It is Superbowl Sunday here in the United States. It has become a mini-holiday of sorts. For football fans, it is the ultimate game between two rivals. Whether you go to the game or watch it at home, it means cheering on your favorite team (if you have one). And it has become a major food day as well. There are many foods to celebrate the game from nachos to pizza. Pizza is the number one food according to both surveys and sales. All the major national pizza chains look to Superbowl Sunday as the biggest pizza day of the year. It is also the Chinese Lunar New Year so at my house this year, the game will have delicious Chinese food from a local restaurant.
Now to Titanic….
*Not that anyone really cares (or do they?)but the entertainment media has been aflutter with Kate Winslet saying that Jack did not need to die. If they do a remake, perhaps he will live that time or perhaps both will die. Or resurrected as flesh eating ghouls for the cinematic horror Zombies From The Cold Sea!
*A cardboard boat race to teach the lessons of buoyancy ended with the famously named Titanic suffering a similar watery fate. Duck tape and cardboard are a tough challenge to be waterproof though Mythbusters proved the viability of a duck tape boat.
*A political candidate recently spoofed Titanic on Saturday Night Live. Once again Titanic being used as a political prop.
*A Spanish broadcaster apparently confused British Prime Minister David Cameron with famous movie producer James Cameron. Oops! Next time try doing an Internet search first.
Raising the Titanic from its watery grave is not possible but Pete Williams of Burnley, UK has found a way to do it–with weights. When not doing his day job as a detective with Greater Manchester Police, he works out three or four days a weeks at a local gym and also a martial arts center. His goal is to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support and possibly set a world record that Guinness will take note of.
Williams and volunteers will attempt to lift Titanic’s weight of 52,000 tons (5.2 million kilograms) for a world record starting on Saturday 16 April. Williams is getting support from friends, a supplement company and hopes to get other sponsors as well. His reason for raising money for Macmillan is the support they gave for his father who was treated there for throat cancer. So far 100 people have signed up for the chance to dead lift a choice of weights for ten times before resting allowing for three people lifting at the same time.
This has been a quiet week for Titanic, so not a lot of news to report. Here are some interesting bits of news for you to consider.
1. You never know what lies waiting to be uncovered when cleaning out your home. Especially if you have not looked in those dust covered corners in closed up rooms, attics, or basements for a long time. A man found the portrait of Elsie Bowerman, a Titanic survivor, suffragette, and barrister. And it is now up for auction at Duke’s Auctioneers in Dorchester, Dorset, UK in March with an estimated price of £1,000.
Source: Titanic Survivor’s Portrait Discovered (BBC News,22 Jan 2016)
2. The Titanic Hotel at Stanley Dock in Liverpool has won the Luxury Travel Global Guide Award of Luxury Hotel of the Year. The editor of Luxury Travel Magazine is quoted as saying they “were blown away by Titanic Hotel Liverpool’s profile.”
Source: Titanic Hotel wins at Luxury Travel Awards (BDaily,22 Jan 2016)
Finally to close out this Friday, I offer something for my friends facing a very snowy weekend back east and all those also having very cold temperatures.
Lego is getting used a lot these days to build Titanic. One kid built a complete replica using Lego bricks. But no one has attempted doing a Lego representation of Titanic sinking. Till now. Take a look at the photos here and you will be astonished. It really took some real creativity to pull this off. It is far easier to build a replica than to simulate the sinking.
The Titanic and Bodies exhibitions at the former Movieland Wax Museum in Buena Park, California has gotten a reprieve. It was scheduled to shut down in January but the new owner is finding getting all the required approvals taking longer than anticipated. So the current owners, the City of Buena Park, contacted Premier Exhibitions and asked them to stay till 17 April 2016. This is good news for Titanic fans wanting to visit the exhibit in Buena Park and gives more time for Premier to locate a new home for the exhibits at Movieland.
According to Orange County Register, the announcement that it was closing in January brought in record numbers of people. The announcement that was being extended till April has seen reservations soar and January is nearly sold out. While the rent for the facility was a bargain $1 a month, Premier had to spend thousands to upgrade and maintain the facility. When the new owners finally take over, the venue will be modeled after the Butterfly Wonderland park in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Further information about purchasing tickets for Buena Park can be found at the Premier Exhibitions website.
1. The entertainment media is all aflutter telling of a mini-reunion of Kate Winslet and Leonardo DeCaprio at the Golden Globes. At least they are not reminding us for the 1000th time the new Star Wars movie has smashed Titanic’s box office record.
2. Can one describe a school bus flooded as akin to Titanic? It appears so. The United Kingdom has suffered from tremendous rain of late causing all kinds of problems. Now there is a certain rule when driving in areas where water is pretty well concentrated: you avoid it. Cars are not water proofed (a select few are but they are special custom jobs or military)so trying to drive through a deep pond of water on the road will certainly not bode well. Usually the driver gets stranded and a tow truck has to pull your car out. Now you would think a school bus driver with a bus full of kids would want to avoid driving in areas that have already been marked to avoid by authorities. School authorities in North Yorkshire are perplexed and investigating why a school bus with 26 children aboard was driven on a closed road where it ended up in a ditch and began filling with water. A young girl told Sky News “like the Titanic.” Water began pouring into the bus and kids had to kick windows to get out. Sky News also reports the driver was warned by the kids not to take that road.
“It started floating and then it capsized into a ditch, and before it capsized loads of water gushed through,” she said. It was pretty much like the Titanic – it was going.”
Not the kind of things parents want to hear about their kids day at school. None of the kids were injured and either went home or continued on to school via other means.
Source:Flooded School Bus Sank ‘Like The Titanic’(Sky News,5 Jan 2016)
3. Just checked the Blue Star website for any new information about Titanic II. Nothing found.
4. Premier Exhibitions is trying to be more transparent these days. In the past shareholders had complained that management was less than forthcoming about company operations, the proposed sale of Titanic collection, and other things. If recent filings are an indication, the new management is taking a different approach. They are trying to let investors know the company is going to be better managed and trying to increase revenues. Also they are looking into opportunities in Asia and in particular Macau.
Source:Premier Exhibitions Inc. Announces Corporate Update(Globe NewsWire,8 Jan 2016-press release)
Did you hear that the new Star Wars movie has toppled James Cameron’s Titanic off the throne? Hard to miss it since the entertainment media reminds us with screeching headlines announcing this important fact. There are major rumblings in the Middle East, the Turkish prime minister sees Hitler’s leadership as a positive role model, Russia is getting nasty as well but as long as the new Star Wars movie topples Titanic, that is more important.
Down under Clive Palmer’s dream of Titanic II appears moribund. There is still nothing going on at the Chinese shipyard and no formal contract has been signed for its construction. We did learn that if and when it should launch its first stop from China is Dubai. And Dubai has a serious interest in Titanic thanks to developers wanting to make a movie theme park. China is doing better than Palmer in building their Titanic that will be permanently docked at a theme park. You can stay aboard and even experience what it was like as it sank thanks to a sinking simulator. Oh and you can, for a fee, learn what cremation is like first hand (sans the real heat of course). Palmer may not be moving forward with Titanic but the Chinese are.
Premier Exhibitions saw major changes in the past year. Revenues have been mostly flat overall but costs were taking a big chunk of change. One proposed merger deal fell through and recriminations are now headed to court over that. So they sought out Dinoking and its chairman to try and turn around the company. Also they would like to sell the Titanic artifact collection but the price is so astronomical that it is hard to see anyone putting up that money. And it comes with a big sticker shock in the form of permanent judicial oversight from the U.S. Federal Court in Virginia. My guess is that in the end it will either be sold to a government entity of some kind or a consortium either in the Middle East or China. China and Dubai would seem the logical choices and will not be surprised if Beijing steps in to acquire the collection.
Titanic exhibitions continue to draw large crowds wherever they appear. People are fascinated by the story. Belfast has certainly seen it become a big boost for tourism and business. Titanic Belfast continues to draw them in and recently the Nomadic was made part of the exhibition. The fully restored tender is as close to the real Titanic as we can get. It took a lot of dogged work to get it out of France and then even more work to properly restore it. People are so used to how quickly we can turn out things these days but old seafaring vessels require a lot of special work. You do not splash on a new coat of paint and call it a day. It takes hours of patient work to take out the rot and replace it with new material and replacement parts generally hand crafted. Not unlike San Francisco’s historic cable cars. The original factories have long ceased operation and San Francisco has to make all its replacement parts to keep the cars going up and down hills at about nine miles an hour.
Titanic though is steaming on. It sank in 1912 but is still quite alive and well in different forms. People are learning the real story, which is good because there are plenty of lessons from Titanic we can draw from. Pity is that historical forgetfulness often means those lessons are lost but they can be relearned.
Marine City, Michigan may soon have a memorial plaque to honor those who died on Titanic in 1912. Margaret Micoff wants to not only honor but support “the dream people had coming here.” Micoff wants to have the memorial in Marine City’s Corwin M. Drake Memorial Park and believes it will draw interest from locals and from those in other states and possibly Canada. Micoff’s idea is to have the plaque be shaped like a ship’s wheel with the names of the 72 Michigan residents lost inside it. The plaque would be surrounded by a brick-paved with Titanic style benches. She is hoping the plaque will be bronze and is seeking funds to get the memorial plaque started.
The Marine City commission has approved the plan and Micoff believes the city’s maritime history makes it a suitable location for the memorial. Micoff is currently raising funds for the plaque.
When Titanic Belfast took over responsibility this year for the famous ship’s ‘little sister’, the SS Nomadic, it was the happy culmination of a lifetime’s dream for Roy Snowden. As the first chairman of the Nomadic Preservation Society, he was a key figure in the campaign to save the last maritime link to the Titanic from the wreckers’ yard and have it restored to its original glory in its home port. Roy served as a board member and trustee of the Nomadic Charitable Trust and his infectious enthusiasm persuaded many firms to supply materials and services free of charge. David Young, of the Nomadic Preservation Trust, said he never sought recognition but has left a remarkable legacy. “He talked about nothing else. He was an articulate man who knew a great deal about world shipping, but the Nomadic was the love of his life. He will be a tremendous loss.”
Snowden passed away on 5 Dec 2015 and is survived by his wife Geraldine, sons Mark and Michael and five grandchildren.