History Schmistory: February 23. The world looks mighty good to me.

1896: The Tootsie Roll is invented, and gives rise to an unusual morphological phenomenon…

History Schmistory: February 22. “As bad as Moose Murders?”

1983: After 13 dismal previews, the notorious Broadway flop Moose Murders opens and closes on the same night at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre. It is now basically the standard by which all horrible plays that find their way to the Broadway stage are compared, and it pretty much loses every time. NY critics were literally in competition to see who could write the most witheringly scornful review.
Here’s some highlights:

“…The only stage play I ever saw presented in stereo-odoriferous Smellovision.” -John Simon

“Those of us who have witnessed the play… will undoubtedly hold periodic reunions, in the noble tradition of survivors of the Titanic.” -Frank Rich

“…Would insult the intelligence of an audience consisting entirely of amoebas” -Brendan Gill

In fairness, we have never seen or read the play, but from the reviews it seems likely that Eugene O’Neill didn’t just roll in his grave, he’s been rotating on a spit ever since. Zing!

History Schmistory: February 21. “The new phone book’s here, the new phone book’s here!”

1878: The first telephone book is issued in New Haven, Connecticut. It was basically one cardboard page with a list of 50 businesses that could afford to have telephones. There was no number system yet, as every connection could be made by one operator at a switchboard. Over the next hundred years the phonebook took a giant step, partly by becoming just that; a giant step, perfect for reaching the cookie jar and other such unobtainables. Today it appears the phone book is doomed of extinction. Should we do away with phone books altogether? Who knows, maybe in another hundred years, they might be the only thing left to keep us warm. Let’s hope not.
-In the meantime here’s some other cool stuff you can do with them…

GO THERE! …or wait until it’s finished.

The Sanctuary of Truth is a temple in Pattaya, Thailand, visualized by Thai businessman Lek Viriyaphant in 1981. The sanctuary is an all-wood building filled with Visionary art carvings based on traditional Buddhist and Hindu motifs. A team of 250 carvers contribute to the project, which is technically not scheduled to be completed until 2025. But at this point we think it’s awesome enough to check out as is.

History Schmistory: February 20. Hofer heaven’s sake!

1810: Andreas Hofer, a humble Tirolean innkeeper turned patriot, who became the leader of a rebellion against Napoleon’s forces, is executed by firing squad under Napoleon’s order to “give him a fair trial, then shoot him.” Hofer refused a blindfold, passing money to the corporal with orders to “shoot straight”. In his final letter Hofer proclaimed; “Goodbye disappearing world! Dying is so easy that my eyes have no tears.” Today he is regarded as a national hero in Tirol and much of Austria and Germany. Even has a four star hotel named after him. As a former innkeeper, he probably would appreciate that.

Art Stop: Trucking Around the World

Russian artist, Andrey Gordeev takes us on a unique journey with his series,  Around the World in Twelve Months, where we see the world from the perspective of the indispensable truck driver. Stereotypes lovingly included :)



View the whole series here!

History Schmistory: February 19. It’s people!!

1847: The first group of rescuers reaches the Donner Party. Sadly, they arrived just after the main course.

History Schmistory: February 18. Moooovin’ on up.

1930: Elm Farm Ollie, aka “Nellie Jay” becomes the first cow to fly in a fixed-wing aircraft, promoting the International Air Exposition in St. Louis, Missouri.
Ollie was also the first cow to be milked in an aircraft, producing 24 quarts of milk which were parachuted in cartons down to eager spectators.
Unfortunately, the air-milk industry failed to thrive.

 

History Schmistory: February 17. Orange you glad we’re a free state?

1854: The United Kingdom recognizes the independence of the Orange Free State, which would later become a part of the Union of South Africa. Today the province remains free from the tyranny of Oranges.

History Schmistory: February 16. “Are you a gameshow panelist?”

1950: The longest-running prime time game show in network television history, What’s My Line?, premieres on CBS, and runs until 1967. The show consisted of a semi-witty celebrity panel that attempted to guess the typically unusual occupations of various guests by way of yes or no questions. (As in ‘what’s my line of work?’ not to be confused with Whose Line is it Anyway?) Shows also included “mystery guests” which the panelists were challenged to identify while napping…

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