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This Day in Pop Culture for May 9

missing socks

National Lost Sock Memorial Day

It is better to have worn two socks and lost one than to never have worn any socks at all. No one is immune. We all have had socks that were once close to us only to turn up missing one day. Rather than morn those socks all year long, the National Lost Sock Memorial Day is observed ever year on this day.

1958: ‘Vertigo’ Premieres

Alfred Hitchcock’s psychological thriller Vertigo, which starred Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak, premiered in San Francisico, California on this day in 1958. Based on the French novel D’entre les morts (From Among the Dead) by Boileau-Narcejac, the film was shot in city as well as Paramount Studios in Hollywood. The film features John “Scottie” Ferguson, a former police detective forced into early retirement due to his extreme fear of heights and vertigo. Even so, he is hired to follow a man’s wife who is acting strange. It was the first movie to use the in-camera effect, dolly zoom, which distorts perspective giving the audience an idea of what Scottie saw and felt on screen. (Image: Wikimedia)

1662: How About a Punch, Judy?

In Victorian times, one of the first puppet shows created featured the iconic Mr. Punch and his wife Judy. It was on this day that the duo made their first recorded appearance in England in 1662. Back then, the show was presented by one puppeteer hiding in a booth while a “bottler” would bring the crowd. He might also accompany the show by providing music or sound effects and of course, he would collect the coins after each presentation. (Image: Wikimedia)

2008: ‘Speed Racer’ Stalls in Theaters

Many men and women have found memories of watching Speed Racer, a 1960’s Japanese television series, even though many are disappointed when re-visiting the episodes years later. Still, Warner Bros. thought it would be a great idea to create a live action movie of the show. On this day in 2008, the big-budget movie came to the big screen with a great cast (Emile Hirsch, Christina Ricci, John Goodman, Susan Sarandon and Matthew Fox), great special effects, loud music, lots of color and…well, that’s about it. The movie suffered from a lack of a plot and what plot they had was too convoluted to understand. The movie did poorly with critics and fans alike. Rotten Tomatoes ranked the film at 39% “rotten.” Store shelves contained Mach 5 merchandise for a lot longer than planned and talk of a sequel became just that. Still, the movie has a great version of the Speed Racer song during the ending credits. (Image: Warner Bros.)


  • 1946: Candice Bergen (actress)
  • 1949: Billy Joel (singer)
  • 1961: John Corbett (actor)
  • 1979: Rosario Dawson (actress)

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Jeffrey Totey View All

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

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