Turns out my magical first viewing of Houdini was 40 years ago TODAY on Sunday, November 16, 1975 at 5:00 PM on local Los Angeles television station KCOP Channel 13. I also recently tracked down the original TV Guide for that week.
Needless to say, November 16, 1975 was a day that changed my life. In a way this viewing of Houdini was my own modern equivalent of the moment young Ehrich Weiss discovered The Memories of Robert-Houdin:
"My interest in conjuring and magic and my enthusiasm for Robert-Houdin came into existence simultaneously. From the moment that I began to study the art, he became my guide and hero. I accepted his writings as my text-book and my gospel. I asked nothing more of life than to become in my profession "like Robert-Houdin." -Houdini
Magic fans might also recognize this date a being just six weeks before Doug Henning's historic first World of Magic television special in which he famously did Houdini's Water Torture Cell. That live television event completed the one-two punch that landed me in Houdini's corner for life.