Friday, July 03, 2015

Watching "Give Out, Sisters" with Nora

My four-year-old granddaughter and I were watching the old movie, "Give Out, Sisters." I leaned over and asked her, "Isn't this fun - watching an old Andrews Sisters movie?" She thought a moment and answered, "It would be more fun if we had popcorn and sno-cones."

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Thursday, July 02, 2015

The Blindfolded Wildcat

After Mousey Grey (alias The Masked Muskrat), took on Cedric Wehunt as his assistant. Cedric chose The Blindfolded Wildcat as his professional name. (From the Lum and Abner radio show)

Puny man

Floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, drought. They all serve to remind us just how weak man is. All our vaunted technology and scholarship cannot stand before them. But they obey the voice of the Creator.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Live accompaniment

One of the things that I like least about modern-day talent competitions is the canned accompaniment. Back in the good old days, it was all live. And that made it that much harder. Today's singers do not have to worry about coordinating with the accompanist, and the accompaniment is exactly the same every time. A whole lost easier than how it used to be.

Excess acidity

One sponsor of Fred Allen's Town Hall Tonight was Sal Hepatica, which was supposed to combat "excess acidity." Not the easiest phrase to spit out, on the air, under the gun. But the announcer managed to do it consistently. (Say it ten times quickly to understand.)

"Secrets and Spies" - Reader's Digest

If you have any interest in World War II history, or in the history of espionage, I highly recommend the book Secrets and Spies. This is a condensed compilation published Reader's Digest. It is excellent, and would be an especially good WWII primer for junior high and high school students. Most of it is fascinating reading. Included in it, by the way, is the real story behind the movie The Great Escape. I got my copy decades ago, and have enjoyed reading in it ever since.

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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Balboa Dank

Another not-so-famous person with whom you may not be familiar. He was a fictitious character on one of the Fred Allen radio shows. Interesting flair for names, what?

Monday, June 29, 2015

Greetings, fellow Vallianter!

One of my best friends in high school was a fellow named Dan Kirkpatrick. He drove a Valliant, which was about the uncoolest car you can imagine. But Dan was one of those people who could take something uncool and make it the height of cool, just because it was uncool. He had a real knack for that. Many times, when riding with him, we would pass another Valliant on the road, and he would exclaim, "Greetings, fellow Vallianter," as if it were an exclusive club. And it was, sort of.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

The retiring tattooist's last published work

"A Farewell to Arms"
(from the Fred Allen radio show)

Old radio shows and long drives

Our children grew up listening to old radio programs (cassette tapes back then) when we were on long trips. It is amazing how much faster the trips went and how much calmer the children were. I recommend it.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Jack Benny and the Louis-Roper fight

In one of the episodes of the Jack Benny radio show, Jack and Rochester get into an argument about who is going to win the fight between Joe Louis and Jack Roper. Rochester supports Louis, and gets so enthusiastic about how badly he is going to beat the challenger that he wrecks the car.

In fact, Louis did knock out Roper at 2:20 of the first round.