Friday, October 29, 2010

vintage eerie ad of the day

Vintage Ad #1,185: Be a Cool Ghoul with Professional Hollywood Masks!

Can you name the movies that inspired these interpretations of classic monsters (at least two seem to be drawn from Abbott & Costello movies...)?

Source: Eerie #11, September 1967 - JB

Thursday, October 28, 2010

welcome to rob ford country

Warehouse Election Central

Special Election Edition of Adventure Comics!

So here we are, just a little over a month before Rob Ford officially assumes the duties of Mayor of Toronto. Based on the numbers from Monday night, there were slightly more people walking around Tuesday with long faces (or nursing hangovers) than those giddy at the prospect of derailing the gravy train (and nursing hangovers). The results capped a campaign where anger reigned supreme and both candidates and voters did their best to imitate the Incredible Hulk.


I admit it. I drew a line to connect the two stumps of arrow next to Joe Pantalone's name. Not my ideal candidate, but as the sort-of-stand-in for the outgoing administration, I could live with myself if I voted for him.
Neither Ford nor George Smitherman were enticing prospects. The only thing I discerned all along from the former provincial cabinet minister's campaign was that he was running for mayor just to become mayor. Give Ford credit: his policies were unpalatable, but there was no question about where he stood. Smitherman's vagueness allowed him to swing toward the right side of the spectrum when Ford gained momentum, then swing back toward the middle when he became the anointed lead for the anyone-but-Ford brigade...though Smitherman's swings weren't as wild, or bizarre, as Rocco Rossi's.

Monday, October 25, 2010

election sign department

From the Punny Election Signs Department...

My habit of madly snapping election signs subsided this year, partly because few raised by eyebrows in terms of design or uniqueness (or the headscratchers flew under my radar). Out of the signs I took pictures, this one from Peterborough wins the pun category. Despite historic associations with this candidate's last name, it's safe to assume there won't be any rebellions if he is elected.

Photo taken October 10, 2010 - JB

just a friendly reminder...

Just a Friendly Reminder...

Based on an ad that appeared during the 1969 North York municipal election campaign. - JB

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

vintage fightin' marines ad of the day

Vintage Ad #1,232: Monorail, Monorail, MONORAIL!

Was this the product that inspired a certain Lyle Lanley to embark on a career of promoting the construction of monorails (and fleece unsuspecting communities across North America)?

Source: Fightin' Marines #45, January 1962. - JB

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

your g20 stories

Your G20 Stories (1)

Not long after the G20 summit, a wall was set aside in Kensington Market for anyone to relate their thoughts and memories about the events of the last weekend in June. Whether you were in or near the chaos downtown or at home glued to a blackberry or radio, it would be hard not to have a story related to the craziness that ensued.

Here's ours.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

bonus features: who'd make a better north york controller than mel lastman? NOOOBODY!

Before reading this post, check out the related article on Torontoist.

Lastman Loop
From the November 19, 1969 edition of the Enterprise (a community paper in Willowdale) comes this map of the proposed "Lastman Loop" commuter rail system. The accompanying article was titled "Lastman a-go-go," either as a nod to the times or a reference to GO Transit.

Friday, October 08, 2010

favourite movie scenes department

While sorting through mounds of childhood stuff at home over Labour Day weekend, I came across a stray card from O-Pee-Chee's Raiders of the Lost Ark trading card set featuring one of my favourite scenes from the movie.



The back of the accurately sums up the action on screen.

I saw Raiders during its first run at the theatre (whatever name it was operating under that point) in Fort Malden Mall. Given that a year earlier I had run screaming out the Capitol in Windsor when Chevy Chase became Benji in Oh! Heavenly Dog, it's a testament to see how far I'd come in a year when I took in the melting Nazi scene with no problems (other than the dude with the medallion burned into his hand looked like Dad, a resemblance which his high school students reminded him about for the next year or two). From then on, Dad had few worries about taking me to a theatre to see anything that wasn't Muppets, Disney or child-centric.

The Raiders card set was one of the first non-sports series I collected, along with Topps's tribute to Superman II. I collected few non-sports series, as gaps in the set broke up the flow of the storyline printed on the back and you couldn't sort them into teams beyond heroes and villains.

Sorting was a large part of card collecting for me—I'd sit in my room or basement for hours in imitation of Dad sorting out his newspaper and magazine clippings before taking them to his classroom. I chose a sport for that day (baseball, football or hockey), then loosened the rubber bands holding each set together and sort the cards by team. Within a month or two I'd grow bored of that order and place the cards back into their respective sets. The cards weren't a future investment but something to read and play with. Dad encouraged my collecting, partly out of memories of the collection he had as a child that my grandmother got rid of for not being an educational tool. I continued this cycle of sorting into my early teens, when my interest flagged. I tried to pick up a new pack or two of cards once a year to maintain a sense of continuity in case I ever produced any offspring who shared my interest, but even that trailed off. The investor mentality the hobby veered toward alienated me, as the product became treated like a precious commodity to be preserved beneath twelve layers of protective material. My collection was worn but well-loved, which is more valuable than the latest glossy-coated, uniform swatch-embedded piece of cardboard.

The collection is still intact, but probably not for much longer as I slowly clean out my remaining stuff from Mom's. My suspicion is that I'll keep everything up to the cusp of my teens and toss out everything after that (if you'd like to make an offer for mass quantities of worthless sports cards circa 1990, talk to me after Christmas). The Raiders of the Lost Ark set will be one of the keepers, as Indy doesn't deserve a visit to a snake-filled landfill site. - JB

Thursday, October 07, 2010

the cat who loved the sunday new york times

Sunday morning. As in many homes across North America, we ease into the day by reading the New York Times. Our brains slowly crank into gear as all three of us flip through our favourite sections, whether it be op-ed, arts coverage, or the style section to determine if anyone in the wedding notices isn't a lawyer or financial analyst.

Wait...did I say three of us?

Haruki and the Sunday New York Times (2)
It's true: besides Sarah and I, Haruki also reads the morning's headlines. Of all the newspapers that float through our homestead, it's the New York Times that draws his attention. He jumps up on the bed and promptly plants himself on whatever section is lying flat...even if I'm in the middle of reading it (especially if I’m in the middle of reading it). We've figured out that if we toss him a section neither of us is drawn to immediately (business or sports), he'll snuggle up to that cozy newsprint and stretch out on those column inches.

Haruki and the Sunday New York Times
And yet there are times where I'm convinced he is trying to read the paper. He stares down at the paper, as if he's scanning the headlines. He flips the pages with his paws, looks for a minute, then flips again. We knew he was a smart beastie, but we may be underestimating his intelligence. Perhaps his purring sounds aren't contentment at finding a comfy spot to rest with us, but his attempt to comment (in cat-ese) about American politics, mutual funds or the batting order of the Yankees. - JB, SO

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

irving the unlucky

When running for public office, candidates hope to have Lady Luck on their side. Under ideal circumstances, civic officials in waiting hope to get positive feedback from their potential constituents, score points during debates, and pray no dirt from their past resurfaces. Even if you accomplish all of that, fate may have other ideas.

Take the case of Irving Goldberg, who ran for alderman in North York's Ward 6 back in 1969. Based on this account from the Don Mills Mirror, he was plagued by misfortune throughout his campaign.

dmm 69-11-26

Goldberg's bad luck continued on election day, when he lost by just over 500 votes to optician John Knox.

Source: The Don Mills Mirror, November 26, 1969

PS: Here's what Goldberg's pharmacy looked like when Google Maps snapped a shot of 2829 Bathurst. At the time, it was an shuttered children's store. - JB