There’s an elephant in the room … # 1
I suffer from an extremely rare condition.
There is a medical name for it …
“1951 Elephant Fixation.”
The doctor told me this before he had me forcibly ejected from from the surgery. He felt the best way to treat the condition was to have me write a series of posts about it. So here is the first post. This will be followed by others until I am cured. Can’t wait.
Briefly, “1951 Elephant Fixation” is the inability to talk about anything else apart from elephants. It manifests itself through the constant association of 1951 with elephants and vice versa.
Elephants are everywhere in the next few posts so be careful where you tread or you may well find yourself knee-deep in elephant dung. And Don’t forget. Elephants never forget. Neither should you.
OK. Where to start ? Well. How about Mandy Miller.
Born in 1944 she became a child-star of the 1950s. Her father, a BBC Radio producer, took Mandy (then age 6) and her older sister, Jan Miller to watch a film being made at Ealing Studios. Instead of her sister, it was Mandy who impressed the powers-that-be at the studio commissary that day and was offered a small role in the Alec Guinness film The Man in the White Suit. This wonderful film was released in … 1951. And this was the start of her brief but very successful career in films.
But Mandy is probably best remembered for her recording of the song “Nellie the Elephant”. It was written and recorded in 1956 and produced by non other than the “Fifth Beatle” George Martin. I have a feeling you would like to have a listen …
The song contains an early example of predictive text. In this case it comes in the form of a reference to a future American President.
Nellie the Elephant packed her trunk
And said goodbye to the circus
Off she went with a trumpety-trump
Trump, trump, trump
Yes. I know. Eat your heart out Nostradamus.
OK. Talking of circuses. There was a television series in the 1950s called Circus Boy. It starred Mickey Braddock as a young boy called Corky who, after the death of his parents, was adopted by a circus. He looked after a baby elephant named Bimbo.
Now … Mickey Braddock changed his name to Micky Dolenz and he became a member of 60s pop group The Monkees. One of his fellow band members was Mike Nesmith. And Mike’s mum, who was a secretary, invented correction fluid (Liquid Paper) in … 1951.
I could go on. You know that. I sense it. More next time.