Category Archives: Lifestyle

May 20

Denim and Popular Culture

On the 20th of May 1873, Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis received a U.S. patent for blue jeans with copper rivets. In San Francisco, Levi Strauss, a Jewish-German immigrant, had established a profitable wholesale dry goods business importing clothing and fabric to sell in the small stores opening all over California and other Western states to […]

May 14

Oona O’Neill Chaplin. Behind Every Great Man…

… There is a Great Woman. One such woman, Oona O’Neill, was born on the 14 of May 1925,  in Warwick Parish, Bermuda, to talented parents, the prize-winning playwright Eugene O’Neill and writer Agnes Boulton. We can only assume that this saying must have been true in Oona’s case, as her true character remained an […]

May 08

The Story Behind Gauguin’s Biographic Noa Noa

On the 8th of May 1903, the iconic French Post-Impressionist painter Paul Gauguin died in Atuona, Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia. In 1891, Gauguin sailed to French Polynesia allegedly to escape European civilization and “everything that is artificial and conventional”. As a record of his travels, he ended up writing a book titled Noa Noa describing his experiences […]

May 02

Women’s Magazines and Ideology Shifts

On the 2nd of May 1885, Good Housekeeping magazine was founded by Clark W. Bryan in Holyoke, Massachusetts. Still owned by the Hearst Corporation, it has ever since featured articles about women’s interests, product testing, recipes, diet, health as well as literary articles. It has become an institution known for its “Good Housekeeping Seal of […]

April 19

The Wobbly Beginnings of Motoring in Britain

On the 14th of April 1931, the first ever edition of the British Highway Code was published, sold for one penny and containing only 18 pages of advice! Some of it was directed at drivers of horse drawn vehicles to ‘rotate the whip above the head; then incline the whip to the right or left […]

February 14

Artist Nina Hamnett, Jazz Age’s Wildest Party Girl

On the 14th of February 1890, Welsh artist, writer and bohemian party girl Nina Hamnett was born in Tenby, Pembrokeshire, Wales. Her emerging artistic skill helped her escape an unhappy childhood. She moved to London where she studied at Pelham Art School, then the London School of Art and in 1914 she went to Montparnasse, […]

December 30

Guru Ramana Maharshi on Meditation

We all want to be that little bit better in the new year, both on the inside and on the outside . Love yourself, love the world around you, better yourself through meditation! Heed the advice of Ramana Maharshi (1879–1950), born on the 30th of December 1879 in Tamil Nadu, South India; here are some snippets from interviews with […]

December 25

The Story Of the First Christmas Ads

The following excerpt about the age-old material significance of Christmas comes from Pulitzer nominated Prof. Stephen Nissenbaum’s The Battle for Christmas, (Random House, 1997): “If the domestic reform of Christmas began as an enterprise of patricians, fearful for their authority, it was soon being reinforced by merchants, who needed the streets to be cleared of […]

December 16

Denny Fouts – From Escort and Literary Muse to Gay Idol

On the 16th of December 1948, Louis Denham Fouts died in Rome of a heart attack at the young age of 35 after years of excess – drugs, cigarettes, alcohol and a wild and promiscuous lifestyle. In the 1930s and ‘40s, he became notorious as America’s luxury gigolo, socialite and muse to literary greats such […]

December 01

Christine Jorgensen: The First Transsexual Celebrity

On the 1st of December 1952, the headlines on the front page of the New York Daily read: “Ex-GI Becomes Blonde Beauty: Operations Transform Bronx Youth”. They were announcing the ‘sex change’ of Christine Jorgensen (born George William Jorgensen, Jr.), the first ever person in the United States to have undergone sex reassignment surgery. The […]