On the Tube: Hattie McDaniel

Hattie in a hat

We pay money for streaming services, but yet again I spent last night watching old programs on YouTube.

In particular, I enjoyed this documentary about the life of the multi-talented Hattie McDaniel.


Unfortunately, they really didn’t mention she had 5 husbands, but just focused on her final marriage and divorce to Larry Williams, a shiftless layabout.

More details about Ms. McDaniel’s personal life are revealed on her Wikipedia page.


Poor Hattie died at age 59 after being a target of protests against her subservient “house-maid” stereotype.


In retrospect, most startling to me was the relatively short lives of the leads of “Gone with the wind.”

Clark Gable died at age 59, Vivian Leigh died at age 53, and Leslie Howard was 50 years old when he died in 1943.

However, only Olivia De Haviland lived a long, lengthy life. She made it to age 104!

I just noticed her first name has the word “live” in it!

Also, she noted years later although she lost the Academy award to her rival Hattie, she felt it was a far better, and much bigger thing for the world.

Strangely, whereas Olivia de Haviland’s character Melanie dies in the movie, “Gone with the wind,” the actress Olivia out-lived all her co-stars in real life, while the other stars survived in the film.

P.S. In Georgia there is a “Gone with the wind” museum.


On the tube: “The Green Hornet.”

Van Williams and Bruce Lee

Each Monday I will show you what I’ve been watching in a new feature I have decided to call, “On the tube.”

Today I’m watching, “The Green Hornet.”

Campy fun.

Fun locator gadgets
Crime fighting fun

Sadly, it only went for one season on ABC, but such a lark.

It’s called the Banjolele or banjo uke

Well my husband got me hooked on George Formby. You may not know who he is if you are not familiar with the British musicals that George starred in during the nineteen thirties and forties.
His father, George Formby, Sr. was also a popular and successful musician and entertainer. As a result of dad’s success, George Jr grew up in a life of opulence that belied his Blackpoolian humor that hinted at humble beginnings.

Like his father before him, some of the songs that George Formby jr. performed on stage were full of double entendre.

But that’s British humor for you. They like their shows to include bawdy music hall jibber-jabber, knee-slapping goofy hi-jinks, and I like it too.

My husband asked for a Banjo Uke on his Amazon wish list, and I got him one as a surprise. Here is a video of us with his new banjo ukulele demonstrating the difference between the Hawaiian ukulele and the banjo ukulele.

Ukelele vs. Banjolele

And here is the great George Formby Jr. Playing one of his signature humorous songs.

 With me little ukulele in me hand

I like George Formby’s lighthearted style and it really helped lift up Britain during the darkest days of World War II.

During our cold Minnesota winters, I enjoy listening to George Formby on Google Play while I relax and wait for Spring!