November 28: Skywriting

SKYWRITINGAlright, it’s Thanksgiving day, so let’s make this one quick, because there’s food to be eaten.

The practice of skywriting had been exhibited a few times in air shows during the 1910s, but it was on this day in 1922 that the first known act of commercial skywriting was performed. Yes, 91 years ago today, Royal Air Force Capt. Cyril Turner wrote “Hello, U.S.A. Call Vanderbilt 7200” 10,000 feet above Times Square. Over the next two and a half hours, the Vanderbilt Hotel received 47,000 phone calls from people who had seen the skywriting. Since then, skywriting has become fairly commonplace, used for everything from advertising to marriage proposals. Of course, my favorite use of skywriting was when comedian Kurt Braunohler hired a plane to write “HOW DO I LAND?” over Los Angeles earlier this spring.

So, while you’re enjoying Thanksgiving cocktails, take a moment to mark the anniversary of when humans began, as Braunohler calls it, “forcing clouds to say things”  with a Big Blue Sky cocktail. It’s a delicious tropical drink that might seem out of place at the Thanksgiving table, but makes for a solid post-dinner drink.

Big Blue Sky

  • 1/2 ounce Blue Curacao
  • 1/2 ounce Light Rum
  • 1/2 ounce Cream of Coconut
  • 2 ounces pineapple juice
  • 1 cup ice

Blend everything together and pour into a wine glass.

Tomorrow: We look at some Thanksgiving leftovers.
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