Thursday, May 17, 2012

Reader comments: Dynamite, cheese, vampires, hob and Horgheim

Here's another dandy batch of reader comments. Thanks for all of your contributions, which add so much to this blog!

Plucked from a yard sale, Part 4: This and that ... and Scott Baio! Wendyvee of Wendyvee's writes: "You beat me to the Willie Aames reference. I don't remember SuperMag, but I'm quite sure that I had pages of Dynamite plastered everywhere. I loved the lucky days when the teacher magically produced a stack of Scholastic Book Club flyers."

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View of Assmannshausen, Germany, from 1910 book: Anonymous writes: "Maybe the vineyard belonged to the church below and the cross was there to bless the grapes?"

That's the best guess I've seen so far. Anyone else have thoughts on the matter?

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Saturday's postcard: Cheese market in Alkmaar, Netherlands: Michelle writes: "Yay Dutch cheese!!! My luggage weighed a lot coming back from Amsterdam the other year, because I stuffed it with OVER $100 WORTH OF CHEESE. There was no way I was going without back in the States!!! Oh, gouda.... Since then, I've started collecting bits and pieces of Nederlanse Kaas related ephemera -- a 1970s Gouda sticker here, a couple of old cheesebearer pins there... Slowly but surely...!"

Sounds like a great collection, Michelle! And I'm glad you weren't nabbed by airport security.

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The (new) oddest stuff I've found tucked inside a book: Debraacts, of Wilmington, N.C., writes: "Wonderful! I'm trying to find info on Cynthia Mills, as my mother crochets and has in her possession a crochet book -- obviously old but I can not find a date on it -- and it talks about Cynthia Yarn. My mother is 80 and had never heard of Cynthia Yarn. So I was trying to find information about it. A quick search brought up your article. Thank you!"

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"Sun, Moon and Stars" and a look at Mr. Roy G. Biv: Anonymous writes: "Are you sure 'Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter' and 'Pride and Prejudice and Zombies' weren't inspired by 'Dick and Jane and Vampires'?"

Looks like the publication dates for the monster mash-ups are as follows:
  • "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies" (April 2009)
  • "Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters" (September 2009)
  • "Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter" (March 2010)
  • "Dick and Jane and Vampires" (August 2010)
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Sarah wants to know whose black cat from 1968 this is: On my wife's Facebook page, her friend Nate Martin checked in with the following scoop on the kitty's history:
"The cat in question was to be used as a promotional mascot for the debut of the 1968 Japanese horror movie Kuroneko or 'The Black Cat'. Unfortunately the Cannes Film Festival was canceled that year due to massive labor strikes and the cat, jobless and forced to fend for itself, took to the streets of Paris looking for work. Fortunately it was adopted by a passing troupe of circus performers on their way to America. Midway through their cross Atlantic trip one of the elephants, in a fit of rage upon finding his wife sleeping with the head lion (he liked 'em big), punched a hole through the hull causing the ship to sink. Thus startling development forced the cat onto a liferaft with the ships cook, three monkey's, and the ring leaders attractive daughter. The cat quickly asserted himself as the leader and ruled over the raft as an iron-fisted dictator; or at least he did until they were rescued by a passing fishing boat. Upon reaching shore the ringleaders attractive daughter, at this point quite smitten with the forceful cat married him. However their love was not meant to be as federal legislation passed that forbid their union and the cat was forced to go on the run. Several days later a photography student from the local college spotted the cat taking a dump in the woods, snapped a picture, and won the class prize for his picture showing a bitter satire of US politics at the time. As for the cat he went on to have even more incredible adventures, but that's a story for another time."
Wow! Shall we give Nate an "A" for creativity?

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Quaker Oats takes you "Around the World with Hob": Gulliver Arkham (which is a flat-out terrific name) writes: "I believe 'hob' is an old English name for the devil."

Of course! The oatmeal-loving, bird-riding voyeur must be Old Scratch himself. According to Wikipedia, some of the definitions for "Hob" are:
  • a devil
  • a generic term for various dwarf-like and elf-like magical creatures in Germanic folklore
  • a household spirit in northern England (A famous hob called the hobthrust lived near Runswick Bay in a hobhole, and was said to be able to cure whooping cough.)
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The "Imposing Troldtinder" in Horgheim, Norway: Horgheim writes: "Hi. Horgheim is a family farm, not a village."

Thank you for the correction. That was a really tough post to research, as it was a stereographic card from more than 85 years ago, and information on the Internet was scant.

I found evidence of Horgheim being both a village and family farm, so what I originally wrote was: "Horgheim appears to be a village (or perhaps even the name of a family farm) in central Norway, not far from the Norwegian Sea (Norskehavet)."

I shall revise the blog and update that statement. Thanks again!

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