January 24 in nerd history: Beer in a can

Happy Library Shelfie Day! If you're curious what a "shelfie" is, apparently it's like a selfie but with books on a shelf in the background. So if you see a bunch of influencers at your local library branch today... well, that'd still be pretty surprising, but at least there'd be a reason.

This is The Reset Button from Classic Nerd, resetting your day.

January 24 in Nerd History

Here are five things that happened on January 24th at the intersection of nerd and pop culture.


Birthdays of honor: Neil Diamond (1941), John Belushi (1949), Sharon Tate (1943), Matthew Lillard (1970), Ernest Borgnine (1917), Kristen Schaal (1978), Ed Helms (1974), Warren Zevon (1947), Aaron Neville (1941), Mary Lou Retton (1968).


Today in 1935, just shy of 90 years ago, one of the greatest innovations in human history became available to the American public — the beer can.

Gottfried Krueger Brewing Company, operating out of New Jersey, had been a successful brewery for some time, and even weathered prohibition quite well as it was set up to brew near beer and soda through those dark, dark years. So when prohibition was lifted, they were ready to roll. But they needed a better way to get beer to the masses, as pouring it directly into cups could only serve so many.

That's when the American Can Company pitched them on the nutty idea of canned beer — and believed in it so much they installed the equipment to do so for free. Gottfried Krueger was skeptical, but after a small test with friends and family, they knew they had something special on their hands.

Krueger's Cream Ale and Krueger's Finest Beer went on sale as the first beer in cans to wild success. And if you're curious, yes there must have been hipsters back then because Kent India Pale Ale soon followed.

Unfortunately, the brewery was unable to survive industry consolidation in the 1950s, but their legend lives on.


At the height of the WWF golden era, they were trying to figure out what the hell else they could do to get people to cough up more money and push interest even higher. The answer? Put a whole bunch of dudes in speedos in the ring all at once. That's right, today in 1988 the very first Royal Rumble took place.

For those unfamiliar, the Royal Rumble is essentially a battle royal where contestants enter the ring at timed intervals. You're out if you're thrown over the top rope and both feet touch the ground — this piece is critical, because if you can manage to keep that second foot from touching, even by an inch, you can get back in there and maybe even win.

The first event was the only one televised as a TV special, and it's been PPV ever since. My man Jim Duggan took home the crown in that first of what would ultimately turn into the world's largest pro-wrestling promotion.


Today in 1984, 40 years ago, the Apple Macintosh officially went on sale for the first time following the huge success of the 1984 Super Bowl commercial.

Initial price: $2,495.


40 years ago today, "Owner of a Lonely Heart" by Yes topped the charts.