Vintage Reading

We got a donation of older magazines to the library recently and I have just been enjoying the heck out of them.  I love the advertisements most of all.  They are so different than modern ads.  There are so many words and so few images.  They really sold themselves on their product, not just their image.   It seems to speak volumes about a cultural shift.  That in general we don't have time to read all about a product and why we should buy it, where it was made and of what materials.  We want it fast and flashy, cut to the point with a photo, forget the words.  Image sells, not content and quality.  Its a real shame.   I also confess to getting a real chuckle out of the strong gender roles that were such a blatant part of this era.  The ads telling me that I should be happy to let my husband get a Bell phone connection installed in his workshop because that is probably where I have my washing machine so I can use it to while I am doing laundry.  But, for all my chuckling at its outdatedness I DO enjoy doing the laundry and the washing machine IS in Matt's workshop.  I also adore all the ladies' dresses and how gosh darn handy the people seem to be.  There is a real we-can-fix-that! kind of attitude.  Oh how I wish we still had that.  Now we lean more towards the we-can-throw-that-out-and-buy-a-new-one! attitude.  We're not keeping these for our library, but have offered them up to a group of libraries nationwide to see if any of them would like these treasures. 
I had just asked my dad (while we were at the local minor league ballpark) how fast a baseball travels after it is hit.  I knew they had recorded how fast balls were pitched, but I never heard how fast they travel off the bat.  Turns out it about 47 mph.  Interesting.

Check this out!  Its a rotary mower like mine, but as a RIDING lawnmower...that you a bicycle.  How awesome and whacky is that?!

This is an example of the awesome we-can-fix-it attitude.  How to Repair an Umbrella.  Awesome.

This was a pretty amusing and interesting idea for an article.  They did a side by side test of how many suitcases you could fit into a car versus a station wagon, complete with diagrams and comparison photographs.  In the end, the conclusion was yes, station wagons are worth it if you travel a lot.
.I love to come across a cultural treasure trove like this.  I really hope we are able to find it a new home.  I couldn't possibly send them to recycling!


  1. I would love to have that pedal reel mower! I would also love to spend time with that magazine collection.

    1. It is pretty darn awesome reading! I'd like to try out that mower, too! I wonder if it would be great or just one of those things that SEEMS like a great idea, but isn't.

  2. I love old magazines, too. I received an old collection of Organic Gardener magazine from the late 70's and early 80's and they sounded prophetic. There was all this talk about how by 2010 there would be gasoline shortages and the topsoil would be flying away.

    And there were hardly any pictures in those old magazines, either. It was all words, lots and lots of really interesting and informative things about gardening.

    1. Ooooh, I bet those are fantastic reading.

      I've read some older ecology and environment magazines we have in our collection and the voices of prophecy and warning (that were so resoundingly ignored) is just astonishing, isn't it?!

  3. If you can't find them a new home I will take them! Just give me a holler and I'll pay the shipping. Those cannot go to the recycle bin!! I remember reading those as a kid.

    You are so right about the cultural shift. I feel like a dinasaur. Even worse is the shift in manners and work ethic. I'm a yes sir yes ma'am kinda gal that works at a job until it is finished no matter how long it takes.

    1. We can totally work that out, Mary. I really cannot stand the idea of them going to the recycler. Its possible some other libraries will want them, but I never can tell.

      That shift in work ethic is aggravating and astonishing! I hear some things from both my peers and younger people I know that just make me shake my head.... They have no idea how lucky they are.


Post a Comment

Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts and ideas. I value the advice and friendship that you share with me!

Popular Posts