from a proper family. Her dead body was found on a beach near Rome. The investigation exposed the drugs and sex orgies of Roman high society at the time. The murder remains unsolved as of today.

February 3, 1964 -
Just prior to the Beatles invasion of the US, Meet the Beatles went 'gold' on this date.

Meet the Beatles! was The Beatles first "official" album in America, released on January 20, 1964 by Capitol Records, the sister company within EMI to their British label, Parlophone.

February 3, 1973
Elton John' song Crocodile Rock became his first US Billboard Hot 100 hit on this date.

The falsetto hook from Pat Boone's 1962 hit, Speedy Gonzales has some similar "La La"s, and that song's writers spoke out, accusing Elton of plagiarism. There was no legal action taken, and Elton has copped to the influence, saying Crocodile Rock was "a really blatant homage to 'Speedy Gonzales' and all the great '50s and '60s records that we used to love."

February 3, 1978 -
The TV-movie Dead Man's Curve, the first to deal with the tragic Jan & Dean story, premieres on ABC-TV on this date.

Wolfmand Jack, Dick Clark, and Beach Boys Mike Love and Bruce Johnston, appear in the movie. In the film, Wolfman Jack introduces himself to Jan and Dean in a small town as "Bob Smith", manager and The Jackal at the local radio station. Wolfman Jack's real name is Robert Weston Smith.

Don't forget to tune in to The ACME Eagle Hand Soap Radio Hour today

Today in History:
February 3, 1468 -
About 600 years ago a child was born in the city of Mainz, in what is today Germany. His name was Johannes Gutenberg. He worked as a goldsmith and gem cutter until finally converting a wine press into a printing press.

He printed 200 copies of the Bible and gradually went broke. He died on this date.

Lesser known to history is the name of Edgar Weasle-Puck, the Englishman who developed a printing press at around the same time as Gutenberg. Instead of printing Bibles, however, Weasle-Puck ran off 500 copies of Lewde & Graffical Engravingf of Perfonf Not Wearing Any Clothef. He made a small fortune, changed his name, purchased an Earldom, and moved to southern France, where he spent the rest of his days eagerly awaiting the invention of the lower-case "s."

February 3, 1637 -
Considered the first major speculative bubble, the sale and collection of tulips in the Netherlands reached extraordinary heights before collapsing spectacularly on this date.

At the height of the tulip mania, one bulb could sell for more than ten times the annual income of a skilled craftsman. And you could not smoke that crap.

February 3, 1882 -

P.T. Barnum purchased the elephant Jumbo on this date. He kept him for three years until the animal's skull was crushed by a train.

After his death, Jumbo's skeleton was donated to the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. The elephant's heart was sold to Cornell University. Jumbo's hide was stuffed by William J. Critchley and Carl Akeley, both of Ward's Natural Science, and the mounted specimen traveled with Barnum's circus for a number of years.

In 1889, Barnum donated the stuffed Jumbo to Tufts University, where it was displayed until destroyed by a fire in 1975, coincidentally a fate that befell many of Barnum's exhibits during his own lifetime. The great elephant's ashes are kept in a 14-ounce Peter Pan Crunchy Peanut Butter jar in the office of the Tufts athletic director.

I could not make this up if I wanted to do so.

February 3, 1913 -
In one of the darkest days in U.S. history, the 16th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified on this date. This amendment created the income tax.

Please check on your MAGA supporting neighbor; they might do themselves harm on this day. You know what, upon further thought, leave them be.

The United States broke diplomatic relations with Germany on February 3, 1917. The Germans were very upset by this and tried to make America jealous by flirting with Mexico. Britain overheard Germany's sweet talk and told America everything she'd heard. Unfortunately for Germany, however, it didn't make America jealous. It made America angry. A few months later the United States declared war on Germany.

(Less than two years later, World War I ended with Germany's defeat. This made Germany upset again, and they spent the next two decades planning how they'd get even. Eventually this led to World War II, which also ended, once again, with Germany's defeat. Germany remains upset to this day, but, having been deprived of an army, poses no serious threat to anyone but France.)

February 3, 1927 -
I have a problem with censorship by the lawyer - by legal people by the publishing firm, and I may be changing publishers. They don't seem to want to take too many risks with living people.

Kenneth Anger, American underground avant-garde film-maker, author of the notorious book Hollywood Babylon and professional Dan Rather impersonator, was spawned on this date.

February 3, 1943 -
The US transport ship Dorchester, which was carrying troops to Greenland, sank after being hit by a torpedo. Four Army chaplains (Rev. Lt. George L. Fox, a Methodist minister; Rabbi Lt. Alexander D. Goode; Father Lt. John P. Washington, a Roman Catholic priest; and Rev. Lt. Clark V. Poling, a Protestant minister from the Dutch Reformed Church) gave their life jackets to four other men, and went down with the ship.

Of the 902 men aboard the U.S.A.T. Dorchester, only 230 survived. Before boarding the Dorchester back in January, Chaplain Poling had asked his father to pray for him, "Not for my safe return, that wouldn't be fair. Just pray that I shall do my duty...never be a coward...and have the strength, courage and understanding of men. Just pray that I shall be adequate."

February 3, 1956 -
It's Nathan Lane's birthday today.

Pound for pound, one of the funniest guest on a talk show.

February 3, 1959 -
The Day the Music Died:

Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and the Big Bopper were on a tour called “Winter Dance Party” tour. The musicians were traveling from venue to venue on tour buses.

A small plane carrying The Big Bopper (J.P. Richardson), Buddy Holly and Richie Valens crashed near Mason City, Iowa, while en route to a show in Fargo, North Dakota. Richardson had developed a case of the flu during the tour (erroneously thought to have been caused by riding on the unheated bus) and asked one of Holly's bandmates, Waylon Jennings, for his seat on the plane; Jennings agreed to give up the seat. Dion DiMucci of Dion and The Belmonts, who was the fourth headliner on the tour, was approached to join the flight as well; however, the price of $36 was too much. Dion had heard his parents argue for years over the $36 rent for their apartment and could not bring himself to pay an entire month's rent for a short plane ride.

The plane crashed during a blizzard, smashing into a cornfield at over 220 mph, flipping over on itself and tossing the passengers into the air. The victims were jettisoned from the plane, landing yards from the wreckage, and lay there for ten hours as snowdrifts formed around them. Because of the weather, no one reached the crash site until later in the morning.

The Surf Theatre's Winter Dance Party in Clear lake, Iowa, is on again this year. If you're in the area, catch it (if tickets are still available!)

February 3, 1971 -
New York Police Officer Frank Serpico was shot during a drug bust in Brooklyn on this date and survived to later testify against police corruption.

Many believe the incident proves that NYPD officers tried to kill him.

February 3, 1995
Astronaut Eileen Collins became the first woman to pilot the Space Shuttle as mission STS-63 is launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. STS-63 was the second mission of the US/Russian Shuttle-Mir Program, which carried out the first rendezvous of the American Space Shuttle with Russia's space station Mir.

In July 1999, Collins became the first (and currently only) female Shuttle commander with the launch of STS-93. On her last mission in 2005, she would command the historic STS-114 "Return to Flight" mission, the first after the Columbia tragedy.

And so it goes

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