Saturday, February 28, 2015

Ideal Electronic Wrist Quiz

Clearly Ideal's Electronic Wrist Quiz hoped to capitalize on the digital watch craze of the late '70's and early '80's.  Unfortunately, what it didn't do was tell time.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What To Do Now

Growing up in the 70's and 80's, I was  aware of the distinct possibility I would die in a nuclear attack before I reached adulthood.  Living in St. Louis, I had heard we were a prime target given the McDonnell/Douglas aircraft plant and Defense Mapping.  "Before Disaster Strike: What To Do Now - A Family Handbook", published by the St. Louis Office of Civil Defense, was created specifically for the St. Louis area in the 1950's and discusses that danger and how to prepare for the inevitable.  Of course, we know now the appropriate position to assume in the event of such an attack is to place your head between your legs and kiss your butt goodbye.  But here are some things we were told back then would help to prepare for and survive after a nuclear holocaust.  Oh, and if you're too young to remember the nuclear threat, replace "A-Bomb" and "H-Bomb" with "Zombie".

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Hey, Hey, Hey!

I found this Fat Albert game at a sale today.  I wasn't a huge Fat Albert fan, but I did watch the show and was always fascinated by the things the kids would find and build in the junk yard.  Maybe that contributed to my love of junk.

I'm a little uncomfortable with Fat Albert's posturing here, given the smirk on his face, the proximity of Mushmouth's face and Dumb Donald's "knowing" look.


"Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids" ran intermittently on CBS from 1972 to 1985.  It was, of course, based on the comedy routines of Bill Cosby who in turn said they were based on his childhood friends.  "Bill" was based on himself and "Russell" on his real-life brother.  Beyond that, it's uncertain if any were based on actual people.  The 2004 movie, which showed an emotional gathering of the "original" characters around the grave of "Fat Albert" added to the legend that he was based on a real-life man named "Fat" Albert Robinson, although there doesn't appear to be any solid evidence anywhere that he did exist.

Easley Street

Today's postcard offering comes from the same lot I previously wrote about here.  You may remember those were written by a young man named Gilliland Couch to a young woman named Frances Julian.  These cards date about 6 to 9 years later after Frances married Paul Koehler.

Monday, February 16, 2015


I was watching some vintage toy commercials on Youtube a couple weeks ago (I know it's weird, but I do that on occasion) and came across a commercial that brought back a memory.  One I think I had hidden in the recesses of my mind, blocked even, so scarred was I by it.  In my memory, I'm 7 years old and I'm in the basement of a friend's house and he's shooting metal jar lids at me.  You know, those thin ones that come on olive and pickle jars.  He's shooting them from some evil instrument that seems designed for just such a purpose, so efficiently and accurately it lobs them.  One after another they come out like mini death frisbees, and when they connect, man they sting.  I beg him to stop, but he won't.  He keeps shooting them at me, laughing maniacally...OH GOD MAKE IT STOP!

Sorry.  Deep breaths.  I'm okay.  So back the commercial.  After watching this, I finally know what that lid-flinging hell-machine was.  And apparently, it was supposed to be used in fun, not in torture.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Caves 'n Cavern

Time for another postcard.  This one is an over-sized card (5" x 8 1/2") for The Caves 'N Cavern in Northview Mall in Indianapolis.

There's very little on the internet about it, but I did find this adverstisement on Flickr that gives you an idea of what it looked like.

Northview Mall is still there, but doesn't have it's own website and I would guess like most malls these days, they're not a going concern.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Looking for a Valentine?

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone.  Here's hoping you have someone to Be Yours on this day.  Below are a few Valentine's I picked up this past year.  Not as big a haul as previous years, but a few cute ones.

These two cards to Marchella probably date from the 40's.

This card has a slide that pops the letter out.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Scholastic Memories

My two favorite days in school (not counting snow and vacation days) were when the Scholastic Book flyers would arrive and the books you ordered from them came in.  Okay, I liked Art day too, but that's beside the point.  Anyway, looking through those flyers always charged my imagination; they were like windows to undiscovered worlds.  I loved reading when I was a kid (I still do, although I seem to have less time than ever now).  I could hole up in my room with a book and not come out all day.

I found some Arrow Book Club flyers at an estate sale a while back and just recently scored a large lot of Scholastic Books at another estate sale, so I thought I'd match the flyers up with some of the books.  These flyers are from the late 1960's, so a little before my time.  A warning: this one is image heavy.

November 1968 Arrow Book Club News

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Jack and Jill, February 1979

I don't recall when I picked up this issue of "Jack and Jill", but I do recall it was bundled with others which I'll come across eventually and blog about.  It's the February 1979 edition with a cover by artist Jared Lee who I've known since I was a kid from reading his "Bummers" in Dynamite magazine.  My kids (and I) love the "Black Lagoon" series of books he illustrates.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Winky Dink, 50 cents, and You

Last weekend, I attended a local estate sale at a home that had all the appearances of having housed a hoarder.  There were papers and magazines strewn throughout the home and an actual dump was on the property where the homeowners had thrown their unwanted debris for decades.  This kind of sale is usually a deterrent to the casual garage/estate saler, but I've found these kind of homes can house treasures as the owner rarely threw things out (except in the dump I mentioned above!)

I found this among the rubble.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

The Lost World

I don’t want this post to sound like a typical “in my day” rant of an aging gen-x’er, but…kids these days, am I right?  Sorry, there I go.  Let me start over…

I found this large, plastic dinosaur at an estate sale last weekend.  It's a replica of a Corythosaurus and stands 5 inches tall.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Woman's Home Companion, February 1937

I came across this issue during my recent purge/reorganize.  I found it at a garage sale about 12 years ago.  Hang onto your hats, this one is image intense.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

What was on TV January 20th through 26th, 1979

This week's issue is a week behind, but timely since it features the 1979 Superbowl.  Special thanks to friend John for supplying the humor.

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