This Week in Boomer History: Kwanzaa … Beatlemania … ‘Howdy Doody’

Notable events from our shared experience A California professor of African studies leads the first celebration of Kwanzaa, on Dec. 26, 1966. Rooted in the Black Power movement, Maulana Karenga seeks to connect black Americans with traditional African harvest rituals and give young people an introduction to the continent’s culture during what becomes an annual weeklong observance. Signaling the end of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, Mikhail Gorbachev resigns as general secretary Dec. 25, 1991, and hands over the nation’s nuclear launch codes to Russian President Boris Yeltsin. …

11 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week

News, discoveries and fun… 1. Howdy Doody (and Van Gogh) could help save Detroit. (Learn more at AARP) 2. The YouTube sensation “Grandma Drummer” has revealed her identity. (Learn more at AARP) 3. A stench like rotting flesh from a blossoming corpse flower attracts not only bugs but humans, too. (Learn more at Washington Post) 4.  The days of $3 a gallon gas are gone for good.  (Learn more at AARP) 5. “Silver shoplifting“ in Japan has doubled since 2002. (Learn more at Portland Press …

Could Howdy Doody Save Detroit?

On June 18, Detroit, which has been wallowing in something like $18 billion of debt, became the largest city in U.S. history to seek bankruptcy protection. Detroit’s creditors have already vowed to go to war over a proposal by the city’s emergency financial manager to settle with them for just pennies on the dollar. Now they’re floating the nuclear option: forcing a sell-off of the holdings of the museum of the Detroit Institute of Arts, which is home to 60,000 …