Sunday, November 12, 2023

Send the Popcorn Clown to get me

For the second year in a row, I whiffed on October/Halloween posts. I had so many grand plans and so much spooky/fun stuff lined up on the runway. Once again, I blame cats, work and the Phillies for stealing all my available time, but ultimately the blame should be directed at me. I just wasn't disciplined enough to keep Papergreat rolling during the best month of the year.

This clown was going to be part of the Mild Fear festivities. Maybe my punishment should be having to hang out with him in a haunted house on a dark and stormy night. 

Anyway, this colorful postcard was published in 1968 by Yankee Colour Corp. of Massachusetts. It shows — in the happy days long before Poltergeist and Bob Gray flipped the script on clowns — a red-haired clown selling popcorn in a Boston-area park. The caption on the back explains:
"Ye Days of Yore ... saw this Popcorn Wagon built by Mr. [Eleftherios] Alexion in South Boston, Mass., in 1915. Travelling Boston for 48 years, he became friend of young and young-at-heart at his frequented stop between the Common and Public Garden. Acquired by Mr. [Joseph A.] Coyle in 1963, this wagon still pops corn in a wire basket over white gas flame."
I wonder what happened to the wagon, which would be 108 years old now and would certainly be museum-worthy. 

When this postcard was posted on Facebook by Vintage Roadside, most of the comments were exactly what you'd expect. But I did like this one from Mary Beth: "I think this is really sweet, but I’m from the pre-scary clown era. What a lovely man to have spent 48 years brightening up days for kids and adults with fresh popcorn. Hard for me to see anything other than good vibes here. Send in the clowns — I love ‘em."

Maybe it's time to bring back Good Clowns and give them another chance. What do we think?

In the meantime, now I have the upcoming late autumn and winter to put all of my belated Halloween posts onto Papergreat. Winter chills, indeed.