1996 Facts, Fun Trivia and History

1996 Facts, Fun Trivia and History

Quick Facts from 1996:

  • World Changing Event: Dolly the cloned sheep was born on 5 July 1996.
    She was named after busty singer Dolly Parton because her DNA came from a mammary gland cell.
  • The Top Song was Don’t Speak by No Doubt
  • The Movies to Watch include Jerry Maguire, The English Patient, Michael and Mars Attacks!
  • The Most Famous Person in America was probably Lance Armstrong
  • Notable books include: It Takes a Village by Hillary Clinton and Kingdom Come by Mark Waid and Alex Ross
  • Minimum Wage in 1996: $4.75 per hour
    Compaq Presario Computer: $1,999.99
  • Red Bull energy drink entered the US Market.
  • The Funny Guy was: Adam Sandler
  • The Funny Girl was: Kathleen Madigan
  • The Crazy Conspiracy: Tupac Shakur was not really shot and killed in the BMW driven by fellow rapper Suge Knight.
Top Ten Baby Names of 1996:
Emily, Jessica, Ashley, Sarah, Samantha, Michael, Matthew, Jacob, Chris, Topher, Joshua
Fashion Icons and Sex Symbols:
Claudia Schiffer
Leading Men and Hollywood Hunks:
Tupac Shakur, George Clooney, Tom Cruise

“The Quotes”
“You had me at ‘hello'”
– Renée Zellweger, Jerry Maguire

“Show me the Money!”
– Cuba Gooding, Jr., in Jerry Maguire

Time Magazine’s Man of the Year:
David Ho
Miss America:
Shawntel Smith (Muldrow, OK)
Miss USA:
Ali Landry (Louisiana)

The Amber Alert was named after Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old girl abducted and murdered in Arlington, Texas in 1996.

The Scandal:
The United States campaign finance controversy was an alleged effort by the People’s Republic of China to influence domestic American politics during the Clinton administration and also involved the fund-raising practices of the administration itself.

Theodore Kaczynski, the Unabomber was captured. He had killed d injured 23 people in his 17-year spree. He was turned in by his brother, David, who recognized the writing style and the content his brother was talking about.

Beauty Pageant Princess Murder: JonBenet Ramsey was found killed in her basement, and the killer was never found.

The Mystery:
6-year-old girl JonBenét Ramsey was murdered in her home. The case is still unsolved and no arrests have been made. An unusually lengthy ransom note claiming to have the girl kidnapped and demanding $118,000 for her return was found at her home, despite her corpse also being there.
Rap Star Murder:
Tupac Shakur killed in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas.
Actress Overdose Death:
Margaux Hemingway, age 42, from a deliberate overdose of phenobarbital.
World News:
Sparta and Athens signed a peace pack officially ending the Peloponnesian War that was fought over 2,500 years ago.

US News:
From 1897 until 1996 the federal government had a board of tea testers whose job was to make sure that imported tea was good enough to be sold in the US.

Prior to 1996, there was no requirement to present an ID to board a plane. The policy was put into place to show the government was “doing something” about the crash of TWA Flight 800.

Pop Culture Facts & History:
In 1996, a man broke into a New Zealand radio station, held the manager hostage, and his demand was for the station to play Rainbow Connection by Kermit the frog.

Ethernet inventor Robert Metcalfe predicted that the internet would collapse in 1996, promising to eat his words if not. In 1997, he took a printed copy of his column that predicted the collapse, put it in a blender with some liquid and then consumed the pulpy mass.

Jim Carrey was the first actor to make $20,000,000 to star in a single film, The Cable Guy.

After the release of the 1996 film Scream, which involved an anonymous killer calling and murdering his victims, Caller ID usage tripled in the United States.

Oprah started her famous book club.

In 1996 the remains of the “Queen Anne’s Revenge” Blackbeard’s pirate ship, were discovered off the coast of North Carolina.

Meg and Jack White of the White stripes publicly portrayed themselves as siblings despite the fact that they weren’t related and had married in 1996 prior to the band’s formation.

While creating the first Tomb Raider video game in 1996, a developer increasing Lara Croft’s breast size by 50% accidentally enlarged them by 150%. Others approved of the change before he fixed the mistake, and the marketing campaign emphasized Lara’s exaggerated body. It became a #1 hit.

The made-up word from a 1996 Simpsons episode “embiggen” was officially added to the Merriam Webster Dictionary in early March of 2018. #cromulent

The Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Man was created for the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta.

There is a light on top of the Capitol Records building in Los Angeles that spells out the word Hollywood in Morse code. It started blinking Hollywood in 1956 and has only stopped once in June of 1996 on Capitol Records 50th Anniversary where it blinked “Capitol 50”.

Lottie Williams is the only person to have been hit by re-entering space debris. She was walking through a park in Tulsa Oklahoma in Jan 1997 at 3:30 am and felt a tapping on her shoulder. It was a piece of the fuel tank of a Delta II rocket launched in 1996. She was unhurt.

The first person to stream their life on the internet was a 19-year-old woman, Jennifer Ringley on the Jennicam broadcasted her life from her college dorm room 24/7. At its peak, she got 7 million hits per day, a significant proportion of the internet at the time.

On April 1, 1996, Taco Bell spent $300k on ads claiming that they purchased the Liberty Bell and named it Taco Liberty Bell, and earned millions of dollars in free publicity.

Mary Tyler Moore offered a restaurant $1,000 to sell her a 65-year-old lobster so she could return it to the wild. Rush Limbaugh then offered $2,000 to eat the lobster. The restaurant denied both offers and kept the lobster as a mascot.

It wasn’t until 1996 that minivans had sliding doors on both sides of the second row. Before then minivans did not have a sliding door on the driver’s side.

Febreze fabric refresher began test-marketing in 1996. By 1998, it was sold nation-wide.

SNL’s Dana Carvey had a show that only aired 7 episodes in 1996, and had a writing team including Steve Carell, Bob Odenkirk, Louis CK, Stephen Colbert, and Charlie Kaufman.

Dave Chappelle was in a spin-off from Home Improvement, called “Buddies”. It premiered on March 5, 1996, and was canceled on April 3, 1996, after just five episodes.

Neither the Spice Girls themselves or their management came up with the Scary, Sporty, Baby, Ginger, Posh aliases. They were devised by Top of the Pops magazine in 1996 and later adopted by the group.

In 1996, Travelocity opened online. Early on, it was primarily traveling agents who booked flights on American Airlines.

The future King of Jordan, Abdullah bin al-Hussein (then prince), made a cameo in an episode of Star Trek: Voyager in 1996.

Animal Hero: Binti, a gorilla at the Brookfield Illinois Zoo, grabbed a 3-year-old who had fallen in the cage, protected him from the other apes, and delivered him to zoo personnel at the gate.

Marvel Comics filed for bankruptcy in 1996.

Marvel Comics writer Mark Gruenwald, upon his death in 1996, by request had his ashes mixed in with the printing ink for the collected edition of his series Squadron Supreme. Most first printings of the book probably contain some of his remains.

The world record for keeping the original 1996/1997 Tamagotchi alive is Age 89 days.

In 1996 the boxing career of former heavyweight boxing champion Tommy Morrison ended when he tested positive for HIV. However, in 2007 two nationally renowned HIV experts retained by the NY Times concluded that the 1996 result had been a false positive.

Cost of a Superbowl ad in 1996: $1,085,000

The Habits:
Doing the Macarena
Playing with Tickle Me Elmo
Reading Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt
1st Appearances & 1996’s Most Popular Christmas Gifts, Toys and Presents:
Tickle Me Elmo, Toy Story toys, Pokemon, Beanie Babies catch on, although they had been around since 1993. The McDonalds mini-beanie-babies giveaway fueled the madness.
Popular and Best-selling Books From 1996:
A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
Airframe by Michael Crichton
Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding
Cause of Death by Patricia Cornwell
The Christmas Box by Richard Paul Evans
CivilWarLand in Bad Decline by George Saunders
The Deep End of the Ocean by Jacquelyn Mitchard
Desperation by Stephen King
Executive Orders by Tom Clancy
Falling Up by Shel Silverstein
Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk
The Green Mile by Stephen King
The Horse Whisperer by Nicholas Evans
How Stella Got Her Groove Back by Terry McMillan
Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
Intensity by Dean Koontz
It Takes a Village by Hillary Clinton
Kingdom Come by Mark Waid and Alex Ross
Malice by Danielle Steel
Moonlight Becomes You by Mary Higgins Clark
Primary Colors by Anonymous (Joe Klein)
The Regulators by Richard Bachman (Stephen King)
The Runaway Jury by John Grisham
Servant of the Bones by Anne Rice
Silent Honor by Danielle Steel
The Tenth Insight by James Redfield
East End Show:
The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) (Play) Opened on March 7, 1996, and closed on April 3, 2005
Broadway Shows:
Bring in ‘da Noise, Bring in ‘da Funk (Dance Musical) Opened on April 25, 1996, and closed on January 10, 1999
Rent (Musical) Opened on April 29, 1996, and closed on September 7, 2008
Chicago (Musical) Opened on November 14, 1996 (revival)
Best Film Oscar Winner:
Braveheart (presented in 1996)
1996 Entries to the National Film Registry:
The Awful Truth (released in 1937)
Broken Blossoms (released in 1919)
The Deer Hunter (released in 1978)
Destry Rides Again (released in 1939)
Flash Gordon Serial (released in 1936)
The Forgotten Frontier (released in 1931)
Frank Film (released in 1973)
The Graduate (released in 1967)
The Heiress (released in 1949)
The Jazz Singer (released in 1927)
The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter (released in 1980)
M*A*S*H (released in 1970)
Mildred Pierce (released in 1945)
The Outlaw Josey Wales (released in 1976)
The Producers (released in 1968)
Pull My Daisy (released in 1959)
Road to Morocco (released in 1942)
She Done Him Wrong (released in 1933)
Shock Corridor (released in 1963)
Show Boat (released in 1936)
The Thief of Bagdad (released in 1924)
To Be or Not to Be (released in 1942)
Topaz (released in 1943/1945)
Verbena tragica (released in 1939)
Woodstock (released in 1970)
The Big Movies: (according to boxofficemojo)
1. Independence Day
2. Twister
3. Mission: Impossible
4. Jerry Maguire
5. Ransom
6. 101 Dalmations
7. The Rock
8. The Nutty Professor
9. The Birdcage
10. A Time To Kill
1996 Most Popular TV Shows:
1. E.R. (NBC)
2. Seinfeld (NBC)
3. Suddenly Susan (NBC)
4. Friends (NBC)
5. The Naked Truth (NBC)
6. Fired Up (NBC)
7. The Single Guy (NBC)
8. Home Improvement (ABC)
9. Touched By An Angel (CBS)
10. 60 Minutes (CBS)

1996 Billboard Number One Songs:
December 2, 1995 – March 22, 1996:
One Sweet Day – Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men

March 23May 3:
Because You Loved Me – Celine Dion

May 4May 17:
Always Be My Baby – Mariah Carey

May 18July 12:
Tha Crossroads – Bone Thugs N Harmony

July 13July 26:
How Do U Want It – 2Pac featuring K-Ci and JoJo

July 27August 2:
You’re Makin’ Me High – Toni Braxton

August 3November 9:
Macarena (Bayside Boys Remix) -Los Del Rio

November 9 – December 6:
No Diggity – Blackstreet featuring Dr. Dre

December 7, 1996 – February 21, 1997:
Un-Break My Heart – Toni Braxton

World Series Champions: New York Yankees
Superbowl XXX Champions: Dallas Cowboys
NBA Champions: Chicago Bulls
Stanley Cup Champs: Colorado Avalanche
U.S. Open Golf Steve Jones
U.S. Tennis: (Men/Ladies) Pete Sampras/Steffi Graf
Wimbledon (Men/Women): Richard Krajiceck/Steffi Graf
NCAA Football Champions: Florida
NCAA Basketball Champions: Kentucky
Kentucky Derby: Grindstone
Sports Highlights:
Cal Ripkin broke Lou Gehrig’s consecutive MLB game record when he played game number 2,131