Someone once asked me what my favorite app was, and I told them pen and paper. It’s true. I don’t use a smartphone, and I don’t 100 percent trust “the cloud,” so I’m very old school when it comes to taking notes and keeping things organized. I can’t live without my Moleskine and Field Notes notebooks and my Uni-ball 307 pens. I love the Kindle but I prefer print books. I’m a paper guy.
This BBC article about the joys of paper and the resurgence that it’s having made me smile (a real smile, not an emoji). And it’s not just older people clinging to nostalgia; it’s also millennials and younger people who grew up as digital-first natives. Studies show that people who actually write things down remember them better. There’s something about paper that is vital, necessary, something that will make it last, even if we constantly hear that print books and newspapers are going away and everything is digital digital digital. Or, as my friend William Powers puts it, paper is eternal. [PDF]
How important is paper? Try going to the restroom without it next time. There’s no app for that.
Hair Is Overrated
I’m not saying this because I’m bald, even though I am, well, bald. I’m saying it because it’s science!
According to a University of Pennsylvania study, bald men are seen as more dominant, stronger, and even taller. Considering my height, I don’t really understand the “taller” part of that study, but I’ll take dominant and stronger.
The study also showed that men who are balding should just go ahead and shave off what hair they have left instead of using hair restoration products or doing that horrifying comb-over that isn’t fooling anybody.
The Best Airport in the World Is In…
Come on, guess! Is it in England, Japan, Australia, Switzerland, China? Nope, the best airport in the world is right here in the United States (and no, it’s not in New York or Chicago or Los Angeles).
It’s in Pittsburgh! It’s Pittsburgh International Airport. This is according to Air Transport World magazine, a publication that has been picking the best airport for the past four years. Previous winners are London’s Heathrow, Hong Kong International, and Singapore’s Changi.
I think airports instantly sound more important if they have “international” in their title.
RIP John Hurt, Barbara Hale, John Wetton, Mary Webster, Harold Hayes
John Hurt was an acclaimed veteran actor who appeared in such classic movies as The Elephant Man, Alien, Midnight Express, A Man for All Seasons, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, The Osterman Weekend, Watership Down, Rob Roy, and Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, plus several Harry Potter films. On TV he had roles in I, Claudius, The Storyteller, and Doctor Who. He will be seen in four movies later this year. Hurt passed away from cancer last Friday at the age of 77.
Barbara Hale was best known as Perry Mason’s assistant Della Street on the classic series Perry Mason and dozens of TV movies. She also had roles in movies like Airport, Gildersleeve’s Bad Day, The Boy with Green Hair, and The Window, as well as TV shows like Adam-12, Ironside, Playhouse 90, Lassie, and Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color. Her death at age 94 was first reported by her son, actor William Katt, star of The Greatest American Hero.
Musician and producer John Wetton was the lead singer and bassist for the supergroup Asia, who had hits like “Heat of the Moment,” “Don’t Cry,” and “Only Time Will Tell.” He was also in the bands UK and King Crimson and had stints in Roxy Music and Uriah Heep. He also released several solo albums over the years. He passed away after a long battle with cancer at the age of 67.
Mary Webster co-starred in one of my favorite movies, the 1957 Anthony Perkins/Henry Fonda western The Tin Star, as well as Jerry Lewis’s first film without Dean Martin, The Delicate Delinquent. She was also in the Vincent Price sci-fi adventure Master of the World and TV shows like The Twilight Zone, Perry Mason, Dr. Kildare, Father Knows Best, Route 66, and The George Burns and Grace Allen Show. She passed away Monday at the age of 81.
Harold Hayes, a true American hero, was the last surviving member of a group of Army medics and nurses who escaped from Nazis during World War II. He was on a plane with 29 others when it was hampered by bad weather and German attacks, forcing it to land in Albania. All 30 of them — one with a badly injured knee — survived the 600-mile trek through hostile territory to freedom. Hayes passed away at the age of 94.
One Last Thing about Mary Tyler Moore
Did you see CBS’s hour-long tribute to Mary Tyler Moore? No? Good. You didn’t miss much. The show was all about Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King, as the two talked and talked about how The Mary Tyler Moore Show affected them and how Moore went on Oprah’s show that time and how she empowered women. It looks like it was put together too quickly by someone who learned about Moore by reading Wikipedia. I thought it was more like The Oprah Winfrey Show than a real tribute to Moore, and when I checked Twitter, someone else thought the same thing:
— Dick Van Dyke (@iammrvandy) January 27, 2017
That’s officially my favorite tweet of all time.
Earlier, Van Dyke was interviewed on CBS This Morning, and it’s better than that special, even if Charlie Rose does pronounce the character’s name wrong (it’s PET-rie, Charlie, not PEET-rie):
This Week in History
Prohibition Begins (January 29, 1919)
It lasted until December 5, 1933. Maybe you can remember Prohibition by making some moonshine.
Black Student Sit-In at Woolworth’s (February 1, 1960)
Four students sat in the whites-only section of the Woolworth’s lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina, and were refused service. They came back later with more protestors, and the sit-in eventually grew to 300 people, which forced Woolworth’s to change its policy.
This Week in Saturday Evening Post History: Norman Rockwell Born (February 3, 1894)
When you think of The Saturday Evening Post, you also think of artist Norman Rockwell. Here’s a look back at our Rockwell birthday issue from 1984, and here’s a terrific remembrance from his granddaughter Abigail, which includes a gallery of classic Rockwell Post covers.
Super Bowl Recipes
Super Bowl LI is this Sunday. It airs on Fox and starts at 6:30 p.m. ET. Believe it or not, the pre-game starts at 1 p.m., so you have approximately 5 1/2 hours to “get ready” to root for the New England Patriots or the Atlanta Falcons (as a Bay Stater, I have to put the Pats first in this sentence).
One of the things you can do during the afternoon is make food for the big game. Now, I’m going to assume that because this is the Super Bowl, you’re not going to want Beef Wellington or ceviche or a big plate of Papparelle with Sea Urchin and Cauliflower. You want football food. Stuff that’s probably not that great for you and requires a bunch of napkins.
How about these classic chili recipes from Emeril Lagasse? Chips and dips are big on Super Bowl Sunday, so how about this recipe for guacamole? And for drinks and dessert, go on over to the Today show website and get some recipes for root beer floats and Rice Krispies treats that look like football jerseys.
Me? I’ll be watching the game, but only for the commercials.
Next Week’s Holidays and Events
National Weatherperson’s Day (February 5)
Four days ago the local meteorologists here said we were only going to get a dusting of snow today. Then, suddenly, yesterday’s forecast changed to 3 to 5 inches and I had to shovel. Maybe this is why we shouldn’t have 5- or 7- or 10-day forecasts. They’re never right.
But people dump on meteorologists all the time, so maybe this is one day we can send them a box of chocolates or an umbrella instead.
Safer Internet Day (February 7)
The safest internet is the one you never log on to, but if that’s not an option for you, you can read our tips for being a smart cyber citizen, learn how to prevent identity theft, and learn how to keep your kids safe when they’re online.