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Spud McLaren
939640.  Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:13 pm Reply with quote

I was intrigued by the first episode of the J series' mention of surprising things that famous people liked or did. So I thought a K-thread for it might be in order. I'll start with

Boris Karloff

Although he played many sinister characters on screen, Karloff was known in real life as a very kind gentleman who gave generously, especially to children's charities. Beginning in 1940, Karloff dressed up as Father Christmas every Christmas to hand out presents to physically disabled children in a Baltimore hospital.
The actor appeared at a celebrity baseball game as Frankenstein's Monster in 1940, hitting a gag home run and making catcher Buster Keaton fall into an acrobatic dead faint as the Monster stomped into home plate.

 
Oceans Edge
939644.  Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:23 pm Reply with quote

Ooooooooo and he played the Grinch in the TV version of How The Grinch Stole Christmas.

and even sang the (You're A Mean One)Mr Grinch song

Edit: Woops apparently I'm wrong - while he did narrate the tale, and was the voice of the Grinch, he did NOT sing the song.... another childhood memory shattered *sob*


Last edited by Oceans Edge on Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:27 pm; edited 1 time in total

 
bemahan
939647.  Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:27 pm Reply with quote

Jerome Kern 1885 - 1945

American composer of hundreds of songs, such as "Ol' Man River", "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes", "A Fine Romance". He collected stamps, rare books and had a very fine collection of coins.

QI article about his book collecting:

http://www.americanheritage.com/content/greatest-book-sale

          Coin News Today: 
Quote:
Famed American composer Jerome Kern built one of the finest private coin collections of that time.  Kern, who penned hundreds of hit songs including such standards as “Ol’ Man River” and “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes,” among others, also had a keen eye for “hit” coins.  Among the many treasures in his collection were an ultra-high-relief 1907 Saint Gaudens Double Eagle.


Nicole Kidman is rumoured to be a collector of coins, ancient Judean coins in particular.

 
Spud McLaren
939652.  Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:56 pm Reply with quote

Jolly good, keep 'em coming!

DeForest Kelley ("Bones" McCoy)

Late in life, Kelley developed an interest in poetry, eventually publishing the first of two books in a series, The Big Bird's Dream and The Dream Goes On – a series he would never finish.

 
bemahan
939653.  Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:20 pm Reply with quote

Ex-Japanese Prime Minister, Junichiro Koizumi is a big Elvis fan but I think this maybe fairly well-known.

Article about it:
here

 
djgordy
939658.  Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:40 pm Reply with quote

Spud McLaren wrote:

DeForest Kelley ("Bones" McCoy)

Late in life, Kelley developed an interest in poetry, eventually publishing the first of two books in a series, The Big Bird's Dream and The Dream Goes On – a series he would never finish.


Not to mention his best selling anthology, "Dammit Jim, I'm a Doctor, not a poet".

 
Spud McLaren
939665.  Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:59 pm Reply with quote

Which was rather defeated by the fact that Spock had only just said, "It's life, Jim, but not as we know it."

 
Spud McLaren
939667.  Sun Sep 16, 2012 4:06 pm Reply with quote

Heinz Alfred "Henry" Kissinger

Since his childhood, Kissinger has been a fan of his hometown's football club, SpVgg Greuther Fürth, one of the nation's best teams at the time. As a youth, Heinz enjoyed playing soccer, and even played for the youth side. Even during his time in office, he always asked to be informed about the team's results every Monday morning. He is an honorary member of the club.

 
Spud McLaren
939857.  Mon Sep 17, 2012 4:07 pm Reply with quote

John Maynard Keynes

Keynes was interested in literature in general and drama in particular and supported the Cambridge Arts Theatre financially, which allowed the institution, at least for a while, to become a major British stage outside of London.

Following the War Keynes was instrumental in establishing the Arts Council of Great Britain and was the founding Chairman in 1946.

Keynes built up a substantial collection of fine art, including works, not all of them minor, by Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Amedeo Modigliani, Georges Braque, Pablo Picasso, and Georges Seurat (some of which can now be seen at the Fitzwilliam Museum). He enjoyed collecting books: for example, he collected and protected many of Isaac Newton's papers. It is in part on the basis of these papers that Keynes wrote of Newton as "the last of the magicians."

In 1939 Keynes had the option to enter Parliament as an independent MP with the University of Cambridge seat. A by-election for the seat was to be held due to the illness of an elderly Tory, and the master of Magdalene College had obtained agreement that none of the major parties would field a candidate if Keynes chose to stand. Keynes declined the invitation as he felt he would wield greater influence on events if he remained a free agent.

Keynes was a proponent of eugenics. He served as Director of the British Eugenics Society from 1937 to 1944. As late as 1946, shortly before his death, Keynes declared eugenics to be "the most important, significant and, I would add, genuine branch of sociology which exists."

- direct quoting from Wiki.

 
Oceans Edge
939860.  Mon Sep 17, 2012 4:30 pm Reply with quote

Helen Keller

Though famous as the deaf blind child, most accounts of her life and accomplishments gloss over her passionate fight for social causes.

A member of the Socialist Party
Involved in the founding of the ACLU
A suffragist
A Wobblie
An advocate for disabled persons

and the person accredited with having introduced the Akita breed to North America.

Friend of many well known and well respected persons of her age, Mark Twain, Alexander Graham Bell, Charlie Chaplin. She was a regular world traveller with a fondness for Japan.

There's a LOT more to Helen Keller than the 'little blind deaf girl'

 
'yorz
939862.  Mon Sep 17, 2012 4:38 pm Reply with quote

That's a coincidence. I was googling her for my contribution to this thread.

 
PDR
939865.  Mon Sep 17, 2012 4:44 pm Reply with quote

James Doohan (the world's most famous Canadian-Irish Scotsman through his portrayal of "Scotty" in STar Trek TOS) was one of those lucky few whose heavy silver cigarette case genuinely stopped the bullet that was heading for his heart.

But he was also a pilot of some note, having developed the military art of extreme low-flying to allow the very slow army reconnaissance aircraft to evade ground fire in a war zone. To make the point he once Slalomed an Auster IV around the telegraph poles (under the telephone cables) for about 4 miles across Salisbury Plain.

At nearby Boscombe Down this sort of low-flying skill was refered to as "doing a Doohan" for years after the war.

PDR

 
Spud McLaren
939874.  Mon Sep 17, 2012 5:38 pm Reply with quote

That's QI, PDR, and thanks for the info. I hesitate to be a wet blanket and ask whether you have any similar gems for people with a K initial, this being the K-section and all.

Does anyone think that we perhaps ought to have a thread for second string in a more general section?

 
PDR
939876.  Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:22 pm Reply with quote

Well you could say he played "sKotty"...

:0)

I'll give it some thought - there must be someone.

If you can wait for the "L" series then you could include Hedy Lemarr (actress) who was one of the inventors of frequency-hopping secure radio systems, or Ada Lovelace (daughter of Lord Byron) who was a gifted mathematician and arguably the world's first software engineer.

PDR

 
bemahan
939910.  Tue Sep 18, 2012 2:43 am Reply with quote

Alfred Kinsey
Founder of the Kinsey Institute For Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction.
He was a keen Scout and his psychology thesis was a dissertation on the group dynamics of young boys.

Wiki wrote:
At a young age, Kinsey showed great interest in nature and camping. He worked and camped with the local YMCA often throughout his early years. He enjoyed these activities to such an extent that he intended to work professionally for the YMCA after his education was completed. Even Kinsey's senior undergraduate thesis for psychology, a dissertation on the group dynamics of young boys, echoed this interest. He joined the Boy Scouts when a troop was formed in his community. His parents strongly supported this (and joined as well) because the Boy Scouts was an organization heavily grounded on the principles of Christianity. Kinsey worked his way up through the Scouting ranks to earn Eagle Scout in 1913, making him one of the earliest Eagle Scouts.[3] Despite earlier disease having weakened his heart, Kinsey followed an intense sequence of difficult hikes and camping expeditions throughout his early life.

 

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