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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Back to school....pop quiz! (SOLVED)

I always hated hearing that phrase. It never had anything to do with soda, and I was never prepared. Take a look at the image and tell me what it is...

Should be easy, but I am not sure how long these were around. Leave your guess in the comments.
Answer coming soon...


Sunday, August 26, 2012

I read the news today,...oh boy...

It's a shame to hear that Neil Armstrong died. I wrote the post below back in 2009 and it seemed appropriate to repost.

It is amazing what has been tucked in the pages of books. It can be a good way to flatten out an old silver certificate, but don't let it slip your mind. Case in point:This patch looks as though it just came from the (where do patches come from?) patch factory? patchery? the loom? It looks as good as it does because it has been sitting squashed between the pages of a book for the past (take a deep breath) 40 years. How do I know this? Take a look what came with it:

I marked this as a"part 2" from the previous post because I thought the relationship between the mug and this invitation was funny, Tricky Dick funny. This is one cool item, Apollo 11 was the big one. Neil Armstrong's first step on the moon and his most important quote of the century, which he apparently flubbed by leaving out the "a" in "That's one small step for [a] man..."

Is that a significant gaff? No. I think it represents mankind truthfully. We're imperfect, and our ability to accomplish all that we have despite our imperfections probably has the martians scratching their green heads. I think it would have been better if Neil had tripped and landed on his head before stepping on the Moon, "That's one embarrassing header for a man, but still one smooth recovery for mankind."

UPDATE! A commentator from the original post offered this link as proof that Neil got the quote right!
Thanks! Galadriel.

 Anyway, back to this find. Here are all three pieces:
The addition of the envelope makes this complete. If you click on the image you may be able to see the cancellation better. There is a story here: I suppose even an invitation from the President with an official Apollo 11 patch inside isn't enough to impress the guy who was head of the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum. He probably looked at the patch and said "Pftttt! Big Deal! I have the Spirit of St Louis hanging from my ceiling!"

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Don't watch this Video! (no one else has)

Once I turned 300 posts, I promised there would be some new enhancements to this blog. One of them is to embrace video as a means of communicating all the weird and wonderful stuff I find. This video I made as part of a Patch.com article on some old theatre programs I had found. For some reason, while other videos are over 100 views, this one is stuck under 10! So, whadya say? Take a look and tell what's wrong with it....too long?... crappy song?...needs more cowbell?

There will be more videos coming, better ones...I promise.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Kids and Guns? Why not?

I know this has been done before, because I have seen some of these old ads posted. I was leafing through a 1904 "Saturday Evening Post" (doesn't everyone?) and I noticed a pattern in a couple of the ads. This one caught my eye as strange.
 I've never seen "lockjaw" used as an angle for selling a gun, but if the boy needs a real gun to shot on July 4th, why not give him the option of a .22 or a .32?
 The Iver Johnson ads are the ones I have seen commonly, but I couldn't resist posting this one. Does "inappropriate" come in caliber sizes? 
 This one I just tossed in for the novelty of the claim. It better shoot something other that water! A vicious man or dog will just become more pissed if you only squirt him.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Found Photos - Mystery Estate

Likely take in the early 1900's these images I have produced into a short video. I have had several guesses made, but none of them have as yet panned out. Can you guess the location of these distinctive properties?

Monday, August 6, 2012

For a Good Time: Park Yer Carcas right here!

It's hard to image the importance of entertainment in the days when there were almost no TV channels. Actually, today we have almost no TV channels - they are all data streams sent over digitized frequencies far away from the analog "channels" they were assigned in the 40's. Sorry if I am getting to technical.
In 1937 you could listen to the radio, the record player, grampa on the spoons, maybe watch a few lines of experimental TV,or go see a movie-
Movies 25 cents
 Ann Southern was a chorus girl who could also sing and act. A friend and contemporary of Lucille Ball, she had a good long run in movies and in TV. She died in 2001 at 94. I have been looking but I can't confirm that she was "The Girl with the Golden Gimmes"  I suppose anything gold is good, but what the heck is or are "Gimmes?"  I thought they miss-spelled "Gams" but I can't confirm that either. Can You? See below:
The second red arrow points to the comedic actor who called himself Parkyarkarus  (Park your Carcus) whose real name was Bob Einstein, and also Harry Parke. He used this odd name in 11 films from '36 to '45. He deserves more of a description than I could find, but I will say that he got his start in radio with Eddie Cantor, is the father of one of my favorite actors - Albert Brooks (and Super Dave Osborne), and died of a heart attack after roasting Desi Arnez at the Friar's Club. Oh Lucy. He was only 54.

Click for a larger image
There were all sorts of attractions, besides the movies themselves, to keep people filling the seats...maybe they new that this new "TV thing" was right around the corner?

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Stockings for Stalkers

There are numerous marketing methods that can be used by an advertising agency to sell a product. They could appeal to how good the product makes you feel, or in this case, how you should feel - Paranoid.
1956 Theatre ad
 This is from 1956 and while its placement in a theatre program might have made the play on words acceptable...today, not so much.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

You don't know Tauchnitz! (Neither did I.)

Maybe you do know Tauchnitz...I am usually the last to know.  Well, there I was at a New Milford Estate sale and there on the ground was a bookmark, and I could see it said 1909. I'd buy anything from a hundred years ago...if it was small enough.
1909 Tauchnitz Bookmark
It looked interesting but I had only glanced at it.  When I finally got around to researching it I ended up with a real education in publishing.

German born Baron Tuachnitz (no, he wasn't born a Baron) was an apprentice to his uncle in the printing & publishing business in the early 19th century. At a young age he opened his own publishing house (in Germany) and began printing English translations of popular novels, stories, works.
He was so prolific at this that he quickly reached triple digits in the books he was publishing. All this without the permission of the authors - his conscience or his ethics led him to secure the rights to do this and he quickly found as much success paying his authors. He also became an exclusive publisher across the continent for these English language editions. Something that British and American publishers were not prepared to do.
1909 Tauchnitz Bookmark
  There is more to this story, which I recommend you read here. They wrote a much better history than I could. But, at least, now you know the significance of finding any book published by Tauchnitz.

Stay tuned...There were many more interesting finds at this sale, with possibly more to come.