I was recently in Bahamas and learned that one of their favourite local food is conch. Conch is the snail-like creature that lives in the cone-shaped sea shell.
I didn’t get the chance to try Bahamian conch. I have eaten it and it’s surprisingly quite good. Here’s a recipe for Bahamian conch fritters, if you can find a nearby supply of conch.
Of all the places in the world, I have more postcards of Florida than anywhere else (including my home province of Ontario). No doubt, this reflects that Florida is the vacation destination of choice for many of my friends and family.
So you’d think I’d seen all the postcards Florida has to offer. I was recently in Florida and spent much time hunting for postcards. It was much harder than it used to be with many souvenir stores not selling postcards at all or just having the obligatory palm trees and shoreline images.
But I struck gold at a souvenir shop on Fort Lauderdale beach getting a few gems of the tacky and dorky sort, such as this gem:
After the Santa Claus Parade in Toronto, my family and I stopped at The Bay at their flagship store at Yonge Street and Queen Street. It’s been our family tradition for years to visit Santa there and then for a present my daughter gets to pick out an ornament. But this year I too got some presents!
The Bay’s stationery department had a rack of amazing greeting postcards. I’ve been good this year so I bought a bunch, including these gems:
I’m not sure the word to describe this facial expression, but it’s very striking.
That’s Audrey Hepburn posing above. The postcard below is a die-cut of an owl.
The following postcard speaks for itself:
Lately, Toronto has been very good to me for postcards. Christmas is coming early!
Today is Cheese Day!!!! Cheese is one of my greatest pleasures in life, so it gives me great joy to celebrate this holiday.
I’ve been waiting for such a special occasion to showcase this bizarre gem from the Collection depicting the rightful worship of cheese:
We got this giveaway postcard in 2005 at a variety store, Couche-Tard in Montreal, Quebec. It was a strange advertisement for an incredibly strange frozen drink, sloche, – presumably flavoured as “Tropical Cheddar”.
All these years, I never understood why anyone would drink a frozen cheese beverage and the role of the freakish mice. Thanks to the Internet, I found out about the ad campaign. There’s even an odd, but funny, video to accompany this cheesy ad campaign:
The back caption adds to the mystery:
“Souri-souri, archipel de Chizi Wizi. Sacrifice rituel”.
Which seems to be something about smiling, Cheese Wiz islands and sacrificial rituals.
My daughter was a baby when we got this postcard, since she couldn’t write anything I decided to trace her hand.
“Baby’s handprint. It’s actually a bit smaller as she wiggled so much while we were tracing her hand.”
Bon appetit on this joyous jour du frommage!
Today, I’m in Leamington, Ontario for the long weekend to attend an event for my in-law relations.
I’ve been to Leamington several times before. In addition, to the inlaws, it is close to Point Pelee National Park and other attractions such as Colasanti’s Tropical Gardens. But my favourite site is the world’s largest tomato, as pictured on this postcard:
As the slogan on the tomato states, Leamington is the tomato capital of Canada – hence the giant tomato. I have great affection for giant things and related postcards.
This postcard was sent from one of my wife’s cousins, who lived near Leamington. Here’s the back of the postcard:
This unique attraction in downtown Leamington serves as a tourist information booth. Leamington, the Tomatoe Capital of Canada, is a short drive from Point Pelee’s Beaches, Monarch butterfly’s and Bird watchers’ Paradise.”
“Thank you for your wonderful postcards of the tulips and Big Ben. I am glad you had a fun time. It would be nice to see you again. On the looonnggg weekend I went to my Grandparents to celebrate Grandpa 90th birthday. I made him pictures of birds. We went to Colosanti’s, it was fun there. I am glad you are still my pen pal. I can’t wait till school is over. Bye. P.S. Write me.”
It’s interesting that the front of the postcard spells the fruit (yes, it’s a fruit) as “tomato” but the back has it as “tomatoe”. I have never seen tomatoe (singular) spelled that way. Is it some old British spelling?
There is a genre of postcards that I don’t have many of in the Collection – that is postcards of an event or announcement, such as a play, art gallery showing, club event, trade show, etc.
There are a lot of fake “postcards” of this type – that is print cards about an event, but doesn’t actually let you use it as a proper postcard. Here was a rare announcement postcard that I have found in the past few years.
I never sent this postcard, but check out the back design of this postcard (nice touch!):
Nice that it’s a proper postcard. And it has a carrot surfing wheat – so what’s not to love!
As an avid (compulsive) postcard collector, I’m always on the look-out for interesting postcards. I have to say North America tends to have rather dull and uninspired offerings for the most part.
This is not the case with Europe it seems. The Collection has a few patrons who have travelled throughout the continent and sent back some fine samples of very original postcards.
Such as this delicious item:
What a refreshing way to think of the Roman Coliseum, eh?
It’s seemingly odd that Europe, the place that has given us such fine High Culture, also gives us the tackiest postcards on Earth.
“Ciao from Roma. Have I sent you this card before? I saw it and thought of you. Rome is great as usual. I found a great apartment if you come. Poor X at Harvard this week so it’s just me and the girls and my sister and niece.”
I recently read an article about tall-tales postcards. These are postcards that depict some sort of ridiculously exaggerated food item or animal passed off jokingly as real. Such as this one:
I loved these as a kid and still do (but for different reasons now). Judging from the many such examples in my collection my family and friends must also clearly loved them too.
In the days before PhotoShop these images were made by making photo-compositions and then taking a picture of that. There are a lot of great examples out there and articles that state that these died down by the 1950s but this specimen is from 1973. And although rare, I still see some tall-tale postcards on the racks (and quickly buy them).
I particularly like this one as the message on the back, is just as great as the front side.
“How do you like the size of the corn. Wouldn’t you look if that guy in Florida had of given you a cob like that instead of a roll of ass wipe. Ha! Ha! Did you know ‘Jesus has a lot to Give!’ I’m still waiting.
This recent arrival, below, is a first for the Collection.
Postcards have been made out of various materials other than just paper – mostly for novelty or gimmick reasons suck as foam, fabric, cork, plastic, etc. I have a few non-paper postcards, but this is my first wooden one.
Much to my envy, my young daughter got a wooden postcard years ago, so I’m glad to finally catch up to her. (Just because she’s cuter, nicer and smarter than me, doesn’t mean that I don’t LOVE postcards MORE!)
It’s designed to look like an old Florida orange crate. So the wood connection is very fitting (although I don’t know if they were made out of birch as this one is).
Here’s the backside:
[top] “Wooden Post Card”
[bottom] “Made Responsibly With Sustainable Birch.” [right] “Made in the USA.”
Only 1 postcard this trip, but it is wooden! A very relaxing, lazy week in Florida with the family. Cheers.”
I love cranberries – granted with a lot of sugar and normally in some sort of desert or cocktail. When we were in Bala Ontario a year ago we toured a cranberry farm. We had a great time – we ate a lot of cranberry samples, had cranberry wine, and they did some geocaching along the cranberry bog and vicinity.
The best is that they also gave out free postcards:
If you are near Muskoka this October 17, 18, or 19 – check out Bala’s Cranberry Festival
Here’s the back:
“Bala, Muskoka. Celebrating the harvest, the weekend after Thanksgiving at the Bala Cranberry Festival.”
“Mark your calendar October 12, 13, 14 2012. There will be a midway, petting zoo and much more for the family. craft vendors, food vendors, juried craft show and live entertainment are all included in a single 3 day pass. Visit us at http://www.balacranberryfestival.on.ca See you there!”