Let's Get Physical #8: When Will It Ever End?

I watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead last week.  It's a great demonstration of the benefits of juicing without sounding like an infomercial.  But, the thought dawned on me that, while this may be a perfectly reasonable tool for weight loss, it's just one of the thousands upon thousands of weight loss plans..... when will it ever end?

Remember the Atkins craze a few years back? Guess what - my parents were on that diet back in 1972!  That's right - it's actually a forty year old diet.

Many of you will recall the beginning of the fitness boom at the end of the 1970s - precisely the time when Baby Boomers became old enough to actually need to work out.  Nobody on the face of the earth jogged before then, and aerobics classes were a new invention as well. The Boomer generation was declaring war on the ravages of time, and because of their massive numbers, the whole world seemed to revolve around punching Father Time in the face.

What would be the next elixir of everlasting youth? Could it be Jazzercise? Sweatin' to the Oldies? Maybe Jane Fonda would know what to do...


Magazines #29: GLOW

The Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (GLOW), created by Sylvester Stallone's mom, hit the boob tube during the 1980s.  It didn't last long - and it case you missed it, just picture the WWF, but without the maniacal intensity. The only lure was hot 80s babes in leotards.... we didn't have the foresight to appreciate its cheesy nature.  It takes a couple decades before something this horrible can be enjoyed.

Perhaps, GLOW's most embarrassing legacy are the raps each lady wrestler would spit into the mic before the matches began.  Picture the most stilted and awkward hip hop song you've ever heard (maybe something by Ja Rule or Vanilla Ice) and then multiply it by largest number in the universe (∞ - 1), then you might be close to what it sounded like.  The GLOW rap made the Super Bowl Shuffle sound hardcore. I'm amazed Chuck D and Professor Griff didn't terminate this travesty with extreme prejudice. (You can check some of it out on YouTube).


Food & Drink #13: MEAT!

In the 1950s and 60s, there were three basic food groups: pork, chicken and beef.  Vegetable matter could be used for garnish.  Food recipes and ads from this period featured brilliant close ups of glistening mounds of meat, striated with fat ("lean" really was a four letter word back then) and dripping with gravy.  Food stylists were basically nonexistent back then, so what you got was nice full color mug shots of meat, no airbrushing, no Photoshop, no camera trickery.... just slabs of real meat in your face.

This post is a vegan's worst nightmare.  If you prefer a tofu pita wrap over a giant mound of shoulder meat wallowing in its own pan juices, you may want to skip this post.  For those of you (like me), who are akin to Fred Flintstone clicking his heels over his Brontosaurus ribs, then read on my brother!


Mini Skirt Monday #89: Girl & Boy

Perhaps a better title for this post would be "Girl & Lucky Bastards Who Didn't Realize How Goddamn Good They Had It"; but, for the sake of brevity, I opted for the current title.


Vintage Men's Mags #18: Action Mag Sharity

I've had several posts spotlighting some pretty amazing pulp covers, and have had several requests to provide a look inside.  As with B movie posters and carnival attractions, sometimes the art tantalizes you to take a peak, but typically leads to disappointment. Indeed, if the magazine even comes close to living up to its breathtakingly lurid cover art, it's a rare find well worth the time.

Here's a few pulp rags scanned from cover to cover for your reading pleasure. Enjoy.


Vintage Wheels #12: Car Show Honeys

Just as Bob Barker liked to drape sexy women all over La-Z-Boy recliners and dinette sets, car manufactures also like to place their products alongside beautiful ladies. Auto shows were lined with cool rides and smoking hot babes - and my understanding is that this trend still goes on today (correct me if I'm wrong). It's common sense marketing: don't have your new line of cars sitting alone, looking unwanted. Instead, have a foxy lady directing your attention to it, and show those male customers that this car is a genuine chick magnet.

In the 60s and 70s, it was the guy who laid the money down for the car.  So, naturally the automobile companies were only too ready to supply their customers with plenty of eye candy.  Even the station wagons had groovy chicks atop their metallic-pea colored hoods.

Check out my small gallery of auto show honeys from yesteryear. Enjoy..... and you're welcome.


Ads #43: You Can Survive Atomic Fallout

Welcome to Pleasant Valley USA.  Smell the freshly cut lawns and barbecue in the air.  Kids on bikes, dads reading the paper out on the patio, and moms taking the Studebaker out to the hair salon.... everything's just dandy.

Except for one thing: If Khrushchev wakes up on the wrong side of the bed, this entire suburb will be reduced to radioactive cinder.  Mom, dad, the kids, even the poodle will all be disintegrated..... if they're lucky.  If they're not lucky, they'll end up wandering the ravaged earth covered in festering tumors praying for death.

How about purchasing a fallout shelter and all the delightful fixings? While your neighbors are obliterated into vapor, you can be relaxing in the comfort of your own home!  Buy it today..... because there may not be a tomorrow!


Retrospace Gets Deep with a Random Word Generator

You'll recall from the last post where I used a random word generator that (A) I am easily amused and (2) it is often a better wordsmith than a lot of actual writers when it comes to turning a quick phrase.  Fans of authors like James Joyce can certainly appreciate the subtle beauty that is intrinsic in the right combination of words.  I'm not saying the random word generator is as good as Bill Shakespeare; however, I am saying it's pretty cool to play with.

This time, for the sheer hell of it, I thought I'd go deep.  Could the right random combination of words with a complimentary vintage image make me look like a deep thinker? Could I frame these and make people think I am a reclusive existentialist?  It was worth a try...

Food & Drink #12: Gagtacular Gourmet

"These golden beads dissolve - actually pop-ity pop into noggy nutmeggy flavor."  If ever there was a bad idea, it was instant egg nog - sort of a Folger's Crystals but with eggs and dairy.

However.... wait a tick, my wife is telling me she actually loved these as a kid.  Her memory: "the crystals were the texture and consistency of Ovaltine, and it turned your milk lemon yellow.  It was tasty, and you could have it year round.  But truth be told, it was flavorful but tasted nothing like real egg nog"

Mini Skirt Monday #88: Minis X 3

Today we have a veritable potpourri of minis sharing one thing in common: each has 3 miniskirts.  And we all know the only thing better than three stooges is three minis.  There's 30 pictures in this post, so that's 90 minis all totaled. Your cup literally runeth over with minis this Monday.  Life is good.


Vintage Reads #30: Paperbacks O'Plenty

As I've said many times before, I can never get enough of these old paperback covers.  Believe it or not, I actually do read some of these trashy novels; they're never as tawdry as the cover would have you believe. A number of great blogs devoted to them have popped up over the past few years: Cover Junkie and Pop Sensation come instantly to mind.

Well, here's my little contribution to the world of old school paperback appreciation.  Enjoy.


Retrospace Trading Cards #5: Bond Girls

Pussy Galore is perhaps the finest example of a so-called "punny name" in pop culture.  Not since Dickens has the punny name game been played so well.... and just when you think it can't be repeated, they release a Bond movie called Octopussy.

Little did the public know, there was going to be a whole slew of double entrendre Bond Girls in a never-made Bond film called Never Dream of Dying. It was to be released in 1978, but it was scrapped and Moonraker was released the following year in its place.  It's a widely held belief that it never made it to theaters because of some hardcore sexual situations in the film. The director, Tinto Brass, sought to capitalize on the disco-sex culture of the late seventies, but perhaps went a bit too far.

EON Productions chalked it up as a loss. Lesson learned.  All evidence that it was ever made never made it out of MGM studios; merchandising never had a chance to hit the shelves.... except these cards.  I present to you the ultra rare Never Dream of Dying Bond Girls Cards.  Stare in awe at the only remaining physical evidence of the Bond film that never was.


Mini Skirt Monday #87: Girls of British TV

Really, before each Mini Skirt Monday post, we should all observe a moment of silence in honor of the Brits.  After all, they basically invented it - sure, it was around for ages, but no one ever wore them in such numbers.   For once, the French and Italians took a backseat in the fashion biz to another nation, and of all places Carnaby Street!

So, if you want to see the mini at its source, I suggest you take a look at BBC programming from the 1960s (and early seventies).  To say they were in plentiful supply doesn't even come close.  I've gathered a few examples below; but, even better, I've tried my hand at YouTube with a few clips.

I love that YouTube has brought so much vintage material back from the grave; however, I don't often use it on Retrospace.  Mainly, this is because most of the videos are poor quality, but also because it can slow down a pageload big time - especially on a mobile device.  I've attempted to upload my own, so tell me what you think about bringing in some videos.  (Or, who cares, let's get on with the minis!)


Rock Tour Programs

Just thought I'd share some old rock tour programs.  In this pdf are programs from Triumph, Aerosmith, Monsters of Rock (1987), Ted Nugent, Journey, and the Charlie Daniels Band (not rock, but what the hell).  I'm not super interested in these, but I do remember cherishing my Kiss tour book when I was a kid.... damn, I wish I still had that.



Vintage Men's Mags #17: Girlie Magazines A - Z (Part 5)

It's time once again to take a look at what gentlemen were reading back in the day.  This time, our post is brought to you by the letter "E".  For you homeschooling moms out there, I highly recommend this series as learning tools for teaching the alphabet.


The Groovy Age of Travel #7

Here's a series of pictures from the early 1980s, when airline travel still wasn't a soul crushing experience.  Can any of you remember back when you didn't even pass through so much as a metal detector? Remember when they didn't over-book every f***ing flight? We didn't have to take our shoes off and we chain smoked the whole trip. Ahh, the good life.


Vintage Musicians #5

I've mentioned this many times before, but it bears repeating: Back in the day, every Holiday Inn, Best Western, and Howard Johnson's had a lounge. And in each lounge would be some low-key musician on stage.  They became an easy target for ridicule in the eighties, but the lounge act during the sixties and seventies, was the f***ing bomb. These guys and gals took a page out of the Tony Orlando playbook and were there to entertain you while you sipped your Scotch. No high aspirations - just background music, perhaps, to your swingin' evening.

They say most lounges were converted to conference rooms for businesses. Maybe that was more lucrative for the hotel chains, but I say there will always be something lacking.

Have a look at some good old fashioned press photos of musicians who weren't exactly household names, but are forever preserved here on Retrospace.


Magazines #28: Dynamite Sharity

see download link below
Remember when those Scholastic book orders would come in? The teacher would pass the loot out to those who ordered stuff, while the poor kids awkwardly looked on. You were either  wetting yourself with orgasmic joy over this motherload of cool stuff..... or you sat there empty handed wondering why your parents didn't love you enough to buy you a Dynamite magazine.

Well, today, lucky readers of Retrospace get to relive those days - and this time it's definitely you who gets the loot.  Proudly upload these pdfs to your work computer or mobile device and watch the people sitting beside you turn green with envy.... just like the old days.


Mini Skirt Monday #86: 1968-1974

Let's have a look at the mini as it marched through the sixties and seventies.  In the States it caught on a bit later than the UK with skirts still being about knee length in 1967.  The mini finally hit US/Canada catalogs in '68.  A couple years into the seventies and the hemline had gotten about as high as it was going to get.  Catalogs of 1975 through the mid-1980's featured nary a mini to be found.  Longer dresses and slacks were the mini's pitiful replacements (hot pants didn't appear much in mainstream catalogs).

So, let's have a look at a few catalog pages from each year starting with 1968 and ending with its last year of popularity, 1974.  Enjoy.


Beatles Covers #12

I thought we'd go multicultural this go around.  Here's a selection from a variety of countries including Singapore, Spain, Denmark, Germany, England, and the US. Click the link at the bottom of this post if you'd like to download them (plus a few bonus tracks). Enjoy.

....And find good deals on Beatles music here.


Listen Up!

Sorry to interrupt this healthy stream of retro goodness with a few quasi-important updates.  Your regularly scheduled program will continue in a few minutes.

1. You may have noticed the new desperate attempt to get money in the sidebar.  Well, as I've said many times before, I'm not going to pretend that Retrospace can't continue without your donations - this ain't public television and, all things considered, it's a pretty inexpensive hobby.

That being said, it does take a lot of time, and these pesky fees keep adding up (Flickr account, Rapidshare, Usenet account, etc.... not to mention all the crap I buy and scan).  The bottom line is this: A quick 1 dollar donation would be appreciated.  It doesn't get spent on Mountain Dew and McRibs, but rather it sits in my Paypal account to go towards blog stuff.  

Those that are feeling especially generous can donate even more (see donate button on right).  Many of you already have, and it does not go unnoticed. Some of you have even mailed me stuff - your generosity is highly appreciated here at Retrospace HQ.

So, drop me some loose change. Keep those Mini Skirt Mondays alive.  It's for a good cause.

2.  Followers of Retrospace will know that I have tried to branch out lately, only to fall flat on my blogger face.  Facebook and the Forums were nothing short of steaming piles of retro crap.  I apologize, and I have pulled the plug on both of them.

Facebook is great for keeping up with friends; but for Retrospace's purposes, it just didn't make sense.  I could give a flying shit how anyone likes their eggs in the morning, so Facebook wasn't really a great fit for me.  I gave it an honest try, hated every minute of it, and moved on.  You don't know until you try - both Tumblr and Podcasting ended up being great extensions of Retrospace.  Facebook not so much.

As for the forums, I think it was a great idea, and one that could easily have taken off.... if I didn't have a day job. I think I over extended myself - to get a forum active and thriving takes time and effort, of which I have very little available to give.

Que sera, sera.

Found Photos #7

Readers of Retrospace know that one of the purposes of Found Photos posts is to try to figure out what the hell is going on. So, that being said, I don't think you could ask for a better picture than the one above.  Sure, it could be just a boring shot of a couple lounging around the house... or maybe just maybe there's something interesting going on here...

The clues:
A chair with a Coca-Cola can in the center
A coffee mug, a deck of cards, and a book(?)
A very disturbing cutout of a face hanging on the wall
And, finally, a woman smoking a cigarette whilst a man lays asleep/dead on the wood floor