Monday, January 5, 2015

How Meat Moves to Market

This comic book premium was published by Swift & Co. in 1966 and tells the story of...

It was produced by Pictorial Media, Inc. which published a lot of similar educational comics.

It begins with young Bob contemplating a dismal summer only to be interrupted with meat and a ringing doorbell.  Could they be related???

"Oh boy... this summer isn't going to be the same old stuff, after all!" Translation: I'm so glad I'm not spending another summer with you three stiffs.  Maybe it's me, but you'd think Uncle Jim would have cleared things with Bob's parents before springing a telegram on them proposing to abduct their son for the whole summer.  On second though, maybe it was all mom and dad's idea to get Bob out of the house, just made to look like a surprise...

"Good luck, son.  To tell you the truth, I'd like to be going with you." Translation: I can't stand your mother either.

"Exactly, Bob.  2/3 of the People in the U.S. live east of the Mississippi River, but 2/3 of the cattle are raised west of it.  Here, let me show you this map that says exactly what I just said in case you're a complete idiot."

"Hi, Betty.  Thought you'd be more at home on the open range that at the kitchen range.  Say, that's a good joke!"  Easy, there Bob, you're coming on a little strong, besides, she's your cousin.  Don't even think about it.  Your kids would be born with two heads.

"Why, Cousin, we don't know whether this beef came from the ranch or not.  It's not like we killed and gutted this thing on the upper north 40.  We're not barbarians!"

"Now, now, Betty.  Bob doesn't know.  Remember how your father had to show him that map of the great people/cattle divide?  We'll have to draw him a picture."

"And see them scrawny looking ones chained to the ground?  Them's our veal calves.  Mmmmm, boy.  Good eatin'!"

"You see, Bob, 'dress' is just a fancy word for killin', skinnin', disembowelin' and sawin' 
'em clean in half!"

I can't decide.  Is "Cracky" a beatnik, a folk singer, or a hippie?  Correct answer?  All three.  He's a folk-singing beatnik hippie.

To be honest, I bought this comic strictly for this ad insert for ABC's 1966 Saturday morning cartoon line-up.

Smokey the Bear is all over you about forest fires, but apparently has no problem with random destruction with a handsaw.

"There's an additional 300 lbs of valueless material that comes from that steer.  And that's where we get hot dogs, Bob."

Is that a big enough piece of cake or what?!  And have you ever in your life seen someone eat a piece of cake out of their hand like that?  Oh, Bob, you have so much to learn.

"So that's how western meat gets all the way east..."  

"Hold on a minute there, Bob.  As usual, you're over-simplifying this.  Here, let me draw a picture."

"And, at best, for all these operations on both meat and by-products, we average a net profit of only a fraction of a cent per pound after expenses".

"Gee, Mr. Johnson, I don't understand then. Why even bother?  Seems like you could make more money withholding some of your stock to artificially drive up cattle prices..."

"Well, Jim, you're back right on the dot.  This kid was asking too many questions."

Cousin Betty looks a little down, now that Bob knows the secret of meat.  And a little too sad to see him leaving. "Come on, young fella.  Let's get you out of here and away from my daughter.  Don't forget what I told you about them 2-headed babies!"

Great, now he's Mr. Meat-Know-it-all.  Life will be insufferable.


  1. wow Smokey The Bear Cartoon!?! I have never heard of that. Might have to look into it.

    1. Yeah, I recognize some of them from repeats I saw in the 70's and from Boomerang, but never saw Smokey the Bear. Of course, there are a couple episodes on Youtube.

  2. Ha ha - my Dad worked for Swift in Chicago for years. This is very funny.


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