Since I have long considered popcorn to be one of the four major food groups (chocolate being another), it is only fitting that I recognize Orville Redenbacher on his birthday. Redenbacher was born on July 16, 1907, in Brazil, Indiana. Not surprisingly, he grew up on a small corn farm. He studied agronomy at Purdue University and afterwards made his living running a fertilizer company. But popcorn seems to have been his passion. In his spare time, he worked on creating the perfect kernel, and when he felt he had developed it, went into business with a man named Charlie Bowman. They initially named their hybrid RedBow, but were convinced by an advertising agency to use Orville Redenbacher Popcorn instead, and their company took off. As somewhat of a popcorn fanatic myself, I have indeed cherished this brand, as one of my two favorites.
Quoting from Biography.com: “Around 1972, however, Redenbacher began appearing in television commercials, as himself, hawking his new popcorn. He even appeared on the television show, To Tell the Truth where he stumped panelists such as Kitty Carlisle Hart, Peggy Cass and Joe Garagiola.” He was so folksy, that many people assumed he was an actor, but it was always the genuine Redenbacher. Nor was he just a pretty face. Time magazine called Redenbacher “the Luther Burbank of popcorn,” for his scientific work on creating a better popcorn kernel. Alas, he died in 1995 when he had a heart attack in a Jacuzzi and drowned. His biography is called Just Call Me Orville.
The Orville Redenbacher brand is now owned by ConAgra.
Quotes about popcorn
Every once in a while, someone will mail me a single popcorn kernel that didn’t pop. I’ll get out a fresh kernel, tape it to a piece of paper and mail it back to them.–Orville Redenbacher
I had popcorn all over the place, so I decided I might as well be in the Processing Business.–Orville Redenbacher
Popcorn! Our fatal weakness!–Hazel Levesque
Have you ever pondered the miracle of popcorn? It starts out as a tiny, little, compact kernel with magic trapped inside that when agitated, bursts to create something marvelously desirable. It’s sort of like those tiny, little thoughts trapped inside an author’s head that – in an excited explosion of words – suddenly become a captivating fairytale!–Richelle E. Goodrich
Sometimes I think that all anyone needs in life is lots of popcorn…–Sam Savage
“Come in early, so there’ll be time to pop corn,” Mrs. Ray said. If she mentioned popping corn, they always came in early. So she usually mentioned it.–Maud Hart Lovelace
Fresh popcorn is near impossible to resist, second only to fresh doughnuts.–Shannon Wiersbitzky
The laziest man I ever met put popcorn in his pancakes so they would turn over by themselves.–W. C. Fields
American’s love popcorn, and their love doesn’t quit.–Rosecrans Baldwin
The modern era has brought up immense conveniences, but at what price. The human heart is desperate for something more than a quicker serving of popcorn.–John Eldredge
Of course life is bizarre, the more bizarre it gets, the more interesting it is. The only way to approach it is to make yourself some popcorn and enjoy the show.–David Gerrold
I just got a reputation for making popcorn at parties. I don’t mean to brag on myself, but I make the popcorn in the pot, and it comes out fine every time.–Bill Nye
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