Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Thursday Thirteen #183



Next week is the 35th anniversary of Elvis Presley's death. Here's a snapshot of what the world looked like in mid-August 1977, when he left it:

1) The King replaced The Son of Sam as everyone's #1 topic of conversation. Till then, David Berkowits' summertime reign of terror had New York and the nation riveted.

2) Jimmy Carter was President, advised by his Cabinet (including Secretary of State Cyrus Vance and Attorney General Griffin Bell)

3) Wall Street was nervous about Carter and his new SEC regulations, causing stocks to dip precipitously.

4) Judge William H. Webster was about to nominated for the head of the FBI, a position he'd hold for 9 years.

5) Dr. Carl Sagan, America's best-known scientist, graced the cover of Newsweek in a story called, "Seeking Other Worlds," which detailed his efforts to bolster support for the space program. There was no internet, no blogosphere, so the cover of a major magazine was influential.

6) My Chicago Cubs were in first place in the NL East! (We may have finished out of the money, but in mid-August, we still were at the top of the heap.) 

7) Diana Ross, sans the Supremes, graced the cover of Rolling Stone.

8) Shaun Cassidy was setting young girls' hearts aflutter in Tiger Beat. His Hardy Boys TV show had premiered as a mid-season replacement a few months earlier and he succeeded his older brother, David, as #1 teen dream

9) Olivia Newton John was on two magazine covers -- US and Ladies Home Journal -- because she was promoting her summer mega hit, Grease

10) The movie Rocky won an even greater honor than Oscar (at least among my young crowd) when it was satirized in CRACK'D
11) Charlie's Angels (minus Farrah) were on the cover of that week's People

12) Cosmopolitan featured an interview with Shirley MacLaine and the cover girl was a supermodel named Lena Kansbod

13) Everyone was reading about Meggie and Father Ralph in The Thorn Birds.


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  1. Oh, I remember The Thorn Birds and Grease and thinking about them I can also sense my younger self--how I felt then. Good memories. Thanks.

  2. I remember that time. I was riding across Kansas in a van with my parents, my brother, my grandmother, and two uncles on a journey from VA to CA. We were riding through acres of corn when the radio said Elvis had died.

  3. Anonymous10:41 AM

    I grew up reading Cracked AND Mad - that would explain a lot regarding my humor and outlook on life!


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