Monthly Archives: October 2013

What a character!!

One of the original comedians from the silent film era, other than the more commonly known Chaplin and Keaton comedies…..there was Ben Turpin!

First of all, the cross-eyed comedian of silent days was not born that way. Supposedly his right eye slipped out of alignment while playing the role of the similarly afflicted Happy Hooligan in vaudeville and it never adjusted. Ironically, it was this disability that would enhance his comic value and make him a top name.

Ben Turpin was born in New Orleans in 1869, the son of a French-born confectionery store owner. When 7 years old, his father moved to New York’s lower East Side. A wanderlust fellow by nature, Turpin lived the life of a hobo in his early adult years. He started up his career by chance while bumming in Chicago where he drew laughs at parties. An ad in a newspaper looking for comedy acts caught his eye and he successfully booked shows along with a partner. Going solo, he performed on the burlesque circuit as well as under circus tents and invariably entertained his audiences by doing tricks, vigorous pratfalls and, of course, crossing his eyes. One of his more familiar sight gags was a backwards tumble he called the “108.” He happened upon the Happy Hooligan persona while playing on the road and kept the hapless character as part of routine for 17 years.

Do you have a favorite film by him?


Vintage loving event in Rancho Mirage!!

And free!!!

http://www.ranchomiragelibrary.org/event/frankenstein-conversation-sarah-karloff-/

boris

Join art and culture journalist Stacy Davies as she presents clips from Karloff’s extensive career and talks with his daughter, Sara Karloff, about the man behind the many masks. The Bride of Frankenstein will screen after the interview.


Some fabulous Halloween Gifs!


Don’t forget to find me on Facebook!!!

https://www.facebook.com/vintagewonderlust

 

Please come and “Like” me on Facebook.  I have over 700 AMAZING pictures I have found and there is a lovely bunch of people who are already aboard.  Almost 1,400 already and only in 2 months!!  I am of course still going to post here from time to time but to get your daily vintage “fix”, stop on by!!

Thank you and I hope to see you all over there as well!!


What is this “Halloween” holiday anyway??!

Like many holiday’s these days, we play the marketing game and buy, buy, buy everything they tell us and end up broke until January. Also, like many holidays, most people do not know the history and origins of many of our traditions.  Here are some fun Halloween facts for you to get hip on and hopefully share with your kids so they also know what Halloween is all about!

Halloween’s roots can be traced back to Celtic culture in Ireland.  According to their “Druid” religion, November 1st was New Years’ on their calendar.   The celebration would begin on October 31st ,and last into the following day. The spirits of all who died in the prior year, would rise up and roam the earth on this night.  This is an evil night when spirits roamed the streets and villages. Lord Samhain, the lord of Darkness, would arrive in search of the spirits to take  them to the underworld.

  • Orange and black are Halloween colors because orange is associated with the Fall harvest and black is associated with darkness and death.
  • Jack o’ Lanterns originated in Ireland where people placed candles in hollowed-out turnips to keep away spirits and ghosts on the Samhain holiday.
  • Pumpkins also come in white, blue and green. Great for unique monster carvings!
  • Halloween was brought to North America by immigrants from Europe who would celebrate the harvest around a bonfire, share ghost stories, sing, dance and tell fortunes.
  • Tootsie Rolls were the first wrapped penny candy in America.
  • The ancient Celts thought that spirits and ghosts roamed the countryside on Halloween night. They began wearing masks and costumes to avoid being recognized as human.
  • Halloween candy sales average about 2 billion dollars annually in the United States.
  • Chocolate candy bars top the list as the most popular candy for trick-or-treaters with Snickers #1.
  • Halloween is the 2nd most commercially successful holiday, with Christmas being the first.
  • Bobbing for apples is thought to have originated from the roman harvest festival that honors Pamona, the goddess of fruit trees.
  • Black cats were once believed to be witch’s familiars who protected their powers.

Some people view Halloween as a time for fun, putting on costumes, trick-or-treating, and having theme parties. Others view it as a time of superstitions, ghosts, goblins and evil spirits that should be avoided at all costs.

As the Christian debate goes on, celebrating Halloween is a preference that is not always viewed as participating in an evil holiday. Halloween is often celebrated with no reference to pagan rituals or the occult.

Traditional activities include trick-or-treating, bonfires, costume parties, visiting “haunted houses” and carving jack-o-lanterns. Irish and Scottish immigrants carried versions of the tradition to North America in the nineteenth century. Other western countries embraced the holiday in the late twentieth century including Ireland, the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and the United Kingdom as well as of Australia and New Zealand.

Have a safe and fun holiday season.

 


Los Angeles Haunted Hay Ride….Oh yahhhhhh!

Located in the abandoned Griffith Park Zoo, the setting is perfect!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Griffith_Park_Zoo

The Griffith Park Zoo was a city-owned zoo in Los Angeles, California that opened in 1912 and closed in 1966 with the opening of the Los Angeles Zoo. The abandoned site of the Griffith Park Zoo, complete with the ruins of animal enclosures, is now a picnic area and hiking trail in Griffith Park.

History

The first zoo in Los Angeles was the Eastlake Zoo in East Los Angeles, which opened in 1885. The Griffith Park Zoo opened in 1912 with a grand total of 15 animals. The new zoo was built on the site of Griffith J. Griffith‘s defunct ostrich farm.  In the mid 1920s, William Nicholas Selig donated many of the animals from his own collection to the new zoo.

It was expanded in the 1930s by work crews from the Works Progress Administration.Most of the enclosures were built in the caves-with-iron-bars style which was then standard for zoos.

Old cages with a sign explaining their historical background.

As Los Angeles grew, the small Griffith Park Zoo was increasingly criticized as an “inadequate, ugly, poorly designed and under-financed collection of beat-up cages”, despite drawing more than 2 million visitors a year. In 1958 the city passed a $8 million bond measure to create a brand new zoo. Griffith Park Zoo closed in August 1966 and its animals were transferred to the new Los Angeles Zoo 2 miles away, which opened in November 1966. The animal enclosures, minus bars, were left as ruins; picnic benches or tables were installed in some of them.

 

http://losangeleshauntedhayride.com/

 


Happy Birthday Groucho Marx!

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000050/

 

Born October 2, 1890!! NYC, NY

Julius Henry “Groucho” Marx (October 2, 1890[1] – August 19, 1977) was an American comedian and film and television star. He is known as a master of quick wit and widely considered one of the best comedians of the modern era.[2] His rapid-fire, often impromptu delivery of innuendo-laden patter earned him many admirers and imitators.

He made 13 feature films with his siblings the Marx Brothers, of whom he was the third-born. He also had a successful solo career, most notably as the host of the radio and television game show You Bet Your Life.[3]

His distinctive appearance, carried over from his days in vaudeville, included quirks such as an exaggerated stooped posture, glasses, cigar, and a thick greasepaint mustache and eyebrows. These exaggerated features resulted in the creation of one of the world’s most ubiquitous and recognizable novelty disguises, known as “Groucho glasses“, a one-piece mask consisting of horn-rimmed glasses, large plastic nose, bushy eyebrows and mustache.[4

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groucho_Marx