The Story Of How Peter O’Toole Taught Locals How To Comfortably Ride Camels

While filming Lawrence of Arabia, Peter O’Toole had a difficult time riding his camel. To increase comfort, he added foam rubber to his camel saddle. This eventually spread across the Middle East and O’Toole was called the “Father of Rubber”.

In an interview to NPR’s Fresh Air, Peter O’Toole talked about the incident:

“I loved the desert, I really did. … I was there three months before filming started and the idea was to learn to ride a camel. [It was] impossible. What you see is a European perched uneasily on the top of this huge brute, snorting and galloping. … I found after a while my bottom was bleeding from bouncing up and down on this snorting great dragon. (the article continues after the ad)

I went to Beirut to buy sponge rubber and it was, I remember, mucous membrane pink. And I arrived back to my Bedouin friend with this lump of thick, thick rubber and I stuffed it, shamelessly onto my saddle. … But after a while they looked and they saw it was quite comfy, too, and they could bounce more easily on sponge rubber than you could on wooden hump, so they began to ask me to buy more. So I was requisitioning tons of this damn stuff, yards of it. I think I introduced sponge rubber into Arabian culture. … They called me [in Arabic] “the father of rubber.”

If you like what you read, then you will definitely love this one: How Is It Possible For Old Films To Be Remastered In High Definition? 

Source: Fresh Air, NPR
Photo: VanityFair

Widget not in any sidebars

This Was The Loudest Noise Ever Created And It Ruptured The Ear Drums Of Sailors 40 Miles Away

The Doctors Who Are 4x More Likely To Commit Suicide Than The General Population