Sunday, November 25, 2012

Do You Wanna Dance?

I bought a large lot of slides at an estate sale in South St. Louis County this past summer.  A lot of pictures were of a family's trip to Nicaragua, but also featured some pictures from home.  I'm not sure who's family and who's friends in this pictures, but these people knew how to party.  Lots of eating, drinking, smoking and dancing.  I'm featuring the dancing in this selection -- the eating, smoking and drinking are merely incidental!  These slides date from Spring of 1969 and feature a couple different parties.  One in the home basement and another possibly a church basement.  Enjoy!

Giving lessons

Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Polariod Land Camera -- Results Are In

I've shot all of the film I bought for the Polaroid Land Camera I bought this past summer.  The first batch was taken in October on the Great River Road in Illinois.  We drove the road up to Grafton and Pere Marquette State Park, took the Brussels' Ferry to Brussels, Illinois (imagine that) and stopped (but didn't eat) at the Whittmond Hotel.

Some pictures developed better than others.  Temperature and duration of development are key, I think.  Also, sun positioning, as I learned later on.  Another thing I will note about developing Polaroid Land Camera pictures -- it's messy.  You'll get the develoment chemicals on your hands.  They're not dangerous, but bring a rag or paper towel to wipe you hands off.  Also, I don't recommend stacking the pictures, even days after they've been taken.  They have a tendency to stick together.

This first picture was taken by my son at the Piasa Bird painted on the bluffs of the Great River Road.  I'll add that framing with a Land Camera can be a challenge.  What you see in the viewfinder is definitely not necessarily what will appear in the photo.

Pere Marquette State Park

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Just Coasting Along

If I were asked what the most common feature I see at estate sale homes, it would have to be the basement bar.  A home bar was a status symbol of the 1960's and it seems like everyone had one.  I've seen some pretty elaborate bars, but many are little more than a 2 x 4 frame covered in paneling, a formica counter and a few stools set in front.   Even these, I'm sure, were the pride of the owner.  A place for the boys to have a few drinks and maybe even a cigar while the ladies chatted upstairs.

Common items I find along with the bar are swizzle sticks (previously blogged), matchbooks (coming soon), and coasters.  I found these coasters at the sale in Webster Groves where I found the Magik can.

 I love how fun these are.  Featuring anthromorphic renditions of various drinks, my favorite has to be the wolf hanging out on the corner whistling at the Pink Lady.

We never had a bar at my house, but I remember the mixed drinks coming out at get togethers.  My mom was a Highball drinker which I just learned is not a specific drink but  a family of drinks.  My grandfather liked spiking the egg nog at Christmas time, often offering me a cup to my mother's horror.  My dad was mostly a no-nonsense beer drinker, although I do recall him hitting the bottle of Scotch at Christmas.  Amazingly, I grew up to be a non-drinker.

What happened to the home bar?  For that matter, what happened to get togethers?  It seems people have drawn inward more and more, isolating themselves from social interaction.  As I type this, I find it ironic that by posting this to the internet I'm interacting with more people than previous generations could have imagined, yet here I sit alone.

I think I'll go have a drink.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

"T" is for "Table"

I took my 5-year-old daughter to an estate sale a couple weeks ago.  It was her idea, I swear.  She was mad because I had gone to another estate sale the day before without her.  The garage sale force is strong in this one. 

She found this and had to have it.  It was only $8 and to be honest, I was already eyeing it when she spotted it.  I love the drawings.  It's a "Babee-Tenda" Feed-and-Play Table.  Based on the drawings and the model of C for "Car", I would place it from the '50's.

The incorporation of Halloween was a plus for me

S for Santa...

...and X for Xmas.  Two Christmas references.

The table top insert is reversable and removable.  I wasn't sure what the trap door was for and thought it might  be to convert the chalkboard into an easel.  I was wrong.  More on that later.

I found a reference to a later model over on a similarily-themed blog.  According to that blog, the trap door is removed and becomes a seat for the baby.  I guess I'm missing the seat assembly the baby would sit in.  I found this ad on Retrosnark:

Apparently, they're still in business, but get very poor reviews from BBB and customers.
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