I got a great haul this Christmas! Fuzzy Oscar the Grouch pants, Mozartkugel chocolates, cool history book, Grumpy Cat calendar (that cat tells it like it is!), a new laptop, and most of all an awesome array of POSTCARDS!
My wife and daughter picked out a couple batches of postcards – some from Canada Post and the other from Canadian Culture Thing. I blogged about Canadian Culture Thing’s cool retro and repro postcards a few weeks ago and they must have been reading as here are some great ones from them:
“Royal Canadian Club Soda Bottle Labels circa 1930”
“Cover of Girls’ Friend Library No. 387 May 4 1933”
“Men Who Build Canada Drink Tea Ad 1946”
“From ‘Recipes at the Flick of a Switch’. Featured recipes include: Fisherman’s Snow Balls, Beachcomber Pie, Crusty Onion Loaf, Aspic Florentine & more… Hydro Home Service Bureau Booklet circa 1970”
Thank you very much Santa!
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.”
For two years now, we’ve been watching the Amazing Race Canada. Originally, the show features Canadian teams completing challenges across Canada. This season the teams are also occasionally venturing outside of Canada. This week they went to Normandy, France. See the episode online or view details.
This episode was timely considering one of the donors has been travelling in Normandy and sending some fine specimens to the Collection. Such as this one:
[top] Visitez Rouen Ville musee [attempt at translation: Visit Rouen – City Museum – I’m not sure if they mean that city itself is like a museum or if there is a city museum there.]
[bottom] “Pour tous renseignements, s’adresser au Syndicat d’Initiative de Rouen” [Contact Rouen’s tourist board for more information.”
Here’s the reverse side:
“Bonjour a Rouen, our last stop of our Normandy tour. Normandy is lovely and so close to home. I can’t believe we haven’t been before! Rouen has loads of old timbered buildings even though it was heavily bombed – most have been amazing in 1938.
[top right] why do they love gizzards – every menus in [indecipherable]”
I’d love to visit Normandy for its history, architectural sites, and apple libations and pastries, but I’ll pass on anything involving gizzards.
Last week, I signed out the DVD Due Date from our public library (I love that our library has popular movies). The movie, starring Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis, was pretty fun. One scene in it was particularly absurdly hilarious and timely for us as we’ve recently received several generous donations to the Collection from there.
During the film, the main characters, Peter (Downey) and Ethan (Galifianakis) stop at the Grand Canyon and argue over whether it is natural formed or man-made. Below is the scene and dialogue snippet:
Peter: I’m telling you, I wouldn’t make it up.
Ethan: Sure? I could have sworn I read it was man made.
Peter: Nope, nope. Not correct. Very old. Formed over time. Grand Canyon. Known fact.
Ethan: Peter, I have a photogenic memory, I can recall things like that.
Peter: Ethan, I promise you. It’s…It’s old, it’s the Grand Canyon. It’s not the Hoover Dam.
Ethan: Well, I know it’s not the Hoover Dam. It was built by the pilgrims.
Peter: Also incorrect.
Ethan: It’s magnificent though.
It is indeed magnificent, as demonstrated by our recent acquisitions. This one is imitating the classic linen-style postcard:
Here’s the back:
“Grand canyon National Park. As seen from Point Imperial on the North Rim, Mount Hayden is formed Coconino Sandstone and rests on Red Hermit Shale.”
“The Grand Canyone is truly a postcard mecca. Even modern [?]?, retro cars with chewed edges! Cheers.”
I believe the correct deltiological term for the edges is not “chewed” but rather “scallop” (although one can chew scallops). There’s also deckles which is more of a ragged natural paper style of edging.
In picking postcards to send to people when I (used to) travel, I find postcards with illustrations opposed to photography can often be more evocative and visually interesting. Illustrated postcards are harder to find, however.
I particularly enjoy illustrated postcards that have an old-fashioned style. This can be seen by this fine item below that arrived last week from Arizona, USA:
Here’s the back:
“Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona – Hermit Trail. Lantern Press Original Poster”
“Great views, excellent air and a lot of sleeping. Not thinking about work is good too…”
I’ve added two new categories to the Museum’s thematic and stylistic classification to capture these postcards: retro and repro. Repro is short for reproduction and is used for postcards that are an authentic reproduction of an old postcard. The only way I know this is if the postcard credits on the back indicate this. Retro is for any contemporary postcard that copies older artistic styles or repurposes old content from other sources (e.g. posters, advertisements, etc.) into a postcard.
Postcards aren’t just great travel images to share with friends and family, they can also instill fond memories for those who have visited the place on the postcard. As this recent arrival does with me:
Ohhh the chips in Britain – such fried, potatoey goodness! I have never had such great chips as I had during my visits to the U.K. I’ve tried my whole life at home and throughout North America and none compare. Such happy limey spud memories….
But I had no idea that chips were good for me! What delightful news!
Here’s the reverse side:
“We went to Bournemouth at the start of summer but it’s taken me this long to get stamps. I thought a chips postcard was very appropriate for you two.”
I also love the stamp of Queen Elizabeth (on the right) – it’s rare to see her so happy. The only thing that makes her that happy are her corgis and possibly a cone of chips!
While my family was enjoying summer by the lakes in Muskoka friends of ours were enjoying Italy’s lakes (or is it “lake”). I love this recent arrival from Lake Como, Italy:
Here’s the back side:
The stamp on this is great, in that it is likely the second most boring stamp in the Collection. The most boring, being the one on this card from Chicago.
“Bonjourno from Lake Como. We arrived yesterday and the weather is glorious. Today we are in Bellagio, which is right across the lake from our hotel, a short ferry ride. We’ve just finished lunch and are going in search of gelato.”
Ahh gelato, ti amo! Now that’s the way to spend one’s summer…