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This Day in Pop Culture for January 4


1905: The Voice of Winnie-the-Pooh was Born

Winnie the Pooh
(Disney)
Sterling Holloway
(Wikimedia)

Sterling Holloway was born on January 4, 1905. While being an actor in movies as well as for TV for almost 50 years, Sterling Holloway is probably best remembered for his voice work, namely that as the original voice of Walt Disney’s Winnie-the-Pooh. Sterling “almost” began his career with Disney in 1937 as the voice of Sleepy for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, but Disney decided to go with Pinto Colvig instead. However, in 1941 Sterling’s voice was heard in Dumbo, playing the role of Mr. Stork who delivered the big-eared elephant to his mother. He also voiced the roles of Flower in Bambi, the Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland, Kaa the snake in The Jungle Book and Roquefort the mouse in The Aristocats in addition the iconic bear who was stuffed with fluff. Sterling is also famous for voicing a number of TV commercials including Sugar Bear for Sugar Crisp cereal (“Can’t get enough of that Sugar Crisp”), Purina Puppy Chow (“For a full year till he’s full grown!”) and Woodsy Owl for the US Forest Service (“Give a hoot, don’t pollute.”) He was even considered for the role of Garfield the cat in 1982, but lost to Lorenzo Music. His last voice-over work was for an episode of TV’s Moonlighting, (“Atomic Shakespeare”) in 1986 as a narrator. He died on November 22, 1992.

National Trivia Day

It is said that National Trivia Day is celebrated every year on this day and was created by Robert L. Birch, known as the “Grand PunScorpion” of the Puns Corp. Although many sources point to his name and his reasoning for the day was to “raise awareness of the significance of trivia in the development of human curiosity, science and fun,” very little information can be found about the man or the day. Even so, many still celebrate. By the way, “trivia” is the plural of “trivium” which means “place where three roads meet.”

1936: The Day the Music … First Got a Chart

Billboard magazine published its first “hit parade” list of most popular song recordings on this day way back in 1936. The top 5 songs for that year were “Pennies from Heaven” by Bing Crosby, “The Way You Look Tonight” by Fred Astaire, “Goody Goody” by Benny Goodman, “Glory of Love” also by Benny Goodman and “Did I Remember?” by Shep Fields & His Rippling Rhythm Orchestra.

Billboard
(Billboard)

Birthdays

  • 1643: Isaac Newton (mathematician)
  • 1809: Louis Braille (inventor of the Braille writing system)
  • 1838: General Tom Thumb (circus performer)
  • 1937: Dyan Cannon (actress)
  • 1963: Dave Foley (comedian)
  • 1977: Graham Elliott (chef)

Other Events

  • 1853: Solomon Northup was freed from being a slave. He later became the best-selling author of 12 Years A Slave.
  • 1896: Utah is admitted as the 45th U.S. state.
  • 1999: Jesse Ventura, a former professional wrestler, was sworn in as governor of Minnesota.

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Jeffrey Totey View All

I write about arts and entertainment in the greater Seattle area.

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