What did I say last week? What did I say would happen? It’s freezing outside. The clouds came in with all their hissy drizzle, and there’s just a few degrees between us and snow. Snow.

i apologize for the brevity of this, although really I’ve nothing to apologize for whatsoever. When you think about it. At least in the hierarchy of apologies owed lately, but you know what I mean; this isn’t like a regularly scheduled TV show that consisted of nothing but stagehands walking back and forth while the main actor says “sorry; no one wrote us any lines.” I do what I can here and OH SHUT UP AND JUST WRITE SOMETHING.

Sorry. I am waiting at the moment to go the airport, to pick up daughter; she’s coming back from a choir trip to Seattle. Hence the art above? No; I just chose that because it spoke to me in some peculiar way. Perhaps the combination of the old small-town basics - look at the ceiling, the light fixture - and the modern world up in the heavens, flying too damned low because they were having serious mechanical failures, perhaps? The steeple represents hope in a dire time? If this was a painting in a museum it would be studied in these terms, but since it’s just an ad for an airline (or a hair tonic, I forget) it’s dismissed.

At the work blog I wrote something about the new Whitney in New York, which is not as cruel as the previous Whitney, but continues the modern trend of museums that pile a bunch of shapes together into a tendentious assemblage that’s supposed to Break Ground or Question Paradigms or the like. Meh. I’ll tell you what a museum should look like: a white porcelain cube five or six stories tall, which would make each floor easy to configure for special showings. A big circular staircase in the middle around a glass elevator, with stairwells in each corner. One exterior wall would contain a huge video screen that would display selections of the paintings, chosen by the viewers in real time - there would be a touchscreen in the galleries that would let you choose the paintings and highlight certain areas. So the exterior would always been changing. The exterior would be the content. The building itself would not be the star of the show. If the museum behaves as if the physical structure is the real main attraction, there’s a good bet it’s filled with work that’s good ’n’ transgressive, and is transgressing the heck out of things that have been transgressed into a whimpering mass of bruises.

Nothing that’s transgressive transgresses against the pieties that replaced the old ones. That would be unhelpful at best, and subversive at worst. And some things, oddly enough, are simply above subversion.

So I’m waiting to go the airport. The flight gets in at 11:46 PM oh joy. I have no doubt whatsoever that the other girl I’m supposed to take home will have checked a steamer trunk. Knowing I have to leave the house to go the airport ruins an entire night’s work; just can’t sit back in comfy clothes and let the work take me wherever it seems to go; always checking the flight, always thinking I have to leave. I managed to rack up a heap of material for later inclusion, including a site that screencaps and manipulates some color footage of the 1939 World’s Fair.

It’s really a different world.


Oh, sure, there time for . . . .

If they're looking for him in the back pages of a Western Stories magazine, mother will grieve on. Nice job all around, Randy Cummings. Nine lines of copy and your saddened six women.






I'm not saying Elsie's trying to move in on the mister, but that conveniently placed table hides the fact that she's taken her apron off and is standing there naked as a newborn calf.


The man with the Redheaded Wife - presumably no match for her fiery Irish temper - is wondering if there's anything he can do to persuade her to supply cheese for dinner.


  Buddy, get some of this! MILITARY GRADE cheese.


Some more mid-60s back-of-the-book New Yorker ads for the sophisticated set. Yes, Campari shoots like a modern rocket over this hideously misshappen European subcontinent, alone in the lifeless void, ever circling the dead world long ago reshaped by plate techtonics.

Oh, no, wait: that's America.

The Witty Brothers are here to give you an architectural quiz:

Can you name the building in the background?

The Witty Brothers, by the way, were Frederick, Ephraim, Arthur, and Spencer B. Yes, Spencer B. Witty. (Their cousin Irving was also in on the business.) Grandfather Witty started the business in 1888; the progeny expanded to six stores.

Monk Eastman was found dead in a Witty Brothers suit.

I snipped this just for the box.

Blue and orange: a hangover from the late-30s early 40s popular colors, or a revival?

What's she so happy about? Certainly not the way her intestines have been extruded down to her hips.

This stuff. Shelf liner. The kids are at school! Let's redo their room!

Another ad from the same company:



As if that stuff would remain pristine for long. It looked gimcracky from the start and just got worse over time. Using the powers of EXTREME magnification, we see the patterns that bothered the shelves of the late 50s.


Generally ghastly, are we agreed?


That is all; off to the airport. Please feel free to share your shelf-paper memories in the comments. And drop by Frank, and see what he's up to. (Hint: steam is involved)


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