Saturday, March 30, 2013

Great links: Movies, maps, baseball, bees, the environment & old photos

I feel like I was overloaded with great things to read this week! The first couple are definitely a function of my Inner Film Geek, and might not be for everyone. Beyond that, though, there's a little bit of something for everyone.

1. For more fun stuff about "The Shining," especially the Stanley Kubrick film version, check out this June 2011 Papergreat post.
2. Hat tip to Joan for pointing this one out.
3. Hat tip to Wendyvee's Roadside Wonders for pointing this one out.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

5 awesome vintage Easter postcards (aka The Cute Chicks Gallery)

I've been collecting these groovy old postcards here and there during the past year, so that I could present them on the blog this week.

I didn't even attempt to coordinate it so that every card featured chicks. It just turned out that way. We also have children, chickens, a sheep, dyed eggs, spring flowers and a worm (if you look closely).

Let me know in the comments which one is your favorite!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Amazing artwork ... with jelly beans

In early February, we took a family field trip to the Reading Public Museum in central Pennsylvania. The main point of the visit was to check out the amazing Lego Castle Adventure exhibit, which Joan has detailed (with many great photos) on Our School at Home.

One of the other fascinating exhibits at the museum featured famous works of art reproduced with jelly beans.

Can you guess which piece of art is represented by each of the jelly-bean mosaics show above? Click on each image to see the answer.

1. The final photo in the Our School at Home blog post features me re-enacting a scene from "Them!"

Old corner bookmark featuring a pair of orange-bellied birds

Pictured above is the front and back of an interesting triangular bookmark that I found in the bottom of a box of used books. The seam on the back of the bookmark has come unglued, but it still does its job just fine, slipping over the upper-right corner of a page.

There are some good websites — including Jovers and Tally's Treasury — that show you how you can make one of these bookmarks yourself.

Of course, if you want an eco-conscious and super-quick corner bookmark, just cut the corners off an envelope you've already received in the mail. And you can still go ahead and decorate it any way you like.

The bookmark in use on Sarah's James Bond book.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Eventually it will be warm and we can all do the Schuhplattler Dance

We received a dumping of about a half-foot of wet snow yesterday. Now, I love winter and I'm a big fan of snowstorms. But not this late. Not when the Major League Baseball season is less than one week away.

Early spring snowfall and onion snow (a Pennsylvania term) are unwanted annoyances when we're ready for warmer weather, beautiful blossoms, aggravating allergies and asinine alliteration.

And when it finally gets warmer and the buds appear, perhaps we can all celebrate with the Schuhplattler Dance!1

The above postcard, more than a century old, features some fine folks having quite the hootenanny. The caption states: "Schuhplattler Dance, Tyrol Village, Earl's Court."

Let's take 'em one at a time.
  • The Schuhplattler is, according to Wikipedia, "a traditional folk dance popular in the Alpine regions of Bavaria and Austria." It is a social dance that was used for courtship in parts of the Alps.
  • Tyrol villages were one location where you might see the thigh-, knee- and sole-slapping Schuhplattler performed.
  • The "Tyrol Village" on this postcard, however, was an exhibition in Earl's Court in London just past the turn of the century. I suspect it's the kind of somewhat-authentic re-creation one might see today at a place like Epcot's World Showcase.
Here are some closeups of the Schuhplattlers...

But wait, there's more!

The fun and festivities don't stop with the front of the postcard!

The back of the postcard features a half-penny stamp and a postmark from Hastings, England. It was postmarked on November 6, 1906, though it took me a while to be certain that the "06" on the postmark referred to the year.

In 1902, England was the first country to issue divided-back postcards.3 (The U.S. did not follow suit until 1907.) And British postcard postage was indeed a half-penny until early in World War I, which began in 1914.

So that all adds up to 1906 being entirely plausible as the date for this postcard, which was mailed to Miss Lily Ormandy of Altrincham. Lily was given the following assignment:

Could you send me my black satin dress. Miss Gladys knows where we put the skirt away in the cupboard on the landing & the bodice is in my drawer in the wardrobe. The belt has my name in & if not with skirt or bodice, is in the old white box where they were kept.4

So there you have it! Maybe the postcard writer needed this outfit so she could go kick up her heels and do the Schuhplattler.

1. Or perhaps not.
2. What happened around November 6, 1906? Well, on November 1, Archduke Otto of Austria, who was a bit of a loafer, died of syphilis; on November 3, SOS was approved as the new international distress symbol; and on November 5, astronomer Fred Lawrence Whipple was born.
3. For "A Not So Concise History of the Evolution of Postcards in the United States," check out the Metropolitan Postcard Club of New York City.
4. Handwriting translation assistance was provided by Joan.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Workbasket bonus: Two more photos from the July 1971 issue

I was originally planning to go in a different direction with this morning's post, which highlighted the Pickle Ham Mold recipe in the July 1971 issue of The Workbasket and Home Arts Magazine. I had been planning to blog some of the vintage fashions featured in that issue.

But then I stumbled upon the horrifying recipe, and everything changed.

A couple of the fashion photos from that issue, however, are too neat not to share. So here they are...

Check out some more Workbasket fashions in these past Papergreat posts:

What's worse than using gelatin in your dinner mold recipe?

Because I am brave and adventurous enough to go where other ephemera bloggers fear to tread, there has been an abundance of Gelatin Coverage™ on Papergreat over the years.1

I think we mostly agree that gelatin molds containing anything but fruit are a horrifying prospect, and we should be thankful that this era of American cooking has essentially ended.2

But I might have stumbled across something even scarier than a mold that uses gelatin. It comes from the July 1971 issue of The Workbasket and Home Arts Magazine. The article titled "Magnificent Molds" includes a predictable number of horrifying recipes, including:
  • Blue Cheese Aspic Mold (with blue cheese, yogurt and cucumber)
  • Olive Seafold Mold (self-explanatory)
  • Shrimp-Dill Mold (with Worcestershire sauce for good measure)
  • Sunday Supper Chicken Mold (with eggs and carrots)
  • Gazpacho Salad Mold (with eggs, scallions, celery, green pepper, olives, Italian dressing and more)
Then there's a recipe that includes no gelatin at all. But how would you make the mold?

It is now time for us to delve into the horror of:

Pickle Ham Mold

This is only the second time that this particular recipe has been mentioned on the Internet.3 There's probably a reason for that. In place of gelatin, the ingredient that holds the ham, gherkins, pineapple and celery together is Blended Lima Beans!

Yum! Yum! Yum! Make sure you chill it well before serving it to friends and family members who will certainly plan to never come to your house again.

Here's the recipe in its entirety, from The Workbasket.

I would love it if Ruth Clark, chef and author of a brilliant blog called The Mid-Century Chef, would recreate Pickle Ham Mold in her kitchen and feed it to her good-sport husband, Tom.4 It would be the perfect way to tie off this dark corner of American culinary history.

1. Here, for masochists, are the links to Papergreat's past gelatin coverage:
2. Fun with vocabulary: A gelatin that includes meat or bouillon is called aspic. Here, according to Wikipedia, is what this dish is called in other countries:
  • Poland = galareta
  • Lithuania = šaltiena
  • Belarus = kvashanina
  • Ukraine = kholodets, dragli and studenets (they do love their aspic)
  • Latvia = galerts and aukstā gaļa
  • Serbia = pihtije
  • Croatia = hladetina
  • Macedonia = pivtija and pača
  • Hungary = kocsonya
  • Romania = piftie and rǎcituri
  • Sweden = aladåb
  • Finland = aladobi
Finally, according to Wikipedia: "Among the Newars of Kathmandu Valley, Nepal, buffalo meat jelly is a major component of the winter festivity gourmet. It is eaten in combination with fish aspic, which is made from dried fish and buffalo meat stock, soured, and contains a heavy mix of spices and condiments."
3. In researching this post, I did a Google search for "pickle ham mold" and came up with just one result, making it a bit of a Googlewhack (though not using the exact definition of Googlewhack). Here's proof of that search, as the existence of this published blog entry means there will no longer be just one result.

4. A great directory of the worst recipes that Ruth and poor Tom have tackled can be found here on The Mid-Century Menu. One of my "favorites" is Cottage Cheese-Pickle-Peanut Sandwich.

Note for posterity
This is the 800th Papergreat post. In the past, I have celebrated some milestone posts with chickens. But I think I'm just going to wait and throw the next big milestone party when I hit 1,000 posts in about six months. Mark your calendars for mid to late September.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Happy 13th birthday to Papergreat junior correspondent Ashar Otto

I am now the father of a teenager. Papergreat contributor and Papergreat Junior author Ashar Otto turns 13 years old today. So please indulge me as I post some father-son photos to celebrate the happy occasion!

The photo below is the one that I use in my Papergreat profile. I held the camera in front of us and took this picture on the day that he and I worked together and researched a book titled "A Joint Archaeological Survey Concerning Old Artifacts in the Borough of New Oxford, Pennsylvania, on June 16, 2010, with Photographs and Annotations." (Only one copy was ever produced.)

And Ashar at Pinchot Lake in northern York County. We were checking out the dragonflies.