The First Time News Was Fit To Print, V

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Walkman
July 7, 1980

Josh Lansing and the young blonde woman had never even met before, but as they passed each other on Madison Avenue the other afternoon, she waved and smiled and he tipped his headphones in salute....What the two well-dressed strangers first noticed about each other was that they were both possessors of the newest status symbol around town: the Walkman, a portable stereo unit (priced in most stores at $200), consisting of an ultra-light headphone set plugged into a cassette player that weighs in at less than 14 ounces, batteries included. "It's just like Mercedes-Benz owners honking when they pass each other on the road," explained Mr. Lansing, whose cassette hung from his Gucci belt.

Osama Bin Laden
December 24, 1994

binladen.jpgAt a time when an increasing number of militant groups are finding a haven in the Sudan, many see the Khartoum Government's assistance to the Algerian rebels as the most serious challenge to Western security interests in the region since the Islamic regime seized power here in a 1989 coup....Osama Bin Laden, a wealthy Saudi financier who bankrolls Islamic militant groups from Algeria to Saudi Arabia, also lives under heavy guard in Khartoum. Western diplomats also note that there have been repeated instances of Sudanese terrorists turning up in international conflicts.

Keep reading for more first mentions, including the Iowa Caucuses, Johnny Carson and Pearl Jam.

Nerf
December 13, 1970

nerf.jpegTopper's Dawn doll was one of the year's best sellers in toys, as were other toys heavily advertised on television like Mattel's Hot Wheels (miniature cars), Parker's Nerf ball (an "indoor" ball), Remco's Dune Buggy Wheelies, Marx's Big Wheel (tricycles) and Kenner's SSP Racers.

Iowa Caucuses
January 26, 1972

Muskie.jpgSenator Edmund S. Muskie of Maine won the largest share of the delegates in last night's Iowa precinct caucuses, late returns showed yesterday. But the victory of the Maine Democrat, widely considered the front-runner for his party's Presidential nomination, was clouded by the unexpectedly strong showing of Senator George McGovern of South Dakota. Mr. McGovern, who won the support of only 3 percent of Democrats nationally in the most recent Gallup Poll, got seven times that in this state.

Johnny Carson
June 9, 1955

johnnycarson.jpgJohnny Carson, comedian, will be starred in a new show to be presented over the Columbia Broadcasting System television network beginning Thursday, June 30, from 10 to 10:30pm. Barbara Ruick, singer and actress, will be a featured performer. The series will be sponsored by the General Foods Corporation and the Revlon Products Corporation.

Pearl Jam & Smashing Pumpkins
November 14, 1991

pearlJam-Time.jpgThe [Red Hot Chili Peppers] concert's two opening bands reflected the current collegiate audience's rediscovery of the early 1970's, just before the bashing and pounding of the hardest psychedelic rock was frozen into heavy metal. Pearl Jam, from Seattle, socks along like a latter-day version of Ted Nugent's Amboy Dukes. Stone Gossard and Mike McCready on guitars diligently work the wah-wah pedals while Eddie Vedder agonizes, in a foreboding baritone, over feelings of uncertainty and displacement, wondering, "Where do I stand?"

corgan.jpgSmashing Pumpkins, from Chicago, throw more old ingredients into the mix, like the occasional folk-rock guitar lick, a raga drone or a lead vocal reminiscent of Neil Young. Its songs meander from pummeling hard rock to gentle interludes to psychedelic crescendos. While the band's album, "Gish" (Caroline), puts the pieces together smoothly, onstage Billy Corgan's crack-voiced singing was mannered and the songs' proportions seemed to be out of whack, making them episodic rather than securely eccentric.

Keep the suggestions coming. You can read the first four installments here:
The First Time News Was Fit To Print, I
The First Time News Was Fit To Print, II
The First Time News Was Fit To Print, III
The First Time News Was Fit To Print, IV

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August 14, 2007 - 3:30am
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