July 5—it's not just another hot summer day for sunbathers, swimmers, and beach-goers. 65 years ago today, the bikini debuted at a public pool in France, the Piscine Molitor (4 Rue Nungesser et Coli, 75016 Paris). The Piscine Molitor at the time had two pools and an ice-skating rink. It also hosted theatrical performances and fashion shows. At a show, Louis Réard put his fashion innovation on a nude dancer named Micheline Bernardini, making the garment the hottest thing in Europe. The rest of the world followed suit.

In 1989, the Piscine Molitor would have been turned into a hotel if citizens didn't fight for it to remain as a pool. While the French government was determining the fate of the Piscine Molitor, people broke in and made it a graffiti art exhibit. The radicals who saved the complex eventually lost ownership, and the building's rights were turned over to an organization called Piscines Molitor. A 2012 reopening of the facility is scheduled, and future plans are being made for including a hotel, a medical center, stores, restaurants, and parking facilities.

We applaud Mr. Réard because without his invention, 2 Live Crew videos would not have been the same. He obviously didn't know in 1946 that hip-hop would take it that far.

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