Surprising history of the "Canadian Tuxedo," starring Bing Crosby

LVC-bing-slider1
I've been known to sport a denim jacket and bluejeans with some regularity, making me the butt of my chums' "Canadian Tuxedo" barbs. Yet I never knew the origin of that phrase until now! Turns out that its origins may go much further back than the 2001 film "Super Troopers" that certainly fueled the phrase's popularity. According to Levi's:

In 1951, the world famous American crooner Bing Crosby was denied entrance into a Canadian hotel because he and his friend were dressed completely in denim. Although the Hotel management eventually recognized Bing and made an exception because of who he was, the story of the incident traveled fast. Friends of his back home contacted Levi Strauss and Co. and the designers immediately developed a custom denim tuxedo jacket for Bing so that he would never have problems wearing Levi’s Jeans, even in fancy establishments. It was made of the sturdy denim used for 501 Jeans, and decorated with a lovely corsage of Red Tabs, held onto the lapel with a cluster of shiny copper rivets.

Inside the jacket was a huge leather patch printed with a “Notice to All Hotel Men” stating that denim is a perfectly appropriate fabric and anyone wearing it should be allowed entrance into the finest hotels.

LS&Co presented the jacket to Bing at the 1951 Silver State Stampede in Elko, Nevada where he was honorary mayor. He was so tickled with the tux that he wore it to many press appearances for his next film, “Here Comes the Groom.” The original jacket, as well as one made for the town’s mayor, is in the Northeastern Nevada Museum in Elko.

Read the rest

Globe and Mail: TPP's copyright chapter will cost Canadians hundreds of millions

14525599118_8ffddb4e03_b

Canada's rock-ribbed bastion of pro-trade, pro-Tory ideology has come out against the Trans Pacific Partnership's Intellectual Property chapter in a leading editorial signed by the paper's editorial board. Read the rest

Canada's new Liberal majority: better than the Tories, still terrible for the Internet

056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x824

Justin Trudeau is certainly an improvement on outgoing Prime Minister Stephen Harper. He's unlikely to go on burning Canada's archives and warring on its scientists, and he'll probably stop ignoring the murder of hundreds of aboriginal women and girls, and he's not a racist asshole who plays to other racist assholes to keep power. Read the rest

John Oliver on the Canadian election: NAILED IT!

KzPkab

Just in time for election day, the best show on late-night TV reports on the decade-long reign of error from Stephen Harper's Conservative Party, and finishes on a note of surreal triumph. Read the rest

Baseball fan in Canada arrested for spraying beer on a baby

Beer from thrown can sprayed on this baby and mom at Toronto Blue Jays game.

Police in Toronto, Canada arrested a man at a baseball game for hitting a baby with the spray of a beer can he threw from his seat in the stands. Read the rest

Every terrible thing Canada's Stephen Harper government has done in the past four years

Prime Minister Stephen Harper was happy to present Justin Bieber with a Diamond Jubilee Medal on Friday, November 23, 2012 (PM Stephen Harper's Photostream/Flickr)

Dave writes: "Boing Boing has been nice enough to post my past yearly round-ups of terrible deeds done by Canada's Conservative Government. Here is the round-up of the round-ups. My summary of all of the bad things that have happened over the last four years. Read the rest

Listen: making sense of the Trans Pacific Partnership, a Canadian election perspective

Ep 103 Header

The current Canadaland podcast (MP3) carefully parses out the implications of the Trans Pacific Partnership from the perspective of Internet freedom, censorship, free speech, business, and transparency. Read the rest

Canadians: you can register to vote at the polls

elections-canada-ballot-box

Elections Canada has made an awful mess of voter registration this cycle, mailing cards to old addresses and providing incorrect information about where your polling place is. But don't despair! Although Elections Canada would prefer that you register to vote before going to the polls, you can just show up at an advance poll, or a polling place on election day, with ID, and register to vote on the spot. Read the rest

Canadian Tories funneled $8M in tax money to US Republican Party's NGO

6262122778_7a43d113d0_o

Under the Stephen Harper government, $8M was given to the John McCain-chaired International Republican Institute, a non-governmental organization started by the US Republican party to advocate for right-wing policies abroad. Read the rest

How the NDP and Liberals can defeat the Tories: a data-driven approach

Qmw8s8EE6YB01Dv9mqHJzw

Ali Kashani, a data-scientist, has run the numbers on Canada's electoral constituencies (called "ridings") and concluded that if the candidates from the NDP and Liberal parties in sixteen of those ridings agreed to one or the other withdrawing, the Conservative Party could not form the next government. Read the rest

Umbrella-sharing service: return it in 48h and it's free

11849032_977469798984128_1393561081_n

Umbracity aims to solve the problem of unexpected urban showers with a shared-umbrella service. They've rolled it out in soggy Vancouver, and the deal is that you get to use an umbrella from any of their kiosks for free for 48h, but if you keep it longer, it's $2/day to a maximum of $20. Read the rest

Tea Party "family values" pol resigns after sending adulterous vid to entire address-book

mcmillinmug

After sending the sex-video to his entire contact list, Republican Indiana Rep Jud McMillin sent out a mass-text saying that his phone was stolen in Canada and had only just been returned; he asked recipients to "please disregard any messages you received recently. I am truly sorry for anything offensive you may have received." Read the rest

Execspeak singularity: the spectacular bullshit of Blackberry's CEO

thumb50

It takes a top-notch MBA and years of training to be able to improvise and enunciate statements like this 2010 gem: "I'm going to really frame our mobile architectural distinction. We've taken two fundamentally different approaches in their causalness. It's a causal difference, not just nuance." Read the rest

Naomi Klein, David Suzuki, Leonard Cohen, Donald Sutherland and Ellen Page's vision for a better Canada

The Leap Manifesto calls for a Canada remade as "a country powered entirely by renewable energy, woven together by accessible public transit, in which the opportunities of this transition are designed to eliminate racial and gender inequality." Read the rest

Step Aside, Pops: a new Hark! A Vagrant! collection that delights and dazzles

harkavagrant
Canadian historian turned webcomics god Kate Beaton is back with her second Hark! A Vagrant! collection: Step Aside, Pops. Never before has history been so bitterly funny.

The first person, and cat, to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel

djkdjkdjd

In 1901, Annie Edson Taylor, then 63, was the first person to make it over Niagara Falls in a barrel. She designed her own barrel, containing a harness and mattress, and sent her cat over the falls first as a test. Read the rest

Stephen Harper will use 12-18 year old junior rangers to fight the Russians

The largely aboriginal youth club -- historically called upon to fight forest fires and volunteer in parks -- is now part of the Canadian Prime Minister's "arctic soveriegnty" plan. Read the rest

More posts