When News Events Compete for the Headlines
From the Zeitgeist Archive: Hooray for Hollywood! (Late July Edition)

From the Zeitgest Archives: July 6-11

LadyGodiva,jpg Long before Lady GaGa there was Lady Godiva who on July 10, 1050 rode nude on horseback through the streets of Coventry, England in a protest over taxation (imposed by her husband no less!).  916 years later she was immortalized in song when the British singing duo Peter & Gordon released their single Lady Godiva which reached #6 on the U.S. charts in the fall of 1966. 



Madonna_in_playboyNudity also broght attention to Madonna this week in 1985 when Playboy published "full frontal" photos of her snapped before she became a sensation.  This controversy erupted as her career was in rapid ascent - her album Like A Virgin was still high on the charts and her movie Desperately Seeking Susan was a summer hit (I saw it twice).  However, rather than being a ruinous scandal it was the first in a string of controversial career boosters.



Eva_peron Madonna_as_eva212 years later Madonna starred in another movie, Evita (which I also saw twice).  And on July 7, 1947 the cover subject of Time Magazine was none other than Argentina's notorious, but beloved, first lady, 28-year old Eva Peron.  Sadly, she would die 5 years later from cancer.  (Personal anecdote: The super of my apartment building is from Argentina and when she was a small child Eva Peron handed her a small toy when she made a visit to her town of Rosario.)  


 Young_johnlennon_paulmccartneyTwo of rock music's seminal hits reached #1 on the charts this week, the Rolling Stones' Satisfaction in 1965 and the Doors' Light My Fire in 1967.  4 years later, also in early July, Doors frontman Jim Morrison would be found dead in a Paris hotel room of a drug overdose at the age of 27.  And on July 6, 1957 17-year old John Lennon & 15-year old Paul McCartney met for the first time when they attended the same church picnic. 



Heatwave,jpgOn July 9, 1936 New York City recorded the highest temperature in its history - 106.  (And this was before air condtioning was the norm.)  In my lifetime the hottest temperature I've experienced was 103 on August 10, 2001 and again last year on July 6.  Some wonder if this temperature will ever be matched since the official readings for the city are now reported from grassy Central Park while before 1961 official readings came from concrete encased Rockefeller Center.


HurricanesUp until 1979 hurricanes were the domain of women but on July 11, 1979 that all changed when the first hurricane named after a man formed.  And although Hurricane Bob was relatively benign others such as Hugo (1989), Andrew (1992) & Ivan (2008) showed that they could be as ferocious as Camille or Katrina.  In 1991 another Hurricane named Bob struck and was a bit more destructive than the first as it clipped the eastern tip of Long Island and then barrelled through Rhode Island and Cape Cod. 


Oliver_northFinally, telegenic & cocksure of himself, Oliver North captured the hearts of the Conservative right on July 7, 1987 as he masterfully portrayed himself as an uber-patriot in front of TV cameras at the Iran-Contra hearings.  Sarah Palin, who possessed the same skills in front of TV cameras, would pull at the same patriotic heartstrings two decades later. 


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