It Was 50 Years Ago Today: ‘Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)’

Well-respected rock-music critic and historian Dave Marsh is normally quite sparing in his praise, but Marsh once could barely contain his enthusiasm when he reviewed a Marvin Gaye single and proclaimed it to be “the greatest piece of music ever written in favor of the survival of the environment on the greatest Black pop album ever made.”

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Celebrating August’s Senior Activism

In the history of senior Americans, August is an important month for a law that a former U.S. president called “one of the great peacetime achievements of the American people.”

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The History of Ordinary Things: The Egg Carton & Other Egg Tidbits

Did you know?

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‘We Hold These Truths to Be Self-Evident …’

On July 4, Americans celebrate the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

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Booming Voice: The Greatest Generation’s Last Witnesses

Recently, my retiree-age literature class was discussing the classic ’50s conformity novel, The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit, as if it were a gripping novel of World War II. In fact, there were raw scenes of the main character’s PTSD-inducing war experiences that impacted his rung climbing in the 1950s corporate world.

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The Curious Beginnings of Our Everyday Customs

You cross your fingers for good luck or to excuse yourself from lying, but do you ever wonder how customs like that originated?

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Fodder for Mother’s Day Chats

If you’re trying to make conversation at your Mother’s Day dinner (or Zoom celebration) this year, try sprinkling some of these facts into the discussion:

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The History of Ordinary Things: Cracker Jack

Cracker Jack is an American brand of snack consisting of molasses-flavored, caramel-coated popcorn and peanuts, well known for being packaged with a prize of trivial value. Some food historians consider it the first junk food!

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Sixties Flashback: Ben and Fillmore: Two ‘Hippie Bus’ Dudes

In 1949, Dutch businessman Ben Pon became responsible for putting the first Volkswagen Beetle on America’s roads.

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