Tuesday, January 22, 2008

My partner loves to browse through antique stores. Sometimes I accompany her. Most of them smell musty and I start sneezing. I also get the feeling that the ghost of the people who once owned the stuff are there and I can almost feel their presence. I think about my dead aunts, uncles and others who owned pieces like the ones we are viewing. Most of the stores just contain junk and look like a flea market. There is a lot of stuff identical to what we have thrown away. I should have saved much of our old cast offs from my childhood, like a tin lunch pail with a Roy Rogers and Trigger picture on the top.

I love to look at the old books and magazines. I was browsing through a store the other day and saw an old Look magazine. My grown kids, and certainly my grandkids, never heard of that great magazine. When I was a kid I loved to read Look, Life and Saturday Evening Post and I was a comic book addict. I learned to read from the comics. Pictured above is an old Look with the picture of Judy Garland.

Anyway the Look magazine was from 1954. It had a story by Ernest Hemingway and the cover had a picture of Marilyn Monroe. The advertisements were the most interesting thing in the magazine. There were a lot of cigarette ads. There were advertisements from companies and automobiles which no longer exist. My kids never heard of Studebaker, Nash, Kaiser, Hudson or Packard automobiles. Of course, Japanese models weren’t heard of. All sort of unhealthy products were advertised, but they were sure good. Hardly anything that taste good now days is good for you. A babies formula at that time consist of Pet milk and Karo Syrup, that couldn’t be good even in 1954. A few other interesting facts: a new house cost about $9,000, a new car $1,800, a gallon of gas 20 cents and a postage stamp 3 cents. The average income was $3,900. It was all great except that we didn’t have air-conditioning in our home. Air-conditioning was only in the movie theater in our town and is one of the reasons I must have gone there so often.

I sure miss those old magazines and the stuff advertised in them. The stories and pictures in those publications were great. I wanted to buy a few of the old magazines for the porch library but I started sneezing and decided I already had enough reading material for the rest of my life. For now I will just have to reminisce and make an occasional visit to the antique stores to rekindle the fond memories of those glorious times.


Blogger jeff ludwick said...

I sure wish my parents had kept my little metal red fire truck with real wooden ladders and a bell that rang. I saw one in a shop like you are talking about a couple of years ago and could have bought a decent used pickup for what they were asking for it. It's sort of sad that everything is more valuable the older it gets with the exception of horses, dogs and old men. They mostly devalue to the point that they are just left to die or mercifully put down....guess the same thing goes for dairy products and meat, two of my favorite things.

6:49 AM  

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