8.19.2013

Chic Fashion from 1963

1963 fashion sweaters in Orlon polyester
According to this ad from a 1963 McCall's Magazine, "Seeing is believing - so see the fashion surprises of "Orlon" acrylic in boutiques and wherever better sweaters live."

I don't really know where better sweaters live nowadays. Certainly not in my closet. My closet is full of thrift shop clothes.

I've been popping tags since back in the mid 1970's, which is to say ever since I had a job and was old enough to drive. It was always a source of embarrassment to my parents, who insisted we buy everything from the Sears Surplus Store. With all those "Was and Now" orange stickers, I can't possibly see what the difference is other than the span of a few decades.

I'm sure the fact that I am still wearing thrift shop clothes all these years later is proof that some old habits never really die. As Macklemore would say, "I wear your granddad's clothes. I look incredible. I'm in this big ass coat from that thrift shop down the road. I'm gonna pop some tags..."

8.16.2013

Carpet Slippers from 1963

Carpet Slippers from 1963 that look like, well, carpet.
Carpet slippers are just an old fashioned term for house slippers or house shoes. It would appear from this 1963 ad that they were made to look a lot like carpet, hence the name perhaps. Or perhaps it is a shoe you wear when you walk around on expensive carpets.

My daughter has slippers that look like adorable white bunny rabbits, except for the gaping mouths with killer teeth. A Monty Python thing, if memory serves. They would do well on fine carpet, although their fashionability is possibly in question.

My neighbor has started breeding rabbits. Two months ago he had a pair; now he has 30 of them. I think he was breeding them to eat, but I don't think he actually wants to kill them. I am expecting a large influx of rabbits in my yard in about another 3 weeks. That's life in the country, I guess.

8.09.2013

Walking in Your House

Marching on the carpet in your home while wearing lederhosen.
It's easier to take that 50 mile hike in your home, or so the ad says. I personally try not to hike anywhere but on the treadmill, but my grandmother was different.

My grandmother walked a mile every day between lunch and the start of her soap operas without ever leaving her tiny 1400 square foot home. She, or more likely my grandfather, had done the math and determined exactly how many laps from the kitchen to the end of the hall and back were necessary to exact a mile before the beginning of "Like sands through the hourglass, so are the Days of Our Lives." And faithfully, until she could no longer walk, she did her daily mile Monday through Friday.

My mother, now in her 80's, is not an avid walker. She is more like the ball in a pinball machine, bouncing from one piece of furniture to the next in order to get around. She thinks no one notices that she has no sense of balance. As if.

To make matters worse, my brother has decided to take her with him and his family on a cruise. What is he thinking? I somehow doubt it will be as cheerful and enjoyable as the oddly attired family in this ad. Lederhosen in the living room? I think not. It makes me want to cut up my drapes.

8.06.2013

Marshmallow Treats Recipe

1963 recipe for Kellogg's Rice Krispie Marshmallow Treats
I was surprised to find out marshmallow treats were invented in 1939 by Malitta Jensen and Mildred Day of the Kellogg Company as a fundraiser for the Camp Fire Girls.

We didn't have Camp Fire Girls in my neck of the woods when I was growing up, or if we did, my mother was careful to hide that fact. She was wary of anything that required her to drive us to an activity. I doubt she would have survived raising children in the internet age.

According to Wikipedia, whose authority is what it is, Madonna, Gladys Knight, and Janis Joplin were all Camp Fire Girls. Mom certainly dodged a bullet there.

I found this old recipe for Rice Krispie Marshmallow Treats. It is not significantly different from today's version, with the exception being that today's version has a higher ratio of marshmallows to Rice Krispies than the recipe of the past. But if you would prefer the leaner 1963 version, here it is.

Marshmallow Treats
1/4 cup butter or margarine
7-10 ounces regular marshmallows (about 32) or 3 cups miniature marshmallows
5-6 cups Kellogg's Rice Krispies

1. Melt butter in 3 qt saucepan. Add marshmallows and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until marshmallows are melted and mixture is well blended. Remove from heat.

2. Add Rice Krispies and stir until well coated.

3. Press warm mixture into buttered 13x9 inch pan. Cut into squares when cool.
Yield: 24 - 2 inch squares.

7.30.2013

Chocolate Creme Cake Recipe

Chocolate Creme Cake from Robin Hood Flour 1963
I found this great old chocolate cake recipe in a 1963 McCall's Magazine. It is from Robin Hood Flour. Yummy!

Chocolate Creme Cake

1 cup boiling water
2 sq. (2 oz) unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup soft butter or margarine
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cups brown sugar, firmly packed
2 eggs
1 3/4 cups + 2 Tbl Robin Hood All Purpose Flour
1 tsp soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup commercial sour cream

Pour boiling water over chocolate squares in bowl. Let stand until cool.
Creme butter and vanilla. Add brown sugar and blend well.
Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Spoon flour into dry measuring cup. Level off and pour measured flour onto a square of waxed paper.
Add soda and salt to flour and stir to blend.
Stir blended dry ingredients into creamed mixture. Mix well.
Blend in sour cream and chocolate-water mixture.
Pour into greased, waxed paper lined 9x5x3 inch aluminum loaf pan.
Bake at 325°F for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until cake pulls away from sides of the pan.
Cool on rack for 10 minutes. Turn cake out of pan and remove waxed paper.
Frost with chocolate fudge frosting, or as desired.

7.05.2013

Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing

1964 ad for Wish Bone Italian Dressing
I am in love with the new Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing commercials; I think they are brilliant. These commercials, should you have missed them, are a campy, over the top series of highly sexual commercials that will get even the most straight laced laughing. You can view a few on the YouTube video here. My, my, what were they thinking?

Of course, back in 1964, nothing nearly that titillating ever came through your black and white TV tubes, so the most exciting thing you might find was this Wish Bone Italian Dressing ad from a prominent women's magazine, which states, "I'm in love with a sassy Italian."

Things sure have changed in 49 years.


6.21.2013

The Glass Half Full Side of SEO

Minute Tapioca Ad from 1964.
I try hard to be an optimistic, glass half full kind of person. It doesn't always work out. Recently, on Squidoo, I have seen the glass half empty side of a lot of people. It's not pretty.

Squidoo, for those of you who don't know, is an Internet site that  allows you, with no real need to know HTML, to make stand alone web pages on just about any subject. You can make money with your pages, you can link similar pages together, all kinds of stuff. It's very cool, and I have 200+ pages there under 4 different persona, including Beetlemania and ottoblotto.

Recently, however, Google has made some major changes in the way it brings up search results, so the way many people, including myself, have done pages, particularly product recommendation pages, is no longer OK with Squidoo, mostly because it is no longer OK with Google. This has caused a general outcry and much gnashing of teeth for no real good reason. What are they thinking? After all, if Google is no longer going to rank your web page on page one of search, then no one is going to find it anyway, so you may as well be flexible and change it.

I found this ad for tapioca in a 1964 McCall's Magazine. Here is an excerpt:
"Minute Tapioca's full of surprises. People who hate it call these surprises lumps. People with a more positive attitude think of them as bubblets. They say these bubblets transform what's basically a rich, creamy custard into - well, into a dessert that's full of surprises."

I guess Google updates are kind of like the lumps - or bubblets - in your tapioca. You will either like them or not. Sure, it's a pain to redo your work to stay abreast of the latest ideas from the almighty G, but if you don't no one will ever know but you because you are the only one who will ever see your work. Better to take your lumps like an optimist and keep moving forward.