Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Lawrence of Arabia Motorcycle Crash, May 18, 1935

On May 19, 1935, T.E. Lawrence, an avid biker who favored Brough Superior bikes, died in a motorcycle accident near his cottage in Dorset. He was just 46 years old, and he died as he swerved to avoid hitting 2 boys on bicycles, lost control and went over the handlebars. Check out this newsreel, with some brief footage of T.E. Lawrence, better known as Lawrence of Arabia. (ed. note - oddly enough, I was also in a bad motorcycle accident as a 46 year old, trying to avoid a young kid who was making an illegal left turn on a side street into oncoming traffic... me :~) And thankfully, I didn't die, but it was really close. And years before that, I wrote a song called funky motorcycle(mp3 download) produced by Frank Random in my garage circa 1995.)

If you'd like to learn more about T.E. Lawrence, check out wikipedia's extensive entry, or better still, read one of his books, The Seven Pillars of Wisdom. This book was edited by his friend, George Bernard Shaw. And David Lean's movie, Lawrence of Arabia is a great film, sorry - an amazing film, one of the best but not the best source to learn about the man.

Also of note today, May 19 - a young girl named Janet Gaynor cleaned up on the first Oscar night, winning three Academy Awards in one evening, for her role in A Star is Born.

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