10 Things You Should Know About Will Rogers

Here are 10 things you should know about Will Rogers, born 129 years ago today. He was a hugely influential figure in American culture: stage and motion picture actor, vaudeville performer, cowboy, humorist, newspaper columnist, social commentator. Few have ever matched what he accomplished in such a relatively short time. We could use wry sanity and common sense today, that’s for sure.

Ring In the New Year, OTR-style!

A vintage clock that says Happy New YearThe hours remaining in 2014 are dwindling down, and the way we figure it, odds are pretty good that you’re looking to kill a little time right about now.

You’re either stuck at the office on New Year’s Eve, but with precious little to actually do. Or you’re at home, idle in the hours before tonight’s festivities begin.

Either way, you could surely use a pleasing distraction.

As we’ve stated in this space before, we have nothing whatsoever to do with OTRCat, purveyors of audio collections of old-time radio programs. We don’t benefit in any way from offering plugs for them.

But we enjoy listening to old radio programs and we like it that, when major holidays roll around, the good folks at OTRCat make it a practice to offer a round-up of timely broadcasts for the streaming (or, if you prefer, the downloading), absolutely free.

Today, as you might guess, they’ve got a line-up of a half-dozen shows with a New Year theme, and the range of genres and decades is impressive. You can catch everything from comedies (Fibber McGee and Molly, Jack Benny) to mystery-horror (The Whistler) and even westerns (Gunsmoke).

Speaking of The Whistler, we’re sharing that one below, just to whet your appetite—but we strongly recommend you head over to OTRCat.com to see the entire line-up. And why not consider making a purchase of one of their entertaining collections of OTR programs while you’re at it, just to show your appreciation for their seasonal generosity?

The Whistler: “The First Year” (12/31/1947; 29:01)