Victorian Porn Titles.

Time's short today. My office is being downdated with paneling and an avocado green coffee maker. So, today's post is just words. Please enjoy these Victorian-Era porn titles.

-The Bawdy Bussel of Lady Edith Crotchworthy

-Which Fanny?

-Ankle-Length Bloomers 3

-Rather Rubenesque!

-Soot Fetish Monthly


-The Unbuttoned Shoes

-Well-Fed Maidens

-Such a Situpon!

-Gloriously Gap-Toothed 8

-The Fantastical Tales Mr. Johnathan Thomas's John Thomas

-Oliver's Twist

-The Gluttonous Guttersnipe

-The Lewd Extravagances of Doctor Horton Wienerbottom


Crosley - Smaller was good, then bad, then good again, then bad for a while, now good and bad.

A Whatley? Crosley. I know. I never heard of it either, but I'm not telling you that. I'm gonna sound like I knew all about Crosley. This is gonna be great.

You know how every time the price of gas spikes upward, the sales of compact cars do too? Well, during good old Dubya Dubya Eye-Eye (WWII) gas (and lots of other things) were in such short supply that there was gas rationing.

Enter Crosley, an Indiana-based car company founded by two brothers in 1939 that specialized in sensible, small, efficient utilitarian vehicles. Crosley came along right about the time that world affairs went in the pooper and suddenly Americans liked the idea of a small car that got 50 mpg. There were delivery-vehicle type Crosleys and the country-fried "Farm-O-Road" and regular runabouts like the one in todays ad. Smart, right?

Yes, you're right. That's smart. How smart? Hold your horses and I'll tell you. Crosley built the first American production car with disc brakes on all four wheels (Many cars today are still available with horrible drum brakes on the rear, jeez!). Crosley built the first American sports car, and coined the term "sport-utility". Wait, what? Hmm. Maybe Crosley deserved to be punished for that one.

So, why'd they fail? Well, Americans are nothing if not short-sighted, and once times got better after the war, we went back to chanting our old mantra "More is more!". As the chromed-out land yachts of The Fifties took hold, desire for the dinky and sensible Crosley dwindled.

Also, contributing to the corporate death rattle was the shittiness of the engine in the Hotshot - that first American sports car. The engine block, instead of being a, you know, BLOCK of iron, was made from brazed-together pieces of sheet tin. Engine life was kind of an issue. That's why in this ad, Crosley is so jazzed about their "CIBA", which somehow means "cast iron block". Welcome to the engine block party, Crosley. Glad you could finally make it. I'll take your coat. The drinks are over... - hey, you don't look so good! Crosley? Crosley? *THUD* Crooo-sleeeeey!

The manufacturing plant was sold to General Tire and Rubber in 1952. Ah well.

To this day, popularity of small cars moves in tandem two-step with the price of oil. The price of oil goes all crazy, right along with the general happiness level in the Middle East, even though America now imports twice as much oil from Canada as we do from Saudi Arabia. It's perception. You know how people startle really fast and calm down slowly? The price of oil does the same thing, and that's because it's keyed to how scared we are of the Middle East, and not much more.

Small cars are now getting some attention again, but huge SUV boats are still wildly popular, partly because manufacturers can qualify for a very green-sounding "Hybrid" badge if they tack on a ten horsepower electric motor, improving efficiency by 1 mpg. Job done.

Hey, nice Disembodied Floating Head! Well, sort of. She has a neck, so she's not THAT disembodied. Certainly no award winner. Lose the neck and you'll be a contender, doll-face. Maybe she really is just a severed head? Her boyfriend must own a car faster than a Crosley.

UPDATE: I think it's graphically suicidal to print the name of your company with a treatment that looks like it's been crossed out. "CROSLEY a FINE car."

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Marlboro Plaidorama - Manlygirl, girlyman.

Hey, you know how the stereotype of The Fifties is that they loved themselves some plaid? Well, Marlboro Sportswear was getting cranked up for The Fifties in 1949 with their Plaidorama ad campaign. What's the secret ingredient? Extra plaid!

For me, the corniness of The Fifties and Sixitied ruined plaid for me. My childhood was spent seeing reruns of Leave it to Beaver, Brady Bunch and Father Knows best - shows populated with apple-cheeked lads in requisite plaid shirts. At the same time, there was a cedar chest upstairs full of hand-me-down shirts from my brothers just waiting to plaid me up as soon as I fit into them. Bad luck for me that there wasn't a collection of Evel Knievel t-shirts ready to be worn, which is what I would have preferred.

Plaid existed before 1950, of course. It's super old, and in case you've spent your life up to this point with your head stuck in a barrel, it's generally associated with Scotland, where it could be generally used to distinguish one clan from another - or at least what region you were from. However, the earliest known tartan fabric was found in western Austria, Scandanavia, and even... China? Whatever.

So, as a kid, my understanding of plaid was that you wore it because it was there, and that "aw-shucks" dorks on TV wore it. Guess what? To this day I don't like plaid. I have a few plaid shirts, but they're of the ironic "Hey! I'm a rock-a-billy cowboy!" variety. I still feel like Eddie Haskell when I wear plaid. My girlfriend reminds me that plaid is very "in" right now, but I don't care. It was "in" before. It will go OUT again soon. In 1822, there was a "tartan craze" when George IV visited Scotland and brought Tartan popularity home with him. So you see, this bandwagon has been through town before.

In The Seventies, plaid was the livery of used car salesmen and wieners like Herb Tarlek, which did nothing to improve it's coolness. So, to this day, I prefer stripes. For a while, Braveheart brought tartan close to coolness again, but Mel Gibson's "personal interestingness" has put it back cultural short bus, I think.

Plaid cannot be taken seriously. To this end, I have painted two bike helmets in a plaid pattern, which I can tell you, isn't easy. Plaid doesn't want to work on a spherical surface. But, if you want it badly enough, it can be done. Hint: 90% masking time, 10% spraying time. It's possible  to finish a bike race in "dead middle" and still be treated like a hero by your competitors, and that's with a DIY plaid helmet.

Plaid definitely prefers to be applied to square surfaces, like the geek in this Marlboro ad. He's about as square as it gets.

"Hey Tad, your assless dockers really accentuate your ass!"


Exmess Card Solution, Part 2 of 2.

Here are the other five Exmess cards from nineteen something something. The P.A.G! Garage Sale Assault Squad reports that, when flipping through shoeboxes of ancient postcards like these, it's interesting to note that the ones with a picture of a person on them command a higher price. A picture of Santa (or Father Christmas) usually goes for triple.

Cards with a discernible print date are noted. Those without, aren't. So, let us know if any of you decide to rage against the Big Christmas Card machine and make your own using these perfectly good relics.




Exmess Card Solution, Part 1 of 2.

So you're gonna get Christmas cards made, or your family gives you the stinkeye like you're history's greatest monster. Hooray for Joyful Obligation and Judgement Season (JOJS)! It's a time of year when people have vague but definite expectations for each other. You won't know unless you fail. It's the best kind of test - the kind where you either pass and nothing happens or you fail and become a secret pariah. So, you stress out and bust your ass just to tread water. Whee. It's the moooost won-der-ful tiiime, ooof the yeeeeaaaarrrr!

But don't worry worry slightly less, because we've got your Exmess card solution, and it'll be cooler than some saccharine family photo with everyone wearing matching sweaters, or your dog with a hat on. Christmas cards from the turn of the (previous) century.

The Garage Sale Assault Squad raided the petty cash box this weekend and made an unauthorized purchase (They haff some 'splaining to do, Lucy!) of ten Christmas cards from roughly 1906 or thereabouts. It was a simpler time, when all we had to worry about was World War I just over the top of the next hill. People back then felt quaint, adorable emotions like "cheer" and "yuletide", whatever the hell that is. So, browse through these five designs and pick a favorite. Click the little one to see it full size (3.5 x 5.5 @ 300dpi) in a new window, and right click that MFer onto your hard drive for uploading to the printers. Tomorrow we'll post five more. This should leave you plenty of time to get them made and scribbled on, dodging just one of the many Joyful Obligation and Judgement Season bullets. You're welcome.

Christmas cards seem to have ballooned in size, right along with the P.I.T.A. factor of this holiday. This means that these cards are all of the slightly dinky 3.5" x 5.5" size. Do a Google search to find a printer online who can make you cards in this size. Not everyone offers it.

UPDATE: Looking at the back of these cards, it's amusing to note that, apparently, at one time you could get something delivered to the right person by simply writing "Mr. Earl Linderud, Stoughton, Wis." The  card addressed to Master Raymond Nolfe in Bronx, New York, however, needed a house number and street name. I guess larger cities needed more detailed address information, but in small-ish towns, a name was enough. Interesting, but true!

ALSO UPDATE: The printer will probably want to avoid cutting off the design at the edge of the card. This is called "bleed". The borders on these cards are generally pretty thin, and may look weird if it gets cut off. You may want to scale the design down a bit or do some Photoshop tricks to buy yourself some extra room at the edge of the card. I suggest maybe an additional border in a similar color to whatever is on the card.







Reminder: Seasonal Obligation Card cattle call.

There are still a few palettes of this year's Phil Are GO! Seasonal Obligation Card cluttering up the halls of GO! Tower. Get yours by sending us some kind of postal address and that's it. No salesman will visit. We don't have any sales that need manning.


Phone Wires

Joke #1 - The first Apple v. Samsung patent lawsuit stemmed from Apple's allegedly proprietary technology of "a huge gob of wire wrapped in a circular fashion", which forced Samsung to wrap all their wire gobs in a square configuration. Apple's victory secured their dominance in the mobile phone market well into the early 1950's.

Joke #2 - "Okay, I am now rubbing your fanny with a ten dollar bill. How does that feel? After your reply, one of my colleagues will begin describing a different explicit behavior, and we will await your erotic response. Thank you."  - Excerpt from the ruinous phone sex scandal at the Republican National Convention of 1949.

Joke #3 - A scene from one of Apple's very early "one more thing" product launches, in which it is revealed that the iPhone also serves as a potato masher. The crowd was described as "going positively apey" at this news.

Joke #4 - "Please speak very loudly into your receiver, Senator, as if there is no wiretapping going on at all, because there surely is not any of that going on right now, with this phone connection. So, you were saying...?"

Joke #5 has been brought to you by the number three, and by the letter MisterFancyHotBalls_2 - "A phone?!! How the hell did THAT get in there??"

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

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Plugmold - A fantasy of wires.

It looks like Plugmold was (UPDATE: "...IS a system...")a system of electrical conduit mounted on the surface of your walls that allowed you to have an outlet every 30 inches or so. I'm all in favor or that. However, in their product shot, Plugmold have shown us a glimpse into the beautiful fantasy world in which you have   electrical stuff on all your walls with the cords proudly displayed dangling down to your brilliant new Plugmold system. Whee.

I had a hard time deciphering the joke in the little scenario. Were we supposed to be impressed that you could use a soldering iron within feet of a baby's crib? In the end, I figured out that this woman's house was so electrically optimized, thanks to Plugmold, that an electronics shop had moved into her baby's room. Oh, those Plugmold jokers. What shenanigans they get up to!

Plugmold. Dare to dream.

Yeah, that's great and all, but look at that overposed lady, doing the standard 1950's "aghast and surprised" reaction. She's good enough to react to almost anything. If only someone would cut her out of her ad so she can find new employment being horrified at all sorts of things. Wedding invitations, phone bills, death certificates. She can improve just about anything with her permanent state of dainty horror (see below).

Here, let me get that for you. Scared fifties lady on transparent background. Big and small versions. Get your rude finger ready to right click her into your heart in three, two, one...

Big version.

Less big version.

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Bond's 50th Anniversary - Thunderball?

With the release of Skyfall, the Bond movies are 50 years old. So, here's an article on Thunderball from a 1964 issue of LIFE magazine. Thunderball was not the first Bond film. It was the 4th.  Somebody dropped the magazine on my desk, and it just may be my favorite Bond movie, so in it goes. It certainly has my favorite Bond girl: the positively dreamy Domino. Also, be sure to scroll to the bottom for a snooty review of Thunderball from the same issue.

Here's an interesting thing: Roger Moore just said that Daniel Craig is hie favorite James Bond. Wow! Pretty cool guy. LINK

There's a lot of pictures in today's post, so so keep it from getting too vertically-scrolly, the images are small, and you can click on each for the big version where you can actually read the text.

Below is the review of Thunderball by Richard Schickel. It's a comparison with another spy movie of the time: The Spy Who Came In from the Cold. He really seems to hate Thunderball, because it's not gritty and realistic. Uuuh, yeah. Rich? Adventure movie. he also says that, with Thunderball, the producers are "straining, straining, straining to top themselves". Hah! I guess movie reviewers feel like their friends will make fun of them if they give a positive review to an action movie. I wonder how he feels about the film now?


Climax Moly - Decogasm.

In the altogether more innocent year of 1936, you could name a company "Climax Molybdenum" Company" without attracting too many muffled snorts of mirth (I love that band, BTW), even if your board of directors were all fourteen year old boys. Today, putting the words "Climax Moly" in your ad sounds like you're soliciting prostitution. It is possible there may come a day when we people living in 2012 seem quaint and innocent. It's hard to think how, but it has to be possible.

This ad comes from a 1936 issue of Fortune magazine, the publication read by the Monopoly guy (Whose name was once "Rich Uncle Pennybags, but has since been changed to "Mr. Monopoly". Sad.). Fortune is now somehow siamese twinned with CNN and Money magazine, but back in Yore, it was just a super thick monthly simply dripping with mouth-watering deco eye-candy. Art Deco was inspired by industry, and captains of industry read Fortune.

The picture in this ad was airbrushed. For those who don't know but are interested, here's a quick explanation. Those who care but already know or don't know and don't care can skip the next paragraph. The ones who don't care are probably reading OMG and, if they ever wound up at PAG!, it was only by accident, and only hung around long enough to go "what-EVERRRR".

Fishes with her bare hands, and votes.
An airbrush is a cool-looking little spray gun you hold like a pen. It's connected to a compressed air supply (usually a motorized compressor), and it atomizes paint into a spray and allows the artist to control the air-to-paint mix with a fancy trigger. Regrettably, some artists see the airbrush as The Only Tool They Need, and embark on a career painting T shirts at the mall for people who don't know any better and don't deserve any better. As I have ranted before, airbrush art generally looks like airbrush art, and while it does take a lot of skill to control the thing well enough to use, the barrier of entry with regard to taste is the lowest of the low.

According to Wikipedia, The first real commercial atomizing airbrush was presented at the World's Columbian Exposition (World's Fair)  in Chicago in 1893. Hey, cool! Also, the same World's Fair was the scene of the world's first serial murderer, as described in Devil in the White City, (which is an okay book - equal parts interesting history lesson, tedious history lesson, and tedious procedural crime drama.)

Lots of Art Deco flat art utilized the airbrush. Deco is typified by dramatic color, minimalist design, stark silhouettes and clean lines, which lend themselves very well to the cut-stencil technique involved in airbrushing.

In this factory scene, we see a load of scrap metal being loaded into a rail car on a magnetic crane. Clouds of backlit smoke supply your standard deco drama. Silhouettes of smokestacks and factory windows were obviously sprayed over an adhesive stencil, or "frisket", cut with an X-Acto knife. Climax is trumpeting the benefits of molybdenum steel, as opposed to ordinary mild steel, for structural engineering. Moly steel is stronger, is less effected by heat, and less prone to failure. Climax's angle is that it's more expensive to replace a part than to make it stronger the first time. Fair enough.

I learned to say "molybdenum" around the age of ten when my dad bought me a second hand Team Mongoose BMX frame, and built me my first good bike. The frame was "chromoly", which is an alloy of chromium, molybdenum, and good old steel. It made for a lighter, stronger frame. Chromoly is still used for things like roll cages in racing cars and, believe it or not, bike frames. Large bike manufacturers have moved on to aluminum and carbon fiber, but there are still small boutique bike manufacturers that do incredible things with steel (chromoly is still a type of steel) like Surly and Salsa. In the hands of a really good fabricator, chromoly steel can be as light and agile as aluminum without the harshness that comes with a typical ALU frame. When aluminum flexes, it suffers, and eventually will break. It's best to keep aluminum from flexing. But steel can be made into a spring, with clever tempering. A steel frame can be designed to absorb rough vibration without transmitting it to the rider, but an aluminum bike frame built strong enough to last will have to be thick enough to be harsh.

Anyway, please enjoy our special crop of this deco factory scene for your next CD cover, if you still use those things. We present it in slightly-higher-than-normal 2400px size, unpolluted by our watermark, for your delight. You're welcome.

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Scanning Electron Microscope

Joke #1 - New advancements in radiative microscopy lead to development of abnormally tall photographer. Sadly, the photographer now needs a second camera fitted with a macro lens simply to operate his other camera.

Joke #2 - Inside Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine's new "Department of Therapeutic Knobs and Dials".

Joke #3 - As with all technology, the development of the scanning electron microscope was driven by the need to view very small pornography.

Joke #4 - Housed in this underground lab over five hundred feet below the Earth's surface, the new Subterranean Imaging Infrascope allows researchers to see objects as clearly as if they were standing on the surface of the Earth. Further funding has been granted to simply place researchers on the surface of the Earth.

Joke #5 - What one lens in Roy Orbison's glasses would look like today if he were still alive.

Joke #6 - Being a Sony product, the new microscope could only be used with proprietary Sony brand "memory sticks", which stored up to 48 bytes of imaging data, were supported by no other manufacturers, and cost over twenty thousand dollars each.

Joke #7 - "You better not be building a scanning electron microscope down there!" "No, I'm just masturbating, mother!"

Joke #8 comes from Jim D. whose vibrant career in the sciences makes it hard for him to believe he failed 100-level radiometric carbon dating class, freshman year. Here's to turning it all around, Jim! Professor Schlangfanger's eyes had a mischevious glint as he invited me to look through his "inss-trew-ment" - - - and just a moment too late, it occurred to me that perhaps I was being tricked into looking through a hole in the console - - a hole conveniently aligned with - - - sure enough. And that's how I came to play the sucker in the world's most elaborate, and expensive, version of the old "hole in the bottom of the popcorn tub" trick. 

Joke #9 issues forth from Misterfancyhotballs_2, who does an awful lot of issuing, it must be said. Thanks, MFHB2! Jack sensed something oddly familiar about those "electronic beans" he traded that milking machine for...He had only left them charging on his desk overnight.

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

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Frontiers from Science's front edge - Advance forward!

New prop-driven car, powered by chopped children, stops to refuel.

Six jet engines bolted to roof of this 1937 Chevrolet enable it to reach speeds of up to forty miles per hour.

New slightly oversized pilot can now be fitted to normal sized camera for taking in-flight photos. Oxygen mask is needed because canopy cannot be closed with camera in place. Lead brick on opposite side of helmet counterbalances camera. Use is currently limited to five minutes or less, as vertebrae are gradually crushed into singularity and form black hole. Further camera development is pending development of new "black hole resistant" vertebrae.

New scope helps wearer see how dorky other people look. Can be fitted to nose.


Bigelow Carpet - How to decorate, please.

The last person you should have design your kitchen is a cook. Likewise, you shouldn't have a mechanic design your garage. Even more likewise, don't have a carpet company decorate your living room. Guess what you'll get. If you said "A room with too many bookcases", you're wrong.
Bigelow Rugs & Carpet reeeeally love carpet. So, if they're hiring a photographer, they want to see lots and lots of carpet in the picture. If they're hiring a set dresser for their ad, they want to see oceans of plush, vibrant, long-wearing carpet.

Cleverly, they made sure the house in the ad looks like your house, to help you understand that this carpet is made to fit in with your lifestyle. They included a dog, to show that the carpet will shrug off pee stains. And they included a boy, to show that the carpet will shrug off pee stains. (At least, you hope it's just pee.)

Bigelow carpet is so soft and color fast, you can even make a mom sweater out of it.

Bigelow knows how important it is to have plenty of room to move around in your living spaces. That's why the ottoman is tucked away under the sideboard - because the room would feel cramped otherwise.

To help you decorate your next home in a more carpet-friendly manner, we have included a diagram of your next living room, based exactly on the living room in this picture. Please do exactly this with your house. You're welcome.

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