Monte Copter - Day of the Tri-Phibs.

Flying car update now, from 1961. The Monte-Copter was another kooky attempt at a flying car boat. I love the plastic dome over the cabin (or known in laymen's terms "the people hole"). I wish bubble domes had caught on. I wish my car had a bubble dome. I wish the rest of humanity would stop laughing at those of use who like bubble domes. Also, please stop throwing rotten vegetables at us bubble dome lovers. We used to be like you. We're not so different. Why so many anti-domites?

Anyway, the Monte-Copter ran on a turbine. It blew air to turn the rotor and blew air out the back to make it move. Whether on land, water, or getting honked at in an intersection, it relied on the same stream of air to do everything.

This kept the mechanicals very simple. No transmission or gears or metal linkages to disengage the rotor or drive wheels. It just had a system of valves and ducts inside it that redirected the air from the turbine to turn the blades or blow out the back for propulsion. This is a pretty good way to keep things light, and with few moving parts.

However, the challenge that is still... uuh.... challenging designers is the "car" part of the plane/car/boat vehicle. Governments have a lot of laws and requirements to make a car street legal. This article doesn't say whether the Monte-Copter is street legal or not. I'm not familiar with NHTSA regulations from 1961 But I bet it would have a hard time meeting regulations here in The Future.

The article talks about the compact size of the Monte-Copter, but never mentions what you do with the huge rotor when you're in "car mode". Supposedly, the vehicle is fifteen feet long, but the rotor looks way longer.

Then there's the noise generated by a gas turbine. Here's a FaceTube video of a model train powered by a gas turbine engine. Jump to 11:54  when the guy shuts the hell up and turns the thing on. Frikkin' loud. Can you silence a turbine engine like you can with an internal combustion engine? Imagine how loud the Monte-Copter was.

Then there's speed. The Monte-Copter had a top land speed of 40 mph. And since it's motivated purely by jet thrust, it would have been slow to get going from a dead stop. Air is squishy, and pushing against air takes a while to build up speed.. Wheels are much quicker off the line. Top Gear once raced a very fast car against a very fast jet fighter. Ultimately the plane was faster, but right at the start, the car just walked away from the plane. Scroll to 6:20 to see the start of the race.

Imagine trying to use the Monte-Copter as a car, even for a special trip from the lake to your house or whatever. At every stop light people would be flipping you off and honking. Then, some more finger honking on the highway because you can only do 40 and you're causing a traffic jam. Your huge rotor would probably be hitting things and causing clearance problems when you turn corners or drive through a town. If you want to fly later on in the day, you'd be carrying the wing extensions (required for flight)... where? In a trailer? The vehicle's too wide to use on a road (almost 11 feet wide) with the wings on. Even if it's not your daily driver, the Monte Copter would be almost useless on the road.

As an engineering demonstration, the Monte-Copter was a job well done. As an attempt to solve a transportation problem, it was silly. Nice dome, though!

Best of all, Science and Mechanics chose to ignore the Monte-Copter's real name in the headline of the article. They called it the Drive-and-Fly Tri-Phib. At last! A name as complicated as the machine.

Other Science and Mechanics editorial triumphs:

-"Enjoy Color Tele-Vision broadcasts with new Chroma-Omni-Tele-Vid-U-Tron!"

-"Safety Advancement in Oven Mitts! Manu-Thermo-Grab-O-Nutri-Glove!"

-"Prevent Unwanted Pregnancies with Intra-Fem-O-Baby Nega-Hump-Itol!"

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Kooking Kornir - Abhorrent meat paste casting.

I am Oteogg! hear me! Pathetic subcreatures, prepare to receive critical data on the preparation of a meat casting in the form of a favored creature... possibly aquatic, or die!

If your vessel is like mine, some of your subjugated crew are of varying physiologies and temperaments! Sometimes they choose not to consume the flesh of certain creatures due to barbaric superstition, or refuse nutrition as a form of passive aggression! Resistance is futile! Trick your crew into eating whatever you wish by disguising it as an acceptable creature cast in forbidden meat paste!

Begin your hilarious deception with the meat of a creature found to be unacceptable by your eaters! Any fauna will do, such as the Doe-Eyed Darling Faun, Questionable Tentacle Bird, or Insolent First Officer! First, kill your creature! Depending on your anger, you may choose to terrify your creature, before extinguishing its life! Also, you may have the skills to simply frighten your creature to death! Choose as you wish! Listen to your heart!

You will require a series of mesh screens of varying hole pitch! Once death has been given to your creature, cast about your ship for these screens! Consider dismantling your life support systems, as they often have filters and air returns containing filters, grilles, and wire grids! Collect your screens of varying hole pitch in your nutritional preparation chamber!

Begin with your coarsest screen - likely a grille from a ventilation duct! Force your creature through the grille with all strength, to be caught in a standard space bucket underneath the screen! Consider shouting during exertion of this type! It will help your eaters to appreciate the effort you put into their nutritional preparation! Collect your creature and choose a finer screen! Push the creature through the screen with many shoutings! So on in this fashion, you will progressively reduce the creature to a fine paste, ensuring that all parts are unrecognizable and of a smooth, anonymous texture! This is desired!

Now you must make the mold! Observe your galley's collection of creature molds, remembering to choose the form of a creature less abhorrent to your eaters than the one you have so recently pulverized! This is key to the violation of their sensibilities! The image presented in today's recipe is that of a standard fish, but depending on the disposition or culture of your eaters, the fish may seem hideous! Know your crew!

Pour your meat paste into the mold! Be cautioned that laughing during the meat pour is likely to create spills! Keep chuckling to a minimum! You may laugh in full, once the pour is complete!

Place your mold in a refrigeration unit for several hours, periodically shouting at it! This will help to evacuate air bubbles from the paste! It is required that texture be creamy and delightful! After refrigeration, summon your reluctant crew, and serve the meat casting garnished with arbitrarily chosen flora! It is important at this stage that you present the nutrient in a casual fashion, to avoid arousing suspicion! Tell them that they are not about to eat something horrible! If your preparations have been adequate, your crew will never know what they ingested! ...Until you tell them afterwards, during the recreational puppet show! BWAR har har har har har!

I am Oteogg! I have spoken!

Communication ends!


Nucoa - Your bride and joy.

A two-fisted meal of history and marital felony now, from our friends at Nucoa. This little girl is serving an older man a snack with an adoring gaze. What is the nature of their relationship? Obviously, they are married.
We've delivered hard-hitting journalism thingies in the past about "oleomargarine", and today's post is also some of that. In your face, Big Butter lobby!

After a hard day in the fields, it's nice to take a load off, read some single-spaced documents, maybe have a bit of a smoke, and enjoy some kind of sandwiches or something, served to you by your newest child bride. Here she comes, smiling so bashfully. Maybe she's hoping she thoroughly mixed the "color wafer" into the white oleomargarine? Her hands are awfully small, but she does her best. You're sure that anything she's prepared for you has been done with love in her heart... the love that only a five year old girl can have for a middle aged man. The world doesn't understand, but it will some day. And until that day, you'll both have Nucoa.

Find Nucoa at your grocer's in town, where the people stare at you funny. Look for the drab blue and yellow package that could easily be a box of paper clips or bullets. You'll know that you're holding the most uniform preparation from the best-staffed and equipped food laboratories in the world. Nucoa understands it's all about control.

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Trade School Sonnets - Step Jawed Tool Post.

My love bade me tell him, of a summer's morn,
"Art thou constant like the moon, my dear?"
Though sad I was to decry the fairness of The Orb,
How luminous was my joy to proclaim the greater Truth!
My constance is like unto the Step-Jawed Tool Post!

Though my world be spun and thither, I am ever on center.
For you are my center, my fulcrum, my point of zero rotation.
My love for you is resolute and firm and can abide great change, from one-half an inch to nine!

For the jaws of my love for you are stepped, like those of the Step-Jawed Tool Post.
And they will hold, these stepped-jaws of love, through internal or external flexion of their precision clamping mechanism, though they never mar your surface or smirch your edges.

My constancy is like unto the Step-Jawed Tool Post for I hold you in security, my dear,
nomatter your various diameters or composition.
Never doubt my constancy, dear heart, as you would never doubt the Step-Jawed Tool Post.


Royal Crown Cola - Drink the red pill.

RC was always the name brand store brand soda as far as I could tell. If Coke or Pepsi were too expensive, you could buy the store's "Cola!" brand cola, or there was always RC. I never knew anyone who ever really drank the stuff. Maybe because we never see them again if they do? Ever think of that?

Here we see The Construct, where a little girl has been invited to visit the seamless white void. Ah! Refreshments! RC cola! Did you ever wonder why RC cola is found everywhere, but no one you know drinks it? It looks kind of suspiciously red in this old ad from 1959... at least that's the year they THOUGHT it was.

Obviously, this little girl has already drunk some red pill, if she's sitting in The Construct. Apparently RC is what everybody drinks in the "real world". I don't think I've ever seen a bottle of RC with the cap off. I've never seen any in my friends' fridge.

Obviously I've never had any, because I'm still sitting in my cubicle, here in Chicago. I'll let you in on a little secret. None of the elevator buttons in the actual Chicago say "lift" underneath them. We don't call them "lifts" or "Tasty Wheat". We call them elevators, even when we're not shooting up the place. The machines got it wrong.

Unless that's just a glitch... ?

Oops. One second. My phone's ringing.

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'59 Chryslers - Lend us a fin.

By 1959, America was starting to get over the national juvenile obsession with cars that had kooky tail fins. I know people love them, but to me they're as childish as a horsey head built into the driver's seat, you know: so you can pretend you're a cowboy. A car is not a horse, and a car is not a frikkin airplane. Despite the romper room styling, they're still long and low.
Not to say I'd like to have one. Instead of one of these giant tunas, given my choice of any land yacht in history, I'd go with a '62 Lincoln Continental and a free line of credit at my local mechanic... not that you asked, but there it is.

Pretty ad. Typically gorgeous paintings for a car ad of this era. Buyers of these convertibles had the option of getting them with Chrysler's "Swivel Seats", which could swivel towards the doors, making it easier to get in and out. Sooooper cool, though I do wonder if Swivel Seats made safety a problem. Here's a FaceTube video showing them in action. Scroll to 1:35 to see that part, although it may be worth your time to watch the beginning, to hear how much Lawrence Welk sounded like a Lawrence Welk impersonator.

There aren't any jokes to be made about this ad. It's just pertty. So, I... hey, look at that! Ther're dropping off little Miriam at a convent! I hope they told her what's up, and didn't just tell her they're going out for ice cream.

Also, apparently, one of the '59 Chryslers was available as a hybrid model. That's some forward thinking! Twelve miles per cardigan.


The Type-O-Mat

Joke #1 - Behind the scenes at Enormous Print Editions, Inc.

Joke #2 - Early attempts at building an all-in-one computer/monitor/data storage system did meet with some success, although all examples of such machines eventually fell through the Earth's crust and were vaporized in the molten core of the planet.

Joke #3 - Due to the fact that it could be unbolted from the floor, the second-generation Type-O-Mat machine sold twice as many units, thanks to this new portability feature.

Joke #4 - "Dear Mom. Some pranksters have stolen my typewriter, so I am writing this on a industrial punch press I found in the common room. I hope I have enough stamps to mail five Buick roof panels. Anyway, camp is fine. We went swimming yesterday...."

Joke #5 - "My heart is like a summer's lathe, spinning courage from stolen hope, forged at near-molten temperature 'twixt the dies of ardor and passion. And finely de-burred it be, with sixty-grit agate media. O! Does it shine and blaze forth in the moonlight, this love I have wrought! Such is my care, that my hand doth quiver as I chamfer it's obverse end, so that it chafeth not the palm of my intended. Shall I knurl it's handle? Yes! Let me knurl, for surety of my darling's grip! O yes, I shall knurl!..."    (Excerpt from Jane Austin's lesser known collection "Sonnets of a Trade School".)

Joke #6 is from Robby. Thanks for the deposit, Robby!Although you could print your very own giant checks, the down-side to the type-o-mat was it's ear bleedingly loud jet engine that powered it.

[Commenter jokes will be added to the post.   -Mgmt.]

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Camel Filters Denim Patch Offer - The patch that helps you stay smokin'.

Hey, look who's come back for a visit! It's our old friend The Seventies! Hey buddy, how are you? Fat, smelly, and drunkstoned? Shocking. Well, what have you got for us today? A denim pocket offer from Camel? That's very good. Did you cut this out all by yourself? I bet you need a rest after all that work. Oh, all right... A rest and a drink and a smoke. You take a load off while we read your ad. You're so smart and fun, The Seventies. I wish you could last longer than just ten years. Oh wait, you did. Your stink pretty much lingered through 1984.

I can't remember the last time I heard or read anyone using the adjective" dynamite" with sincerity. Good thing, too. I'd be hard pressed not to punch something. Anyway, this offer from Camel is apparently dynamite. A denim embroidered camel pocket for a buck, plus the joy of smoking two packs in order to be eligible. This will look great on your tote bag with no matching colors or textures. Thanks to the ad, we can all have the idea of sewing the Camel patch on our mile-high waisted jeans. These jeans simultaneously function as a bra. Hey! Why no picture of two patches sewn onto a bra?

Too cool for school. The school agrees.
Camel probably sold a million of these things. Believe it or not, people would actually wear stuff like this in The Seventies. Many a camel pocket was pressed to the fiberglass seat of a portable tilt-a-whirl back in the day. Fly by night carnivals were THE place to find licensed beer/smokes products. All the burnouts at any given high school had a camel patch, or maybe a Budweiser mirror: the highly prized prize for learning to shoot fluid into a clown's mouth.

Those of you below a certain age may not believe any of this, if not for hipsters who are responsible for bringing this kind of thing back to life, even if for ironic reasons. They deserve all the hate you can muster. Won't you please muster some today? Know what people like the anonymous hipsters at left would love? A crochet beer can hat. If you see one at a second hand store, buy it for five and sell it to these jackwads for fifty. Wait. You don't know what a crochet beer can hat is? You're in for a treat.

Yeaaaah, that's the stuff. Yes, people did this. No, really. No YOU shut up! In The Seventies, truly brand-loyal drinkers would set aside their cellos long enough to crochet a hat out of some deliciously empty beer cans. You could see these hats out in the wild at street fairs, carnivals, greased pig contests, cockfights, hen-teases, barn raisings, barn topplings,  mud whompin's, harpsichord recitals, and couch burnings. The usual weekend Seventies stuff.

If you really want to, it's not hard to find instructions how to make these on the web. No, I'm not giving you a link. I'm not going to help you do that to yourself. Find your own damn link.

So who wore this stuff? You know, your average professorial type. You can't see in this photo, but this guy has patches sewn on to his elbows. They may even have the camel logo on them.

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G.E. Refrigerator - The center of family life.

Gather round, children, and I'll spin a yarn of adventure from the Days of Yore. See, once upon a time, instead of a "refrigerator" everyone had an "ice box" in their kitchen. This was because before anyone figured out how to make stuff cold by compressing certain gasses, the only way to do it was by keeping huge blocks of ice around the house, and hopefully replacing them with new huge blocks of ice as they melted. Today's ad is from G.E., promoting their exciting 1941 line of electric refrigerators.
Consumer refrigerators had been available since 1930something, but it seems they were still new enough to justify the term "electric refrigerator". Want a modern analogy? "Digital camera". Only a few years ago, you would have told your friends you were thinking of getting a "digital camera", but now you just call it a camera. I bet it really frosts the old timers who now have to listen to everyone say "film camera" to describe the old obsolete technology.

Here's a Three Stooges short on FaceTube in which they play ice men, making a delivery to a house on a very tall hill on a very hot day. This short didn't make sense to me when I was a kid, until my mom explained to me that people used to need giant blocks of ice for daily life. What's funny to me now is that the horse reads the sign to determine they're at the right address, and wakes up the Stooges to get to work. Interestingly, this short was released in 1941, the same year as this ad. I guess there were still enough ice boxes around that the story of the film still worked... or at least worked well enough for a Stooges short.

Anyway, this ad takes up back to the time when the fridge was the center of family life. When you came home on a hot day, you'd open the fridge and let it cool the house, and everyone would hang out in the kitchen, gradually eating all the food you own because it's 1941 and there's nothing else to do but have wars.

Here we see a hand-ful of teen-agers having a bull-session in front of the elec-tric refrigerator. Mary holds a cafeteria tray full of pudding while everyone finishes all the milk and brown squares (or as we used to call them, "squarebrowns").

Blayne loves the way Mary's Mom makes squarebrowns, but he's just plowing through them, eager to try the pudding that Mary is holding in front of those curious lumps in her sweater. Is there pudding in there, too? Yes and no, Blayne!

Redshirt Rob (as his friends call him) just eats whatever is put in his mouth. He's just staring at Mary's legs, wondering what holds them together at the top. Easy there, Rob! There's plenty of time to find out after you're drafted and shot down over France! He'll also find out that the French have a funny word for gonorrhea. They just call it "le sexe".

Hey! What's Judith up to? Is she stealing something from the bread-box? No, she's tuning the radio. Keeping an analog radio on one station  was like balancing a plate on a pencil - constant attention. It was worth it, because in 1941, radio was still relevant and listenable. Radio networks wouldn't be programmed for twelve-year-olds by hyperactive ferrets for another fifty years, so Judith better keep her knob-hand limber! I'll help her steal some of the boys' attention back from Mary. And if the radio doesn't do it, there's always the G.E.'s Butter Conditioner that keeps table butter just right for spreading.

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Plastic Wood - Let us repair.

I don't know how much time or attention was devoted to the artwork in this ad for Plastic Wood, but it kind of looks like clip art, or some other "disposable medium". Quite often, the stuff that gets the least scrutiny is the most enjoyable.
Did they even have clip art collections in 1958? More likely, these little cartoons were cranked out rapidly for not much money. Plastic Wood doesn't seem like a high-profile advertiser with a big reputation to worry about, so maybe they were done as offhandedly as they look. They don't embody any particular style of the era. They're just cartoons. But they become funny once you wipe out the words. Yes, some things get funnier WITHOUT captions! Crazy. I know. Inform the press.

While coming home from a hard day at the Office for Nuclear Mutants, Lucinda ripped the door off her lair. Despite her enormous exposed brain, she somehow found a way to not know her own strength.What a cruel twist of mutant fate.

She cries not so much for the damaged roof of her doll's A-frame alpine chalet, but because her other dolls will have to find somewhere else to stay this ski season. Her brother's dishwasher box fort is a likely place, despite its inconvenient location relative to the slopes and apres-ski cafes. Oh, the humanity.

There's a reason Henry the 8th's chair was so surprisingly cheap at the antique store. Originally rated for 800 lbs or 1.2 kings, Tudor era ham-based construction glues degraded over time and by 1958 could barely support the weight of one standard Aunt. The pages of eBay Europe are filled with offers of "One antique chair. Questionable leg. Could possibly be repaired by handyman with pork."

This same piece of art was used by a different manufacturer to market "Cookie Knobs". Oddly, that company had learned nothing from their previous bout of lawsuits following the "Lunch-a-Blades" fiasco, and the firm folded under economic stress of the many settlements. Their advertising assets were eventually sold off to recover some losses, and this piece of art went on to much better use at the Plastic Wood company.


Concept Cars 1956 - Gimme some bubble dome.

The June 1956 issue of Mechanix Illustrated (no relation to Spellin' Illustrated) featured a report on the new cars for '57. As ever, there were concept cars aplenty, brimming with cool ideas and promises nobody intended to keep. Thanks, Detroit! Reproduced here for your entertainment is the full article, even the trailing pages that have no pictures and make you flip randomly around the magazine to finish reading:: "Continued on the spine of the magazine." I frikkin hate that.

Giant versions of all pages are at the bottom of the post.
A "trend to SMALLER wheels?!?" I know all those words, but they don't make sense to me when placed all next to each other in that order.

Notice the hyphenated whitewalls, which save weight. Also, the tail fins keep the car moving in a straight line, eliminating "cornering" and other undesirable "European" handling traits.

New for '57, spewing soot all over the side of your car! Also notice the clever folding hardtop, which doesn't so much "fold" as it just slides into a nine-foot section of the car completely given over to roof storage. For added convenience, when not storing your car's roof, the trunk can be used to store other things, like perhaps a different car's roof.