May 5, 1981: Adventures and Misadventures

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(Pictured: Stefanie Powers and Robert Wagner in a 1981 scene from Hart to Hart.)

May 5, 1981, was a Tuesday. Irish Republican Army member Bobby Sands, in the 66th day of a hunger strike protesting conditions at the Maze Prison in Ireland, dies at age 26. During his hunger strike, Sands was elected to a seat in Britain’s House of Commons. In Brooklyn, New York, a power struggle within the Bonnano crime family leaves three high-ranking bosses shot to death; one body will be found later this month, but the other two will remain undiscovered until 2004. In Rome, Pope John Paul II issues a statement on euthanasia, calling it “a crime against life.” Future R&B singer Craig David is born. Mobile, Alabama, suffers widespread flooding after recording 7.96 inches of rain today.

Eleven games are played in the majors today and tonight. The Oakland A’s have the best record in baseball at 21-and-5; tonight, pitcher Mike Norris runs his record to 6-and-0 with a complete-game two-hitter as the A’s beat the Detroit Tigers 6-2. The National League’s best record belongs to St. Louis Cardinals, who are 13-and-4 after beating the Atlanta Braves 4-1. In the National Hockey League, the New York Islanders advance to the Stanley Cup Final, completing a four-game sweep of the New York Rangers with a 5-2 win. They await the winner of the series between the Calgary Flames and Minnesota North Stars, which is even at two games apiece after the North Stars win 7-4 tonight; Dino Ciccarelli has a hat trick for the North Stars. The NBA Finals open tonight in Boston with the Celtics beating the Houston Rockets 98-95. The Rockets are the first NBA team since 1959 to reach the finals after posting a losing record during the regular season. Although CBS has the national TV contract for the NBA, it carries tonight’s opening game of the Finals on tape delay following the late local news. It’s the third straight season that CBS has kept Finals games out of primetime, fearing their impact on the May ratings sweeps. As many as four Finals games could be shown on delay.

Instead of primetime basketball, CBS airs an episode of Palmerstown, USA, a drama created by Norman Lear and Alex Haley, based on Haley’s childhood in the rural South during the Depression. It’s followed by the TV movie Broken Promise, about a family of abandoned children struggling to stay together. ABC’s high-powered Tuesday night lineup features new episodes of Happy Days, Laverne and Shirley, Three’s Company, Too Close for Comfort, and Hart to Hart. NBC starts its night with the final episode of Lobo, starring Claude Akins. The show, originally known as The Misadventures of Sheriff Lobo, was retitled for its second season. Also on NBC tonight: a repeat episode of Hill Street Blues and the next-to-last original episode of Nero Wolfe, a series based on the mystery novels of Rex Stout, starring William Conrad and Lee Horsley. In today’s Peanuts strip, Snoopy and his brother Spike are on World War I leave in Paris.

The Grateful Dead plays Glens Falls, New York, Bruce Springsteen plays Drammen, Norway, and jazz saxophonist Dexter Gordon plays Atlanta. Barry Manilow continues a weeklong run of shows at Resorts International Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey. At CKLW in Windsor, Ontario, just across the river from Detroit, “Bette Davis Eyes” by Kim Carnes and “Wasn’t That a Party” by the Rovers hold at #1 and #2. “Medley” by Stars on 45 is up to #3. “A Woman Needs Love” by Ray Parker Jr. and Raydio makes a strong move from #10 to #5. The only new song in the Top 10 is “I Missed Again” by Phil Collins, up to #10 from #15. “Sukiyaki” by A Taste of Honey is also up five spots, to #11, but the biggest upward move on the survey is seven spots—Neil Diamond’s “America,” from #29 to #22. “I Love You” by the Climax Blues Band makes the highest chart debut at #26. Phil Collins’ album Face Value is #1; AC/DC’s Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap is #2. Styx, REO Speedwagon, the Who, Steve Winwood, Rush, and Santana are also in the Top 10 on the album chart.

Perspective From the Present: This was finals week at UW-Platteville, although I wasn’t much concerned; I had largely stopped caring about my studies, not just for my junior year but in general. (I would rack up one A, one B, two C’s and a D for the spring semester.) I was planning to stay in Platteville for the summer to come, where adventures awaited.

May 3, 1957: Round and Round

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(Pictured: Senator Joe McCarthy and his staff in better times; L to R, G. David Schine, Roy Cohn, McCarthy, and Frank Carr.)

May 3, 1957, was a Friday. Funeral services are pending for Wisconsin Senator Joe McCarthy, who died at Bethesda Naval Hospital last night at the age of 49. In her syndicated newspaper column My Day, former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt writes about the recent decision by a U.S. Senate committee to return $9500 of an appropriation it had been given to select the portraits of five outstanding former senators to be hung in the Senate’s Hall of Fame. Wichita Falls, Texas, is faced with serious flooding after heavy rains swelled the Sabine River. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., visits New York City, where he speaks to a crowd in front of the Hotel Theresa in addition to scheduled addresses at the Stephen Wise Free Synagogue and the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem. Off the coast of California near San Luis Obispo, the search continues for a Cal Poly architecture student who is missing and believed killed by a 20-foot shark. In Staten Island, New York, shoppers at Food Fair can get USDA grade choice sirloin steak for 59 cents a pound; live Maine lobsters are 79 cents a pound. In today’s Peanuts strip, Lucy continues her week-long adventure on roller skates. In Detroit, Michigan, Henry Ford’s grandson William Clay Ford and his wife Martha Firestone Ford welcome a son, William Clay Ford, Jr. Also born today: future pro hockey star Rod Langway.

In Los Angeles, city officials meet with Brooklyn Dodgers owner Walter O’Malley to discuss an offer from the city that would entice the Dodgers to move. On the field today, the Dodgers are idle; they trail the Milwaukee Braves by two games in the National League standings. The Braves beat the Pirates in Pittsburgh tonight 8-7 when Bobby Thomson singles in Hank Aaron with the winning run in the 11th inning. The Braves’ record of 12-and-2 is the best in baseball. The American League-leading Chicago White Sox are 11-and-2 after beating the Washington Senators 11-6. Light heavyweight boxer Eddie Machen wins a 10-round unanimous decision over former champ Joey Maxim.

On TV tonight, CBS shows include Beat the Clock, The Lineup (a detective series), and Edward R. Murrow’s Person to Person. Murrow’s guests include Alcatraz prison warden Paul Madigan and actress Sophia Loren. NBC presents The Joseph Cotten Show (an anthology series), Blondie (based on the comic strip), and the Machen-Maxim fight live from Louisville, Kentucky. ABC’s lineup includes The Adventures of Jim Bowie, Crossroads (an anthology show focusing on clergy from different denominations), and Treasure Hunt (a game show hosted by Jan Murray).

In London, Lonnie Donegan and his Skiffle Group and the Platters continue a three-night stand at the Palladium. In Hollywood, Elvis Presley lays down a few new tracks, including “Treat Me Nice” and “(You’re So Square) Baby I Don’t Care.” At KLIF in Dallas, on the new survey that will come out tomorrow, Elvis is at #3 with “All Shook Up,” behind “Little Darlin'” by the Diamonds (#1) and “School Day” by Chuck Berry (#2). Also at the top of the chart are “I’m Walkin'” by Fats Domino at #4 and “It’s Not for Me to Say” by Johnny Mathis at #5. Also on the KLIF chart this week: “Lucille” by Little Richard, the Del-Vikings’ “Come Go With Me,” “A White Sport Coat” by Marty Robbins, and Perry Como’s “Round and Round.” KLIF also charts Elvis’ “Peace in the Valley” and “I Believe.”

Perspective From the Present: William Clay Ford, Jr., is now chairman of Ford Motor Company. Rod Langway ended up in the Hockey Hall of Fame. Most of the music Elvis recorded on May 3 was released later in 1957 on an EP titled Jailhouse Rock. The Dodgers would move to Los Angeles for the 1958 season.

Last January I read Demagogue: The Life and Long Shadow of Senator Joe McCarthy, a new biography by Larry Tye. Tye says he was inspired to write the bio partly by the rise of Donald Trump. Witnessing the fall of Trump during the very same week I was reading the book set off a cascade of historical echoes, not least among them the fact that McCarthy’s right-hand man, Roy Cohn, was one of Trump’s early mentors. And also, as Tye wrote: “Each man made his name into a ubiquitous brand. Neither had a master plan other than accumulating and holding onto power.” In the months since Trump’s ouster, we’ve seen that the modern edition of the McCarthy/Trump party also has no plan other than that.

(Come back Wednesday for a less ancient ODIYL post.)

April 9, 1973: Fact-Finding

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(Pictured: Golfer Tommy Aaron receives his green jacket as 1973 Masters champion from 1972 winner Jack Nicklaus.)

April 9, 1973, was a Monday. Newspapers headline yesterday’s death of Pablo Picasso at the age of 91. The New York Times reports that Watergate burglar James McCord has told the Senate Watergate Committee that the Nixon campaign made cash payoffs to the burglars. A new Gallup poll released today shows President Nixon’s approval rating at 54 precent, somewhat lower than it was earlier in the year when Vietnam POWs were first returning home. Network newscasts lead tonight with news from Southeast Asia, including accusations that North Vietnam has shot down helicopters belonging to the International Control Commission, a body created to monitor the cease-fire agreed to in January. General Alexander Haig, vice chief of staff of the US Army, is in Thailand on a fact-finding visit. South Vietnamese president Thieu visits Pope Paul VI at the Vatican; the pope asks him to release political prisoners in the country’s jails. A giant spring snowstorm moved into the midwestern United States starting yesterday; today it dumps heavy snow, whipped by winds up to 70 miles per hour. Madison, Wisconsin, records 13 inches of snow and Milwaukee gets a foot; in Dubuque, Iowa, 19 inches falls. In Green Bay, Wisconsin, the snow’s misery is compounded by Fox River flooding. Water is four feet deep in some parts of the city. Some of the same locations buried in snow today had 70-degree temperatures last Friday.

In today’s Peanuts strip, Charlie Brown’s team wins a game when Linus and Lucy’s little brother Rerun draws a walk. Four games are played in the majors today. In Milwaukee, the Brewers’ home opener is postponed by the snowstorm. Boston Red Sox infielder Luis Aparicio says his son is under 24-hour guard back home in Venezuela due to kidnapping threats. In Augusta, Georgia, Tommy Aaron wins the Masters; the last two rounds were delayed one day after heavy rain postponed Saturday’s play.

On TV tonight, CBS airs Gunsmoke, Here’s Lucy, The Doris Day Show, and The New Bill Cosby Show, a variety series with cast members including Lola Falana and Foster Brooks, and an orchestra led by Quincy Jones. ABC presents The Rookies and the 1965 theatrical movie Situation Hopeless . . . But Not Serious, a World War II comedy starring Alec Guinness, Robert Redford, and Mike Connors. NBC shows its own theatrical movie set during World War II, The Secret War of Harry Frigg, a 1968 drama starring Paul Newman. It’s preceded by an episode of Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In. Lou Reed plays Toronto with Genesis opening. Queen plays the Marquee Club in London and Faces play in Oxford, England. King Crimson plays Paris, and the J. Geils Band plays at Hillsdale College in Michigan.

At WLS in Chicago, “The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia” by Vicki Lawrence makes a huge leap from #12 to #1 on the new music survey out today. Last week’s #1, “Also Sprach Zarathustra (2001)” by Deodato is down to #5. Between them are “Ain’t No Woman Like the One I’ve Got” by the Four Tops, “Killing Me Softly With His Song” by Roberta Flack, and “Neither One of Us” by Gladys Knight and the Pips. “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree” by Tony Orlando and Dawn is new in the Top 10 at #6. The biggest mover on the chart is War’s “The Cisco Kid,” up nine spots to #12. Four songs are new on the survey; the highest debut is “The Twelfth of Never” by Donny Osmond.

Perspective From the Present: The Monday snowstorm and cold weather the rest of the week kept the Brewers from seeing the field until Friday. Charlie Brown’s victory was short-lived; at the conclusion of a story arc that took most of the month, the win was taken away when it was revealed that Rerun had bet on the game.

The snowstorm kept us out of school for a couple of days, which would not normally have been much of a problem, except that my mother was in bed with back trouble and in no mood to deal with boys aged 13, 10, and 6. Fortunately, Dad couldn’t do much around the farm because of the storm, so he was available for more wrangling than usual. Nevertheless, it was a pretty salty couple of days around our house.

March 8, 1991: Full House

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(Pictured: the cast of Full House puts on the ritz, 1991.)

March 8, 1991, was a Friday. Headlines include the demobilization of American troops in wake of the Persian Gulf War, which officially ended on February 28 with the end of coalition combat operations. Elements of the 82nd Airborne Division are due back in North Carolina today. Defense Secretary Dick Cheney says that barring a new outbreak of fighting, 5,000 soldiers per day will be coming home. In Los Angeles, 15 police officers are suspended today in the wake of the beating of motorist Rodney King after his arrest this past Sunday morning. A videotape of the beating was first broadcast nationally on Tuesday. The Los Angeles DA announced today that he will seek indictments of some officers. In Bowling Green, Ohio, the local police blotter includes the following from earlier this week: several incidents of home and car vandalism, birds running loose down the corridors of the local mall (they had apparently escaped from a pet store), obscene questions from a man claiming to be taking a door-to-door survey, and a woman reporting that somebody took her garden hose from outside her home and put it in her basement.

In men’s college basketball, conference tournaments are in progress before the NCAA tournament field is announced on Sunday. Teams in contention for top seeds include North Carolina, Syracuse, Ohio State, Duke, Arkansas, Indiana, Nevada-Las Vegas, and Arizona. Six games are played in the NBA tonight. In a battle of division leaders, the Chicago Bulls need a fourth-quarter comeback to beat the Utah Jazz 99-89. Michael Jordan of the Bulls leads all scorers with 37 points. Another top team, the Boston Celtics, beat the Los Angeles Clippers 104-98. It’s the 45th win for the Celtics, tying them for most in the league with the Portland Trail Blazers, who have the night off.

In a document released today, the FCC has announced that as of February 28, 1991, there are 10,863 radio stations and 1,469 TV stations licensed in the United States. These figures do not include FM and TV translators or low-power TV stations. On TV tonight, ABC’s TGIF lineup includes episodes of Full House and Family Matters as well as the premiere of Baby Talk, a sitcom loosely based on the Look Who’s Talking movies. Also on ABC tonight is the final episode of Going Places, a sitcom about TV comedy writers living on the beach in Los Angeles, and the news magazine 20/20. NBC presents episodes of Unsolved Mysteries, Hunter, and Dark Shadows, a remake of the original 60s series, starring Ben Cross as Barnabas Collins. CBS airs episodes of the western Guns of Paradise, Dallas, and a colorized repeat of the first episode of I Love Lucy. FOX presents America’s Most Wanted and Against the Law, a legal comedy/drama. At the movies this weekend, you can see The Silence of the Lambs, Home Alone, and Dances With Wolves, Julia Roberts in Sleeping With the Enemy, New Jack City starring Wesley Snipes, and The Doors, which stars Val Kilmer as Jim Morrison.

Nirvana plays Vancouver, British Columbia, and the Scorpions play Irvine, California. Hall and Oates play the Star Plaza Theater in Merrillville, Indiana, near Chicago, and Neil Young plays Miami with Sonic Youth opening. Jazz saxophonist Stan Getz plays Paris. It will be his last show before his death in June. New Kids on the Block play Little Rock, Arkansas. On the new Cash Box charts that come out tomorrow, “Written All Over Your Face” by the Rude Boys is #1 on the R&B chart. The #1 country song is “Lovin’ Blind” by Clint Black, at the top for a second week. On the pop chart, the #1 song is “One More Try” by Timmy T.

Perspective From the Present: In the spring of 1991, I’d been program director of the little station in Clinton, Iowa, for about a year. We had live, local shows in the morning and afternoon, but we got the rest of our programming via satellite. I did the afternoon show. After dealing with a day full of programming minutiae, it was a fine thing to go into a room, shut the door, and be alone for a while. My shows weren’t great, but weren’t horrible either: decent, workmanlike, small-market radio. I didn’t yet know Clinton was the last stop of my full-time radio career, although in retrospect it’s hard for me to imagine where I thought I might go from there.

Coming Wednesday: we’ll go inside the American Top 40 show from the weekend of March 9, 1991.

February 4, 1971: Don’t Let the Green Grass Fool You

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(Pictured: a TV screencap from Apollo 14 showing astronaut Alan Shepard hitting a golf ball with an improvised club on February 6, 1971.)

(This post is by request from a longtime reader. If there’s something you’d like to read about here, get in touch.)

February 4, 1971, was a Thursday. Apollo 14 went into orbit around the moon early this morning. Astronauts Alan Shepard and Edgar Mitchell are scheduled to land early tomorrow morning while Stuart Roosa stays behind in the command module. Twenty thousand South Vietnamese troops have invaded the neighboring nation of Laos. American commanders have refused to discuss the situation in recent days, although an official news embargo has been lifted today. It’s learned that 20,000 more South Vietnamese and 9,000 American troops are massing at the Laotian border. In Oakland, California, authorities fear that the bombing of an Army induction center, which shattered storefronts nearby but injured no one, may mark an escalation of the antiwar movement. Eight American soldiers and one Marine die in Vietnam today. A Delta Air Lines flight from Chicago to Nashville with 27 people aboard is hijacked and flown to Cuba. President Nixon speaks to the American College of Cardiology meeting in Washington. A tornado in rural Grenada County, Mississippi, kills four members of one family. Future actor/comedian Rob Corddry and future Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti are born. The Vatican says that Catholic theologians and teachers will no longer face excommunication or be charged with heresy for opposing church doctrine.

Major League Baseball announces that it will induct former Negro Leagues players into the Hall of Fame, but they will be enshrined in their own wing. Two games are played in the NBA: the San Francisco Warriors beat Phoenix 117-105 and Portland beats Atlanta 137-123. In the ABA, the Virginia Squires beat the Floridians 138-129 in double overtime and the Kentucky Colonels beat the New York Nets 106-99.

On TV tonight, CBS opens with Family Affair and The Jim Nabors Hour, followed by Sinatra in Concert, a November 1970 show taped at the Royal Festival Hall in London. On NBC, it’s The Flip Wilson Show (with guests including Joe Namath and George Carlin), Ironside, Adam-12, and The Dean Martin Show. ABC airs Alias Smith and Jones, Bewitched, Make Room for Granddaddy, Dan August, and This Is Your Life. Movies in theaters include Peter Sellers and Goldie Hawn in There’s a Girl in My Soup, Barbra Streisand and George Segal in The Owl and the Pussycat, plus Tora! Tora! Tora!, Lovers and Other Strangers, and Song of Norway, the musical biography of composer Edvard Grieg. At Syracuse University hot spot The Scene, tonight is Wino Thursday. Cover is 50 cents for the wine and cheese party; glasses of Budweiser are 40 cents.

T. Rex plays Croydon, England, while Earth Wind and Fire plays a club date in West Hollywood. Just off a three-night stand at the Whisky A Go-Go in Los Angeles, the Allman Brothers fly halfway across the country for the first of two nights at Ohio Wesleyan University. Elvis Presley plays dinner and midnight shows at the International Hotel in Las Vegas. The James Gang plays Morehead State University in Kentucky.

At WRKO in Boston, “One Bad Apple” by the Osmonds holds at #1 on the new survey released today. “If You Could Read My Mind” by Gordon Lightfoot is #2, and “Mr. Bojangles” by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band is #3. One song is new in the Top 10: “Groove Me” by King Floyd is at #10 from #13, replacing “Knock Three Times” by Dawn, which slips to #11. “Have You Ever Seen the Rain” by Creedence Clearwater Revival, is up seven spots to #12. “She’s a Lady” by Tom Jones is the week’s biggest mover, leaping 12 spots to #15 in its second week on the chart. Five songs debut: Bobby Goldsboro’s “Watching Scotty Grow,” “For All We Know” by the Carpenters (from the movie Lovers and Other Strangers), Wilson Pickett’s “Don’t Let the Green Grass Fool You,” “Just My Imagination” by the Temptations, and Santana’s “Oye Como Va.”

Perspective From the Present: On Saturday the 6th, astronaut Alan Shepard would make history by hitting a golf ball during a moonwalk. The “separate but equal” Negro Leagues wing of the Baseball Hall of Fame was shot down pretty quickly. I received a 45 of “Knock Three Times” for Christmas 1970, and I would eventually buy “Don’t Let the Green Grass Fool You,” as well as Wadsworth Mansion’s “Sweet Mary” and the Jackson Five’s “Mama’s Pearl,” also on the WRKO chart this week. The song that would stick with me the longest, however, is “Just My Imagination” by the Temptations, which remains one of my very favorite records of all time.

January 1, 1981: Another One Bites the Dust

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(Pictured: Georgia running back Herschel Walker carries the ball against Notre Dame in the Sugar Bowl on January 1, 1981.)

January 1, 1981, was a Thursday. Stories in the morning papers include the death of media theorist Marshall McLuhan yesterday. Also dying this week were singer/songwriter Tim Hardin (of a heroin overdose) and J. W. Milam, who had been acquitted of kidnapping and murder charges in the 1955 Emmett Till case. After the acquittal, Milam and an accomplice admitted the crime in a 1956 Look magazine story. Today, negotiations continue in hopes of freeing the Americans held hostage in Iran since November 1979. Algerian diplomats will take the latest American proposals to Iran tonight; meanwhile, a British envoy says that the release of British hostages held in Iran is imminent. The federal minimum wage increases from $3.10 to $3.35 an hour. It had been raised 60 cents in 1979 and 20 cents in 1980. Outgoing president Jimmy Carter continues to recover from a broken collarbone suffered last weekend while cross-country skiing at Camp David. Despite the break, the Carters attended a New Year’s Eve party at the home of press secretary Jody Powell last night, returning to the White House a little before 1:00 this morning. The president is up at 6 and in the Oval Office by 7:30; later in the morning, the Carters fly to Atlanta and then New Orleans, where they attend this afternoon’s Sugar Bowl game between Georgia and Notre Dame. They return to Washington via Atlanta and are back in the White House by 9PM.

In the Sugar Bowl, Georgia completes an undefeated season and is expected to be voted college football’s national champion after defeating Notre Dame 17-10. Second-ranked Florida State, its title hopes extinguished after the Georgia win this afternoon, loses the Orange Bowl to Oklahoma tonight, 18-17. Elsewhere today, Michigan wins the Rose Bowl 23-16 over Washington and Alabama blows out Baylor in the Cotton Bowl, 30-2. The last of the season’s 15 bowl games will be played tomorrow when Miami (Florida) plays Virginia Tech in Atlanta at the Peach Bowl. Four NFL divisional playoff games are scheduled for this weekend. On Saturday, Minnesota plays at Philadelphia and Buffalo is at San Diego; on Sunday, Oakland is at Cleveland and Dallas plays at Atlanta.

Around the country, radio stations have been counting down the top hits of 1980. At WLS in Chicago, the #1 song of the year is “Lost in Love” by Air Supply. At WABC in New York and CKLW in Detroit, it’s “Another One Bites the Dust” by Queen. At KIIS-FM in Los Angeles, “Funkytown” by Lipps Inc. is #1 for the year. At WFIL in Philadelphia, it’s “Lady” by Kenny Rogers, at WHLM in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, it’s Billy Joel’s “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me,” and at KSTT in Davenport, Iowa, it’s “Call Me” by Blondie. “Call Me” is also American Top 40‘s #1 song of 1980; the second part of the annual Top 100 countdown will air around the country this coming weekend. Cash Box has “Call Me” at #2 for the year; its #1 song is “Another One Bites the Dust.” Cash Box and Billboard both name Pink Floyd’s The Wall as the year’s #1 album. On their regular weekly charts dated last Saturday, both Billboard and Cash Box have”(Just Like) Starting Over” by John Lennon at #1 for the first week, knocking “Lady” from the top spot.

Perspective From the Present: The 1981 federal minimum wage of $3.35 is equivalent to between $9 and $10 per hour today, depending on which calculator you use. It would not be raised again until 1990. Georgia was named the consensus #1 team in college football, in those days before a formal playoff system existed. “Starting Over” would eventually spend five weeks at #1 in both Billboard and Cash Box.

For several years running in the late 70s and 1980s, my group of hometown friends known as the Crew would see in the new year at one guy’s family cottage, on Yellowstone Lake in rural Wisconsin. I am pretty sure that’s where I was when 1981 arrived. Guests tended to come and go as they pleased to these affairs; it was not unusual for people to roll in after midnight ready to party just as most everyone else was ready to go to sleep. One year—and we might as well say it was when 1980 turned into 1981—some of us arrived at mid-afternoon on New Year’s Eve and, thanks to one of those New Year’s snowstorms we always seemed to get back then, didn’t leave until after dark on January 1.