How’s About Cookin’ Something Up With Me?

by Russell Lee for the Farm Security Administration

This rollerskate-clad lady doesn’t seem too shy with the slick-haired fellow at a rink in Southside, Chicago, Illinois in April 1941.  Looks like there’s a good chance they’ll “find us a new recipe,” in the words of Ol’ Hank. Not sure what to do with that onlooking third wheel, though…

http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/fsa.8c00686
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Zoning Out

November 1946

Three doctors–two young, one old–all engaged in a demo of “a new method of using penicillin” because learning never ends. And that class of ’06 meant 1906, of course.

And what we hadn’t learned by the fall of 1946 was that Camel’s catchy T-zone slogan was not exactly accurate. But even if we had known the dangers of tobacco, how successful would it have been to ask veterans fresh off WWII to quit their habit?

Not very.

My whole life, cigarettes have been bad for you, and the T-Zone meant the zone of oily skin on your face, the one in the shape of a T.

A skincare T zone is really only a couple inches higher than Camel’s. And both of them are uppercase T’s. Otherwise, they would have looked more like the crucifix zone.

pinterest

In 2019, we’re more concerned with different zones, like being friendzoned or saving the ozone layer. Where I live, the weatherman is always warning us of Ozone Action Days.

https://www.scoopnest.com

Those are the days we shouldn’t go outside for more than a few minutes, and not without a hat and long sleeves and SPF 100. And try to limit it to early morning! That’s why neighbors mow at 8am now. That’s why the neighborhood pools sit vacant every summer, and you never see kids playing outside at all. They’ll melt in seconds. In fact, summer is the worst time of year in Austin, and yet Californians move here daily. That’s why every highway is in a construction zone. That’s the T-zone for Texas, where all the pollutants and congestion sits. It never ends.

https://www.kut.org

But the more, the merrier, right? With over 100 folks moving here a day, year after year, decade after decade, there are new people to meet and greet. Now all that’s left is to decide on a buffer zone.

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For now, let’s keep everyone in the audience.

https://www.pallasweb.com

 

Back In The U.S.S.R. (Don’t Know How Lucky You Are)

Nat Geo 1/47

When we studied WWII in middle school, I remember trying to wrap my head around the murder of six million Jews. It was a number I couldn’t fathom. I currently can’t imagine having a million dollars, and I can’t process that there are over a million people in my hometown now. It’s still too big of a number for me. So when we think about the estimated 26 million Soviet citizens who died during WWII (according to the Washington Post), it’s mindboggling. Can you process that number? There are only 25 million people in all of Australia right now. Less than 26 million in all of North Korea. Can you imagine just annihilating that many folks?

And the men above were spared. Survivors of forced labor camps with nothing to their names. What a hard road that must have been to travel.

Per a January article about Soviet slavery in Russia Beyond:

“They crammed us into wagons, as many as they could, so we couldn’t move our legs,” recalled Antonina Serdyukova, who was captured in Ukraine. “For a month, traveled that way.” Describing her life at a plant near Dresden, she said, “We ate once a day, a bowl of soup, with carrot and swede.”

For the Ostarbeiter (“workers from the east”), forced to live thousands of kilometers from home, fate was like the lottery. Metallurgical plants, mines and farms needed workers, and where they ended up depended on who paid the most.

“When we arrived, there was a transfer point, I would call it a slave market,” said Fedor Panchenko from Ukraine. “In an hour, they sold the whole group of people to different hands.” Among a group of 200 people, Panchenko found himself in a factory, at the ironworks in Silesia (now Poland). For those who came home, life was also hard: German captivity was a stigma. “Fellow citizens despised us,” calmly recalls Panchenko. “I couldn’t apply for a decent job and spent 37 years working at a factory, and if there was any kind of breakage, they would say to me each time: “Oh, no surprise, you worked for Hitler.” Others kept silent about their experience in Germany for decades – they didn’t want the stigma to impact their careers or families.

giphy.com

How To Pair Peppermint Mocha With Frozen Caribou

Natl Geo Jan 1947

Hunters chop a frozen caribou and devour it uncooked. Indians called these northern tribes Eskimos, “Eaters of raw flesh.”

So go the words of this 1947 National Geographic article. Seems pretty cut and dry to me. But evidently we’re not supposed to say “Eskimo” anymore; Eskimo is considered offensive, especially in Canada, being widely thought to stem from a Cree pejorative meaning “eaters of raw meat,” which is precisely, accurately what they are doing in that very image. So I don’t know how that is offensive. But in this day and age, isn’t everything?

Demeaning any group for their race or heritage is clearly wrong, but good luck staying abreast of all the latest victim classes and subsequent acceptable language. It shouldn’t be too hard to avoid the E word if you live in a non-igloo location. Is it okay to say “igloo”? Will the judge allow it?

Calling an eater of raw flesh the word for “eater of raw flesh” seems fine to me, but a sliver of my race pie is European (read: privileged) so what do I know? And I’m in the South, and them is up in the Nawth. So what do I know from Eskimos?

I DO know this is racist:

http://www.sfu.ca

Absolutely. I get it. Demeaning.

But this next ad from 1958? All I see is a cutie patootie selling me delicious chocolate, which I imagine is waaaay better than frozen caribou. Is there a word for “middle-aged eater of chocolate”? I’ll take it!

There isn’t any hate behind this ad that I can see. But some folks will go looking for it, scavenging for it, desperately trying to find malicious intention. Cute kids sell ads. Always have, always will.

In 2016, then-President Obama signed legislation that replaced Eskimo with “Alaska Native” in federal laws because Non-Inuit people had assigned the term. Isn’t that what all language does? It assigns terms? I guess I just don’t get it there. Does that make people feel like they’re taking their power back if they get to change the language?

So what about Eskimo kisses? Is that okay to say? Is it okay to do?

Is a Native American eskimo-kissing a white male offensive? (If I am to assume she is even Native American based on looks). The boy-child Peter Pan is culturally appropriating a Native American headdress, and that is in the “no-no” column these days. No race is ever allowed to wear anything that another race has ever worn; that is theft, plain and simple. But what if you’re many races, like many of us? A dozen different results from Ancestry.com? Can you “appropriate” the customs of any of your ancestors and don the gay apparel of your forefathers? Or should I say foremothers? Well, that gets tricky. But let’s be honest: even though she is literally pushing him back, he is metaphorically pushing her down both by being white and male. And immortal.

 

Making Merry Music

In the fall of 1947, the Jawhawker published its seasonal magazine, full of pictures of musical students on campus at the University of Kansas. Here we see trumpet major Dorothy Brewer (from Olathe) showing us what she’s got.

But she wasn’t the only one.

Horns were in fashion.

But the piano never went out of style. Old mentored young.

The ladies of Miller Hall gathered to tickle the ivories during this late night pajama party.

These days, however, they may look more like this.

giphy.com