Richard Ernest "Dixie" Blandy

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Scaramouche, Nov 4, 2018.

  1. Scaramouche

    Scaramouche Student of the Columbian Exchange Supporting Addict

    Sep 15, 2015
    The world went kind of nuts after World War I; those who remained after the cataclysmic industrial strength killing machine that saw 40 million military and civilian casualties that changed nothing and weathering the 1918 - 1920 Flu pandemic known as the Spanish Flu that took another 50 to 100 million lives world wide, the world stepped into the 1920s with shirts off and pants unbuttoned.

    People got a fever to live, they had survived. This gave rise to some very odd behaviors. Dance marathons thrived with couples competing for prize money, stepping the light fantastic for a month and sometimes two. There was a guy, Bill Williams, who pushed a peanut up Pike's Peak with his nose. Plennie Lawrence Wingo walked backwards from Santa Monica, CA to Istanbul, Turkey using a pair of reverse looking glasses and wearing through 13 pairs of shoes. Six day bicycle races were all the rage. Them stories of Americans abroad ripping up Paris, Gertrude Stein and Ernest Hemingway and the bullfights in Spain. F. Scott Fitzgerald and James Joyce running amuck in Berlin and Lisbon and Belfast and Casablanca. Lindbergh flying the Spirit of St Louis across the ocean.

    People got to understand that if you don't live a life worth living you aint going to have much to think about when they lay you down into your final resting spot.

    One of the weirdest fads that arose out of this time was flag pole sitting. My idea of watching paint dry, but others thought it a venue to amass money, fame, good looking women and a free lunch.

    Richard Blandy was a 5' 4" Cajun and a cocky rooster at that. In 1933 he went up to the Chicago's World Fair and knocked down all the previous records by sitting on a flag pole for 77 days and nights.

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    Mr. Blandy in his later years

    In 1954 he acquired the flag pole standing record at the Michigan State Fair by staying erect for 10 straight days.

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    I doubt this photo is of Mr Blandy as that doesn't appear to be the kind of perch one would chose for a 10 day stance.

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    Car dealerships use to have contests for pole sitting, last man/woman sitting would be awarded a new Chevrolet or Desoto or some such thing.

    In 1960 Blandy established the bicycle record for sitting on a bicycle on a pole for 13 days and nights down in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

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    I don't remember rightly but I think he was struck by lightening something like 11 times in his pole sitting career. He was definitely married six times, three of those holy congresses ending in divorce, and three ended in widowhood. He was known to meet his younger wives through telephone conversations with fans on the ground during his many flagpole sitting exhibitions.

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    He broke his 1933 record on the Steel Pier in Atlantic City, NJ in 1964 by one day, the idea of sitting in the weather day and night for 78 days eludes me.

    In 1965 he achieved the world title for sitting on a flag pole at Grona Luid Amusement Park in Stockholm, Sweden seated for 125 days in a chair 200 feet in the air. It was recorded that during that time he consumed 92 large bottles of whiskey and smoked three packs of cigarettes a day.

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    He died in an accident at age 71 when the flagpole he was atop collapsed at the Dixie Mall in Harvey, IL.

    Probably the all round endurance champion of sitting in a tree or flagpole was Kenneth Gidge, in 1971, who somehow endured 8 months (248 days) up in a Peabody, MA flagpole. Breaking a previous 211 day record set by a 16 year old girl in the 1950s.

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  2. GoetzTalon

    GoetzTalon Well-Known Member

    Oct 21, 2011
    Good stuff! And I thought sitting in the deer blind for 11 hours yesterday was something lol!
     
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  3. Bro. Pappaw

    Bro. Pappaw Well-Known Member

    Mar 18, 2016
    One time, maybe. Nah. Not even once. Thanks for sharing.
     
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  4. isialk

    isialk Well-Known Member Supporting Addict

    Jan 7, 2017
    Holy cow scaramouche! Great write up! Not sure sitting on a flag pole getting struck by lightning is something I’d be all that excited about when my time came, but enjoyed the read.


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  5. xerts1191

    xerts1191 Well-Known Member

    Aug 12, 2017
    My first thought was, “unbelievable”! My second thought was, “why”? Good read mouche
     
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  6. ZoidMeister

    ZoidMeister Consider my signature line before replying . . . .

    Dec 4, 2014
    How did they take a dump?

    Isn't anyone wondering the same?
     
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  7. Scaramouche

    Scaramouche Student of the Columbian Exchange Supporting Addict

    Sep 15, 2015
    I responded to this question on one of the other other forums.
     
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  8. ZoidMeister

    ZoidMeister Consider my signature line before replying . . . .

    Dec 4, 2014
    They banned me . . . . because I cancelled my subscription . . . .

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  9. The War Wagon

    The War Wagon Well-Known Member

    159
    Oct 11, 2018
    Geez... and all I do for fun, is chase the occasional tornado... :meh:
     
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