Saturday, December 10, 2016

First Nobel Prize is Awarded

The first Nobel Prize was awarded on December 10, 1901.
December 10, 1901
The very first Nobel Prizes for physics, chemistry, medicine, literature and peace were awarded on this day in 1901 in Stockholm, Sweden. The date is significant because it was the fifth anniversary of Alfred Nobel’s death who was the inventor of dynamite. In his will, he directed that much of his fortune be spent on a fund to give awards to deserving people. No one knows for sure why he even created these awards, but it has been speculated that he created them over his regret of creating lethal uses of his inventions in war.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Charlie Brown Celebrates His First Christmas Special

"A Charlie Brown Christmas" airs for the first time on December 9, 1965.
December 9, 1965
On this day back in 1965, perhaps the greatest Christmas TV special aired for the first time. A Charlie Brown Christmas aired on CBS and some thought that the show wouldn’t get a second viewing. Charles Schulz, the creator of the Peanuts comic strip, wanted to include a few verses from the Bible telling the nativity story which raised a lot of red flags with the network big wigs. They were afraid that the special would end up offended a large audience. Schulz refused to the special unless the passage was included. CBS relented and the special did amazingly well. Today the special usually airs two or three times during the month of December on ABC. And still, no one complains.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

New Amy Grant Christmas Tune - Video of the Day

New (and great) Christmas song by Amy Grant, "To Be Together."

Count Chocula was Trademarked Registered

Count Chocula was trademarked registered on December 8, 1970.
December 8, 1970
It was on this day in 1970 that the breakfast cereal, Count Chocula was registered for a trademark for General Mills, but the Count didn’t arrive on store shelves until October the next year. Beside him of course was his marshmallow cereal rival, Frankenberry. The two monsters would bicker about which one was the better-tasting one and usually ended up scaring each other in the process. Boo-Berry cereal came next in 1973 and Fruit Brute in 1974. The Werewolf-inspired cereal was pulled off the shelf in 1982 and then came back in 1987 as Fruity Yummy Mummy. Since 2010, stores do not sell the monstrous cereal year-round, only during the Halloween season. In 2013, all of the monsters were given an update by DC Comic artists.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Worst Church Singer Ever? - Video of the Day

So, would you consider this man's singing a "ministry"?

Comparing the Best 'Jingle Bells'

President Obama made headlines recently for singing "Jingle Bells" during the tree lighting ceremony at the White House just a few days ago. The performance was less than spectacular, but nobody seemed to care.

The first Christmas carol you ever learned to sing, next to "Away In a Manger," was probably "Jingle Bells." (Or if you grew up in my grandmother's Sunday School class, you were taught "Gospel Bells" to give the song a Christian meaning.) It's an instantly recognizable tune and one that has been give many different treatments over the years. While Obama's version won't go down in history as one of the best, here is a collection of some that will:

Lauren Daigle
The most recent version has a sound as if it was written many years ago.

Bing Crosby and the Andrew Sisters
Recorded in 1942, this is probably the most classic version of tune.

First Airing of "Frosty the Snowman"

"Frosty the Snowman" aired for the first time on December 7, 1969.
December 7, 1969
Frosty the Snowman came to life on this day on CBS in 1969. Though produced by Rankin/Bass who are best known for producing stop motion puppet specials, Frosty was a hand-drawn animation special. Also unlike earlier specials, Frosty featured just one  song and was only 30 minutes in length. However, it did feature a celebrity narrator (Jimmy Durante’s final performance in a film). Rankin/Bass wanted the special to have the look of a Christmas card, so Mad magazine and greeting card artist Paul Coker, Jr. was hired to do the job. In 1992, CBS created a “sequel” to the special which doesn’t look or feel like anything like the original.