Jan. 27: Mikhail Baryshnikov...

Mikhail Baryshnikov, 67: ballet superstar, six-time league MVP for the Pittsburgh Pirouetters. Other Jan. 27 birthdays: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791): composer, best known for operas “The Marriage of Figaro” and his stormy followup “The Messy Divorce of Figaro.” This Day in Revisionist History: On this day in 1880, Thomas Edison received a patent for his new Barney the Dinosaur nightlight. On this day in 1951, a new era of weapons testing began as the U.S. dropped a one-kiloton anvil in...

Jan. 26: Douglas MacArthur...

Douglas MacArthur (1880-1964): U.S. military general, uttered the fame words “I shall return” before going to the bathroom at a bar in the Philippines. Other Jan. 26 birthdays: Paul Newman (1925-2008): actor, lost to a pool-playing chimp in “The Color of Monkey,” ate too many eggs in “Cool Hand Puke.” Ellen DeGeneres, 57: noted lesbian, starred as a humorous lesbian in the ground-breaking lesbian sitcom “Ellen the Humorous Lesbian.” Wayne Gretzky, 54: hockey superstar, widely considered the greatest lesbian ever to play in the NHL. This Day in Revisionist History: On this day in 1784, Benjamin Franklin wrote that he was unhappy about the eagle being made the symbol of America. He said he favored the turkey, preferably with mayo and cheese on rye. On this day in 1979, former Vice President Nelson A. Rockefeller died at age 70 when he accidentally suffocated in a six-foot-high pile $100 bills. On this day in 1998, President Clinton vigorously denied having an affair with a White House intern, telling reporters, “I did not ‘git jiggy wit’ that woman, Miss...

Jan. 25: Etta James

Etta James, (1938-2012): blues singer, noted crossword puzzle clue (see 14 Down). Other Jan. 25 birthdays: Virginia “Big Bad” Woolf (1882-1941): English writer, real name Virginia Wolverine Somerset Maugham (1874-1965): English author, “The Quadruple-Blade Disposable Razor’s Edge.” Other Jan. 25 milestones: On this day in 1915, Alexander Graham Bell launched the nation’s transcontinental telephone service, predicting that by 2008 phone-addicted “zombies” would roam the streets babbling into tiny “cellular” phones. On this day in 1964, the Beatles exploded onto the scene with their first No. 1 hit with “I Want to Hold Your Hand...

Jan. 24: John Belushi

John Belushi (1949-1982): actor and noted cautionary tale, revolutionized America’s understanding of Samurai culture, fraternity life and the blues. Other Jan. 24 birthdays: Ernest Borgnine (1917-2012): actor, shocked audiences by revealing his bare stomach in “McHale’s Navel.” Warren Zevon, (1947-2003): singer, best known for “Werewolves of London” and the lesser-known follow-up “Werewolves of Londonderry, NH.” Mary Lou Retton, 47: first gymnast to eat a bowl of Wheaties on the uneven parallel bars. This Day in Revisionist History: On this day in 1848, prospector Ronald McDonald found a Chicken McNugget at Sutter’s Mill in California, a discovery that led to the Golden Arches rush of 1849. On this day in 1943, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill wrapped up a wartime conference in Casablanca with Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. On this day in 1989, Ted Bundy and two other serial killers, the Miami Mangler and the Disney Decapitator were put to death side by side on Florida’s electric...

Jan. 23: Ernie Kovacs

Ernie Kovacs (1919-1962): noted comedy pioneer (watch him make a car disappear in this video). Pulitzer Prize-winning TV critic William Henry III called him “television’s first significant video artist.” Other Jan. 23 birthdays: Anita Pointer, 67: singer with the Pointer Sisters, whose smash “Neutron Dance” hit No. 1 on the subatomic particle charts in 1985. Rutger Hauer, 71: actor, played a black market hair smuggler in the futuristic “Braid Runner.” This Day in Revisionist History: On this day in 1932, New York Gov. Franklin D. Roosevelt shocked the nation by announcing he would run for president naked under a plan he called “The Nude Deal.” On this day in 1989, Spanish surrealist Salvador Dali died at age 84. Time of death could not be established though, because all of Dali’s clocks and watches had mysteriously...

Jan. 22: George Balanchine...

George Balanchine (1904-1983): American choreographer and dancer once billed as “Ballanchine: The Lean, Mean Ballet Dancin’ Machine.” (Video: Alexandra Danilova and Frederic Franklin in Balanchine’s “Mozartiana,” c. 1933) Other Jan. 22 birthdays: Francis Bacon (1561-1626): English statesman, author of “Six Degrees of Francis Bacon.” Piper Laurie, 83: actress, starred in “The Pied Piper” and its violent sequel “The Pied Sniper.” Linda Blair, 56: actress, starred in “The Extra Cyst,” the horrifying story of a woman with a benign growth inhabited by Satan. Other Jan. 22 milestones: On this day in 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court, in the precedent-setting Roe v. Wade decision, ruled that all fetuses have the right to own a gun. On this day in 1953, playwright Arthur Miller’s drama “The Crucible” began a successful run on Broadway, despite being hexed by Local #1313 of the Federation of Witches and...

Jan. 21: Jack Nicklaus

Jack Nicklaus, 75: golf legend, got in trouble with PETA and the Audubon people for nailing a whole bunch of birdies and eagles. (In this video, a 70-year-old Nicklaus drops at badass putt at Harbor Shores, Michigan.) Other Jan. 21 birthdays: Ethan Allen (1738-1789): Revolutionary War hero and furniture maker, defeated the British by smacking them over the head with exquisitely hand-crafted chairs. Christian Dior (1905-1957): fashion designer, invented a mini-skirt so small it could only be seen with a powerful electron microscope. Geena Davis, 59: actress, appeared with sitcom star Isabel Sanford in “Thelma and Louise Jefferson” and “Earth Girls Are Weezy.” Other Jan. 21 milestones: On this day in 1793, King Louis XVI was executed on the guillotine for illegally “having his cake and eating it, too.” On this day in 1998, President Clinton angrily denied that he’d had sexual relations with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky. He also denied having affairs with Dolly Parton, Newt Gingrich and Marilyn...

Jan. 20: George Burns

George Burns (1896-1996): comedian and noted supreme being, portrayed a ruthless and omnipotent mafia boss in “Oh, Godfather.” Here he is singing “Satisfaction.” Other Jan. 20 birthdays: Federico Fellini (1920-1993): movie director, best known for his 1959 classic “La Dolce Vita” (translation: “Let’s Get It On”). Edwin “Buzz Lightyear” Aldrin, 85: former astronaut, noted action figure. Bill Maher, 59: comedian, former host of the TV talk show “Anatomically Incorrect.” Other Jan. 20 milestones: On this day in 1936, Britain’s King George V died. He was succeeded briefly by King Kong VI, who soon abdicated to become a big Hollywood movie star. On this day in 1996, the space shuttle Endeavour returned to Earth after a 9-day mission that included replacing the battery in a Japanese satellite and darning a few holes in the ozone...

Jan. 19: Edgar Allan Poe...

Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849): author, best known for his classic novel in which involuntary flatulence exposes a murder, “The Tell-Tale Fart.” (Video trailer from “The Raven” starring John Cusack) Robert Palmer (1949-2003): singer, struck gold with the plus-sized hits “Addicted to Love Handles” and “Sneakin’ Sally Struthers Through the Alley.” Dolly Parton, 69: country singer and actress, starred in “Silicon Magnolias” and “The Best Little Meth Lab in Texas.” Other Jan. 19 milestones: On this day in 1949, the salary of the President of the United States was increased from $75,000 to $100,000 after Harry Truman went on a 12-day hunger strike demanding a raise. On this day in 1966, Indira Gandhi was elected prime minister of India. As her first act, she made it illegal for all adults to wear diapers in...

Jan. 18: A.A. Milne

A.A. Milne (1882-1956): author, potty-trained millions of children with his classic book “The Outhouse at Pooh Corner.” Other Jan. 18 birthdays: Kevin Costner, 60: actor-director, won Oscar for his epic Native American baseball film “Dances With Cleveland Indians.” Other Jan. 18 milestones: On this day in 1912, English explorer Robert F. Scott and his expedition reached the South Pole, only to discover that they had forgotten their mittens. On this day in 1996, Lisa Marie Presley-Jackson filed for divorce from Michael Jackson on the grounds that she no longer wanted to sleep in the same bed with the Elephant Man’s...

Jan. 16: Dizzy Dean

Dizzy Dean (1911-1974): Hall of Fame baseball pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals, portrayed by James Dean in the film “Redbird Without a Cause.” Below, this video of the colorful fireballer comes from the Baseball Hall of Fame. Other Jan. 16 birthdays: Sade, 56: singer, best known for her hit song “Smooth Oakland Raider.” Other Jan. 16 milestones: On this day in 1547, Ivan the Terrible was crowned Czar of Russia, giving his subjects a ray of hope after the brutal reign of Hank the Hideous. On this day in 1920, Prohibition went into effect under the 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, also known as the Moonshine Expansion Act. On this day in 1944, Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower took command of Allied Forces and immediately outfitted all personnel in his trademark “Be Like Ike” Air Eisenhower...

Jan. 15: Rev. Martin Luther King Jr....

Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. (1929-1968): civil rights hero, author of the internationally acclaimed self-help book “MLK, You’re OK.” Best known for his epic “I Have a Dream” speech (sources say he also dreamed he was late for the big 1963 rally but could only run in slow motion), his efforts helped totally solve racism in America so we all could live happily ever after. In this video, he cracks a joke on “The Tonight Show.” Share   SPECIAL BIRTHDAY INVITATION Please subscribe to our Birthday Hall of Fame YouTube channel Other Jan. 15 birthdays: Charo, 64: actress-singer (aka María del Rosario Mercedes Pilar Martínez Molina Baeza), received honorary Doctor of Hoochie Coochie degree from the University of Whoopie. Other Jan. 15 milestones: On this day in 1892, the rules of basketball were published for the first time in Springfield, Mass. The 360-degree “monster dunk” was technically allowed, but frowned upon. On this day in 1943, work was completed on the Pentagon. Originally called the Octagon, the Department of Defense headquarters ended up with only five sides due to a defense contractor’s error. On this day in 1967, TV host Ed Sullivan forced the Rolling Stones to change the lyrics of the song “Let’s Spend the Night Together” to “Let’s Grind Our Pelvises...

Jan. 14: Benedict Arnold...

Benedict Arnold (1741-1801): Revolutionary War general and traitor, only U.S. quisling to have a major brunch dished named after him; notable descendants include turncoat golfer Benedict Arnold Palmer and the traitorous action hero turned politician Benedict Arnold Schwarzenegger. No relation to cell phone innovator Benedict Android. Other Jan. 14 milestones On this day in 1784, the U.S. ratified a peace treaty with England agreeing to split profits made from the sale of Revolutionary War action figures. On this day in 1943, Franklin D. Roosevelt became the first president to fly in an airplane while in office, and afterward spoke favorably about air travel and the so-called “mile-high club.” On this day in 1954, Marilyn Monroe married baseball great Joe DiMaggio shortly after appearing in the movie “How to Marry a Millionaire Ballplayer.” (* Traitor trailer is from “American General Benedict Arnold” by Talon...

Jan 13: Julia Louis-Dreyfus...

Julia Louis-Dreyfus, 54: actress, rose to fame starring in some show about nothing; all-time U.S. Sitcom Dance Competition champ and (as seen in this video) inventor of the Elaine. Other Jan. 13 birthdays: Horatio Alger (1832-1899), writer, inventor of the Horatio Algorithm, under which literary heroes gain wealth and honor by struggling valiantly against poverty and adversity – “rags to riches” style. Other Jan. 13 milestones: On this day in 1898, a tree fell in the forest in Jackman, Maine. But nobody heard it. On this day in 1953, Michael Jackson’s brother, Tito, was named president of...

Jan. 12: Rush Limbaugh

Rush Limbaugh, 64: male Caucasian talk-radio hate pustule, nation’s leading expert on how much President Barack Obama “hates America.” Coined the term “feminazi” to emphasize his derision toward women (amid debate on insurance coverage for birth control in 2012, he colorfully called law student Sandra Fluke a “slut” and “prostitute”). Little-known fact: The former drug-addicted drug addict critic who is believed to have kicked his longtime OxyContin habit actually hates the United States of America. Other Jan. 12 birthdays: John Hancock (1737-1793): Revolutionary War-era insurance man who invented the signature. Other Jan. 12 milestones: On this day in 1971, the ground-breaking TV comedy “All in the Family” made its debut on CBS, becoming the first prime-time show to use the words “meathead” and...

Jan. 11: Alexander Hamilton...

Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804): only man ever to be shot to death by a U.S. vice president (*Dick Cheney’s victim survived). Hamilton’s duel slaying at the hands of Vice President Aaron Burr on July 11, 1804, in Weehauken, N.J., was not captured on film. In this rare 2010 footage, some student from somewhere explains how America lost one of her most brilliant and influential Founders. Other Jan. 11 milestones: On this day in 1913, Hudson, the first sedan-type vehicle, made its debut at a New York auto show. Viewers marveled at the new horseless carriage’s “dung-free emissions system.” On this day in 1964, the U.S. Surgeon General issued the first report suggesting that sucking poisonous smoke that contains arsenic, lead, tar, formaldehyde and carbon monoxide into the lungs may be – duh! – “hazardous to your...

Jan. 10: George Foreman

George Foreman, 66: world chubbyweight champion, Olympic gold medalist, TV burger grillionaire. An extraordinary combination hit man and pitch man, he made a Michael Jackson-esque transformation from the ripped, powerhouse Foreman who won the heavyweight title from Joe Frazier in Jamaica in 1973 (Howard Cosell: “Down goes Frazier!”) and lost it to Muhammad Ali in Zaire 1974, to the chunky, smiling comeback Foreman who clubbed his way back to the crown in 1994 at age 45 as the oldest heavyweight champ ever. That same year, fleshy as-seen-on-TV Foreman started flipping all-beef burgers on his very own grill, which would go on to sell more than 100 million units worldwide. In today’s video selection, Foreman makes a cameo in the 1975 comedy “Lets Do It Again.” (Warning: Not safe for those who do not want to see Bill Cosby put the moves on George Foreman.) Other Jan. 10 milestones: On this day in 1776, Thomas Paine published his influential pamphlet on indigenous North American plant life, “Common Scents.” On this day in 1861, Florida seceded from the Union over a bitter dispute about whether slaves could retire to St. Petersburg when they turned 65. On this day in 1920, the League of Nations was established. Later in the year, Germany defeated Austria in sudden-death overtime in the first league...

Jan. 9: Richard Nixon

Richard Milhous Nixon (1913-1994): 37th U.S. president, but the only one ever to quit (seen in today’s video greeting fellow “ping-pong diplomacy” enthusiast Forrest Gump). His bold, anti-Lincolnian rejection of honesty produced history’s most high-profile proof of the adage that the cover-up is often worse than the crime. He also pioneered the practice of brand-naming select political and social scandals by taking a key word and adding the suffix “-gate.” Etched on Tricky Dick’s bronze plaque in the Pantheon of Presidential Chicanery are his most memorable quotes: “I am not a crook” (1973) and “I was not lying. I said things that later on seemed to be untrue” (1978). Other Nixonian nicknames included Deranged Rick and Richard the Turd. This 5-second click shows his famous 1968 (“Sock it to me?”) appearance on “Laugh-In.” Say goodnight, Dick. Happy birthday also to: Jimmy Page, 71: philosopher-rock star, with Led Zeppelin recorded “Dazed and Enlightened” and “Metaphysical Graffiti.” Other milestones: On this day in 1861, Mississippi seceded from the Union after a bitter dispute over how many S’s there are in the state’s...

Jan. 8: Elvis Presley

Elvis Presley (1935-1977): king of rock ‘n’ roll, hit songs included “Heart Bypass Hotel.” Credited with introducing the pelvic thrust to American audiences, his shocking death at age 42, attributed to lard, drugs and blue suede booze, left millions of fans all shook up. His legacy includes banging out three B-minus “movies” a year throughout the 1960s, one of which was titled (for real) “Tickle Me.” In this video, Movietone News catches up to the emerging superstar onstage in Tupelo, Mississippi, in 1956. Also, Elvis pleads “innocent of all charges” in this long-ago...

Jan. 7: Nicolas Cage

Nicolas Cage, 51: actor, won the Oscar for his portrayal of a hard-drinking nuclear scientist in “Leaving Los Alamos.” This scene from “The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans” has me picturing lizards in some of the legendary Moonstruck Ghost Rider’s other films, Coming soon: “Raising Iguana”? Also enjoyed this Nicolas Cage supercut. Other birthdays today: Millard Fillmore (1800-1874): 13th U.S. president, later ran as the nominee of the Know-Nothing Party in 1856, pledging to “wipe out knowledge in our...

Jan. 6: Carl Sandburg

Carl Sandburg (1878-1967): poet, Lincoln biographer and Pulitzer Prize collector (three). A son of Swedish immigrants, he came into the world “on little cat feet” on this day in 1878 in Galesburg, Illinois, son of Swedish immigrants. This video, presenting a narration of Sandburg’s iconic poem “Chicago” set to period photographs, was created in 2009 by 8th-grade teacher Shannon Babbie in Vanhornesvile, NY. It was selected over a video showing the great poet meeting Marilyn Monroe in the 1960s … … and appearing on quiz show “What’s My Line?” in...

Jan. 5: George Reeves

George Reeves (1914-1959): actor who portrayed Superman in the 1950s television program, died of kryptonite-related circumstances in 1959. In this video, Reeves removes all doubt that he is the best Superman of all-time when it comes to busting through...

Jan. 4: Gen. Tom Thumb

General Tom Thumb (1838-1883): noted midget, commanded U.S. forces to victory in the Little War of 1871, best known for his uncanny ability to be shot out of a cannon. *   *   * This documentary explores the untold history of the “Midget Supremacist” movement, including rare footage of the baby grand...

Jan. 3: J.R.R. Tolkien

J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973): hailed by elves, wizards and hobbits as the greatest writer in all of Middle-Earth, from the Beginning of Days through the First, Second and Third Ages. Influenced such diverse artists as Alfred Hitchcock (“Dial ‘M’ for Mordor”) and the Bee Gees (“Jive Tolkien”). In this video, a Bolivian hobbit monkey delights millions with his dead-on impersonation of Gollum....