1964 Pontiac Tempest - Red vrum. Red vrum.

I have no strong opinions about the Pontiac Tempest, other than the fact that I like that you never hear about them. This makes the Tempest an underdog car. If I saw a Johnny Lightning version of a Tempest hanging on a hook in a hobby shop, I'd probably buy it, because I think badass muscle cars get too much attention, and that lame, ordinary cars are amusing.

Nice photo. Red on red. An ordinary mortal might have thought that it would be a fine idea to put the bright red car against a contrasting background, and that's a perfectly sensible idea. It's worked a million times. But, to put the red car against a big red square plays up the redness.

And the choice of the color red is no random chance. People like red. It makes us think of sex and blood and getting pulled over. That's why red cars get  so much attention from the constabulary. Police assume that people who buy red cars like to drive like maniacs.

Anyway, this Tempest ad is a nice piece of art. It reminds me of the motorsport art by Ricardo Santos, seen here at Motor Sport Retro. Know how car-related art can be actually beautiful, and admired by someone who isn't especially into cars? Maybe like this. Santos does good stuff. He has a few examples of monochromatic pieces that highlight the blueness or yellowness, etc. of a car. Super gorgeous. Exactly where to find prints of these remains a bit of a mystery, but I would seriously consider hanging these where normal non-gearhead people could see them.


Gypsy curses.

When angry, consider using these gypsy curses, carefully translated from ancient Russian Bazooka Joe comics by the P.A.G. Cultural Awareness Assault Force.

Curse #1 - May a hundred bats vex your cattle.

Curse #2 - May your potatoes all have voles hidden in them. Yes, voles!

Curse #3 - Your children should have such heads as the Kennedys in largeness, and as such, appear ungainly.

Curse #4 - Your wife should become sassy and bring shame to your house.

Curse #5 - Your eyes should turn to wood, and have poorly-applied paint on them, such that it peels, and causes you great discomfort.

Curse #6 - May you live a thousand years as a carnival worker.

Curse #7 - Your face is like unto a different, uglier face than yours. That face should be yours for the rest of time.

Curse #8 - May your clothing turn to fiberglass, and be of a size that it is difficult to remove.

Curse #9 - Your mouth should be filled with lint, and from underwear.

Curse #10 - All your carpeting will be soaked in urine of many kinds, and shall have no warranty.

Curse #11 - May TV Guide become mostly ads and only show television listing for prime time, and may it become useless and irrelevant, while still costing the same price as always. (Oh, wait, that's already happened).

Curse #11 - Go vex yourself.

Click for big.


Dixon Ticonderoga pencils - I pity the fool who doesn't know what a number two means.

Today's ad from 1949 has something for everyone - some history, some technical art boredom, and a little sexism for the ladies... you know who you are. Please enjoy the freaky mascot "Mr. T", who apparently has an eraser and ferrule fused to his skull.

What's a "ferrule"? It's a metal collar that holds something in place. The shiny bit on a paint brush that all the bristles go into? That's a ferrule. The shiny bit on a pencil that forces the eraser and wooden part to make nice together? That's a ferrule. Fascinating! Not really.

Either Mr T is at peace with his deformity or his flute tootling is the only thing that eases the throbbing pain that comes with his badge of office. More importantly, he really bulked up in The Eighties. Also, he turned African-American. Still, even in his later, wider, blacker years, he still wore the gold ferrule of his bygone pencil days in the form of his twenty pound albatross of miscellaneous gold bric-a-brac around his neck.

In this ad, we see him preaching the gospel of Dixon's Ticonderoga pencils to the ladies in the secretarial pool. He can be viewed as either a liberator, making their day-to-day lives more livable, or a brutal taskmaster, leading them in a horrible parade of menial, chauvinist drudgery. You decide. The three women seem to be waving rectangles at him. I prefer to believe that these rectangles are symbols of their rebellion against the male "squares" that keep them down, limiting their careers to a state servility. Fight the power, girls. You don't want to be squares. Find your rectangularity.

The baffling numbers on the side of pencils have been the low-hanging fruit on the tree of jokes for the laziest of comedians for years. Bobcat Goldthwait used to have a joke about taking a test, and finding himself without a No 2 pencil. The punchline is that he broke a four in half. Ha. Ha. Well done, Bobcat. In more recent years, Adam Carolla has occasionally railed against the mystery of the No 2 pencil on his podcast. In one-tenth the time he spends complaining about it, he might have performed a Google search that would have cleared the whole thing up. But, looking up minor curiosities for yourself is not how you fill mobile devices with upwards of seven hours of content per week.

The number on a pencil refers to the hardness of the lead (which hasn't contained any real lead in decades and is actually made of mostly graphite and other stuff). The scale of lead quality has "H" at one end (for Hardness) and "B" at the other end (for Blackness). The number next to the letter indicates the degree of hardness or softness. In the middle is "HB", which doesn't know how it feels about being hard or soft. The scale looks like this:

9B 8B 7B 6B 5B 4B 3B 2B B      HB     H 2H 3H 4H 5H 6H 7H 8H 9H

The ubiquitous No 2 pencil is a 2B. Why do they leave off the "B"? Maybe because normal people never use "H" pencils and they don't need to specify. The B-ness is assumed. That's my guess.

Hard leads make pale marks and soft leads make darker marks. Also, the hardness of a lead will change the feel of the pencil. A really hard lead will feel like you're engraving the paper with the point of a dart, while soft lead will feel almost creamy as you wipe it onto the paper. A 9B pencil will turn to powder, disintegrate and blow away if you breathe gently on the tip. Soft pencils smudge really badly and break really easily. Hard ones don't smudge much at all and can be stabbed through a car's hood if you get the angle just right. The holy grail of pencil craftsmanship would be a nice soft pencil that doesn't smudge and doesn't break when you press too hard. Every manufacturer has their own secret formula and every artist has their favorite pencil, and probably has a coffee mug with fistful of their favorite brand in a variety of hardnesses.

My favorite for years has been a Japanese brand called Tombow. The lead seems to be finely ground so that it goes onto the paper very smoothly. Cheap pencils will sometimes have an inclusion or "stone" in it that will suddenly scratch or tear the paper. Tombows never seem to have these flaws. Also, they somehow resit smudging really well. Generally, they cost about a dollar each, but if you're persistently stupid, you can find them on Amazon for more than twice that. It takes giant cedar balls to charge that much for a pencil.

Why should you care about any of this? You probably don't need to unless you're an artist yourself. Here's a drawing I did a hundred years ago in college. It's basically a pencil-rendered copy of a picture I found in a J Crew catalog. It's not really a test of drawing skill so much as an experiment in pencil rendering. I used about six different pencils in various hardnesses. The hard pencils were used for all the silvery shading in the hair and shirt. A hard pencil will let you easily create a subtle range of tones limited to the pale end of the spectrum in a way that a soft pencil wouldn't allow. As a bonus, all that carefully modulated pale shading won't smear when you accidentally drag the heel of your hand across it, if it was done with a hard lead. All that delicate silver shading stayed sharp and clear because I used hard lead.

Even if you're careful about where you rest your hand, most artists strategically choose where to start rendering so that their wrist and arm rest on the blank area, and not on a finished part. Since I'm right-handed, I started in the upper left and worked to the lower right, rotating the paper to try and keep my hand and arm off the finished part. Also, artists tend to keep a scrap piece of paper under their hand to protect the drawing and never slide it around. They lift it an re-position it, but never drag it. This kind of stuff helps keep you from ruining a drawing before you finish it.

What the hell is Mr T doing at the bottom of the ad? Venting? On the left he's beating the shit out of an eraser, and on the right he's trying to tear one out of a pencil with a pair of ice tongs. Does he think that's someone's head?

Apparently he hates erasers. I don't blame him. If I had a huge hermit crab pinched onto my head, I'd probably have a bit of a chip on my shoulder about hermit crabs. So if I had an eraser crimped into my skull, I'd be kind of resentful at those too. He probably writes with a pen.

Click for big.


Chef Distress

Joke #1 - "For the last time, sir... No, we do not know who stole the cookie from the cookie jar."

Joke#2 - "Yes, sir. We'll get this out right away. 'APB. Sexless white humanoid. Seven and a quarter inches tall. Blue doll-like eyes. Responds positively to poke in belly. Suspect is armed and presumed fresh.'"

Joke #3 - "Yes officer. I was robbed by a dozen youths. Three of them had a kind of glazed look to them. Some may have been filled with jelly. One had bear-like claws. I need you to send a squad around right away to apprehend them. ...That'll be six fifty."

Joke #4 - Within a few months of being test-marketed, the vend-a-cop program was discontinued, due to the difficulties involved in keeping the officers "fresh" long enough to be needed. For a short time afterwards, vend-a-cop machines were replaced with vend-a-corpse units, and then vend-a-bone dispensers, before being abandoned altogether.

Joke #6 - Scene from Frank Capra's underwhelming non-visionary 1934 film "Robo-Cop".

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

Click for big.


Object Review - Nixie clock.

My bedroom clock failed a few weeks ago. It was a new-old-stock 1973-ish Westclox of Japanese manufacture, and had run for me, without fail, for maybe two years. I may make some attempt to revive it some time, but not having the electronics kung-fu of my dad, I'm not optimistic about the effort. So. New clock time.

I'd managed to find out the name of the super old digital displays that are beloved of Steampunk hipsters - Nixie tubes. Those are the glowy orange numbers that live inside a glass tube about the size of a man's finger. Steampunk guys, by definition, have a certain disregard for chronological continuity, and so have no problem mixing in Nixies, which are a 1950s technology, with their victorian stovepipe hats and clockwork brassieres.

A Nixie tube from my dad's collection of bits. Note 
the wires connecting to the post inside the tube.
These correspond to the numbers cathodes in
the stack.
A notable pop culture occurence of Nixies can be found in the Anime epic, Wings of Honneamise, if I recall. I can't be bothered to watch the whole thing again to make sure, but I seem to recall one of the control panels in a spacecraft having a Nixie digital readout. Since they were the first type of digital electronic display to be invented, they are the go-to technology for retrologists and weirdos who like their equipment to look unbelievably complicated and fragile.

"Nixie" = "Numeric Indicator eXperimental No. 1", trademarked by the Burroughs coproration. It's become the "Band-Aid" / "Kleenex" name for any tube-based display of this type.
A nixie tube is basically a sealed glass bubble filled with some mixture of neon gas, one anode (electrically charged wire thingy) and several cathodes (other wire thingies), made in the shape of digits. Pins protruding from the back / bottom of the Nixie correspond to the various numbers inside. When current is supplied to a combination of pins, that digit lights up. Because the numbers are stacked on top of each other, there is a distinctive visual depth to the function of a Nixie as the numbers change.

Turns out I had a handful of Nixies, inherited from my dad in a huge chest of electronic components in my garage. They come in various shapes and sizes. The ones pictured here were my dad's. They're not part of the clock, but they're handy for examination without manhandling the delicate innards of the clock.

Nixies became widely used in scientific and aerospace applications in the 50s and 60s, but were being developed as early as the 1930s. After being supplanted by simpler, cheaper, more durable LED technology in the seventies, they fell out of use and sat on warehouse shelves until a bit of a retro revival in the 1990s. Prices have risen sharply because of this, and you can now buy Nixie clocks (in either kit or completed form) on the web.

A Google search brought me to Peter Jensen's site, where he sells Nixie clocks and kits. They can be pretty expensive, depending on whether you want to build it yourself, or have it in a super cool machined case or what have you. Not being able to justify the price of a CNC'd aluminum case, I opted for the "prorotypey" look of the bare electronics, assembled for me by Peter himself (I think). As per his recommendation, I then ordered an acrylic case from a separate specialty supplier.

Despite the fact that Nxies run very cool to the touch, I drilled some 1-inch vent holes in the back of the case, because I just happened to have some press-fit mesh grilles - also courtesy of dad's parts chest - to go back there. The vents help it to look over-engineered and complicated.

The clock has two buttons on the circuit board that function pretty much like the ones on a digital watch, setting the time and brightness, etc. Peter has added a few surprising features, like a dimmer timer, which basically lets you set a schedule to dim the Nixies, presumably prolonging the life of the tubes, which can be had from Peter for about $20 each. Alternately, if a tube fails, you can just send the clock back to him and he'll do whatever it takes to get it going again. Nixie tube service life is generally in the thousands-of-hours range. Peter unofficially predicts the life of his clocks to be about five years before servicing is necessary. Being a little pessimistic about whether or not Jensen is still in the biz in five years, I kind of want to order a few replacement tubes from him while I still can. Additionally, there is a clock speed adjustment function that I haven't had the need to mess with, but it's there. The clock seems to keep pace with my cell phone, a week after setting it.

If you get the "naked" version of the clock like me, you can possibly look forward to powering it up for the first time with your finger absent mindedly touching the pins on the bottom of one of the Nixies, protruding from the underside of the circuit board. The voltage is enough to get your attention.

So what's with the dark square over the seconds display? I found that, staring at the clock while falling asleep, the seconds ticking by could be a little distracting, even with the clock set to the lowest brightness, as shown here. Watching seconds go by while you're trying to fall asleep can have a bit of a "hurry up and sleep!" effect on the brain. This is not restful. That's two pieces of transparent acrylic held together with a nut and bolt, leaning against the two rightmost tubes. I combined a piece of red and purple plastic from a set of color filters. They're intended to be used as gels, over the flash or lens of your pocket camera. A set of about eight filters costs an extortionate $15 or so from a photography site, but here's a tip... Go to a plastics site like Delvie's Plastics and order a "sample kit". It will be pretty much the same thing for about five dollars. Anyway, with the seconds dimmed down to a deep purplish-red, the ticking away of the numbers no longer changes the ambient glow of the room sixty times a minute, which doesn't interfere with sleep, but you can still watch them do their thing if you want to, the numbers moving forward and back in their wire cathode stack, in time with the pulsations of your brain.

The case is recommended by Jensen himself, and comes from Cases for Collectibles.com, which doesn't seem to be affiliated with Jensen at all. It's a 4"x4"x8" case and fits the clock perfectly. The little stick-on feet that came with it seemed a little underwhelming, so I went back to dad's parts chest and found four rubber feet about an inch in diameter, some screws and brass cap nuts (or "acorn nuts" as dad used to call them) to hold them on. Some more drilling and before long, the feet not only made it look more "finished", but also contribute mightily to the retro appeal.

Pro tip: Acrylic scratches only slightly less than butter. When drilling or working with it, cover the surface with masking tape. It doesn't make it indestructible, but you can mark on it with a sharpie and you're way less likely to ding the surface with an errant drill bit or utility knife. The tape should leave no residue when you peel it off.

Even in the economical caseless form, the cost of a clock like this is non-trivial. However, they are ex-Soviet tubes not mass produced, soldered by hand onto a custom circuit board by an independent businessman not in China. Tell yourself you're helping the economy.

FULL DISCLOSURE: There is nothing to fully disclose. I paid for this clock with my own money and Peter Jensen doesn't even know I'm doing this write-up. However, if he sees this post and wants to shower me with free stuff or something, I welcome the opportunity to totally sell out in this way.


Blue Ridge Parkway, 1957

Joke #1 - "That's right, ladies. These wildflowers are a protected national treasure. So are these handcuffs. Let's go."

Joke #2 - "Boy am I glad to see you! Have you got anything to eat? And, could you drive me back to my squad car? Oh, you're not allowed to park that here. Would you mind terribly if I arrested you a little bit?"

Joke #3 - Suddenly, a ranger was there. Judy didn't know where he had come from. They were miles from anywhere, but there he was. Before she knew what was happening, little Gina was arrested for public urination.

Joke #4 - "I know this seems like an ideal spot, but I urge caution to any park visitors planning a pic-a-nic. These mountains are full of bears, and some of them are slightly smarter than your average bear. And a few of them wear hats. I know. Horrible."

Joke #5 - "I'm sorry, ma'am, but picking of state park flowers is prohibited. So is taking pictures of them. Also, looking at the flowers is prohibited. So is rolling your eyes about the flowers. No, ma'am, a heavy sigh is perfectly legal, but you're still under arrest for previous infractions."

Joke #6 - "Excuse me, little girl, you're not allowed to park that here. I'll have to ask you to move along."

Joke #7 - Judy didn't know how much longer she could keep the ranger distracted. Why didn't Loretta take the shot? Come on, Loretta, take the shot!"

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

Click for big.


Chesapeke and Ohio - The world's worst logo, decoded!

Our 1936 Bureau Chief has just wired me this ad for Chesapeke and Ohio railroad, which finally reveals exactly what the hell their logo is. History's secrets... revealed!!!!

Many times I have sat at a railroad crossing, watching an interminable line of rail cars go by. They are often grouped together, so the bored / frustrated motorist can appreciate multiple examples of the giant logo on the side of the train. This is made even less bearable when the logo is one of such baffling and terrible design as The Chessie System (as it is called now). What is the logo supposed to be? A satellite image of an undiscovered island? Pac Man with oral cancer? The worst shadow puppet ever?

The Chessie logo is a frikkin' kitten sleeping on a pillow. Now I know. This was meant to communicate to you how smooth was the ride on the Chessie system. This mattered when humans traveled on trains much more so than they do now. There was once, citizens, so much competition for the train traveler's dollar that railroads apparently worked hard to give the passenger the smoothest ride possible. This is quaint. Travel by train is still completely possible, of course, but it's just not the ubiquitous mode it once was.

This logo is a failure. It was once a photograph (or painting) that has been made into a two-color graphic, and has not survived the transition with any degree of legibility. If you need the original picture to decipher the graphic, it's a failure.

If your logo cannot be deciphered when it's nine feet tall, it's a failure. The casual observer should not have to be eighty years old to remember a time when the logo was once printed in photographic form in order to understand what the hell he or she is looking at. Yes, if I had done a Google search on the Chessie logo, I would have immediately found the kitten picture. But, if your logo requires a web search to find out what it is, it's a failure. Yes, the Chessie logo is memorable, but your company logo shouldn't be memorable for being an inscrutable blob.

None of this would matter if I hadn't spent a cumulative nine hours of my life in a state of frustration watching this horrible logo keep me from getting home, a mere quarter mile from the railroad crossing. The uselessness of the logo just makes it more galling, and now that I know what it's supposed to be, I hate it more. If, on any of the innumerable logo design jobs I've done, I had submitted a logo that looks like an alien continent, I'd have been laughed at, fired, and punched... unless of course the job was for The Tourism Board of "Space Barbados, with exciting new peninsula!" The artist who made this kitty picture into a logo should be stuffed up his own butt. "How's the view in there? See anything that looks like the shit logo you designed? Enjoy!" He should then be kicked in the stomach, to break his nose.

That being said, the locomotive in this ad is brilliant. I am a man, and as such, was once a boy, and likewise, once had strong opinions about trains. The one in this ad is from the perfect time when trains had become enormous and still had lots of wheels and wiggly bits on them that made them interesting to watch, but had yet to become the slab-sided featureless rectangles that we have today. If I some day become one of the crazy old men who plays with model trains, I will have a locomotive like this one. Make no jokes about phallic symbols. As Freud once said, "Sometimes a train is just a train."

Click for big


Roach Shirts - Be the loser you've always dreamed of.

All right, class. Turn off your various lathes and band saws and begin sweeping up. I found this 1975 copy of Popular Hot Rodding in your locker and it's time to order your new T-shirt from Roach (heh heh) incorporated. You're gonna be the "toast" (heh heh) of shop class!

When choosing your new stoney t-shirt design, you need to be sure you'll be wearing your very favorite thing on your chest. What do you like best? Your shirt will tell the world for possibly months to come (until the decal fades or peels off). You'd better be certain of your affections.

In the middle of the page are some new and exciting "Permagraph" designs, featuring actual photographs. As soon as permagraph technology was available, Roach Inc. immediately created full color designs that everyone had been waiting for. Cars, beer, trains, and.. a cactus?

Do you like beer? Of course! Have you ever had one? Possibly! But you definitely want your friends to THINK you have. More likely, your dad let you taste it that one saturday when you were holding the flashlight while he reattached the dryer duct. Then you barfed and told your buddies the next day that you finished the whole can. If this is you, design # 5079 is for you.
If you aren't afraid to have your mind bent or your eye dazzled, you may need to choose a "Glitter" design. Maybe you're not sure what the hell you're into, but you want everyone to know you're into things? Then choose one of the non-specific space-themed, island lagoon, or seagull designs. people will definitely know that you want to have interests.

If you're the weird kid who doesn't know why he does things, you're going to need the "Flash" shirt. Everyone will ask what that's about, and you'll shrug. It' not The Flash's logo. It's just a shirt that says "Flash". Nobody talks to you anyway, so it hardly matters.

Maybe you want people to be scared of you, so they won't know how scared you are of them. Then get the snake or dragon design. The dragon is also good for nerds who will be the first in school to try Dungeons & Dragons when Gary Gygax invents it in a couple of years. You'll want to have your shirt ready when you throw your first D20.

Are you a girl? Positive? Okay, then you'll pretty much need the "Foxy Lady" shirt. But maybe you don't want to look like the school slut (for some reason). In that case, just get a "Boogie" or "Sunshine" design and nobody needs to know you "do more than dance".

Maybe you like cars? Your "Mopar or No Car" trucker hat and STP sticker on your Schwinn Sting-Ray are a clue, but they'll know for sure when they see you in one of these various car caricature shirts. Or, just get the "I'm with stupid" shirt and let everyone in one hemisphere of the world know that not only are they stupid, but you're are also with them.

But really, if you're the person dead center in the bullseye of Roach's demo, you'll be wanting one of their pot-themed shirts, as if anybody in school doesn't already know you smoke weed. You'll also be baked while filling out the order form, so you'll screw it up and wind up with "Foxy Lady". And, because you spent your whole allowance on it, you'll have to wear it anyway. You, my friend, are the loser of your dreams.

Click for big.


Wagner Auto Parts - Service with a smile and a funny hat.

Sorry, joke enthusiasts. Nothing super funny about today's 1949 ad from Wagner auto parts. Just a piece of very dated clip art and some cool car illustrations. And spot color! You know how you all get excited about ads printed in black plus a color, right? Didn't think so. Well it is anyway.

I don't remember personally, but there was a time when gas stations, or "service stations" were populated with scurrying humans in uniforms who would scamper all over your car, checking fluids and stuff while your tank was filled... also by a worker bee in a crisp white uniform. They wore quasi-military hats like the one Gomer Pyle wore. That's what's the deal with the Disembodied Floating head at the top of this ad. This explanation was for the confused among you who are less than 100 years old.

In my experience, I can remember a time when there was still a gas station guy who would walk up to your driver's side window and ask what kind you wanted and how much. But, since this was The Seventies, he didn't look like the clip art guy in this ad. he looked more like Doctor Johnny Fever, from WKRP in Cincinnati, and was probably just as likely to try and sell my dad a joint as he was willing to sell him a carton of Salem 100s.

I was neither a gasoline customer, nor alive, when gas stations were run like this. But in my experience, I can remember a time when there was still a gas station guy who would walk up to your driver's side window and ask what kind you wanted and how much. Since this was The Seventies, he didn't look like the clip art guy in this ad. he looked more like Doctor Johnny Fever, from WKRP in Cincinnati. In a way, I kind of prefer to pump gas myself, rather than have even this limited conversation with a potential tilt-a-whirl operator. I'm sure if I were a lady, I'd feel even more strongly about this.

Anyhoo, the car illustrations in here are pretty good. They remind me of the Richard Scarry books I used to have when I was a single-digit human. Richard Scarry books were focused more on showing kids how things were made, built, moved, and generally done. Even his more "plot-driven" books featured vehicles pretty heavily. Good man. He encouraged curiosity.

I have half a mind to buy up some copies of these books before they're outlawed for not being "self-esteem oriented" enough. Some people seem to want a world full of people who have a very high opinion of themselves, despite the fact that they don't know how to do anything. When I make my nostalgia-driven purchase, I could use the excuse that I was buying them for my girlfriend's son, which is true enough. That would not explain, however, why I bought two copies of each (one for me and one for he). Lucy, I have some 'splaining to do.

Anyhoo again, this Wagner ad uses a very typical Fifties font for the body text: Two Cent. The title script font looks like one of the "Sign Painter" collection. If you simply can't live without either of these fonts, you should be able to find free versions of them on the web without too much trouble.

The groovy font used for the title of "Busy, Busy World" could be simulated by starting with the "Socket" or "Ad Lib" TTF and then bending, scaling and pulling on the strokes to do the nutty, uppy-downy stuff and the goofy legs on the letters. These should also be pretty findable out there on the intertubes.

Here is the gas station guy, complete with Gomer Pyle hat and misguided chalky shading. He has thos pac-man eyeballs that were all the rage in The Fifties. There are big and small Jpegs and PNG versions (with transparent alpha channel). I'm pretty sure that most applications will let you flip images horizontally, so no mirrored ones are posted. Complain if you can't flip them yourself, and we may change policy on that.  Please enjoy. You're welcome.

Big Jpeg


Small Jpeg

Small PNG


Painted Stockings - Why ask why.

Pretend garment news now, from our bureau chief stationed in 1939. We now have a way of convincing ladies to let us fondle their legs under the pretense that wearing real stockings are too much trouble! Mashers, scoundrels, cads, bounders, and oaves rejoice(d)!

Apparently, before Nylon was cheap and abundant, it could be a problem supplying a movie set full of extras with actual stockings, which were made from silk, which is a natural material painstakingly pulled from the butts of moth larvae. Here in the Marvellous Future, Nylon is a cost-effective substitute that can easily be harvested from the municipal water supply of almost any major American city.

But back in the savagery of 1939, they sometimes resorted to painting women's legs to resemble stockings. Allegedly, they didn't smear or run, regardless of sweaty exertion. The application process was always performed by one of the three straight male makeup artists in Hollywood at the time, probably due to some union rule.

Why this article ran in Popular mechanics is either a huge mystery or totally NOT a mystery, due to the nonexistent status of the internet at the time and lack of availability of dirty pictures to the average man.

Click for big.