Happy National Tortilla Chip Day! Meredith and I started celebrating early when I whipped up some loaded nachos for dinner last weekend. Interested parties should reply to this email to request a pic of that epic platter, but I can't be held responsible if seeing it leads to the ruination of any carb-related New Year's resolutions that are still persisting.
Today's famous birthday boys/girls/persons are as follows:
• Writer and anthropologist Wilhelm Karl Grimm, born this day in 1786! Wilhelm was one half of the literary duo that brought us the famed compilation Grimms' Fairy Tales. Thanks for the nightmares, Bill!
• Actor Abraham Charles "Abe" Vigoda, born this day in 1921! The son of Jewish immigrants from Russia, Mr. Vigoda studied acting in college thanks to the G.I. Bill upon returning from active military service during World War II. Key roles: Salvatore Tessio in The Godfather, Phil Fish in police sitcom Barney Miller and its spinoff Fish, and assorted random cameos as himself on Late Night with Conan O'Brien. Abe was also the subject of countless celebrity death hoaxes from 1982, which became a running joke on late night talkshows until his actual passing in 2016.
• Actor, producer, director, and activist Edward James Olmos, born this day in 1947! Mr. Olmos has an extensive filmography, including appearances in Miami Vice (the original), Battlestar Galactica (the remake), Blade Runner (both original AND the 2049 sequel), and Stand and Deliver. Fun fact: one of the students of high school math teacher Jaime Escalante, whom Edward played in Stand and Deliver, was Sergio Valdez. Mr. Valdez is currently an engineer at Jet Propulsion Laboratory and helped lead a team that was part of the Perseverance rover project that just landed on Mars last week. Cool!
• Apple co-founder and CEO Steven Paul Jobs, born this day in 1955! Even if you've never owned an Apple product in your life, Jobs' expertise as an industrial designer influenced a lot of modern technology over the decades, from personal computers that could fit on a desk, mass-use of computer mice instead of keystroke commands, smartphones, and laying the groundwork for those wonderful Pixar movies we've all been enjoying over the last 25 years.
• Comedian Mitchell Lee Hedberg, born this day in 1968! Though his predilection for hard drugs ended up cutting his life short, his deadpan delivery of non sequiturs, one-liners, surreal scenarios, and use of wordplay still never fails to elicit a giggle or ten out of me.
OK, OK...you've waited long enough. It's link time!
OK, so maybe "chiseling" is the better verb to use here, but I couldn't resist. Fatica has made a name for himself by demonstrating his sculptural prowess on unconventional materials, including coffee beans, fruits, and cheese.
On the one hand, any opportunity to admire happy pups is one we should relish. On the other hand, indulgent weirdness like this is probably why the rest of the world hates us.
This is both adorable AND depressing AND relatable AND I want so much more of it in my eyeballs.
Way back in 2015 we met some puppeteers who were trying to get a live action show featuring a guy and his shark roommate made. This was the unaired pilot, and it STILL cracks us up; why it never got picked up for a full season is beyond me. Guess it was just ahead of its time. I know it's not exactly new, but it was a struggle to find five links to uplifting content this week, between the humanitarian crisis in Texas and the grim pandemic milestone we just passed. Watch this, chuckle, and for goodness' sake stay home and wear a damn mask!
Certainly there's nothing wrong with a little shameless self-promotion amongst friends?