Saturday, September 18, 2021

Seasons, shadows, sunlight & song

Here are frames from the four films I watched this past week.

La Notte (1961), dir: Michelangelo Antonioni, cin: Gianni Di Venanzo
Le Bonheur (1965), dir: Agnès Varda, cin: Claude Beausoleil & Jean Rabier
David Byrne's American Utopia (2020), dir: Spike Lee, cin: Ellen Kuras
City of the Dead (1960), dir: John Llewellyn Moxey, cin: Desmond Dickinson

Thursday, September 16, 2021

1982 advertisement for East Coast Sports Service Inc.

I plan to write a post one of these years about the Street & Smith's baseball yearbooks of the early 1980s, as they were an integral part of the growth of my baseball fandom. Tonight, however, I just want to share this advertisement from the inside back cover of the 1982 Street & Smith's (which features Rollie Fingers and Pete Rose on cover).

"East Coast Sports Service" only gets me three hits on Google (prior to this post going live), so it's truly been lost to the sands of time. It was a sports "forecasting" service that claimed — for a price, of course — to have all the insider information that bettors needed to have the most chance of success with their sports gambling.

This was decades before there was easy online access to crucial information like injury reports, daily roster moves, weather reports and statistical breakdowns (like righty-lefty or home-road splits). So East Coast aimed to make its money by gathering that information from baseball "insiders" in each Major League Baseball city (probably just a guy who subscribed to the local newspaper, or perhaps a sportswriter in some cases) and aggregating it for folks who sought to make educated bets on the games.

The advertising copy includes these pitches (no pun intended):

  • "East Coast has the expertise that comes only from years of winning experience to correctly analyze the information and produce flocks of winners."
  • "The ability to pick underdog winners is synonomus [sic] with East Coast Sports!"
  • "Therefore, by teaming with us you maximize your profits and minimize your losses."

Then there are the testimonials, which, of course, are impossible to validate. (We've been down that road often on Papergreat. See, for example, Glover's Imperial Mange Medicine.) One bettor claims to have financed a three-week trip to Acapulco with his gambling profits. Others say they netted $10,000 or $12,500 (even with the 1981 baseball strike). There are no testimonials, though, from the many folks who surely lost their hat, shirt, dog and/or house. 

Gambling doesn't pay, kids. Don't gamble. 

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Book cover: "The Art of Coarse Rugby"

  • Title: The Art of Coarse Rugby
  • Secondary title: or Any Number Can Play
  • Additional cover text: "A moving and hilarious book" Spike Hughes
  • Author: Michael Green (1927-1919)
  • About the author: Green was a journalist in the UK who hit it big with this book as a best-seller and went on to write a whole series of The Art of Coarse... books over more than two decades. Other titles covered sailing, golf, drinking, cruising and, err, sex.
  • Illustrator: John Jensen
  • Publisher: Hutchinson of London
  • Year: 11th printing, 1963 (first published in 1960)
  • Pages: 128
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Dust jacket price: 12s 6d net (in UK only)
  • Provenance: Bought for $1 during a day of going to thrift stores in late July
  • First sentence of preface: I do not wish to pay the author's customary tribute to his old college tutor for correcting the proofs of this book, because I have no old college tutor (in fact I haven't even got an old college), and even if I had, I would not have allowed him to touch the proofs.
  • First sentence of book proper: Anyone who plays rubgy very soon finds out there are two sorts. 
  • Last sentence: Eastern Park (3 p.m.): Bagford Vipers 'B' v. Old Rottinghamians Extra B.
  • Random sentence from middle: The referee tried to object but Slasher asked him what Law he was breaking, and he couldn't think of one.
  • Goodreads rating: 3.86 stars (out of 5)
  • Goodreads review: In 2017, Amanda wrote: "Gentle and amusing look at the lower level games of rugby that occur on various windswept fields during the winter months in England. Quick read, some chortles, mild entertainment."
  • Amazon rating: 4.5 stars (out of 5)
  • Amazon review excerpt: In 2000, Neil wrote: "It was one of the funniest books I ever read, but will appeal only to those who play, or are at least familiar with, rugby."
  • About the book's legacy: In a 2014 column for The Rugby Paper, Brendan Gallagher wrote: "Green’s The Art Of Coarse Rugby has run to 23 reprints over the last 50 years – that’s well in excess of 250,000 books – and to this day remains both the template, Bible and excuse for 90 per cent of the rugby playing world." 
Gallagher asked Green about the book's enduring popularity:

“I remain mystified to this day about the book’s success, it came from nowhere and teaches you never to give up in life,” mused Green in between mouthfuls of mince pie as we made ourselves comfortable in his den at Twickenham – the town, not the stadium. “I always wanted to pen the ‘great novel’ – I still do but of course never will – but I wrote a newspaper article for The Observer about the kind of rugby I played and loved and a publisher phoned me up the next week and offered me a few quid to try making a book out of the idea."

Monday, September 13, 2021

Vintage chipmunk postcards and the love of nature's critters

The backyard wildlife is much different in Arizona than it was back in Pennsylvania. In recent weeks here, I've had to deal with black widows, a furry spider I don't care to indentify, a plague of crickets, piles of pigeon droppings, and an unknown mammal (or possibly an owl) that pooped on our artificial grass and also tried to dig up Mr. Bill. I reckon I should be grateful, at least, that I haven't had any encounters with scorpions or rattlesnakes.

Ashar and I had spent the pandemic year of 2020 getting very closely acquainted with the adorable animals in our backyard in Dover, Pennsylvania. We watched families of bunny rabbits grow up and grow fat on the grass and the birdseed. The birdseed, of course, was mostly gobbled up by cardinals, blue jays, catbirds, robins, wrens, finches, mourning doves and other songbirds. We were able to start differentiating the squirrels by their facial markings and their personality quirks. We had a resident field mouse for a while. And then a family of raccoons that we pampered with peanut-butter crackers (sorry, not sorry). A groundhog made a couple of funny cameo appearances. And, very best of all, we trained the chipmunks. Yes, trained them.

I started by sitting very quietly for long stretches in a chair, just watching as the chipmunks came up and grabbed peanuts I had put near my feet, before scurrying away. The next step: I put the peanuts on my feet. They grabbed those too. After that, and over a series of days and weeks, I sat cross-legged on the ground and waited patiently as the chipmunks eventually began to climb into my cupped-together hands for a peanut feast. Sometimes they grabbed a nut and ran. Other times they sat there and nibbled away, or attempted to see how many peanuts they could stuff into their comically bulging cheeks. 

After a while, Ashar got into the act, and surpassed me as a Chipmunk Whisperer. We would sit quietly, side by side, and wait for the chipmunks to venture out for their snack. It usually didn't take long. In addition to climbing into Ashar's hands, they would venture up his arms and even up to a shoulder, seeking peanuts. As long as we didn't make sudden sounds or movements, they were completely at ease. We could even turn our heads slowly and whisper to each other while the furry little visitors went to and fro, taking treasures back to their dens. Great times.

Anyway, today I want to share a little collection of vintage postcards featuring chipmunks. The one at the top features adorable "Chippy" at Smugglers Notch, Vermont. Presumably that's Smugglers' Notch State Park. The card was mailed to Mr. Robert C. Moore of Bingham, Maine, in August 1934, and the cursive message states:
Dearest Daddy,
We were so happy to get your letter. We went up to Smugerlers [sic] Notch yesterday. The "Chippy" you see in the picture is tame: We saw him. All the Birds and Animals around Smuggerlers [sic] Caves are tame. Lots of love.
Rachel.

This next one might nor might not be a chipmunk. The caption, as you can see, states that it's a golden brown squirrel at Crater Lake, Oregon. The golden-mantled ground squirrel is native to that part of the country, and it certainly looks like a chipmunk, so I think it should count as one. So there. This real photo postcard was never written on or mailed.

Next up is another unused real photo postcard of "a native at Diamond Lake." There are many places called Diamond Lake in the United States. But clearly the Diamond Lakes that have tame chipmunks are the very best.
This next one is labeled "NUTS about Northern California" on the front. It was mailed in 1937 to Mr. and Mrs. Knuckles in San Mateo, California. The note on the back states:
Cloverdale - June 9th
Everything O.K. Rain this A.M. Read about Burlingame Fire in S.F. Examiner. Hi-school tonight.
Finally, it's Yours Truly. For fun and posterity, I used Redbubble to publish a vintage-looking real photo postcard showing me feeding a chipmunk in Dover. We do miss those little fellas. You can see a few more photos, including one of Ashar feeding them, in this October 2020 post. (It's really hard to believe that was only 11 months ago.)

Hide your children & scaredy cats

Sunday, September 12, 2021

Dad's memories & Pappy's photos of Hurricane Diane in 1955

(All of these captions are written by Dad) Northampton Street in downtown Easton, looking east toward Phillipsburg, NJ, and the Northampton Street bridge. Parts of this bridge were destroyed by debris floating down the Delaware River.
The Northampton Street bridge, showing sections underwater.

***

Those living in the United States are still recovering from the impacts of Hurricane Ida and its rainy remnants. That recovery will go for a long time in many places that suffered the worst devastation and flooding. Hurricanes and tropical storms are overwhelming natural disasters that work their way into the fabric of our history and the tales we pass down to each generation.

Of couple of days before Ida even formed in the Atlantic, Dad sent me his latest installment of childhood memories. In this case, coincidentally, it involved memories and his own father's photographs of Hurricane Diane, which hit the northeastern U.S., including Pennsylvania, in August 1955 — 66 years ago.

Here's what Dad wrote: 
How did I spend my 8th birthday? In August of 1955, Hurricane Diane hit the mid-Atlantic states and  a good portion of eastern Pennsylvania. Rain from the hurricane flooded the Delaware River valley and surrounding streams that drained into the Delaware. The worst flooding occurred August 19, 1955, my 8th birthday.

I found these photos. I believe Dad took the photos and I was with him.

At that time, there were three bridges crossing the Delaware between Easton, PA, and Phillipsburg, NJ. The 3rd Street bridge (the southernmost bridge), the Northampton Street bridge (this was the main street in Easton's downtown) and the relatively new Route 22 bridge (north of the Northampton Street bridge, connecting Route 22 in NJ to the new Route 22 in PA).

It took several days for the flooding to subside. Traffic between Easton and Phillipsburg could only use the Route 22 bridge for a long time. (How long, I can't remember.) My grandfather's house still stood after the flood and, after cleanup, became livable again. 

I had a rather low-key birthday that year.
Northampton Street in downtown Easton and the Northampton Street bridge.
The 3rd Street bridge south of Northampton Street. I believe this bridge was completely washed away and never rebuilt.
This is the Route 22 bridge, again looking east toward Phillipsburg, NJ. On the far left of this photo is a water tank. Not shown but two blocks away from this water tank was the three-story brick home of my grandfather, Frederick Hartford (my mother's father). It was on the Bushkill Creek that flowed into the Delaware River. At the height of the flooding, only the top of the chimney was above water.

3rd Street in Easton and the 3rd Street bridge.

***
For the record (and for search engines), the following businesses and signs are visible in the above photos: Epstein's; Hotel Easton and Hotel Easton Tap Room; Army & Navy; Coastal [something]; Lyons (carpets, linoleums, rugs); Pep Boys; Packard; and Kowitz Furniture.

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Nifty envelope from Postcrossing pen pal in Ghana

On the heels of the nifty decorated envelope I received from Ukraine recently, here's an envelope all the way from the Republic of Ghana, the second-most populous country in West Africa. My pen pal Lee mailed this around Aug. 2, so it took a little over a month to arrive. (Not bad, in my estimation.) 

His letter included a wonderful collection of ephemera, including information on historic "mammy trucks," Kente cloth, Kaolin clay, the ginger-and-tamarind beverage lamugin, and Adinkra symbols. So much interesting stuff to learn more about!

Also, Lee included some dandy stamps...

Saturday's postcard: Old Woman's Shoe on the playground

Speaking of playground equipment, this advertising postcard, which was mailed in 1963, touts a spiffy new piece of playground equipment that was being offered by Los Angeles-based Jamison Manufacturing Company at the time.

The F-19 Old Woman's Shoe is described on the back of the postcard as being 11 feet, 3 inches long, 15 feet wide and 9 feet high. "Includes 10 foot long stainless steel bottom slide hidden behind the right side and a sliding poll from the back." It was then, "hot-dip galvanized after fabrication," which doesn't sound like a phrase one would use to describe playground equipment.

The price tag was $698 in 1963, which is the equivalant of about $6,000 today. Zoinks!

The "Fantasy by Jamison" series of high-end playground equipment also included the F-6 Satellite, F-20 Gates of Camelet and F-44 Flying Saucer, according to this postcard. Check out these online images of other Jamison equipment:

Today I learned there's a Wikipedia entry named Cold War playground equipment that deals with this specific topic. It notes that the equipment "was intended to foster children's curiosity and excitement about the Space Race. It was installed during the Cold War in both communist and capitalist countries. ... By 1963, Philadelphia had installed 160 space-aged playgrounds, which featured satellites, rockets, and submarines."

To take a deeper dive into Jamison's Cold War playground equipment, I highly recommend this July 2018 post on the blog Preservation in Pink: "Rare playground find: Miracle/Jamison 1975 Mark IV Imagine City." It documents a great discovery of a "metal spaceship-looking apparatus" in an overgrown field the eastern United States. You'll want to read all about it and see the fantastic photos of the wave slide, two-deck satellite tower, swings and more. Check it out! 

Meanwhile, I feel like the Old Woman's Shoe advertised on this postcard was Jamison's last hurrah of fairy-tale themed equipment before going "all in" on the futuristic designs that dominated 1960s and 1970s parks.

Snapshot & memories: Relocated fire engine in Montoursville

Writing this post was quite fun, thanks to some crowdsourcing of memories.

I snapped these photos of the red-and-yellow playground fire engine during a visit Joan and I made to Montoursville's Indian Park in July 2012. At the time, it jogged some hazy, pleasant memories. This unique playground climber looked so familiar. I knew I had spent time on it during my childhood. But I couldn't put my finger on any specific memories from Indian Park.

Turns out, that's because there weren't any. Not from that location.

When I was a kid, this fire engine had been located about a mile away on the playground at Lyter Elementary School, which I attended for first grade (1977-78) and again for fourth grade (1980-81). As folks in my Facebook crowdsourcing post explained to me, it was there for decades, from the mid-1970s until about 2010. Then, the playground at Lyter was renovated, but the decision was made to preserve this piece of equipment and move it to Indian Park. My photos must have been taken not too long after the move. No wonder it was initially such a disconnect for me!

It's still at Indian Park, by the way, according to this April Facebook post. It could use a fresh coat of paint, though.

So, yes, once I was able to think about this fire engine at the setting of Lyter Elementary, old memories fell back into place. I had climbed all over this thing, going along the monkey bars across the top and sitting in the driver's seat with the big "steering wheel." 

Here are some other people's memories from the Facebook post:
  • Yes it used to be on the Lyter playground. I have pictures taken on that very truck. If it helps I just turned 34 yesterday and that truck was at Lyter during my elementary days.
  • I remember this being at Lyter in the 70s.
  • I seem to remember it at Lyter and I graduated in ‘95.
  • I went to Lyter from 89-93 and it was there.
  • There was one like that at Loyalsock Valley Elementary School when I was a kid. We had our 3rd grade pictures taken on one.
  • It was still at Lyter in 2004.
  • It was there in 75.
  • Talk about something I thought I’d never see again! Also I remember a stagecoach, thanks for sharing.
  • I remember the stagecoach and trying to go across the bars and people standing on the ground trying to pull you down!
  • It was there in 77 when I was in 1st grade.
  • Yes it was at Lyter when I was there in mid 70s. I remember when they first got it.
  • I graduated in 2010 and the firetruck was one of my favorite playground pieces at Lyter.
  • I thought they put it in there around 76-77 ish.
  • I went to school at Lyter and remember playing on in in the early 90’s and yes after playground update it moved to Indian Park!!
  • Lyter in the 70’s. I remember falling off the back at recess, right into a mud puddle. I had to call my mom to bring me clean clothes. I was so embarrassed that I made her take me home instead.

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Scoping out the packaging at the grocery store

I've been saving up some grocery store snapshots and I reckon I'll just lump them together into this post. Today's labels and packaging are tomorrow's history. People seemingly love to be reminded of decades-ago trips to the grocery store and the foodstuffs their parents and grandparents had in freezers and pantries. Tangibly reminded. Right now on eBay, there's a 1970s Pepperidge Farm Coconut Layer Cake box offered for $65; a 1970s Swanson Fish 'n' Chips TV dinner box for $37.50; an unused (!!) Good Seasons Zesty Italian salad dressing mix package for $25; and a 1970s Nestle oatmeal cookie mix package for $15.

What will be the grocery-shelf talkers of tomorrow? I don't know that answer. But I do know the things that catch my eye today, for various reasons.

First up, we were thrilled to come across this Tofurky product packaging that advocates for aggressive legislation that will help counteract the man-made aspects of climate change.

A July 16 article on the aptly named industry website Refrigerated & Frozen Foods states: "Tofurky, a leading independent producer of plant-based proteins in the U.S., is setting aside self-interest to call on consumers to join in the battle against climate change. For the first time, a brand is creating billboards at shelf level, dedicating its packaging to advocacy with the goal of inspiring widespread consumer action. ... Each package also features a QR code linking to a resources and activism page with additional information for consumers. Here, visitors can register to vote, find phone numbers and text services for their representatives, sign pledges and have access to scripts to use when contacting policy makers. There are also additional statistics to learn more about getting involved in the fight for change." 

Bravo Tofurky! Your products continue to be worthy of strong support by people who are conscientious about their food choices. And, yes, we need a Green New Deal, dammit.

Second is another plant-based product, but I'm presenting it for a different reason. Wicked is a company dedicated to selling, in its words, "delicious flavor-first, convenient plant-based foods from lunch and breakfast options to dinner, snacks, and desserts." That's good enough, all by itself. But its packaging is amusing and eye-catching. Full disclosure: I bought this one half for the food, and half because I never thought I'd see a food label sporting the word amazeballs.
I have childhood nostalgia for the monster cereals (Count Chocula, Franken Berry and Boo Berry), because I saw those commercials endlessly during Saturday morning cartoons. Mom smartly never put them in the shopping cart, though, so they remained an Aspirational Sugar Cereal, alongside other stuff Mom would never buy, most notably Lucky Charms and Cap'n Crunch. (We did, however, get Cocoa Pebbles, so it was never quite clear where the line was.)

Ashar, meanwhile, finds the monster cereals fascinating because they have marshmallows and because they're a groovy relic from long, long, long ago. (Sigh.) He likes to read about their history and, more than that, he likes to try them out and see if they're any good. So, during this year's seasonal re-release of the monster cereals, he's tried — and I've tried for the very first time — Boo Berry and Franken Berry. (The Count Chocula sold out in a flash, so we didn't get to try that this year.) I found the Boo Berry pretty respectable (for a monster cereal), but the Franken Berry wasn't my jam, no pun intended. Ashar liked them both. "Pretty tasty," he said. He also wanted to collect the boxes after we finished the cereals, because he's totally my son that way. 
Finally, another thing I'm nostalgic for is products containing my No. 1 favorite food: peanut butter. I sent out this tweet earlier this summer in honor of three favorites that are produced no more: PB Max, Milk Break Milk Bars, and Peanut Butter Boppers. I don't miss them enough to buy empty packaging on eBay, though.

Monday, September 6, 2021

1944's "Decorations for the Schoolroom"

American kids have been returning to school during the past few weeks, and more will return after this Labor Day weekend. The first days of a new school year can be so exciting; we all have cherished memories of what those days felt like, and of all the people who worked hard to make them special.

So it's heartbreaking to think of all the contemporary schoolchildren who've had similar moments dampened or erased because of the ongoing pandemic. Many missed out on the classroom buzz about the start of summer adventures during the last day of school in the spring of 2020 (which seems like a million years ago, right?). There were the long weeks of necessarily remote instruction during the 2020-21 school year. And now the 2021-22 school year has begun under the black clouds of the delta variant and the anti-science parents and politicians who are trying to bully school boards into mask-optional policies.

But kids are resilient. Past generations have attended school during numerous unsettling or nerve-wracking moments in U.S. history: World War II, for example.1 Today's ephemera is a staplebook book that was published in 1944, during that war, and is designed for teachers seeking ideas for the classroom.

I didn't do a full series of "back to school" posts this year, so these peeks inside that 1944 book will have to suffice. But there's a ton of stuff in the Papergreat archives. A good starting point if you're interested in School Days Nostalgia is this directory that I last updated in 2015. Or, if Scholastic Books are your jam, there's a whole subcategory for that. 
Footnote
1. Or during the Cold War, when the threat of atomic or nuclear annihilation hung over our nation and our schoolchildren, who were instructed in perfectly useless "duck and cover" drills. I recently watched the excellent 1963 film Ladybug Ladybug, which offers a harrowing look how the threat of a war that could instantly wipe out millions of lives affected the psyches of students, teachers and parents. Without spoiling anything, I'll say you'll never forget this movie's ending. 

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Book cover: "The Extraordinary Margaret Catchpole"

  • Title: The Extraordinary Margaret Catchpole
  • Author: Ruth Manning-Sanders (1888-1988)
  • Cover illustrator:
    The name written on the illustration looks like Jane Paton. There's no credit given on the dust jacket or inside the book. And I can't find anything connecting her to this book in Google searches. There is an illustrator from this era named Jane Paton, though, so that's probably the best guess. There are no interior illustrations in this book.
  • Publisher: William Heineman Ltd., London
  • Printer: Latimer Trend & Co. Ltd., Plymouth
  • Year: 1966
  • Pages: 222
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Dust jacket price: 21 shillings (Very roughly, I think that's the equivalent of about £20 today. Please correct me if I'm wrong.)
  • Dust jacket excerpt: The true story of a girl who was born in obscurity and became notorious through her loyalty to a worthless man. Margaret Catchpole was born in Suffolk, the daughter of a farm labourer in the days when farm labourers were lucky if they earned 10 shillings a week.
  • So Catchpole was real? Yes. She lived from 1762 to 1819. When I cited her Wikipedia page last year, she was described there as "an English adventuress, chronicler and criminal." That line has been revised and now describes her as "a Suffolk servant girl, chronicler and deportee to Australia."
  • Author's note: This is a true story. Margaret Catchpole was a real girl, and all the happenings in this book really happened. A word should be said about the use of the term coastguard. Actually the coastguard service did not come into being until 1831. Before that, the men who performed the same duties were known by various names: as preventive men, revenue men, coast-officials, excise men, or (if mounted) riding officers. But for the sake of clarity, it seemed best to use the more familiar word coastguards.
  • First paragraph: 'Lord save us! Whoa-o-oh, Punch! Whey-e-eh there! Whoa-o-oh!'
  • Last sentence: And so, knowing her valiant to the last, we take our leave of her: the guileless, warm-hearted, and astonishingly brave Margaret Catchpole, whose tragic fate it was to love a man not worthy of her."
  • Random sentence from the middle #1: Stephen Laud's cottage was in a very lonely spot, half hidden by the ruins of an old castle.
  • Random sentence from the middle #2: The horse and trap were run out, and Margaret, still unconscious, was driven off to Newgate Prison.
  • Reviews: There's extremely little about this book online. No reviews on Amazon or Amazon UK or Goodreads. I did find this tidbit about the book on Newspapers.com, from the April 29, 1967, edition of The Age, a newspaper of Melbourne, Australia, written by Dennis Dugan:
"Margaret Catchpole's life finished in Australia, but Miss Manning-Sanders tells mainly of her life beforehand as a girl in Suffolk and her unfortunate romance with the dashing but easily led William Laud. 

"The story is well known, of the vivacious and venturesome farmer's daughter who, although transparently honest herself, became entangled with a smuggler and eventually went to prison because of her love, escaped, was recaptured and finally transported.

"Miss Manning-Sanders fills in the background with her usual sure touch — the over-fond father and the grumbling mother, the happy days of service with wealthy people, and the continual worry over Will's lapses into questionable ways.

"There is little about Margaret's life in Australia, for she was then a grown woman, but Miss Manning-Sanders accepts that story that she became associated with George Caley, the botanist. It is now generally believed that botanist with whom Margaret was 'keeping company' was James Gordon, sent out by J.A. Woodford, of the War Office."

Saturday, September 4, 2021

At the movies 50 years ago today...

Here are some of the movie advertisements that appear in the September 4, 1971, edition of the York Daily Record, which I worked for from 2000 to 2013. As you can see, the selections leaned much more toward raunch than Renoir.

Among the films for the big screen (a mix of theaters and drive-ins) are: Robert Altman's McCabe & Mrs. Miller; Klute; Night of Dark Shadows; The Horror of Frankenstein, a Hammer film without Hammer stars (although it does have future Darth Vader actor David Prowse); the Elvis Presley/Mary Tyler Moore/Ed Asner incognito-nun flick Change of Habit; the Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young/Joan Baez/Joni Mitchell concert film Celebration at Big Sur; The Omega Man; and the 1970 bomb of a war drama called The Last Grenade. Then there are a bevy of X-rated films, including: Oona, Mnasidika, The Swinging Pad, Lorna, and Dandy — The Love Animal, which you can read about in this amusing review from Mondo Digital that keeps out the X-rated stuff.

Saturday's postcard: 1911 schoolchildren in Iowa

This real photo postcard was a piece of local mail within Forest City, Iowa, in May 1911. The city in northcentral Iowa went on a population upswing between 1910 and 1920, growing from 1,691 residents to 2,145. Today it's about double that, with 4,285, according to the 2020 U.S. Census. Forest City is, most notably, the place where Winnebagos are made, and you can take a factory tour if you go there.

The postcard was written in pencil and in cursive. It was mailed to Miss Agnes Jones, and the message states:
How is school? Are you coming to my picnic Fri. Are those pictures as good as yours? I am glad mine are not there. 
K.L.S.

Related post: Sorry, I was detained for a bit in Forest City

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Psychogeography, snickelways of Miami, Arizona: August 2021

Last weekend, we took an afternoon trip along U.S. Route 60 to historic Globe, Arizona, passing through a region that's already been threatened by wildfire (the Telegraph Fire) and flooding this year. On the way back along Route 60, we stopped to have a look around the small mining town of Miami

I didn't have much time there, and these photos do not represent the full quality and character of the town. I just walked a few blocks quickly and took these snapshots to get an initial sense of place, the psychogeography of Miami. And to quickly look for snickelways. I don't know if these alleys count as full-fledged snickelways, which are defined as the narrow footpaths between and through buildings in an urban setting, but I think they're close enough to the spirit of them.
Bonus #1: 
Instagram from Superior, Arizona
When I posted this image of the Copper Motel, someone commented on Instagram: "This place is being remodeled. I'm glad someone was able to save it."
Bonus #2: 
Front door of a bar in Globe, Arizona
Other photography posts