Not Past It - How To Invent A Holiday

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You ever listen to the radio or scroll through Twitter and learn that it’s like hug and Australian day, or International moments of frustration, scream day or cook, something bold and pungent day.

And you just wonder to yourself.


Like how did this become holidays?

Well, those days and a lot of other silly holidays are all the work of one, man.

Tom Roy, how many of Have you written?

Do you know, 90, 90 90, they cost nothing to celebrate.


You don’t have to buy a gift for anybody.

You don’t have to invite anybody for dinner.

Our producer, Amy Padula, recently tracked, him down to see what the deal is with all of these days in the mid-1980s.


Tom was looking for stuff to talk about on the radio show.

He hosted and he had this book called chases calendar of events.

It’s it’s been around since 1957.

These two brothers had come up with it as a way to keep track of every single holiday.

And one big fat book.


I was flipping could one day and noticed in the back.

It was at the thing.

Is it submit your own holiday?

And I was like, oh no, What wait, why?

Because you were like, I have too many ideas.

No, because I’m left-handed ADHD, Sagittarius, sober alcoholic camel smoker.


Am 77 days.

They started telling me when I was seven.

Tommy settled down, see once Tom started, getting ideas for holidays.

He couldn’t stop.

He submitted one Northern Hemisphere hoodie who day a day.


To battle your winter doldrums and chases calendar printed it.

So I submitted eight more holidays, the next year and they printed all those like, oh my God, he kept winning.

You kept winning at holidays.



So some of the holidays Tom came up with our kind of odd take today, December 1st.

He’s got one in the book called bifocals at the monitor Liberation day.

Day, yep.


So for anyone who’s bifocals make reading their computer screen harder?

This stays for you.

I guess have you written any recently?

I’m not allowed.

You’re not allowed.

My wife said that’s it.

Oh man, do you miss it?



So after 90 Holiday Hits Tom’s been forced into retirement and that got us thinking over here at not past it because we’re obsessed with dates and maybe just maybe we could keep the holiday ideas flowing.


From gimlet media.

This is not past it a show about the stories.

We can’t quite leave behind.

And this week for December 1st, the not past it team is proposing.

Four different history holidays and telling you why we think they’re worth celebrating.


So move over Chase.

There’s a new calendar of events in town, after the break.

We’re going to do something a little different today.


We’ve lined up for reasons, why we think December 1st is worth celebrating, and each one is rooted in a historical event.

An event that actually happened on this very day.

First up.

I’ve got a proposition for a holiday.


I’m calling it International Pat a day to commemorate the opening of the very first permanent movie theater.

See for me.

Cinema is life.



I do know how that sounds but I don’t care if I’m giving freshmen and an intro to film seminar.

I mean it I don’t just love movies.

I live for them.

In a pre-pandemic world.


I was hitting up the movies like once a week.


It was expensive.

Did I use my expired college ID?

To get student?


That’s not the point.

The point is I just couldn’t get enough of these movies, the lights dimming, the surround sound, the big cushy chairs and the broke down musty ones and that’s screen ready to transport me wherever I want to go.


It’s intoxicating every time.

I feel this strongly about the movies and I’ve been going to the movies.

So, can you imagine living in 1906 and going to the very first permanent Cinema in existence?


It opened 115 years ago.

Today in Paris Cinema Omnia, Pate.

The theater had been built in part by Charles Pate.

He’d founded one of the world’s first film production companies with his three brothers.


They actually started out by selling phonographs, you know, like old-timey stereo systems, but soon they caught wind of a new technology and early motion picture camera.

The cinematograph coincidentally invented by another set of French siblings, The Lumiere Brothers.


The Pate Lumiere partnership, was a fruitful one.

They made hundreds of short films that toured the world and arguably launched the movie business, as we know it and Pate is still Distributing films today.

You may have come across their crowing, rooster logo, perhaps during your own, visit to the movies.


So, how are we going to celebrate this December first holiday?

Well, obviously you have to go to the movies, but that’s just the beginning because you got to also do it and period costume.

Get yourself a bustle, get yourself a top hat.


This is an event, you know, put a look together.

And if you’re thinking like hello, there’s a reason why old movies were only like three minutes long.

Because how am I going to sit?

Roo say a three hour long James Bond movie.


If I’m wearing a corset, don’t worry because on International Pat a day, I’d get all the movie theaters from the big chains to the little art houses to play all the pre Hollywood greats, the two-minute clips of trains charging and Factory workers leaving their jobs.


That way.

They get their special holiday business, you get to wear your corset and I single-handedly, Save Cinema.

It’s a win-win-win.

International Pate de think about it.


Alright, so that’s our first idea.

But what if you’re into celebrating something edgier producer?

Amy Padula has a holiday for you.

I hereby declare December 1st.

The curse heard round the world day.

The path to stardom isn’t always a straight line.


Sometimes we walk the line on purpose.

Sometimes we find ourselves on it by mistake.

Sometimes it’s our mistakes that lead us directly to fames doorstep.

On December 1st 1976.

That’s exactly what happened to a punk rock band called The Sex Pistols.


Now, at the time, nobody really knew who the Sex Pistols were.

They’d only been signed to a major label for two months.

But on that morning in December, they got a call from their label.

Queen was supposed to appear on this family-friendly British TV show called today, but supposedly Freddie Mercury had a horrible toothache.


So the label offered the has instead.

Rockers the new craze they tell me they’re Heroes.

Not the nice clean Rolling Stones.

The show was hosted by a prominent interviewer named Bill Grundy.


Grundy was known for pushing his guests around in the hot see that our group called The Sex Pistols.

I’m surrounded Now by all of them, but even he was maybe I’m prepared for how hostile and well, mumbly young Steve Jones and Johnny Rotten would be, are you serious?


Oh, yeah.

Just making it right about me.



Yeah, that’s what I mean about what you do.

Oh, yeah, you are serious.


Let’s out.

Last Brownsville died.


What what what we say is a lie.


Yes, they really turn ourselves on Grundy is in a suit and tie holding a microphone.

The Sex Pistols are slumped down in their seats.

Some wear jeans, others leather pants, their hair is spiky and bleach.

Each tour long and unnatural shade of red.


One has his hands jammed into his pockets eyes averted.

Another is rocking back and forth in his chair.

Well, suppose, they took other people on It’s just that.

I feel like it’s worth noting a rude word.

Next question.



No, what was the then?

Grundy dared.

One of the pistols Steve Jones to go even further.

Go on.

You’ve got love 57.

Say something outrageous.

Jones takes the bait and he swears on national TV.

Think of all the times you’ve said something off the cuff that didn’t land well in a job interview to a friend.


Maybe you totally went overboard at that wedding speech.

You gave, if I think back on those moments myself, I come out on the other side with a lot of embarrassment.

Not even a lousy t-shirt, but that wasn’t the case, but the pistols in 1976.

Well, that’s it for tonight.


Good night.

Who are these punks?

That’s what the daily mail wanted to know.

And suddenly Punk was Unleashed to Britain and to the world.

Like I said, the pathway to fame isn’t a straight line.


Sometimes it takes a little TV magic, someone speaking out of turn and Freddie, Mercury’s bad teeth.

So let’s raise a glass to celebrate the curse heard round the world day.

Okay, y’all don’t get holidays.


Two more reasons to celebrate December first.

After the break.

Okay, I’m going to throw another December first holiday into the mix will call it.

Life is a highway day.


This one is to commemorate December 1st, 1913 or the opening of the first drive up gas station.


Yeah, I can hear your horror through the podcast void.


Is this not the dawn of gas-guzzling, jammed roadways infrastructure, chaos and just like environmental apocalypse.


Yes, sure, but hear me out.

Before we had gas stations as we know them you’d have to swing by your local pharmacy or general store or your blacksmith even to buy your gas by the can then you just pour it into your tank, using a giant funnel like a freaking cartoon.


So when the first drive up, gas station opened its convenience was unmatched.

The first one opened in Pittsburgh.

It’s actually still there on the northeastern side of the city.

It had that Pavilion.

Look, that’s so common in gas station, still, and the services they offered were fairly basic.


In addition, to selling fuel.

They offered free are free water and free road maps.

And here’s where we get to the thing that I think is worth celebrating.

I’ve got Words for you car culture.

Listen, I’m from California.


Cars are basically the state bird car culture is my culture.

I’m talking road trips.

I’m talking gas station snacks.

I’m talking fighting over the radio.

I’m talking going to the carwash and sitting inside your car and watching it.


Get blasted by a bubble machine and just feeling a childlike sense of wonder.

I’m pretty sure none of that happens without that first drive up gas station.

So here’s what I’m proposing.


A December first holiday.

That’s all about celebrating, the small Joys that car culture brings us and, you know, we’ll do fun car shit.

Go to a drive-thru, get a gas station Slurpee or just drive around with your friends and talk about everything and nothing.


And then we’ll make December 2nd no car day to try and offset the emissions.

It’s like two holidays for the price of one just like those good gas station snacks, and that’s my take on Life Is A Highway Rascal Flatts version day?


Our next and final December.

First holiday commemorates, the death of an author who taught us so much about life.

It comes from producer.

Remove a Philip, take it away.


I All right, so you don’t know me, but my name is Ramona, George.


Philip the first, what’s up?

I got an idea for December 1.

I call it national Baldwin to buried a the names of work in progress.


So I’m a brown Southern Christian boy who moved to New York as a preacher.


Yeah, and you know, who else was a New York City preacher?

The prolific writer of James Baldwin, who died on December?

1st 1987.

And after I lost my faith, I found James.

It started with his short story.


Sonny’s Blues.

Sonny’s Blues is about these two black Brothers, the good one, who quietly does, what the world expects of him and the other Sunny the Troublemaker.

He’s a talented jazz musician, but he can’t get it together.



The rest of the world wants him to be.

Sorry captures.

What I Call The Duality gym.

Six that experience minorities have to go through within the confines of whiteness.

Here’s Baldwin and an interview talking about that.

What the world does to you is the world does it to you long enough and effectively enough you begin to do it yourself.


They think it is going to be white and you think it’s important to be light.

I think it’s a shame to be black and you think it’s shameful to be black and you have no corroboration around you of any other sense of life.

The story is about this sexy Confluence of New York and Jazz back in the day when I’d be first date, awkwardly chatting down the quiet West Village cobblestones.


I’d point to a handsomely, like, jazz bar and say, you have a red Sonny’s Blues.

Am I saying Baldwin was my wingman?

Well, I’m not not saying that.

If you never seen him, he had the small build, but these Bright Eyes.


Almost danced as he spoke, which he did in this frenetic pace of Rhythm, that captured America’s attention, but truth is Baldwin had to get out of America to really find his voice Baldwin in the 40s with 40 bucks in his pocket depth of Paris for a few years.


It was powerful to hear a man of color, a black man, like Baldwin needing to get out of these white American confines as importantly because I was able to, I wanted to find out Doubt.

Well, Being black ended when I began or vice versa.


I mean, it.

Something’s Happened to me because I was Jimmy, and something’s happening because I was black.

I’d want to spend the rest of my life go around.

Saying, you keep it that way because I’m black.

You know, what if James didn’t leave America, we may never have gotten to towering figures in American culture and politics the man.


I like to call the berries.

In 1953 Baldwin came back from Europe and finished his novel Giovanni’s room.

A love story between two men in Paris. 60-plus years later.


We get Moonlight from writer director.

Barry Jenkins.

Jenkins said that coming from the projects in Miami.

Giovanni’s room was his first experience with queer literature.

He’d go on to say about Baldwin quote.

Very elevated intellectual.


And black is fuck at the Same damn time.

I was like, this is dope.

I want to take a little bit of this and quote that black intellectual approach has inspired others like the other Barry President, Barack Obama.


President Obama often eludes to Baldwin as a principal figure in understanding his life.

As a black man in America.

The former president has spoken about reading Baldwin’s books.

While growing up in Hawaii and he’s repeatedly included ball.

Owens book.

The Fire next time on his famous recommended reading lists.


And when the NFL tried to Blacklist Colin Kaepernick, he Baldwin back, it was James Baldwin who said to be black in America and to be relatively conscious is to be in a rage, almost all the time.


My question is, why are all people And it’s all of this that is shaped my life.

All that.

He wrote that he did that.

He said as a prolific intellectual queer black man that has had a very visible effect on me on the berries and Kaepernick and even maybe you.


So that’s why I’m petitioning that we make December 1.

National Baldwin to bury to probably a bunch of other people day.

The name still needs work, but it’s worth celebrating.

The future of the liberal this country.

Is precisely as bright or as dark as the future of the country.


It is entirely up to the American people whether or not they are going to face and deal with an Embrace, The Stranger named Alliance along a valid nigga here.

And you invented it, you the white people invented him and you have find out why?


So there you have it for brand-new holidays, for you to celebrate on December 1st.

We had a lot of fun coming up with these.

But after turning out a few of them, we realized very quickly that you could make a holiday for just about anything.


So what makes something worth commemorating on its own special day.

Remember, Tom Roy, the guy who came up with a list of holidays just for the fun of it.

Well, he sort of has this rule of thumb.

What happens is once you start finding things that people talk about you go.


Oh my God, that’s a holiday.

That’s it.

It’s just the stuff that matters to people enough to keep talking about enough, to give it its own spot in the calendar.

Whether it’s a movie Obsession.

Something wild that happened on TV, your relationship with your car or your favorite author holidays.


Like, these help us reflect on things from the past that shape, Our Lives now, and what makes those things special.

Listen, someone somewhere had to have decided what major holidays are worth celebrating.

What moments in history, warrant a whole day off, for us all to reflect.


All I’m saying is why can’t anyone make a similar declaration about any day.

What matters is what matters to you?


Not passed it as a Spotify original produced by gimlet and zsp media.

This episode was produced by Amy, Padula.

Next week.

We revisit the 1996 Christmas tree lighting and the birth of a Christmas meme.

Where am I?


Our producer is Sarah Craig.

Our associate producers are Julie, Carly and Ramon.


Laura Newcombe is our production assistant.

The supervising producer is Erica Morrison editing by moral Waltz.

Andrea be Scott and Zach Stewart Ponte a fact-checking by Jane, Ackerman sound design and mixing by Hans Dale.


She original music by Sachs kicks, Ave.

Willie Green, Jay bless and Bobby.


Our theme song is Toko Liana by Coco, Co with music supervision by Liz Fulton.

Erection by Zach Schmidt show art by Elysee Harvin and Talia Rahman, the executive producer a DSP media is Zach Stewart Ponte.


The executive producer from gimlet is Abbie.

Ruzicka special.

Thanks to Lydia Pole, Green, Dan Behar and Clara Sankey Emily wiedemann list Styles and Nabil.

Cholan pot.

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At Simone pollen on thanks for hanging.

Will see you next week.

I did radio for 22 years, 77 I-77.


I want to grow up and have a tree form with Border Collies.