July 25, 1946.
The bomb will not start a chain-reaction in the water converting it all to gas and letting the ships on all the oceans drop down to the bottom. It will not blow out the bottom of the sea and let all the water run down the hole.
It will not destroy gravity. I am not an atomic playboy, as one of my critics labeled me, exploding these bombs to satisfy my personal whim.
- Vice Admiral William "Spike" Blandy
“Spike” is most noted as the Commander, Joint Task Force One, Operation Crossroads
—a series of tests to study the collateral effects of nuclear explosions; ostensibly on plants and animals as well, but primarily on the 71 disposable ships anchored off the Bikini Atoll
as a target. Despite statements to the contrary, the most likely temptation for this exercise is a universal constant: Man's desire to blow shit up, and to have a nice attache case
A rather curious marriage of words, "Atomic Playboy" remains one of the most unintentionally funny monikers ever uttered in the history of politics. Wildly imaginative critics have always been the great well from which timeless and amusing pet names
spring. When straight-faced politicians
and military leaders repeat them back, the results are often sublime.
Strangely, this particular gem has always languished in relative obscurity. It does, however, pop up as a vocal sample in the occasional song, such as the Future Crew
's Second Reality
and the techno
classic "Atomic Playboy" by Space Trax
As the (literal) icing on this rather surreal
cake, there exists an infamous photograph, dubbed "Atomic Age Angel Food
," in which Vice Admiral Blandy, his wife, and Rear Admiral F.J. Lowry
celebrate the end of Operation Crossroads. This photo, captured in November of 1946, shows husband and wife taking the first slice of a cake decorated with an ornate mushroom cloud
rising from the center. Needless to say
, more than a few people were decidedly unamused.
At the time of this writing, said picture can be seen at:
Somebody set up Blandy the cake, and Weapons of Mass Destruction
apparently never tasted so good.