A Little Nab’ll Do Ya

1937 UT

Who’s the most interesting fellow here? The obvious one in dark frames, or the guy taking a pull of his cigarette? It’s quite the crowded counter. Tiny bottles of soda were available for rationing through an entire meal. Honestly, how we did we ever do that? You might also notice that what appears to be a box of Kleenex or napkins is actually a NAB, a square of salty or sugary carbs to compliment your beverage. Of course, NAB is short for Nabisco. And why not indulge? It’s a mere nickel, or as Gary Gulman calls them, “quarter impersonators.” Might I suggest not pairing Oreos with Coke? The sugar crash will be atrocious.

https://fineartamerica.com/

Smooth Operator

This is quite the hairless couple, trim and athletic and healthy. I have never before witnessed such a sheen on a man’s oiled limbs; usually, they are too furry to reflect light. This delightful artwork reminds me both of Vargas pin-up girls, as well as actress Jean Harlow, who shared the platinum hair and pale skin (although rarely a smile). Swimsuits had made leaps and bounds by 1938, with vastly less fabric and stretchier than those of the generation before. Today’s styles hardly differ from these wisp-o-weight Jantzens so many moons ago.

Meal Options From 70 Years Ago

Well, 18 cents a serving is nothing to sneer at. I don’t know about you, but coming from the Lone Star State, I can appreciate the star in the pie crust, a nod to the “star” of the meal, which is Dinty Moore beef stew. Easy peasy!

If you need another side dish, why not green beans? The finest places served them, so you know they’re quality.


As in the above ad, animated characters are singing and dancing over the mere thought of dining. Who can blame them? Dad knows three chords, and kids know lima bean casserole hits the spot.

Let’s not forget a favorite of media, bandwagon. Everybody is doing it! 27 million people are eating soup. I hope you’re not in the minority here.

Next up, processed American cheese, the nastiest cheese that exists. Almost a non-cheese, if you will. But boy, does it melt.

This next one was a new one on me. I didn’t realize folks had peanut butter and jelly parties. This particular showcase is the “Ice Box Raider Special,” with a variety of flavors. I hope they had both smooth and chunky!


And finally, it’s time for a 1951 dessert. No soy milk, full of lactose goodness, and cherries that one associates with the father of our nation, George Washington (until he, too, is erased). Yum!

If ice cream isn’t your bag, you could go for the heavenly flavor of a devil’s food mix. Dorothy Duff liked it, and she’s probably related to Duff Goldman of “Ace of Cakes.” So it has to be good.

Well, there’s your mid-century wrap-up for today. I hope you’re salivating!

When Women Were 6’7″

LIFE 1/29/51

In general, most of us humans are 7.5 heads tall. These sanforized women, however, appear to have streeeeettttcccched to nearly nine heads. Must have been hard to find a frock to fit. But seriously, I do enjoy artistic license, and find the image interesting. 

 

giphy.com

Sanka Makes The Fiesta

If you think the world hasn’t made great strides in being “woke” in the 83 years since this ad was printed in LIFE, you’re wrong. Instead of erasing the past, let’s shine a light on it, so that we know how far we’ve come, and continue to go. Let’s also remember to keep everything in context of its era and keep in mind that not everything that offends people was intended to belittle. As a Hispanic woman who has spent her life in Texas, I can tell you that many people DO speak with poor conjugation in broken sentences, as is par for the course when you are mastering a second language. I have heard sentences very similar to these. Before one jumps to outrage, one should try to see the big picture. Obviously, this wouldn’t fly in today’s advertising. And while I choose to grind my own beans each morning and consequently have never had Sanka, I sadly am forced to drink decaf as well. “I have sleep like the log” after evening coffee, too.

New Fabric Won’t Shrink In Dryer

by Clifton Adams for Nat Geo 2/33

Today’s image comes from Hoquiam High School’s domestic science department, where the seated teacher is tending to a wooden skirt made of Sitka spruce veneer, at a comfortable 1/80 inch thickness. Washington state was swimming in lumber during the Great Depression, leading to its use in costumes as well as (yes!) bathing suits. Can you imagine the marks that would leave on your upper thigh, or how it would clickety clack when you walk?

Sitka spruce.