19 Somethin’ – Evel Knievel

The 19 Somethin’ series continues. If you missed the previous articles, you can get caught up here.

Here is the next line in the song:

and a couple of Evel Knievel scars on my right arm

Evel Knievel was a famous stuntman and daredevil. He was kind of like the David Blaine of the ’70s. Except that it is way more fun watching somebody wipe out on a motorcycle than it is to watch somebody not move from one place for hours and hours.

Evel was born October 17, 1938, and his real name was Robert Craig Knievel.
Evel Knievel was most famous for his motorcycle stunts. There had been motorcycle stunt people who jumped over animals and pools of water. Knievel wanted to stand out, so started jumping cars. He began adding more and more cars to his jumps when he would return to the same venue to get people to come out and see him again. On June 19, 1966 in Missoula, Montana, he attempted to jump twelve cars and a cargo van. He did not get enough speed off of the ramp, so his back wheel hit the top of the van while his front wheel hit the top of the landing ramp. Knievel ended up with a severely broken arm and several broken ribs. Instead of ruining him, the crash made him famous.

He had some very successful jumps, and some more crashes.

While in Las Vegas, to watch Dick Tiger successfully defend his WBA and WBC light heavyweight titles at the Las Vegas Convention Center on November 17, 1967, Knievel first saw the fountains at Caesars Palace and decided to jump them.
Knievel tried to get ABC to air the event live on Wide World of Sports. ABC declined, but said that if Knievel had the jump filmed and it was as spectacular as he said it would be, they would consider using it later.

Knievel used his own money to have actor/director John Derek produce a film of the Caesars’ jump. To keep costs low, Derek used his then-wife Linda Evans as one of the camera operators. It was Evans who filmed Knievel’s famous landing. It was an incredible crash, and here it is:

After his crash and recovery Knievel was more famous than ever. ABC-TV bought the rights to the film of the jump paying far more than they originally would have had they televised the original jump live.
Another one of Knievel’s jumps was over the Snake River Canyon on September 8, 1974.

ABC Sports was unwilling to pay the price Knievel wanted for the Snake River Canyon jump, so he ended up hiring Bob Arum’s company, Top Rank Productions, to put the event on closed circuit television and broadcast to movie theaters. Then WWF Promoters Don E. Branker and Vince McMahon, Sr., were later said to be silent promoters of this event. Knievel hired an aeronautical engineer to build him a rocket-powered cycle that he could use to jump across the Snake River, to be called the X-1 Skycycle.
As soon as he took of, the parachute deployed. The cycle actually made it across the length of the canyon, but the wind brought it back to the side where he started from. He only landed a few feet from the water. If he had landed in the water, he would have drowned due to a jumpsuit/harness malfunction which kept him strapped in the vehicle. Knievel survived the jump with only minor injuries.

Here is an interesting video about the event:

He had many other major jumps after that event, and he was world famous. There were even Evel Knievel toys:

Evel Knievel died in Clearwater, Florida, on November 30, 2007, aged 69. He had been suffering from diabetes and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis for many years.

His son Robbie Knievel has followed in his father’s shoes as a motorcycle daredevil.

19 Somethin’ – Baseball Cards


The 19 Somethin’ series continues. If you missed the previous articles, you can get caught up here.

Here is the next line in the song:

had a shoebox full of baseball cards

Before I had money to buy music, I had my parents’ money to buy baseball cards. I also had football cards, and The Empire Strikes Back cards. But, since baseball is my favorite sport, I had more than a shoebox ful of baseball cards. Remember how the gum would come in the package? You could break your teeth trying to chew it. And a lot of times, the gum would stick to the back of the last card, and the card would rip a little bit.

Here are a sample of the Topps cards from the ’80s:

1980

Carl Yastrzemski
1981

Tim Raines
1982

Nolan Ryan
1983

Wade Boggs
1984
Mike Schmidt
1985

Dwight Gooden
1986

Don Mattingly
1987

Mark McGuire
1988

Kirby Puckett
1989
Randy Johnson

Music Video of the Week – 9/22/10

Today’s selection is in honor of David Coverdale’s 59th birthday today – the classic Whitesnake video Here I Go Again:

“Here I Go Again” was originally released on Whitesnake’s 1982 album, Saints & Sinners. But, the version we are all familiar with is the one that was re-recorded, and appeared on their 1987 album Whitesnake. The 1987 version hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart on October 10, 1987.

The video was made memorable by Tawny Kitaen’s appearance, wearing white lingerie and prancing on the hood of Whitesnake lead singer David Coverdale’s Jaguar XJ and massaging him while he is trying in vain to concentrate on driving.

David Coverdale and Tawny Kitaen were married from 1989–1991. Most of us had seen Tawny Kitaen for the first time in the movie Bachelor Party as the bride-to-be of Tom Hanks’ character.

She became associated with the glam metal scene when her legs appeared on the cover of Ratt’s self-titled album.
Then, in ripped-up clothes, she appeared on the cover of Ratt’s Out of the Cellar. She also can be seen at the beginning of the Ratt video “Back for More” as the girl in the 50s-style skirt at the juke box.

In addition to “Here I Go Again”, Kitaen also appeared in Whitsnake’s videos for “Is This Love” and “Still of the Night.” In 1989, she appeared in video for “The Deeper the Love.”

She was co-host of America’s Funniest People with Dave Coulier from 1992 to 1994. But, then Tawny Kitaen became a mess. She was married to baseball pitching star Chuck Finley. In 2002, Kitaen was charged with committing domestic violence against him. Three days later, Finley filed for divorce. After a plea bargain, Kitaen agreed to “enter a spousal battery counseling program and avoid contact with Finley.” The couple was married for five years and have two daughters, Wynter and Raine.

Kitaen was one of the cast of the sixth edition of The Surreal Life, a reality television show on VH1, which began airing in March 2006.

In November 2006, prosecutors charged Kitaen with possessing 15 grams of cocaine in her San Juan Capistrano home in Orange County. They said her two children were home at the time, and Kitaen had given deputies permission for the search. In December 2006, she entered a six-month rehabilitation program in exchange for the dismissal of a felony drug possession charge.

Then in 2008, Kitaen appeared on the VH1 reality TV show Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew. Shockingly, the show does not seem to help the celebrities that go there! On

September 26, 2009, Kitaen was arrested for driving under the influence in Newport Beach, California.

Whitesnake has slowed down over the years. But, in 2009, Whitesnake began touring with Judas Priest. In August of that year, David Coverdale suffered a vocal injury. The remainder of their tour with Judas Priest was cancelled. Then earlier this year, Coverdale announced that his voice seems to have fully recovered. He said that he is recording new demos, and hoping to release a new Whitesnake album.

19 Somethin’ – Roger Staubach

250px-staubach_cowboys_qbThe 19 Somethin’ series continues. If you missed the previous articles, you can get caught up here.

Here is the next line in the song:

well, I was Roger Staubach in my back yard

Roger Staubach (born February 5, 1942 in Cincinnati, Ohio) is a legendary Hall of Fame former quarterback who played for the Dallas Cowboys from 1969 until 1979.

Staubach was also a college superstar when he played for Navy. He won the Heisman Trophy in 1963, and was the last player from a military academy to win the award. He was drafted by the Cowboys in 1964, but due to his military commitment, did not begin playing until 1969 as a 27-year-old rookie. After graduating from the Naval Academy, Staubach could have requested an assignment in the States but he chose to volunteer for a one-year tour of duty in Vietnam where he served as a supply officer for the United States Navy until 1967.

In 1969, Staubach joined the Cowboys.
In 1971, the Cowboys made their first Super Bowl appearance in Super Bowl V. Staubach had split time with Craig Morton at Quarterback, and Morton played in the Super Bowl. The Balitomre Colts won the game 16-13.

On January 16, 1972, Staubach led the Cowboys to their first Super Bowl victory, in Super Bowl VI, over the Miami Dolphins. The Cowboys won 24–3, and Staubach was the MVP.

In a 1975 playoff game against the Minnesota Vikings, Staubach had one of his most famous moments. With seconds on the clock and the Cowboys trailing 14–10, Staubach launched a 50-yard bomb to wide receiver Drew Pearson, who caught the pass and strode into the end zone for a 17–14 victory. After the game, Staubach quipped he prayed a “Hail Mary” before throwing the pass. Ever since then, any long pass to the end zone at the end of a game has been called a “Hail Mary”.

Staubach had one more Super Bowl victory – Super Bowl XII. The Cowboys beat the Denver Broncos 27-10.

Staubach was in two other Super Bowls in which the Cowboys lost to Terry Bradshaw and the Pittsburgh Steelers – Super Bowl X in 1976 by a score of 21-17, and Super Bowl XIII in 1979 by a score of 35-31.

Staubach retired from football in March 1980, as the then highest rated passer of all time at 83.4, and was voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1985. In 1999, he was ranked number 29 on The Sporting News list of the 100 Greatest Football Players, the second-ranked Cowboy behind Bob Lilly.

Roger Staubach has spent most of his football retirement as a successful businessman.

Trivia Tuesday – 9/21/10

Question: Who was Mallory Keaton’s fiance?


Last Week’s Question: Who griped of his duo’s MTV image: “It’s not as simple as me being the melodic one or John being the one with the mustache”?

Answer: Daryl Hall

Hall & Oates are one of the most successful duos of all time. They had 6 #1 hits: “Rich Girl”, “Kiss on My List”, “Private Eyes”, “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do)”, “Maneater”, and “Out of Touch”. In total, they had 34 top 40 hits. In 1990, they had their last top 40 hit “So Close”. But, they have continued to tour successfully over the years. In 2003, Daryl Hall and John Oates were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
They have had a resurgence of late. Their 1980 hit “You Make My Dreams” was featured in a montage of Adam Sandler’s ’80s tribute movie, The Wedding Singer, and most recently, it was featured in the movie (500) Days of Summer last year.

19 Somethin’ – Stretch Armstrong

maxresdefaultThe 19 Somethin’ series continues. If you missed the previous articles, you can get caught up here.

Here is the next line in the song:

and I’ve seen the stuff they put inside Stretch Armstrong

Stretch Armstrong was gel-filled action figure by Kenner, and first appeared in 1976. You could stretch out his arms and legs, and then they would go back into place.
And then in 1978, an arch enemy came out – Stretch Monster. It was a green reptilian monster. Here is the commercial:

Now, Stretch Armstrong is making a comeback. Taylor Lautner will be starring in a 3D Stretch Armstrong movie that is scheduled to be released in March 2012. Here is a news report on it:

’80s Emmy Award Winners – Television Shows

Here is the list of winners of Best Comedy and Best Drama throughout the ’80s:

1980

Best Comedy Best Drama
Taxi (ABC)
Lou Grant (CBS)

1981

Best Comedy Best Drama
Taxi (ABC)
Hill Street Blues (NBC)

1982

Best Comedy Best Drama
Barney Miller (ABC)
Hill Street Blues (NBC)

1983

Best Comedy Best Drama
Cheers (NBC)
Hill Street Blues (NBC)

1984

Best Comedy Best Drama
Cheers (NBC)
Hill Street Blues (NBC)

1985

Best Comedy Best Drama
The Cosby Show (NBC)
Cagney & Lacey (CBS)

1986

Best Comedy Best Drama
The Golden Girls (NBC)
Cagney & Lacey (CBS)

1987

Best Comedy Best Drama
The Golden Girls (NBC)
L.A. Law (NBC)

1988

Best Comedy Best Drama
The Wonder Years (ABC)
thirtysomething (ABC)

1989

Best Comedy Best Drama
Cheers (NBC)
L.A. Law (NBC)

’80s Emmy Award Winners – Actors and Actresses: 1985-1989

Here are the rest of the Best Actors and Actresses: 1985-1989. It is pretty cool to look back to see who the winners were. Some of these people are still around, but have slowed down a little. However, we still have found memories of them.

1985

Lead Comedy Actor Lead Drama Actor

Robert Guillaume (Benson DuBois) from Benson

William Daniels (Dr. Mark Craig) from St. Elsewhere
Lead Comedy Actress Lead Drama Actress

Jane Curtin (Allie Lowell) from Kate & Allie – 2nd in a row.

Tyne Daly (Det. Mary Beth Lacey) from Cagney & Lacey – 3rd in a row.

1986

Lead Comedy Actor Lead Drama Actor

Michael J. Fox (Alex P. Keaton) from Family Ties

William Daniels (Dr. Mark Craig) from St. Elsewhere – 2nd in a row.
Lead Comedy Actress Lead Drama Actress

Betty White (Rose Nylund) from The Golden Girls

Sharon Gless (Christine Cagney) from Cagney & Lacey

1987

Lead Comedy Actor Lead Drama Actor

Michael J. Fox (Alex P. Keaton) from Family Ties – 2nd in a row

Bruce Willis (David Addison) from Moonlighting

Lead Comedy Actress Lead Drama Actress

Rue McClanahan (Blanche Devereaux) from The Golden Girls

Sharon Gless (Christine Cagney) from Cagney & Lacey – 2nd in a row.

1988

Lead Comedy Actor Lead Drama Actor

Michael J. Fox (Alex P. Keaton) from Family Ties – 3rd in a row!

Richard Kiley (Joe Gardner) from A Year in the Life
Lead Comedy Actress Lead Drama Actress

Bea Arthur (Dorothy Petrillo Zbornak) from The Golden Girls

Tyne Daly (Det. Mary Beth Lacey) from Cagney & Lacey

1989

Lead Comedy Actor Lead Drama Actor

Richard Mulligan (Harry Weston) from Empty Nest

Carroll O’Connor (Chief William O. ‘Bill’ Gillespie) from In the Heat of the Night
Lead Comedy Actress Lead Drama Actress

Candice Bergen (Murphy Brown) from Murphy Brown

Dana Delany (Nurse Colleen McMurphy) from China Beach – 2nd in a row.

Sacha Baron Cohen set for Freddie Mercury biopic

I don’t know what to think about this. Queen is one of my all time favorite bands, and Freddie Mercury is my favorite singer. Now Borat is going to be playing him in a movie.
Here is the article from the Associated Press:


LONDON – “Borat” star Sacha Baron Cohen has been signed up to star in a movie about flamboyant rock star Freddie Mercury, producers said Friday.

Peter Morgan, who wrote “The Queen,” is working on a screenplay about the frontman of the band Queen, who died of AIDS-related causes in 1991.

The as-yet-untitled film will climax with Queen’s barnstorming appearance at the 1985 Live Aid concert in London.

The announcement was made by GK Films, which is producing with Robert De Niro’s Tribeca Productions and Queen Films.

Production is due to begin next year, and a director has yet to be chosen.

Founded in 1971 by Mercury, guitarist Brian May, bassist John Deacon and drummer Roger Taylor, Queen scored hits with songs including “We Are the Champions,” “We Will Rock You” and “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

May told the BBC that the band supports the project, and May and Taylor will oversee the music for the film. There was no word on whether Baron Cohen will try to imitate Mercury’s grandiose singing style, but the comedian has appeared in several musicals, including Tim Burton’s film version of “Sweeney Todd.”

He said the choice of Baron Cohen, creator of wannabe rapper Ali G, Kazakh journalist Borat and Austrian fashionista Bruno, “will probably be a shock to a lot of people, but he’s been talking with us for a long time.”

“He’s been in on this project since we started talking about it seriously with Peter Morgan a couple of years ago.” May said.

Baron Cohen’s latest film is Martin Scorsese’s “Hugo Cabret.”


The one saving grace is that Brian May and Roger Taylor approve, and they will be overseeing the music.

What are your thoughts?

80's Pop Culture and News

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