Willie Nelson Once Recorded An Album To Pay Back Taxes To The IRS (Cool Weird Awesome 1231)

Today in 1933 the birthday of Willie Nelson, a country music legend who once put out an album so that he could send royalties to the IRS to pay some overdue taxes.

Irna Phillips Brought The World Of Soap Operas To Life (Cool Weird Awesome 1038)

Today in 1952, the first TV episode of the soap opera Guiding Light. It was one of many hit shows led by a writer and producer sometimes called the “queen of soaps,” Irna Phillips.

If It Had Been Up To Billie Jean King, Astronaut Sally Ride Might Have Been A Pro Tennis Player (Cool Weird Awesome 1013)

Today in 1951, Sally Ride was born. She was a worldwide sensation in the 1980s as the first American woman in space, but before that, she was a talented youth tennis player who once caught the attention of the legendary Billie Jean King.

Meet ESTHER, A Robot That Plays Wheelchair Tennis (Cool Weird Awesome 1005)

We’ve talked a lot on the show about the many different skills robots are learning. Now we can tell you about Experimental Sport Tennis Wheelchair Robot, which is learning to play tennis. 

By |2024-05-09T08:03:18-04:00May 9, 2023|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , |

Ora Washington, The “Queen Of Two Courts,” Ruled Tennis And Basketball Alike (Cool Weird Awesome 956)

For National Play Tennis Day, the story of Ora Washington, one of the great early stars of women's tennis who also happened to be one of the great early stars of women's basketball.

How Did U.S. Dollars Get Their Name? (Cool Weird Awesome 804)

Today in 1785, the US Congress decided that the name of our country’s currency would be the dollar. Getting to that point was kind of a trek.

Helen Keller Once Flew A Plane, No Matter What People On The Internet Think (Cool Weird Awesome 797)

Today in 1880, the birthday of Helen Keller, the activist, author, speaker, and, on one occasion, a pilot. Never mind what randos on social media have claimed, here's the real story.

By |2024-02-02T09:25:10-05:00June 27, 2022|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , , |

Two Tennis Greats Played A Match On A Half-Grass, Half-Clay Court (Cool Weird Awesome 762)

Today in 2007, the king of grass court tennis, Roger Federer, played an exhibition match against his rival, clay court great Rafael Nadal. Not their only matchup, but for this one, the court was half grass and half clay, making it a so-called "battle of the surfaces."

William Mumler, The Photographer Who Had “Spirits” In His Pictures (Cool Weird Awesome 755)

Today in 1865, Abraham Lincoln went to Ford's Theater, and we all know how badly that ended. But five years later, William Mumler "photographed" the spirit of Honest Abe comforting his widow Mary Todd Lincoln. Here's the story of Mumler and his very controversial "spirit photography."

By |2023-10-03T11:41:58-04:00April 14, 2022|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , |

Tennis Balls Are Optic Yellow Thanks To David Attenborough (Cool Weird Awesome 550)

In the old days, tennis balls were white, but when documentary film legend David Attenborough pushed the BBC to carry the Wimbledon tournament in color, the tennis world realized those balls weren't showing up very well for home viewers. Plus: the community of Fitzgerald, Georgia is hoping to attract tourists with - what else - a giant steel topiary chicken. 

By |2021-06-04T08:44:37-04:00June 4, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , , |
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