Hooray for Hollywood....land......

Ruins the tempo of the song. Good thing the rationing craze of WWII caused them to shorten the name to just Hollywood in 1945, isn't it?

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Hahaha...I'm kidding. WWII rationing had nothing to do with it. It was shortened to Hollywood because it sounded better.

See, I'm the author of these posts, and that gives me the right to kid. Think about that statement for a second. It sounds wrong, doesn't it? "The right to kid" sounds like I'm entitled to peoples children. How did 'kid' become a synonym for joking around? Is it because kids can't be serious?

And what kind of kids are we talking about? Little baby human kids, or little baby goat kids?

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Such a deep subject for such a shallow mind.....What? If I don't insult myself occasionally, how can I get away with insulting you constantly? Um...not that I do, or anything.

Moving right along.....did you know today is Tuesday? As in, Tell The Truth Tuesday? Hold on to your britches folks, because I'm about to reveal if I was lying or telling the truth in yesterdays post.

I was telling you a great big old truth. It was, in fact, the Irish who gave us oyster stew as a Christmas tradition. Christmas Eve, to be exact.

The Irish, being a mostly catholic people, observed the various meatless meals. And one of them was a meatless Christmas Eve meal. (it's also why the Italians developed the feast of the seven fishes). In Ireland, the traditional Christmas Eve diner was a simple stew consisting of milk, butter and pepper, that featured a fish called Ling. Ling was a dried fish that was almost as nasty as lutefisk, but not quite.

In the 140's, when the Irish started migrating to America, they discovered Americans had better taste in food, and ling wasn't available. And not even the Irish were hungry enough to try lutefisk. (smart people). So, they found another seafood that was readily available that matched the flavor profile; Oysters. Oysters were chewy, salty globs of not-meat, and as a bonus, their flavor resembled ling. So they made their simple stew with oysters.

And that's how the Irish gave us oyster stew. If you ask me, they should have kept it. Nasty booger food......

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But, let's move on to todays post. It's a kind of mini history of Hollywood. Or, Hollywoodland. Whatever.

In the 1880's, Harvey Wilcox moved to Los Angeles from Kansas. His goal was to build a place where good christians could reside, free to live in the manner the bible instructed them to. To that end, Harvey and his wife bought 160 acres of land and built themselves a house. Harveys wife, Daeida, had chatted up a fellow traveller on a train who told her about a Dutch settlement named Hollywood. She liked the name so much, she started calling their ranch Hollywood.

As time went on, Harvey, who was a real estate tycoon by trade, promoted the area around Hollywood as an idyllic place to live. And people believed him. By 1900, there were 500 people living in the small town. It had it's own shops, post office and even a newspaper. The people who were living there had been calling their town Hollywood since 1887 when the first map of the location was submitted to the Los Angeles planning commission.

Everything was great, until Thomas Edison ruined everything.

You see, Thomas Edison wasn't content with just taking credit for his employees work. He also tried to patent everything he could. And in the early 1900's, all the motion picture patents were owned by Edisons Motion Picture Patens Company. And true to form, Edison would try to sue into oblivion anyone who dared to make a motion picture.

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So, everyone who wanted to make movies moved west. Their logic was, they could work, free from Edison and his lawyers. And if they came west looking to se them, they could pack up and get to Mexico before they had a chance.

And where did all these movie makers decide to settle? Why, the idyllic town of Hollywood that had just recently incorporated it's self with Los Angeles to ensure a continued supply of water.

Not long after the movie makers showed up, the idea that Hollywood would be a town where christian ideals were in charge sort of died. Not too many of the residents complained very loudly, though. The sudden influx of people, jobs and money benefitted them and made most of the original inhabitants quite wealthy.

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The Hollywoodland sign was erected in 1923 to promote a new subdivision. In 1945 it was shortened to Hollywood because Hollywoodland sounds too much like an amusement park. Actually, it was shortened by the Hollywood chamber of commerce who repaired the sign and copyrighted 'Hollywood'. Technically, if you want a picture of it, you need their permission.

Aight...I'm off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of waverly place.....