Daily Dirt reaches 500th milestone, begins journey toward No. 1,000

Steve Eighinger

500 consecutive days of the Daily Dirt ... who would have ever guessed?

Daily Dirt for Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023

And they said it wouldn’t last!

From the first edition of The Daily Dirt to today’s No. 500, thank you to an ever-expanding reader base. We receive regular e-mails, texts and a wide variety of other assorted messages from Ohio to Kansas, from Arizona to Indiana and Iowa to California. The next 500 days will be even more fun.

Welcome to today’s three thoughts that make up Vol. 500 of The Daily Dirt.

1. For a little extra fun today, our first thought, fittingly, carries a “500” theme with it:

  • 1. Of the 500 greatest albums ranked by Rolling Stone magazine in 2020, Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On?” was No. 1. A great album, but my vote for No. 1 would go to “Every Picture Tells A Story,” the 1971 masterpiece from Rod Stewart.
  • 2. The IMDb’s top 500 movies of all-time lists “Citizen Kane” (1941) as No. 1. Following the death of publishing tycoon Charles Foster Kane, reporters scramble to uncover the meaning of his final utterance: “Rosebud.” (I have a comment on this at the very end.)
  • 3. Of the 500 best-ever TV programs, “Breaking Bad” received the most votes in an IMDb reader ballot. Oh, for another season of Walter White and Jesse Pinkman.
  • 4. Of the 500 paintings labeled as the most expensive, Guinness World Records lists Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” as having the highest-ever insurance value. On permanent display at the Louvre in Paris, the painting was assessed at $100 million in 1962. Taking inflation into account, the current value would be around $900 million. My all-time favorite song from the late, great Nat King Cole was “Mona Lisa.” 
  • 5. After all of these years, the Indianapolis 500 is still considered the preeminent race in all of motorsports. 
  • 6. Of the all-time top 500 MLB positional players, Babe Ruth (who, of course, was an outstanding pitcher, too) is a hands-down selection on every major ranking I inspected. Interestingly, the choice for top pitcher is more wide open, although Walter Johnson probably leads the majority of rankings. Somewhat surprisingly, Roger Clemens is in the mix, ranking as high as No. 3 on some lists.
  • 7. Of the 500 most commonly used words in the English language, smart-words.org says “the” ranks No. 1, followed by “of,” “to,” “and” and “a.” One that’s sure to crack the top five at some point is “bruh.”
  • 8. Of the 500 most expensive cars on the planet, Motor1.com reports the Drako GTE fills the bill at $1.2 million. The Drako GTE packs 1,200 horsepower and a whopping 6,491 pound-feet of torque from a fully electric powertrain. The GTE can hit 60 mph in just about 2.0 seconds and tops out at 206 mph. The website describes the car as a “family-friendly rocket.” Kind of like my Kia Sorento.
  • 9. Of the 500 most expensive writing utensils, the Fulgor Nocturnus fountain pen by Tibaldi sold most recently for $8 million at an auction in Shanghai. The pen contains almost 1,000 black diamonds and more than 120 rubies. Only one of these was ever produced. Just give me the 0.7 G2 Pilot any day of the week. You can get five different colors for about $8 at Staples.
  • 10. Rateyourmusic.com has an interesting top 500 musical artists of all time. The Beatles are No. 1 (no surprise), followed by Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan. No. 1 is always a given. The rest is always up for debate.

2. LeBron James is close to becoming the NBA’s all-time scoring leader. LeBron will deserve all the kudos he receives when he eventually breaks the record, either later this month or in early February. He’ll surpass Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and in all likelihood, he will hold the record for a long, long time. Maybe forever.

Let’s just remember one thing in fairness to Abdul-Jabbar, who started his NBA career four years later than LeBron. College players were not allowed to leave early for the NBA at the time Kareem was coming up through the ranks. He spent four years at UCLA before entering the NBA. LeBron went directly from high school to the NBA. What if Kareem had enjoyed that luxury?

It’s safe to say LeBron would still be pursuing that all-time scoring mark four years from now.

3. Pantheon, a site developed by MIT, uses Wikipedia pages to create a formula to determine an individual’s historical significance. The site has ranked more than 70,000 people. Arguably the most interesting note I saw had Donald Trump No. 19 on its list of the most important 500 people in history. Right ahead of the former president was Julius Caesar. Right behind him were William Shakespeare and Michelangelo. 

Steve Thought O’ The Day
Although not recently, I have watched “Citizen Kane” several times. A great movie? Yes. No. 1 all-time? Ummm … no.

Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. In his debut column, Steve said he wanted to sit down when he dines out, provided five old TV shows he wanted to see resurrected and predicted the top five movies of 2021.

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