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February 10, 2024
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Was this a triple dog dare. . .
It Was 'Cold Tongue' in Bay State
Was Flick's Tongue story inspired by this article?
In the January 27, 1965 article Paul Daly Jr. lived a real life experience that was just like the famous Flick's tongue frozen to the flagpole scene in "A Christmas Story. Did Shep read this article and used the idea for the movie plot? The firemen had to come while Paul was gestering wildly. Sound familiar? By coincidence Shep told his first version of Flick's Tongue on January 27, 1968 exactly 3 years to the day after the article appeared.
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December 14, 2023
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A Christmas Story Cast 40th Aviversary
Comic Con - Pittsburg
The core cast of ACS appeared at Comic Con in Pittsburg recently and signed autographes, posed for pictures and had a Q & A with the audience. J&B in the Hills (Front row center) were there to record it

>>> J&B in the Hills review <<<

November 21, 2023
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A Christmas Story Once in a Lifetime Reunion
Ralphie and the Gang Come Home
December 16-17, 2023 at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond, Indiana during the annual "A Christmas Story Comes Home Exhibit" "A tribute to the 40th Anniversary of "A Christmas Story," a tribute to Hammond, and a tribute to every heart that ever found joy in this timeless tale. The cast, your beloved misfits, are all set to make this reunion an event of legendary proportions. From Peter Billingsley to Scott Schwartz, the gang's all here to relive the magic with you!"
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July 23, 2023
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Eugene B. Bergmann
Another loss for the Shepherd Community
On July 14th 2023, the Shepherd community lost a great member. With the passing of Eugene Bergmann. Gene was the author of two great books "Excelsior You Fathead - The Art and Enigma of Jean Shepherd" and "Shep's Army" as well as his blog "Shepquest". He will be sadly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing him.
July 12, 2012
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Shep in 1978
Photo is dated on back Dec 14, 1978 and is from the Clinton Historical Museum Collection. Shep did his second annual Clinton show at the Clinton Historical Musem Village on August 3, 1978, so it may have been taken at that time (?)
May 16, 2023
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Pete with Shep at 'Wanda Hicky' booksigning - 1974
'Ranger Pete' - Peter F. Delaney
1956 - 2023
On May 2, 2023, the Jean Shepherd community lost an important member of it's fan and contributor base. Known to his friends in the Shep community as "Ranger Pete", we have been honored over the years to hear many of the Jean Shepherd radio programs that Pete recorded and passed along to Max to play on his various radio programs. He often wrote Shep related articles for Movie Collector's World and even a letter to the editor of the Staten Island Advance in response to a negative Rex Reed review of "A Christmas Story" in 1983. Pete worked for the National Park Service as a guide and in later years did "Jean Shepherd Radio Classics" on Staten Island Community Television. Pete will be dearly missed by all who knew him.
>>> Pete's 'Fan' page
February 8, 2023
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Melinda Dillon passes away
Melinda Dillon who played Ralphies mother in "A Christmas Story" passed away on January 9. She was the only main cast member from the movie who was not in the recent sequel "A Christmas Story 2" other than the Darren McGavin who died in 2006. She had been 'retired' from the industry since 2007
November 18, 2022
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A Christmas Story House - For Sale
Purchased in 2004 by Brian Jones of Red Ryder Leg Lamps, and opened in 2006 after very detailed rennovation to restore it to it's 'movie days', the A Christmas Story House and all the associated properties are up for sale. Hopefully, under a new ownership, it will continue to be the attraction it has become over the years.
>>> Original Sale in 2004

>>> ACS House Website <<<

October 20, 2022
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A Christmas Story Christmas
Premiering November 17th on HBO Max
On November 17th the latest sequel to "A Christmas Story" will premier on HBO Max. Let's hope that with Peter Billingsly behind the effort, this one turns out to be better than the turkey called 'A Chrismas Story 2'
>>> The Movie

>>> Official Trailer <<<

February 15, 2022
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Then and now
A Christmas Story Christmas
Additional Cast Annoucements
Joining Peter Billingsly will be former cast members Randy (Ian Petrella), Flick (Scott Schwartz), Schwartz (R.D. Robb) and Scut Farkas (Zack Ward). Also joining the cast in new roles will be Erinn Hayes, River Drosche, Julianna Layne, and Julie Hagerty.
>>> The Movie
January 20, 2022
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A Christmas Story 'Past'
A Christmas Story Christmas
Another sequel(?) planned
So, at first there was "My Summer Story" (aka" It Runs in the Family") which was entirely miscast, then there came "A Christmas Story 2" which was absolutely horrible. Now Warner Brothers has announced a new sequel "A Christmas Story Christmas" with Peter Billingsley recreating his role as Ralphie. So far so good. Hopefully, some of the others in the original cast will also appear, although Darren McGavin will be sorely missed here. I hope that, in writing the script, they will review Shepherd's works, not just the books, but his radio shows which were a big part of the evolution of the original movie. There needs to be a careful balance of 'looking back' at some of the original topics, and introducing new ones based on other stories Shep told. Which leads to another important point. It was Shepherd's narration of the original movie which brought the stories to life. For this movie to succeed, it will need good insight into writing the script from Shep's viewpoint, and then overcoming the two major obstacles of Shep's narration and Darren McGavin's perfomance. Fortunately, the original house used in the movie has been preserved and if they're smart, it will be used in some form. It is a tourist attraction and many people can relate to it personally having been there. Here's hoping that the writers get a visit by 3 ghosts and heed their advice.
>>> The Movie
November 29, 2021
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Andrew holding up his sign and the autograph he got.
A Strange Coincidence
A Groundhog Day Booksigning and Shep Documentary
Andrew Diamond wrote me about a booksigning at Sterns on Groundhod Day in 1967 which reminded me of a documentary "Channel Cat in the Middle Distance" done by Shep Fans Jon Sanger and Al Tedesco in association with the University of Pennsylvania. About 10 minutes in there is a 2 minute segment on the booksigning where Shep appeared with a live groundhog. It just so happens that the camera caught Andrew holding up a sign which he later had signed. (See photo above)
>>> Booksigning at Sterns
July 21, 2021
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Shep as a baby
Happy Birthday Shep!!
100 Years Old Today!
Hard to believe, but Shep is now 100 years old. And his memory is still alive and well.
June 2, 2021
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Tom Nalesnik - 'A Look Behind in Rewind'
A Look Behind in Rewind
Shep Lives!
Tom Nalesnik (Shep Fan of course) has a podcast called "A Look Behind in Rewind" and has paid tribute to Shep on this podcast about his personal encounter with Shep at a booksigning.

>>> A Look Behind in Rewind podcast <<<

January 3, 2021
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Betrayal: Jean Shepherd and "A Christmas Story"
Interesting article posted on the Los Angeles Review of Books website by author Lee Vinsel. Thanks to Paul De Zan.

>>> LARB website <<<

August 23, 2020
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Pin given out by Shep in the 50's
Excelsior You Fathead!
Thanks to David Balkansky, we can now see a pin that was given out by Shep in the 50's. He wrote: "I attended several events in Washington Sq. with my kazoo, many others and of course Jean. At one of these gatherings he passed out a small, "Excelsior you fat head!" button."
>>> Excelsior You Fathead!
June 2, 2020
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Shep on Letterman - March 10, 1982
promoting "A Fistful of Fig Newtons"
A 12 minute segment of the David Letterman Show with Shep as a guest has surfaced on YouTube. He is here to promote his book "A Fistful of Fig Newtons" and tells some of the stories like 'Lost at C' and the 'Great Ice Cream Riots' as well as side tracking in his usual fashion.

>>> YouTube Video <<<

May 6, 2020
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Barry Farber Passes Away
WOR personality who 'sent' Shep to the Amazon
Barry Farber, radio personality, who among many radio venues, was on WOR radio from 1962 to 1977 during the time Shep was on. He was friends with Shep and was responsible for Shep's trip to the Amazon on behalf of the Ludens Candy company in September 1965. Barry told the story at the "Friends of Od Time Radio" convention in 2000 while speaking on a panel with Max Schmid. You can hear that interview on this weeks replay on the Dustbin of History. Barry did his last live radio show, from his home, celebrating his 90th birthday on May 5th, the day before his passing.
January 27, 2020
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Today we celebrate the 20th Anniversary of this website
If one person has appreciated this work, then I am satisfied.
flicklives.com is 20 years old today. The growth of the website over the last 20 years is only a small part of what has evolved in the Shep community during that time. Eugene Bergmann has published several books and a play about Shep. We have had several conferences at the FOTR convention thanks to Max Schmid who has also contributed his talents on the radio, replaying old Shep shows and providing a wide selection of audio tapes for sale. Yahoo groups brought the fans together in a sometimes heated chat group, and when things settled down there were all the Shepfests to sit down, drink, eat, and share stories about Shep. The most popular Christmas movie has played on TBS for the 24 hour maraton for it's 22nd year and has become a stage play and a major Musical. And the list goes on. I would like to personally thank each and every one of you who have enjoyed this site over the years for visiting and spreading the word, and to those who contributed over the years to help build the content and unravel some of the mysteries of our hero. Thank you everyone for coming Excelsior, you fatheads! Jim
December 4, 2019
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The "Old Man's" Favorite Drink
Houston Texas based Karbach micro-brewery presents a seaonal treat: "Just like the old man's "major award," our seasonal red ale will light up the neighborhood. Loaded with smooth caramel malt and a citrus twist, we triple-dog dare you to find a better holiday ale. Ohhhh fuuudge, it's only here for a limited time!"

>>> Brewery website <<<

February 1, 2019
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Shep and the Fab Four
Playboy Magazine - Jim George
In 1982 Jim George was working for the Reading Eagle and interviewed Shep. This is an excerpt of that interview that was printed recently in the December issue of Playboy magazine.
continued...
December 23, 2018
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Mad Magazine
"A Christmas Story"
The February 2019 issue of Mad Magazine presents a parady of "A Christmas Story" as only Mad Magazine could do. Grab a copy and read "A Listless Story"

>>> Mad Magazine <<<

December 19, 2018
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Shep podcast featuring Gene Bergmann and Tom Lipscomb
Jay Douglas did an interview between Gene Bergmann and publisher Tom Lipscomb who published "Ferrari in the Bedroom" and Leigh's book "Show Gypsies". The discuss "A Chrismas Story"

>>> Jay's Blog <<<

November 30, 2018
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Bookplate
Auction of Joan Warner's 'Shep' library
Brown Bros. Auction is selling a group of books from Shep's 2nd wife, Joan Warner. There are some books signed by Jean and Shel Silverstein. The auction is December 1, 2018 in Buckingham, Pa.

>>> Brown Bros. Auction <<<

July 13, 2018
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Website Distruption
During the last few days flicklives.com has been down due to poor planning by the hosting company. 6 months ago they sent out a general email explaining the they would be migrating all accounts to new servers.
May 13, 2018
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Shep Music
Major source found
After a lot of research and listening to scratchy records, I feel that I have found a lot of the 'unknown' music Shep used in the 1963 and later years. It is an album put out by the Waldorf Record Corp in Harrison, NJ called "50 Great Moments in Music." I have identified 9 tracks he used on his shows and as I listen to more shows that number may increase. Shep would have qickly noted that although the album is 50 Great Moments. . ., there are 51 tracks!
>>> Music section
July 3, 2017
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Happy Fourth You Fatheads
By John Whalen
John writes in his blog: This year I will do you all a favor and forego trying to ape Shepherd and simply let you hear the master tell the tale in his own words, in his own inimitable style. It's a classic.

>>> John's Blog <<<

March 30, 2017
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Shep at Drew University
According to Mark Adams who was there - "As I recall, the show started late afternoon and the bar was closed... just set up as a coffeehouse. I think that the crowd averaged 150-175 students and faculty with students coming and going to study. It felt very similar to the Limelight show that my parents took me to see in the mid 60s. My favorite part of the show is the Q&A session at the end. The obnoxiously loud whistling was my own. ;-)"
>>> Live performances page
March 9, 2017
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Leg Lamp For Sale
On Season 6 Episode 11 of AMC's Comic Book Men, a leglamp and crate is brought into the shop and sold for $650.
>>> The Leg Lamp

>>> AMC - Watch Full Episode <<<

December 2016
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The Man Behind the LEG LAMP
Jean Shepherd's Innovation Reflected His Crazy, Conflicted Genius
The December 2016 issue of Inventor's Digest contains a story about the famous Leg Lamp, it's inspiration and creation by Reid Creager.
>>> Article

>>> Inventor's Digest <<<

December 7, 2016
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The Making of A Christmas Story
by Sam Kashner
The Holiday Issue of Vanity Fair features a story about the making of A Christmas Story

>>> Original Article <<<

September 7, 2016
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New Features
Cross - Referencing
Two new sections have been added and affect most of the pages on the website. These are "Plots / Story Lines" and "General Topics." The 'Plots / Story Lines' section covers where the various items were used- movies, books, columns, radio, etc. and the 'General Topics' section covers things that Shep would often talk about on his radio shows such as Baseball, Poetry, Og and Charlie, etc. The purpose here is to cross reference the uses of the various subjects across all the mediums Shep used. This is a massive project that is going to take quite some time, but it will contine to grow and inform daily.
>>> Plots / Story Lines
January 20, 2016
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Trains
Jean Shepherd's America
A copy of one of the 1971 (1st Season) episodes of Jean Shepherds America called "Trains" has surfaced and is posted on Youtube.
>>> Jean Shepherd's America

>>> Youtube Video <<<

December 25, 2015
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7 things you never knew about 'A Christmas Story', including a Jersey connection
By Marisa Iati - NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
Steven Glazer spoke about the untold stories behind Jean Shepherd's "A Christmas Story" at the Cranford Community Center.
>>> Read Steve's essay about the Leg Lamp

>>> Link to article <<<

December 23, 2015
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The Leg Lamp
by Steve Glazer
Steve Glazer has written an essay about Shep's use of the Leg Lamp and how it was conceived from advertisements for the Nehi company.
>>> Steve's essay
December 20, 2015
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Bahn Frei! - The Story of Shep's Theme
by Steve Glazer
Steve Glazer has done some extensive research on the history of Eduard Strausses "Bahn Frei" and how it came about that Shep used it for his opening and closing theme.
>>> Steve's article
November 20, 2015
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Jean Shepherd's "A Christmas Story"
The Truth Behind The Classic Movie
An Illustrated Lecture by Steven Glazer who explains many of the stories behind the Story.
>>> Time and Location. . .
October 18, 2015
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Shep Childhood Home Home Historic Presercation Announcement
2907 Cleveland Street
On October 16, 2015 on the anniversary of Shep's passing, Nick Mantis announced his nomination of the house at 2907 Cleveland Street for historical preservation citing that there are no monuments or statues that commemorate one of America's greatest storytellers. Nick is the filmmaker of the upcoming documentary "Shep".
>>> 2907 Cleveland Street

>>> Youtube Video <<<

September 8, 2015
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1971 KRAB Interview
On October 23, 1971, as part of promoting his book Wanda Hickey . . . , Jean Shepherd and Leigh Brown were Interviewed by Greg Palmer, Lorenzo W Milam and Helen Norton - KRAB radio in Seattle Washington. The interview lasted about 2 hours and can be heard at the link below.

>>> Link to KRAB webpage and interview <<<

August 9, 2015
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The Story of Schwartz
Updated information
Thanks to extensive research on the part of Steve Glazer, we now know that Schwartz was not 'shot down over Italy' as Shep wrote in his book "InGod We Trust. . . "
>>> Read what really happened here. . .
July 8, 2015
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Tom with his autographed Red Ryder
Region broadcaster, TV personality Tom Higgins dies at 82
Interviewed Shep May 15, 1995
Tom Higgins, a longtime Northwest Indiana broadcaster and newsman known for his wry sense of humor and quick wit, died Tuesday at age 82 after a three-year battle with cancer. Tom was working for WYIN Channel 56 - Gary Indiana when he interviewed Shep and presented him with a Toledo Mudhens baseball cap. Shep was in town to receive an award at Indiana University.
>>> The Tom Higgens Interview

>>> NWI Times Article <<<

July 4, 2015
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The Return of Ludlow Kissel
by John M Whalen
It's that time of year again. Every Fourth of July I bring back this blog I wrote back in 2012, which extols the virtues of Mr. Jean Shepherd and his famous story of Ludlow Kissell and the Dago Bomb that struck back.

>>> Read John's full story <<<

February 5 2015
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Nedicks
Admiral of the Orange Seas
Shep used to sing a Nedicks jingle from time to time and there was an actual contest held by WOR (Shep) and Nedicks. The winner was Barry Buhler - the "Bayside Baron" and was presented his award at the Nidicks near Times Square.
>>> More on Nedicks
January 16, 2015
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Wanda Hickey booksigning
Morristown NJ
Dave Somers sent in copies of his autographed copy of Wanda Hickey and the article from the local paper. Shep dedicated the signing to his mom, Pat, for her birthday.
>>> More on the booksigning. . .
December 18, 2014
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A Christmas Story
Cinefix - 8 Bit Cinema
Cinefix answers the question: What if 'A Christmas Story' was an 8-bit video game?

>>> Watch it here . . . <<<

November 23, 2014
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"Channel Cat in the Middle Distance"
Long lost documentary
Back in 1966, when Jonathan Sanger was a graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School of Communications, he made a film with his classmate Al Tedesco, called Channel Cat in the Middle Distance. Thanks to Jonathan who preserved the 16mm film and has since digitized it, we are able to see some very rare footage of Shep at work and play.
>>> More on the documentary. . .
October 31, 2014
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A Major Award!
Shep received a "Doctor of Letters" from New England College in 1986 where he also gave the commencement address that year. Thaks to Steve Glazer and Frank Hall for the info.
>>> Here's more. . .
October 16, 2014
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Remembering Shep
"I was this kid see. . ."
It has been 15 years since Jean Parker Shepherd passed away. He once said: "Can you imagine 4,000 years passing, and you're not even a memory? Think about it, friends. It's not just a possibility. It is a certainty." Only 3,985 more years to go! Thanks to the many fans who recorded his shows, we will be able to enjoy Shep's distinct voice and form of humor for many more years. Shep has the distiction of having succeeded in just about every form of medium in the entertainment business. Radio, TV, Records, Books, Magazines, Live Stand-up Performances, Off-Broadway Acting, and even Commercials were all in his portfolio.
>>> Listen to some Shep. . .
October 15, 2014
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Author will be portrayed
Actor Bennett Ayers will portray noted writer and storyteller Jean Shepherd (1921-99), the author of "A Christmas Story," Saturday, Oct. 18, at 7 p.m. at the Lanier Mansion State Historic Site, Madison. Ayers will recount stories about Shepherd's childhood in Hammond, as well as his career in radio and as a writer, according to a press release.

>>> Batesville Herald-Tribune <<<

October 12, 2014
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Jean Shepherd's FIRST wife
Thanks to Steve Glazer we now have confirmation of the longtime rumor of Shep's 1st marriage, (before Joan Warner, 1950). It was to a girl named Barbara Mattoon who was not only from Hammond but also worked at WJOB while Shep was there. This brings the total number of wives to 4. Barbar Mattoon (1947), Joan Warner (1950), Lois Nettleton (1960-67), and Leigh Brown (1977-98).
>>> More about Shep's 1st wife. . .
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