As well as everything else - There is no celebration of No Pants Subway Ride Day once again this year, in NYC -
"The No Pants Subway Ride is not happening in New York in 2023," reads a message on the initiative's official website. "After 19 years of producing the event, we've decided to take a break (sadly the pandemic ruined our plans of making it 20 years in a row!)." Should you wish to ride the subway sans pants, you are on your own.
You can celebrate National Hat Day today though. John Etherington, a London haberdasher stepped out of his shop on the Strand, on this date in 1797, wearing a new hat of his own design. His black top hat was so startling that it drew a crowd - one man purported was shoved through a storefront window. Etherington was arrested for disturbing the peace, but within a month, he had more hat orders than he could handle.
Although more body heat is lost from your head than other parts of the body, in Fargo, North Dakota, there is a law that forbids dancing while wearing a hat under the penalty of jail. I hope someone informed Mr. Astaire of that fact.
January 15, 1967 -
Ed Sullivan, when he wasn't fall down drunk, swore a lot. He swore that his arch-rival, Walter Winchell was a goddamned bastard. He swore that his 'so called friend' J Edgar Hoover was a goddamned transvestite but surprising spry in his cha-cha heels. And he swore that those goddamned filthy limey boys, The Rolling Stones, would never return to his show.
Sullivan sobered up, looked at his rating when the Stones last appeared on his show and permitted that boys back on The Ed Sullivan Show, on this date.
They were forced to change the lyrics of to Let's Spend Some Time Together.
January 15, 1971 -
George Harrison unintentionally rewrites the song He's So Fine and releases it as My Sweet Lord on this date.
Bright Tunes Music, the owner of the publishing rights, sued Harrison because this sounded too much like the 1963 Chiffons hit He's So Fine. The trial took place February 23-25, with various expert witnesses testifying. The key to the case was the musical pattern of the two songs, which were both based on two musical motifs: "G-E-D" and "G-A-C-A-C." He's So Fine repeated both motifs four times, My Sweet Lord repeated the first motif four times and the second motif three times. Harrison couldn't identify any other songs that used this exact pattern, and the court ruled that "the two songs are virtually identical." And while the judge felt that Harrison did not intentionally copy My Sweet Lord, that was not a defense - thus Harrison was on the hook writing a similar song without knowing it. Harrison was found guilty of "subconscious plagiarism" in a verdict handed down on August 31, 1976.
January 15, 1974 -
America once again, found it's thrill, on Blueberry Hill. The first episode of Happy Days (series) aired on this date. Potsie sets Richie up with that Mary Lou girl.
ABC at first feared Fonzie would be perceived as a hoodlum or criminal, and prohibited his wearing a leather jacket. In the first few episodes Henry Winkler wears a non-threatening gray windbreaker. The original windbreaker resembles the jacket wore by James Dean, the Fonz's idol, in Rebel Without a Cause. The leather jacket was introduced later and helped to make Fonzie a TV icon.
January 15, 1977 -
The Coneheads at Home, featuring Dan Aykroyd and Jane Curtin, debuted on Saturday Night Live on this date. For those of you too young to remember, The Coneheads at Home, was a recurring sketch on Saturday Night Live featuring a family of extraterrestrials with cone-shaped heads, from the planet Remulak, posing in the suburban United States as immigrants from France.
(Hey, why not stay for the whole episode.)
The inspiration for the Coneheads came from a proposal by Dan Aykroyd about pin-headed lawyers. This idea was shot down by the producers, fearing it might be offensive. A later trip to the Easter Islands in the South Pacific and the haunting images of stone head monoliths inspired Aykroyd to pen the series drawings that evolved into the Coneheads.
January 15, 1981 -
Let's Be Careful Out There
Hill Street Blues premiered on NBC on this date.
The series is regarded as a hallmark in American dramatic television. It was the first dramatic series to incorporate long shots, hand-held shots and continuous story lines. It was nominated for a record 21 Emmys for its first season in spite of low ratings.
Another book from the back shelves of The ACME Library
Today in History:
January 15, 1759 -
The British Museum, one of the largest and most comprehensive in the world, opened to the public on this date.
I'm sure the Greek Prime Minister is patiently waiting by the phone for word that Elgin Marbles will be returned to Greece (but that's another story.)
January 15 , 1870 -
A Thomas Nast cartoon titled, A Live Jackass Kicking a Dead Lion, was printed in Harper's Weekly on this date.
January 15 , 1892 -
A little magazine in Springfield, Massachusetts, first published the rules for a brand new game that involved tossing a ball into a high-mounted peach basket.
still as popular as ever in Springfield, Massachusetts.
January 15, 1919 -
In Boston an explosion opened a tank of molasses and the cylindrical sides toppled outward knocking down 10 nearby buildings. 2 million gallons of molasses oozed onto the streets and killed 21 people. Another 50 were injured.
So yes, apparently, there are people slower than molasses in Boston.
January 15, 1929 -
I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality... I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.
Martin Luther King, Jr., pastor, political activist and Nobel Prize winner was born on this date.
January 15, 1943 -
Just outside of Washington, DC in Arlington , VA, The Pentagon was dedicated as the world's largest office building on this date.
It covers 34 acres of land and has 17 miles of corridors.
Once again I ask: what would happen to the DC sewer system if you could have a co-ordinated flush of all the toilets in the building?
January 15, 1947 -
A passerby spotted the nude body of Elizabeth Short, a 22 year old actress in a vacant lot near Hollywood. Her body, cut in half, was bruised and beaten. Grass had reportedly been forced into her vagina, and she had reportedly been sodomized after death. The case was dubbed The Black Dahlia murder and over the years as many as 50 men and women have confessed to this gruesome crime yet it has never been solve.
January 15, 1953 -
An out-of- control, 16-car train, Train #173, the Federal-Express train, suffers a near-catastrophic brake failure and crashed through the railroad terminal at Union Station in Washington, DC on this date.
Thanks to the quick thinking and action of the engineers, there were only 87 injuries and zero fatalities.
Coincidentally this is the 14th anniversary of airline pilot Sully Sullenberger and his crew 's miraculous ditching into the Hudson River.
January 15, 1967 -
The Green Bay Packers beat the Kansas City Chiefs in Superbowl I on this date.
It was generally agreed upon by most television historians that all known broadcast tapes which recorded the game in its entirety were subsequently destroyed in the the process of recycling videotape by re-recording over previous content. NFL films has been able to recreate a version of the game from various sources.
January 15, 1983 -
Meyer Lansky, retired Jewish organized crime genius, (rumored to have photographic proof that J. Edgar Hoover was a homosexual; conspiracy theorists believed this was the reason Hoover wasn't aggressive in pursuing organized crime), died of a fatal nosebleed at Mount Sinai Hospital on this date.
It is not clear where Lansky's estimated $300 million fortune went.
Once again, what a way to go!
January 15, 2001 -
Happy Birthday Wikipedia.
Wikipedia was formally launched on this date, as a single English-language edition at www.wikipedia.com (now found here.)
January 15, 2013 -
Horse DNA was found in beef burgers being sold in supermarkets in Ireland and the United Kingdom on this date.
Health officials stated there was no risk to public health and that the contaminated batches were being recalled from retailers.
Before you go - O Rapturous joy!
A late Christmas gift. 42 years after History of the World: Part I was released, Mel Brooks has made a sequel. The eight-episode TV series, History of the World PART II, will be streamed as a four-night event starting March 6, on Hulu.
And so it goes