March 4, 1928
The first (and only) Transcontinental Foot Race, nicknamed the “Bunion Derby” takes off from Ascot Speedway in Los Angeles. The 199 participants (only men were allowed to enter) ran 3,422 miles from coast to coast in just under 84 days, crossing the finish line at New York City’s Madison Square Gardens on May 26th. The runners ran an average of 40 miles a day, nearly the equivalent of two marathons, every day for over two months.
March 5, 1982
Actor, Comedian, and Blues Brother John Belushi is found dead at his Chateau Marmont hotel room in Hollywood after overdosing on speedball: a fatal combined dosage of cocaine and heroin. Per his request, his tombstone would later be carved with the message, “I may be gone but Rock and Roll lives on”, complete with skull and crossbones.
March 6, 2000
On March 6th, 2000 Los Angeles Lakers center Shaquille O’Neal turned 28. That same night, the Lakers played a “road game” against the Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center. For his birthday, O’Neal asked the Clippers for free seats to give his family and friends; the Clippers denied, and Shaq was forced to buy the tickets himself. O’Neal proceeded to put up one of the most dominant games in his career, scoring 61 points and pulling down 23 rebounds on the Clippers. It was the most points any NBA player had ever scored on their birthday. After the game, Shaq — who would go on to win league MVP that season — supposedly gave a warning to the other NBA teams: “Don’t ever make me pay for tickets.”