1982: The Time Traveling Party That No One Attended
According to the New York Times, it was on this day in 1982 when a group of people gathered for “an epidemic of temporary lunacy” waiting for visitors to arrive from the future. The nine planets were as close together than they had ever been in about 200 years and so a group Known as “Krononauts,” the group anxiously waited for “visitors from the futures” to arrive at a party set up just for them. While the group drank, danced and some even took off their clothes, it wasn’t enough to entice time travelers to show up. Two days later, one of the group’s leaders, Kirby Malone, was asked what happened to his guests. ”We really don’t know. One possibility is that they came and didn’t want to be visible. Another that occurs to me is that there is no future, so there was no place for the people to come from. Another, of course, is that the people came and just decided they didn’t want to be here.” He didn’t blame them.
1959: Barbie Comes Out to Play
On this day in 1959, for the first time ever, people got a glimpse of what would become one of the toy industry’s greatest sellers – Barbie. The first Barbie doll went on display at the American Toy Fair in New York City. She was the first toy doll in the U.S. to have adult features and was sort of an extension of paper dolls. Barbie has a creepy backstory though. She was based on German doll, Lilli, a comic strip character. Lilli was first marketed to men in tobacco shops as sort of a naughty gag gift. Barbie was named after the daughter of Ruth Handler, co-founder of Mattel. In 1961, Barbie would get her boyfriend Ken, named after Handler’s son. Since 1959, more than a billion Barbie-themed dolls have been sold around the world. After years of complaints from women that Barbie is an ideal that no woman can ever achieve, in 2016 Mattel offered a new line of the dolls in different shapes and sizes including “Tall,” “Petite” and Curvy Barbie” types. In 1987 Barbie began to appear in straight-to-video movies. She also appeared in Disney/Pixar’s Toy Story movies. In addition, Warner Bros. is currently making a live action Barbie movie to star Margot Robbie.
I write about pop culture, arts and entertainment in the greater Seattle area.