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Thirty-Five Years Ago
I was walking around humming that old song about jumping down and turning around and picking a bale of cotton and it made me wonder — just how much cotton is that? And what about a bale of hay?

A bale of cotton means 480 pounds of the stuff. And a standard bale of hay weighs in at 210 pounds.
STRAIGHT FROM THE HIP, Matthew Alice, May 29, 1975

Thirty Years Ago
I worked in a fast-food drive-thru for awhile. One time this guy tried to grab off my wedding ring when I handed out his burger.
Sylvia Cooper, Unemployed, East San Diego
OFF THE CUFF: “WHAT ABOUT YOUR TEMPORARY JOBS?” Lin Jakary, May 29, 1980

Twenty-Five Years Ago
Okay, get out your notebooks. This here is lecture time. Wrestling Goes Mainstream. An outcome that is vile, it’s loathsome, it may even cause cancer — don’t laugh, this is serious.

I’ve been watching the shit since 1956, actually earlier; have followed it since around ’56 — more or less continuously. Some multi-year gaps here & there, sure, but also some great big hunks of uninterrupted focus, bigger than for 2/3 the things in my life. I’ve been to it live at least 200 times in various cities, or let’s say 175–180.... Wrestling was the first sport (by any definition) that meant anything to me.
“THE LAST WRESTLING PIECE,” Richard Meltzer, May 30, 1985

Twenty Years Ago
As an early and steadfast fan of their parents, I want to like Wilson Phillips and their recording debut. But the first flush-of-love concerns of young women do not of themselves engage me, and because the songs on Wilson Phillips almost never rise above the thematic and musical levels to which only other women at the same stage of social development can relate — the trio apparently inherited the singing skills and physical attributes of their moms and none of the songwriting genius of their respective dads — I am not enthralled.
RECORD REVIEWS, John D’Agostino, May 31, ­1990

Fifteen Years Ago
I’d forgotten what a repellent piece of architecture Jack Murphy Stadium is. The facility has a Bulgarian workers’ resort ambiance, complete with chipped-cement staircases.

I buy two tepid, tasteless hot dogs and a cup of the worst coffee I’ve ever had. Down here in basement land one is surrounded by cement floors, walls, and ceilings. The feel is East Coast subway. The cement roof leaks, pools of gray liquid dot the floor.

This is just backdrop, although admittedly a bad one. The theater is out there on the field. Assemble an exciting winning team, and no one will care about this human-hating stadium or the wretched food or the $4.50 beer.
SPORTING BOX: “AMNESTY FOR THE PADRES,” Patrick Daugherty, May 25, ­1995

Ten Years Ago
In his 17 years at Pure Platinum, [DJ James] Call has negotiated abusive patrons, nervous dancers, and changes in musical tastes.

Call says some of the dancers need to understand that “guy music” works best in a strip club. “Sometimes I’ll try and talk a dancer out of doing a particular song. If you have a room full of people who are all hopped up after Tupac and Old Dirty Bastard, you probably don’t want to follow it with Sarah McLachlan.... I remember one dancer who always wanted to [dance to] Joni Mitchell. The guys started looking around getting real antsy.”
“MUSIC FOR BARE SKIN,” Ken Leighton, May 25, ­2000

Five Years Ago
A tattoo addiction has left 20 percent of my body covered with subcutaneous ink. Depictions of water, cherry blossoms, a green demon, and an octopus cascade down my arms.

When I was eight, I saw a tiny red devil tattoo on my dad’s left bicep. That devil might have been no bigger than a golf ball, but he couldn’t have made a larger impression.
“GOT SOME SKIN LEFT?” Ollie, May 26, ­2005

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