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NFL Announcerless Telecast - 1980 "We are just moments away from the kickoff of today's Jets-Dolphins game and a telecast that figures to be different. The fact that we try something different--and dare to--has been greeted with almost every kind of reaction, from good-natured humor to applause to some surprising anger." That's how NBC's Bryant Gumbel's introduced what was about to happen on Saturday, December 20, 1980: NBC was going to broadcast an entire NFL game from Miami's Orange Bowl with neither a play-by-play announcer nor an analyst. It was a meaningless, season-ending game for two mediocre NFL teams, but Don Ohlmeyer (pictured here) turned it into a happening. Ohlmeyer was the first producer of Monday Night Football. He produced and directed three Olympics, won 16 Emmy awards, and is a member of the Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame. Based on his years of experience, Ohlmeyer always believed that sports announcers talked too much. Here was an attention-seeking vehicle that would drive that point home. Ohlmeyer also thought the gimmick might be a way to boost ratings points out of an otherwise unattractive matchup. Dick Enberg, who was one of NBC's lead football announcers at the time, was not amused. He was worried. "My first reaction was of incredible nervousness," he recalled. "We're paid to talk, so all of us want to fill the air with lots of exciting words. We all gathered together, hoping that Ohlmeyer was dead wrong. I mean, he was flirting with the rest of our lives. What if this crazy idea really worked?" The game, won by the New York Jets 24-17, featured only sounds that could be picked up by on-field microphones, the referee's calls, plus the usual announcements from the Orange Bowl's stadium announcer. To compensate for the absence of TV announcers, NBC went overboard on its graphics and pre-recorded soundbites of players and coaches. It was a onetime experiment that was largely mocked by TV critics. Surprisingly, though, comments received at NBC's switchboard were about 60% favorable.
Tags: NFL  NBC  announcerless  telecast  Don  Ohlmeyer 
Added: 30th August 2011
Views: 1942
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Donald Haines - Our Gang War Casualty Donald Haines was a supporting character in the Our Gang comedies just after the transition from silent movies to sound. Haines's tenure began during the early talkies up through the "Miss Crabtree episodes," when he would leave for feature films at Paramount only to return a few months later. His tenure continued through 1933. Haines's first short was Shivering Shakespeare, which featured the youngster giggling his way through his lines. On the next short The First Seven Years, he was a main character, playing opposite Jackie Cooper. After that, he was a recurring character with a few small speaking roles until 1931. At that time he was offered a contract with Paramount, which would begin with a role in a feature called Skippy. Jackie Cooper also was offered a role on that feature and a contract. Cooper would remain at Paramount. Haines, on the other hand, would quickly leave Paramount to return to Hal Roach Studios just in time for the 1931-1932 season. At that point, several major characters had left the series because they were perceived as too old. This left a depleted Our Gang of only three regulars and a few recurring characters. Haines would resume his role as a recurring character with an occasional speaking role for the next two seasons. Shortly after Pearl Harbor was attacked in 1941, Haines joined the Army Air Force and rose to the rank of lieutenant. He was listed as missing in action in February 1943. His body was never found.
Tags: Donald  Haines  Our  Gang  MIA 
Added: 10th September 2011
Views: 1843
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Little League WS Bans Foreign Teams - 1975 If you can't beat 'em--ban 'em! The Little League World Series became a truly international event in the mid-1960s. Teams from Asia and Central America began travelling to South Wiliamsport, PA to compete against the best American teams. Embarrassingly for the Americans, the foreigners began to win regularly. So, of course, the only logical thing to do was to ban the foreigners! At the 1975 LLWS, only four teams competed--all regional champions from the U.S. Lakewood, New Jersey defeated the Belmont Heights Little League of Tampa, Florida in the championship game on August 23. This was the only LLWS in which Little League banned all non-US clubs from the tournament. After a justifiable uproar of criticism, the ban on foreign teams was rescinded the following year. An American team did not win the LLWS again until 1982. Below is a photo from the 1975 tourney, showing Wilbert Davis of Tampa scoring a run. Davis was killed in action in Iraq in 2003.
Tags: Little  League  baseball  xenophobia 
Added: 10th September 2011
Views: 4192
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
These Are The Days - Cartoon Series Here's A Saturday morning cartoon show that almost no one remembers: These Are The Days. It ran on ABC from September 7, 1974 to September 5, 1976. These Are the Days was an animated television series from Hanna-Barbera. The series, although critically acclaimed, only lasted 16 total episodes. The show originally aired on Saturday mornings but was switched to Sundays midway through 1975. The second season was almost entirely comprised of reruns. The show was set at the turn of the 20th century in an American town called Elmsville. It portrayed the everyday lives of the Day family--which consisted of a widow and her three children, along with her father (the kids' grandpa) who was a skilled inventor. Each episode featured the various family members and their interactions with friends and neighbors, usually ending with a lesson learned. It was designed to capitalize on the popularity of the nostalgia and rustic family lifestyle of The Waltons, but it failed to catch on with most youngsters. Frank Cady (Sam Drucker from Green Acres and Petticoat Junction) provided grandfather Homer Day's voice. June Lockhart was the voice of Martha Day, the mother.
Tags: These  Are  The  Days  cartoon  nostalgia 
Added: 14th September 2011
Views: 3555
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
G-Men versus the Black Dragon So much action packed in a short clip!
Tags: G-Men  versus  the  Black  Dragon          g-men  vs.  the  black  dragon          william  witney          rod  cameron          republic  serial 
Added: 28th September 2011
Views: 2061
Rating:
Posted By: pfc
Get Smart TV Guide Cover 1967 Barbara Feldon and Don Adams of Get Smart grace this TV Guide cover from 1967. Get Smart was an extremely popular spy spoof that ran on NBC from 1965 to 1970 that pitted the counter-espionage activities of CONTROL versus the nefarious deeds of KAOS. The show introduced the phrase "would you believe..." into popular culture. The youthful looking Adams was ten years Feldon's senior. Adams won three consecutive Emmys playing Maxwell Smart (CONTROL agent 86). Feldon was nominated for two Emmys for her role as CONTROL agent 99. Adams was a WWII veteran who was the only survivor from a platoon that saw action on Guadalcanal. Feldon first gained fame by winning the jackpot on The $64,000 Question. Her subject was Shakespeare.
Tags: Get  Smart  Don  Adams  Barbara  Feldon 
Added: 22nd November 2011
Views: 1751
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Marketing Blunder - White Coca-Cola Cans On December 1, 2011, Coca-Cola temporarily replaced its traditional red cans with a white design to draw attention to the plight of polar bears in the warming arctic. While the cause may have been good, the public's reaction to the move was overwhelmingly negative. People routinely mistook regular Coca-Cola for Diet Coke which comes in a silver can. The company received complaints from devoted fans of both Coca-Cola and Diet Coke: Diabetics and others who cannot consume sugary drinks were especially miffed when they bought the wrong product. Sales suffered as people who were looking for the traditional red cans couldn't find them. One convenience store owner in New Jersey reported that several customers tried to return opened cans when they realized they had purchased regular Coke instead of Diet Coke. On January 1, 2012, Coca-Cola ended the polar bear 'awareness program' and announced a return to the red cans of its popular 125-year-old beverage. The lesson of Coca-Cola's white can debacle? "Don't mess with the brand," said one marketing expert.
Tags: Coca-Cola  marketing  white  cans 
Added: 4th January 2012
Views: 1535
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Canada Discontinues Pennies On May 4, 2012 Canada's Finance Minister Jim Flaherty was on hand at the Royal Canadian Mint to see the last penny roll off the line. Six weeks earlier he had announced that Canada's one-cent coin would be discontinued. An overwhelming majority of Canadians applauded the government's decision. Most felt the move was long overdue. Citing low purchasing power and rising production costs, the government decided to phase the penny out of existence starting in the fall of 2012, when the Royal Canadian Mint will stop distributing the one-cent coin to financial institutions. Over time, that will lead to the penny effectively becoming extinct, although the government noted that one-cent coins will always be accepted in cash transactions for as long as people still hold on to them. The value of the penny has decreased to about 1/20th of its purchasing power in the last 100 years. Indeed, the lowly penny has fallen so far that Ottawa described it as a "burden to the [Canadian] economy" in a pamphlet explaining the change. In part because of rising prices for the metals it's made of, it actually costs 1.6 cents to produce every penny. The government estimates it loses $11 million a year producing and distributing the penny, and that doesn't include the costs and frustrations for businesses and consumers that use them in transactions.
Tags: pennies  Canada  numismatics 
Added: 29th March 2012
Views: 1346
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Bill Cosby Rails Against Bad English In 2004 entertainer Bill Cosby found himself in hot water for speaking his mind. During an NAACP celebration marking the 50th anniversary of the Brown v. Board of Education school-desegregation decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, Cosby upbraided poor black parents for buying their children expensive sneakers but not teaching them proper English. "These people marched and were hit in the face with rocks to get an education--and now we've got these knuckleheads walking around," Cosby said at the event. "I can't even talk the way these people talk: 'Why you ain't,' 'Where you is' ... and I blamed the kid until I heard the mother talk," Cosby continued. "And then I heard the father talk. ... Everybody knows it's important to speak [proper] English except these knuckleheads. You can't be a doctor with that kind of crap coming out of your mouth." After his comments sparked a nationwide debate, Cosby was surprised at some of the negative reactions. He said in a statement that he meant for his remarks to be a call to action to improve the overall English skills of black students.
Tags: Bill  Cosby  education  English 
Added: 10th April 2012
Views: 1677
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964
Brittanie Cecil - Hockey Fan Fatality At any high-quality hockey game, pucks flying into the crowd at great speeds are a common occurrence. Injuries to fans occasionally happen. Only once in the long history of the NHL has a spectator been killed as a result of being struck by a puck. The victim was Brittanie Cecil, who ironically had been given her ticket to the game as an early 14th birthday present. Brittanie, an athletic girl from West Alexandria, OH, was watching the Columbus Blue Jackets play the Calgary Flames at Columbus' Nationwide Arena on March 16, 2002. A slapshot by the Blue Jackets' Espen Knutsen was deflected by the Flames' Derek Morris. It went over the glass behind the net, striking Brittanie in the left temple. Play carried on as the players were unaware of having inadvertently caused any serious injury. Although Brittanie had suffered a skull fracture, she walked on her own power to a first-aid station before being taken to Columbus Children's Hospital in an ambulance. Her only visible injury was a gash on her forehead. At the hospital, she suffered an initial seizure and was admitted, but the next day she appeared to be recovering. Brittanie was both communicative and ambulatory, and had no complaints of pain or dizziness. A CT-scan, however, had failed to catch a torn vertebral artery, resulting in severe clotting and swelling of the brain. On March 18, she developed a high fever and lost consciousness. She died nearly 48 hours after being struck, at 5:15 p.m. on March 18, 2002, two days before her 14th birthday. Brittanie's funeral cortege drew a procession of more than 150 cars. Attending the service was Blue Jackets' general manager Doug MacLean who spoke on behalf of the team. Knutsen and Morris, the two players who combined for the fatal slapshot, expressed remorse following Brittanie's death. Morris, who deflected the puck, explained, "You try to say, 'It happens all the time,' but you can't. I don't know how many times pucks get deflected over the glass, but it doesn't make it any better. You can always say, 'It's not my fault,' but you always feel like it is, a little." Knutsen was given the option of sitting out the next game by Blue Jackets coach Dave King. He chose to play, telling reporters, "I think about it all the time. It was a terrible accident, and I cannot get it off my mind." Knutsen was so shaken by what had happened that he could not handle meeting Brittanie's family until 2010--eight years after the accident. The following season, the NHL mandated that safety netting be installed in every arena to protect spectators seated behind the goal nets. This move was initially greeted with hostility by longtime hockey fans who didn't want their view of games obstructed and who further perceived the netting as an overreaction to a freak accident.
Tags: accident  hockey  fan  puck  Brittanie  Cecil 
Added: 6th April 2012
Views: 1589
Rating:
Posted By: Lava1964

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