Holga, Diana, CCTV - Cheesy lens test.

Today, we have a special feature from the P.A.G. Photo-graphy team. We bought three intentionally crappy lenses for an Olympus Pen E-P3 to show you the different results from each. I spent literally minutes searching the web and couldn't find a side-by-side comparison of three low-fidelity lenses. If it doesn't show up on the first three pages of a carefully-worded Google search, it doesn't exist, baby. So, let's fill that void.

What kind of lenses? For those who don't know but are interested, what follows is a brief summary. For those who don't know or care, come back tomorrow, when we'll probably say some mean things about a defenseless old picture.

If you have an iPhone or Android smarty-pants phone, you've probably heard of or downloaded a program called Hipstamatic (iPhone) or Vignette (Android). These are camera apps that simulate the look of old obsolete cameras in your nice, modern, advanced phone camera. In the same way that some people like the crackle of vinyl, lots of people like the old faded look of Polaroid photos or the light leaks, streaks, and blurs of a Holga or Diana camera.

The Holga was an inexpensive plastic camera produced in China in the Eighties. Even the lens was plastic. It leaked light onto the film and build quality was questionable. This all contributed to the randomness of the photographic results. You can still buy Holgas at hipster stores like Urban Outfitters, but it'll be a film camera. You still have the cost of buying and developing film, and of course you can't see how your photos turn out until you spend the money to have them developed.

The Diana was also an inexpensive plastic-bodied, plastic-lensed camera made in Hong Kong in the Sixties. Pictures taken with the Diana were similarly wonky and unpredictable as with the Holga.

Both of these cameras have been enjoying a kind of renaissance in the last few years, in addition to their softwarey dopplegangers for various camera phones.

Well, you can also just buy their lenses and stick them onto your digital camera. This is what I did. In addition to the Holga and Diana lens, I bought Photojojo's "Lo-fi" lens. So what are the differences? Well, the Holga and Diana lenses can be bought for about $20 - $30 on Amazon (which is where mine came from) and Ebay, plus maybe fifteen dollars for an adapter which I needed to get the Diana lens onto my Micro four-thirds camera. If you really want to, you can buy the same Diana lens from Photojojo for sixty dollars, if that's what you're into. In exchange for simply dtriple the price, you do get their cutesy "Yay! Your goodies have shipped" emails. The Photojojo "Lo-fi" lens costs $90, and is clearly marked as a CCTV (closed-circuit television / security camera) lens with a specially made adapter for your camera. Turns out you can get the exact same lens for $30 on Ebay. It even comes with a micro four thirds adapter to pop right on a non-CCTV camera. Of course, Photojojo does not mention that the lens has the words "TV Lens" inked right on it, or that the box it comes in also obviously designates it as a repurposed security camera lens. If a customer knew that, a customer might go and look elsewhere for the exact same product at one-third the price. "Yay! I'm a sucker! Wheeee!"
Left: Ebay, $34.99   Right: Pjotojojo: $90, plus shipping. Wow.

"I'm worth every penny, Tee-hee!"
Lesson learned: see something nice on PJJ? Check Ebay before ordering, unless you find it's worth a 200%-300% premium to have things sold to you by a company that talks like an Anime schoolgirl. "Aw, shucks! We lost your business!"

The Diana and Holga lenses are totally plastic and are very light. They feel as flimsy and junky as you'd expect, but that's what you sign up for when you buy these. They each have a focus ring.
 The CCTV PJJ lens is all metal, is much heavier, and even has a little iris in it, which you can adjust via a ring on the lens. There is also a focus ring. Note that the aperture created by the iris is not exactly round. Again, build quality is not what you should be hoping for when you buy things like this. You want some wonkiness in your retro pictures. This lens is pretty cool. I just wish I'd done more homework before I ordered.

Anyway, here are some sample pictures. Generally, the Holga requires much more light, due to the tiny pinhole aperture on the back. Pictures have a lot of vignetting (dark edges). The Diana has the "dreamy" look everyone talks about, due to the soft-focus quality of the cheap plastic lens. Pictures are brighter than the Holga. Also, the Diana is more likely to have random light blurs coming in from the side of the frame, as in the bird picture below. The Photojojo lens is the most adjustable, thanks to the built-in iris. Pictures tend to have lots of concentric smearing at the edges, like you see in the tree picture.


Kooking Kornir - Loaf meat.

Hey eaters! Of course you grew up eating your Mom's meat loaf. It's an old fashioned favorite, right? You betcha! Well, it's time for Mom to learn a thing or two about loafing up meats. This is 1971, so there had better be room in her recipe book for a modern take on good old meat loaf. We're going to "sock it to her" with our Loaf Meat! Yeah!

To start, you'll need a loaf of Italian bread 16 inches long by 10 inches wide. Remove the lid and scoop out the center (or "bread guts"), after first making a lid by slicing off the top of the bread.

The bread guts are not meat in any way, and therefore nutritionally irrelevant. So, out it goes. Throw it in the trash or set it on fire at your leisure. Now, back to meat!

Mix four pounds of ground beef and four eggs in your best beef mixing bowl. Also, some onion or whatever. When mixed, stop mixing. Pour the beef into the bread shell to a depth of two inches, then include six wieners on top of this beef base strata. Also, include a few pickles or small fish (The picture isn't very clear, but play it safe and put in both!). Resume the beef mix inclusion until the beef is completely included in the bread shell.

Replace the bread lid, cover with high quality beef foil and bake at 375 degrees for two hours in your favorite beef oven. The beef will shrink in size as it cooks itself. This extra space will be taken up by the flavor juices that renders out of the beef. It may form pockets in the boundary layer around the wieners and pickles or fish things. This is normal and desirable.

If you scooped out your bread guts properly, leaving the bread shell just the right thickness, the flavor juices will seep through the bread right up to the durable Italian crust without dripping out. Did it stay in? Hooray! Did it drip out? Well, just remember that water only makes grease fires worse.

Just wait 'till your family puts a fork in this Loaf Meat! They'll think it's an ordinary bread roast. Then they'll be all "Whoa! Beef!". Then they'll go "Hey! Wieners!" and "Pickles or some small fish I'm not sure! Wow!" and then they'll find the flavor juices and go all "Flavor juice pockets! Slurp!" Mom's meat loaf might as well admit defeat. Mom has surely had it socked to her by this! Loaf Meat's socking-it-to-mom abilities will surely go undoubted! Opa!


Superzapping in Computer Land - The ride of the "Dalton Gang".

This article comes to us from the January 12, 1981 issue of Time. (Actually, "TIME" always spells their name in all caps, so I guess they want you to shout it whenever you say it.) The article covers the antics of four thirteen-year-old boys and their proto-hacking adventure.
Since this is 1981, and most people only understand computers as crazy things that huge companies have, the author (Frederic Golden) takes on the task of teaching some new words to TIME's audience. This is always hilarious. It's unclear whether Golden himself had heard the new terms only recently, but it's easy to imagine him using quotation fingers around strange new words like "access"... hopefully just for the benefit of the readers.
New "jargon" taught to TIME's readers in this article:


"seized control"



The four hackers in the article were all students at a New York private school called Dalton School, and they had hacked into Datapac's (an ISP) system. This, of course, was a softball opportunity for TIME to call them The Dalton Gang. I'm sure there were high fives all round the office at TIME when they thought that one up. Sadly, The P.A.G.  Research and Googling team was unable to find any updates about who the kids were or what they've been up to since then. Since they were only thirteen, their names weren't mentioned in the article and records of this crime are probably sealed or whatever. Incidentally, the amount of data the hackers destroyed: 10 million bits. That's 1.25 megabytes. It would fit on a floppy disk. That's adorable! Like a kid who had his lollipop stolen. Better still, that 1.25 Mb was one fifth of Datapac's computer's total storage capacity. So, a 1981 ISP's computer had 6.25 megs of storage. BAH hah hah, snort! Hang on. Let me go get some coffee so I can properly laugh it out my nose.

In '81, high-profile computer crime was still a curiosity. Back then,  Kevin Mitnick was just getting warmed up and even the FBI didn't know his name yet. Sure, it had been about ten years since John Draper had started his career by phone phreaking and by '81, he was already developing software for the Appe II. However, computer security was still a kooky sci-fi idea to most people. How kooky?
Jeez oh man. "Some" users are resorting to coding devices and "changing passwords". "What has the world come to?" they must have thought. I'm sure that, back in 1778 when the first tumbler lock was designed, people hung their heads in disappointment. What a sad day it must have been for people to realize that if you leave your front door closed with a nice heavy chair leaning against it, somebody might just find their way in and mosey out with your harpsichord under his arm.

I try to be in favor of any effort to remove money from dumb people. Still, the naivete of 1981 is maddening. That must be how most of the world looks from the perspective of guys like Anonymous.

The illustrations are by Kimble Mead. The name sounds familiar, like I should know who that is. 

A Google search page on the name is pretty much a bunch of art-related sites all stumbling over each other to proudly announce they've never heard of him. Nice work, Google. Here's a book he's illustrated on Amazon. Aah yes. That's him. Still beating the dead horse of bulbous, post-Yellow-Submarine Peter Maxism after all these years.

For further reading on early hacking, I recommend watching some TV. This wonderful documentary on Discovery Channel is... well, wonderful. Surprisingly, Discovery will let you watch the whole damn thing online via that link. It tells the story of Draper and Mitnick and pals with interviews and not-too-annoying reenactments. It also tells the story of the blind kid in the 60s who could whistle the control tones into his telephone to "seize control" (heh) of the phone system. Careful though, Discovery may try to sell you a DVD or something. I carry this doc around in my phone because I love it so much. I watch it a few times a year, because it's interesting to see how things get started.

Maaaaybe somewhere in the future, someone is reading this very post on an archived compilation of the entire internet stored on a 75,000,000 petabyte nano-USB stick while they're riding the hoverbus to their job at the space cafe? I wonder what we're starting...  right... now? WooooooooooOOOOOooooo!


Homko Lawnmobile - Doing lawn donuts.

I never heard of Homko. It looks as though they're out of business, or they were bought out by Beatrice Foods or something and rolled into their Spreads and Condiments division and outsourced to Thailand. But look how happy this dad is on his luxurious lawnmower in this 1959 ad.
Homko is dead set on convincing us that this mower is like a car. Well, it's got four wheels and a motor, I guess. Well spotted, there.

I this journalist's opinion, one of the laziest names one can give a company is "something-co". A -co name proclaims to the world your lack of imagination. Best name for a company is the family name of the person who started it up. Soichiro Honda. Henry Ford. Charles Virgin Atlantic.

At the other end of the spectrum are the shittiest overdesigned names dreamed up by "naming companies". I'm not kidding. When a large company with more money than they know what to do with changes it's name due to horrible customer service, or just comes up with a new product, they sometimes hand over millions of dollars to a third party company who invents a stupid name for them. Often, these names sound like they were made up by the same douchebags that name paint colors (gentle harvest, sunset mallomar). Sometimes, they try to sound like a word or emotion that they would like you to associate with the product, but actually has nothing to do with it. Celebrex is an arthritis medication. Abilify is the market name for Aripiprazole, an anti-depressant. Xfinity is the new name Comcast came up with after they appeared on The Consumerist's most-hated company lists too often. Altria used to be Philip Morris, until one too many massive cancer settlements put a certain stink on the company image.

I have to remember that. When the feds come knocking on the door, demanding to know whether I paid any taxes on those illegally imported ostriches, I'll just tell them "Phil's not here any more. Meet Innocentstopher Jones! How are you guys?" Problem solved. Scott free. Hey wait! Scott Free is an even better name than Innocenstopher Jones. Gotta make a note to have an intern go back and change that for me.
Anyway, this "special needs" mower guy in the picture is looking mighty free and festive. Ah, The Fifties. Back then, you could look super happy, wearing highwater chinos  and no one would assume you're a high-functioning assisted living patient. People would just think things were going your way, like this mower guy. "Look at me honey! I'm driving! Ha-ha!". "Yes, dear, I see you."

Actually, with his super-long shifter (or blade height adjuster maybe), he sort of looks like Rat Fink, the cartoon rat who, I'm sure, this nerd never heard of. Also, Rat Fink wouldn't really appear in pop culture until 1963. Even after '63, I'll bet the lawnmower man, here, never moved in any of the same circles as Rat Fink types. But Lawrence Welk... definitely.


Domestic Drama - Two vignettes.

Joke #1 - "Oh Iris, you're ever so lovely tonight. The opera is going to be positively grand. How could I stay mad about your little accident on the floor?"

Joke #2 - Grant swept Iris into his arms, and the moonlight sparkled in her eyes. It would be so easy to simply kiss her. But no. They must wait until marriage. He shuddered, and regained his composure. That had been close. The milk had, as always, gone straight to his head.

Joke #3 - The light was just right. Grant's eyes were luminous beacons of desire. Iris' hair shone like liquid silk. Passion would rule them this evening. It was lucky they had gotten ready for bed early.

Joke #4 - Iris stared into grant's eyes. She saw her wishes mirrored there. The swell of his breathing was an insistent drumbeat against her chest. They were swept away in a tide of passion that drew their hearts together. Grant was lactose intolerant, so they had about ten minutes before the milk took effect. Tonight, it would be enough. It had to.

Joke #1 - "I know it'd hard dear, but you knew it would be when you married me. We can push the beds together after we've been married for a year. You don't want to make a mockery of my faith, do you?"

Joke #2 - "Patricia, won't you please lie down to sleep? We both saw Paranormal Activity. You're starting to creep me out."

Joke #3 - "I'm sorry, dear. I do like your new tramp stamp. It's just that I've never found Family Circus very funny."

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


Ironized yeast Tablets - So there used to be a "too skinny" problem?

In 1938, the Great depression was still stinking up the joint, financially speaking, and lots of people didn't have enough to eat. Enter Ironized yeast Tablets to help plump up our women!
When people are undernourished, they are prone to Anemia, due to vitamin deficiency, like iron, and vitamin B-12. Symptoms include fatigue, and moanings of "Ow! Such anemia I have! Harken to my plea! My kingdom for iron!" People talked like that in the thirties, right?

So, yeast helps you gain weight and Vitamin B increases appetite. Got it. Why don't we see many ads like this now? Well, number one, though times are tough, it ain't the Great Depression. Number two, with the advent of fast food in the fifties, cheap, calorie-rich foods can be found within a few feet of every television set (fact exaggerated for your enjoyment), so most people can fill their belly, but with shitty food prepared by people who hate their jobs. So, fatness is a problem now.

Also, vitamin deficiencies are much less common than they were in 1938, due to the fortification of many foods. This means that manufacturers try to sneak a few extra nutrients into stuff we eat every day, like flour and rice, which is handy. Odds are, you get plenty of every vitamin from the food you eat. Here is an excellent article from Colorado State University explaining popular myths about vitamins such as "you should take them". There is no evidence that taking vitamins has any effect on health at all, unless your suffering from a few specific conditions. More and more, it is looking as though vitamins are much more effective when they are eaten in food and not when they are crammed into a pill.

Also, dosing yourself with vitamins can cause loads of health problems if you take too much.

The "dietary supplement" industry is not regulated the same as actual food and medicine. The rules are much more lax. Here's a good bit from the link (from the FDA) in the previous sentence:

"Generally, manufacturers do not need to register their products with FDA nor get FDA approval before producing or selling dietary supplements"

As it stands right now, you can practically sell bullets with leprosy sprinkles, and so long as you label it as a "dietary supplement", you have no obligation to prove it actually does anything - just so long as it's safe when used as directed. In the case of the leprosy bullets, you'd be within the limits of the dietary supplement laws as long as the directions on your package clearly state that you are to bury them in a cube of concrete several hundred feet underground and not to eat them or remove them from the package. (Hazmat suit sold separately).
Anyway, both of the women in this picture look okay to me. Sure, the one on the left looks grumpy and has bad posture, but that's just how marketing works. The woman on the right could be a right arm amputee, but so long as she's smiling and arching her back, emphasizing her hourglass figure, she'd be the obvious "you want to look like her" picture. The girl on the left would look great too if she were posed flatteringly and didn't look like she's doing her taxes in her head.

This ad has a nice Disembodied Floating Head. He's supposed to be convincing and trustworthy... you know, like a doctor, but they don't even give him a name or say who he's supposed to be. He's just a head, staring at us, telling us we're too skinny. He looks kind of lascivious, like he's the creepy old perv whose job it is to ogle the women at Ionized Yeast HQ and tell them whether they look good or not. I bet he thinks they're all positively yummy.
Apparently, Ionized yeast assumes we're eating plenty of carrots and our eyesight is great. The type size drops down a size halfway through the ad, like they paid for a 1/4 page strip ad but really wanted to squeeze in the part about gaining "normally attractive pounds". He's watching your attractive pounds right now. Better fatten up, twiggy.


Winter Window - Trinny, Rufert, and Mummy.

Joke #1 - "Yes, Rufert, you can go make a snowman, but be sure to close the door, or you'll let all the red out."

Joke #2 - "Oh! Children, it looks like a small spacecraft has landed in the yard. Go and tell them we don't want any anal probing today."

Joke #3 - "Yes, you can go make a snowman, but be sure to take some spot color with you. It looks awfully halftone out there."

Joke #4 - "Oh great. Winter in June. I'll bet the sea has turned to blood, too. Now that glowy guy with the beard is going to be marching around like he owns the place."

Joke #5 - "No, Rufert, you can't go out and play 'till I'm done knitting you a new sled."

Joke #6 - "No, Rufert. It's still winter, so you're still grounded."

Joke #7 - "Oh! It looks like the trees are done out there. Trinny, be a dear and let them back in, would you?"

Joke #8 - "Oh! Children it looks like a small spacecraft has landed in the yard. Go and tell them it's Sunday, so we've already had our anal probing for the week."

Joke #9 - "Oh, for the love of.... *sigh*. It looks like a hack illustrator has come by in the night. Kids, do go out and clean those damn diagonal 'shiny lines' off the window, would you? Honest to Pete, some people can't draw anything at all without explicit photo reference."

Joke #10 - "Yes, you may go out and play in the snow, but be sure to wear your stovepipe hats and extra long scarves. It looks awfully Currier and Ives out today."
[Commenter jokes will be added to the post.   -Mgmt.]


Now is the future of today! - Inventions required for complete living.

Mechanical hunter is powered by one-cylinder motor, concealed by hanging over shoulder of automaton. Runs on hunter fuel. Allows hunting the scwewiest of wabbits by wemote contwol. Acme corp.

Car window locks prevent child from escaping vehicle. Simple mechanism operable from front seat. Tested in Lockheed Constellation airliner. Probably works in cars too. May be ineffective for children over age of 6 mos., or older children with slightest mechanical aptitude, chimpanzees, parrots, or vaguely clever crows.

Taping shopping list to purse eliminates need for pocket, pointing hand at face. May result in strangers discovering dependency on embarrassing products. Not for use with purse grease.

Child's cryptex trains young minds to solve theological conspiracies and to appear in two novels of nearly identical plot, theme, and characters. Easily made from discarded spool and cardboard. May be instantly boring to children over age of five, or crows.

Stove guard prevents child from cooking, surprising parents with ill-advised meals like spaghetti and gumballs, figs benedict, and lobster thermidor.


Kellogg's Pep - Rhymes with "hep".

Every decision made in advertising is carefully considered, analyzed, focus-tested, ground into fine powder, tasted, reformulated, voted on, and finally presented to the disinterested public with the sincere enthusiasm of a municipal zoning hearing. We can only assume that it has always been so. Spontaneity and the vigor of genius are not only rare in the commercial world, but they are hated, all while paying lip service to the idea of celebrating the same. Trying to appeal to a young demographic has always been tricky. The Youth are cynical and mistrustful of The Man. Fortunately, there's always been the easy fall-back of tossing some slang around to show The Kids you're down with them. Problem solved!
Breakfast cereal has always been focused on the youth market. In this ad, Kellogg's is trying to win over the tricky and skeptical teenager. Glasses Nerd Jim lacks the energy to dance with Jill, and instead of dumping Jim for bringing her to a dance and just slouching around, Jill buys him a box of Pep cereal. That's very big of her. She could have easily smashed him in the gems with a folding chair.

Everyone knows that glasses mean either "smart" or "dork". Interestingly, here we see them used as both. In Jim's case, they mean he's a wiener. But on his sister "Sis", it means she's smart. Advertising has learned that this is discriminatory, and now glasses can only mean you're smart, or that you just need glasses. Now, if advertisers need someone to be a bonehead in a commercial, they just reach for the ever-dopey Man to learn the error of his ways thanks to his wife, with the help of Product, of course!

As we have learned in the past, putting something in quotes is The Past's way of indicating that something is exciting and new. The Past is such a square. Anyway, here's the hottest slang of 1941 as demonstrated by this ad, explained for you denizens of The Future:

"got the mopes" -  This means you're infected with Communism, and are banned from dancing, since it doesn't help The State. Also, erectile dysfunction.

"my eye" - An old Italian phrase meaning "I'll give her the evil eye, and her turnip crops will all be eaten by goblins, and she will live in the wilderness like a jackal." The Evil eye can be warded off by strategic use of The Corna, as made famous by Ronnie James Dio. Hopefully, Jill knows The Corna move.

"hot-head" - Someone who suffers from encephalitis, a brain fever that was common in the deprived swamps of wartime middle America. To be called a hothead was to be called a person of low class or of sub-average intelligence having poor decision making skills and poor memory. Encephalitis has also been tied to herpes simplex, making this an especially bad thing to hear from your girlfriend.

"of all the crust" - Identical to "of all the nerve". No longer in use. My mom didn't even know this one. Can also be used to imply the presence of herpes simplex. It's really not looking too good for Jim.

A collection of free things one could have hoped to find in a box of Pep.

Pep TV commercial, in which a guy picks up his date in wat is clearly a WWII era jeep, for some reason.

Another Pep commercial mentioning "that marvelous malty pep flavor." Yes, "malty".

UPDATE: I've just found "crust" in my slang dictionary, and the definietion is a bit roundabout, but it goes like this: 1."The head". From ca. 1870. Upper crust. Hence, off (one's) crust, crazy, or insane. 2.  20th century colloquial "impudence", "cheek": since early 1920s.


Jaan Pehechan Ho - Choreography complete!

Phil Are Go! sadly announces today that the world will no longer be requiring the services of all choreographers throughout the world. Much like a book that reaches a dizzying, flawless climax, dancing is now complete. We can close the book and move on to something else. We're really sorry, choreographers. We know you work really hard. It's just that we don't need to think up any more dances, so maybe now you can devote your energy to landing a spot on almost any reality series on Bravo. Thanks, we'll see you later.

You see, dancing achieved perfection in the 1966 Indian film Gumnaam. The song, performed by Mohammed Rafi, may sound familiar, as it's currently featured in a Heineken commercial called "The Date". It was also used in the 2001 film, Ghost World. The name of the song is Jaan Pehechaan Ho", and is brilliant. You can buy it from iTunes or Amazon.

Henceforth, throughout all of human existence, let there be no dance performed other than the crazypants dance of Jaan Pehechaan Ho. Weddings, funerals, board meetings. Whenever any person dances from now till the end of time, it must be this. Sorry about this, but I think you'll agree it's for the best.

Also, if all bands from now on could wear black suits and bandit masks that would help out a lot.

In case you don't speak Hindi, the P.A.G. Localization team has translated the lyrics into English, and can be read along below the embedded video. Please enjoy.

Jaan Pehechaan Ho lyrics - English translation:

Vomit like a dino.
Gina has unroll.
John pick up Don Ho.
Genius, uh, no.

Dino cut your rally want a a hog natural.
Now, I'm soak a tie, duuuuh.

Don pack a sand roll. Huh huh.
Gina has one throw.
John has a bun roll.
Gina has one bow.

Jean, at your Huckleberry rock, match your aisle.
Non-sofa timer.

Jan pack up Yarnell.
Dina rouse Don Ho.

Oh, I think I found ya
You're my silly guy.
 I'm seeing Tom, though, and you're a jelly tray.
 We're a standard pie pig. A kissy camp will lie.
We'll stand to buy a fig and Sissy's tramp will die.
Willy candle lighting a fizzy dandelion, yeaaaaaaah.

Yeah, woo woo.

Join the telethon-o.
Cheetah Arizona.
Don's alpaca sunroof.
Greener mouse gun throw.

Seen a rack of belly samples, mommy pack a goat.
Now I soap up rhino-o.
Firecracker dino.
Bean of our son-oh.

Where I get a bowl of 'em?
Hope it is shiny.
Bowler get a whole room.
The hukka is shoddy.
Sitter sitter, talk to Huey. Did you took a lolly?
Zippy zippy Rapa Nui. Witty Fittipaldi.
City zitty daughter hooey. Did you book her mommy? Aaaaah!

Huh, huh, huh.

Swingin' like Jongo.
Sheen of ice on hole.
Don's Mantalban-oh.
Be a paisano.

Be a cultured Wally-whacker walk natural.
Dolls fold a tire.
Juan's at McDonald's.
Seen a fire's gun hole.

 Oh, super-duper dapper dukcy.
Very messy money.
Soup or goop of lamb or turkey.
This is very funny.
Then I think about the fungi and a honey.
Then I see about the one guy who broke a bunny.
Then a zebra bought the binary Maserati.

Yeah. Whoa, ooh ah.

Found my lack of vinyl.
Gina eyes are none.
John pecker try now.
Gina likes Bono.
Vito, patch a rally, knock a rug, notch a rail.
Now I'm super fly.
Sean Penn if I know.
Jean Nate's son know.



Babst Blue Ribbon - Energy drinking.

In 1986, Pabst Blue Ribbon was an unhip brand of beer, and had been for some time. That's when Blue Velvet was released: a movie in which a crazy old man played by Dennis Hopper shouted his preference for PBR to a freaked out Jeffrey Beaumont (Kyle MacLachlan). That may be all you know or want to know about Pabst. This ad from 1941 tells us the tale of two reg'lar guys who seek the seclusion of the wilderness to discover the secrets of PBR's flavor and in the process, learn something about themselves.
Pabst Brewing brags that their beer is blended 33 to 1 "like the finest coffee and champagne". As far as an explanation for that goes, I found this page on a home brewer's forum that's authoritative enough for me. Many food manufacturers do this. They mix many batches together so the flavor is more consistent. One poster on the thread calls it "beer averaging". That makes sense. Mystery solved (or solved enough for me, at least).

But apparently Joe and his unnamed friend - let's just call him Joe, too - got a batch of PBR that was slightly heavy with an unnamed stimulant, and maybe some finest coffee.

Panel number three shows Joe and Joe soaring on the PBR rocket ship. Holy smokes. I've never looked like that after one beer - or any number of beers, really. What's Pabst blended with? Thirty three kinds of speed? Joe says he "feels like a NEW MAN now!" "We'll be in camp in NO TIME!" I think this ad might be a little dishonest about the effects of beer... unless "in camp" is code for something else, like "sleeping face down in a woodchuck" or "curled up together on a bed of pine needles, whispering our secrets to each other." By the look on Joe's face, it must be his first experience with beer, but not as first as his friend Joe's.

It may be that the artist exaggerated the expressions, knowing that the final print size would be on the small side. That panel in the ad is about 2 1/2 inches wide, with the faces maybe 5/8 of an inch across. That's pretty small. Any time I'm beginning a project, I always need to know the final use of the piece. That may influence decisions made along the way, like how much to "push" the expressions in these two faces. Or, maybe these two guys just get really really REALLY cranked off one can of PBR.

In my travels on the Google train to plumb the mysteries of the "33 to 1" claim, I found this picture of an old Pabst Blue Ribbon sign from 1943, here in Our Fair City of Chicago. It's part pf a collection of unearthed color photos of depression-era America, in the Library of Congress. Looking at photos this old in full color is slightly incredible. I recommend a look at them, especially if your mind has been in a state of un-blown-ness lately. I gave every photo a rude finger salute right into a folder on my drive, for safe keeping.

In 2001, Pabst engineered a comeback of their brand, using their obscurity and misfortune as an advantage. They used word-of-mouth marketing and sponsorship of counter culture events like scooter rallys and bike messenger races. Here's a link to that story. Clever. Now, with virtually no advertising done, Pabst is enjoying a renaissance all their own, among the hipster beardy types who ride fixed gear bikes with no brakes and mustache handlebars. Makes sense. Those pedal pushers could use the extra energy a can of PBR priovies. They'll be in camp in no time.