Saturday, May 29, 2010
This alligator was supposed to have glasses. A classmate saw what I was doing, took my paper, and added the eyelashes. I was not happy about this. However, Mrs. Chapman, my teacher, really liked my alligator. She liked it so much that she had me work on a special project. She had me make a much larger version of this picture, which was framed and put in one of the hallways of the school. It was on display for years, but I don't know if it is still there.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Hopefully at some point soon I'll find my 1980s Wacky Packages album.
I was happy to discover that a couple of my Garbage Pail Kids cards survived. They are some of the earlier ones, too!
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Here we have Headhunter Helper from Betty Chopper (Shrunken Head Sauce Mix! Just Add Noggins!).
"You've Been Served" Count Funkula from Gangsta Shizzle. Enjoy the Bits of Bling Bling!
These two stickers are from a 2005 release that my sister-in-law gave me. I have more from this run, but these two just struck me as being really funny for some reason. This is a clever twist on Hamburger Helper and Count Chocula.
I also collected Topps Garbage Pail Kids. My mother hated Garbage Pail Kids, and she got rid of mine very quickly when she heard I wasn't interested in buying any more. I had a ton of them! I really should have kept my big mouth shut, because I think it would be fun to look at those again.
Saturday, May 22, 2010
Yes, this bean-filled plush was available at some point in the last decade at Walt Disney World in Florida. This was one of my last eBay impulse buys before I decided that I was dangerously close to being on a Hoarders TV show.
It is not unusual to see Chernabog on souvenir items at the Disney Parks, as he is associated with nighttime shows like Spectromagic and Fantasmic. This stuffed toy debuted at the end of the "beanie" craze.
Also available at this time was a bean bag toy of the hunter that shot Bambi's Mom.
Thursday, May 20, 2010
The gang from the "Big G Cereals" is featured here in Magic Show tricks created by Dan Witkowski. There were 6 of these books available inside specially marked boxes of General Mills Cereals back in 1987. I only got this one.
There used to be three Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal baker characters, but only Wendell, the one with glasses, survived (and became much cartoonier).
I always liked the "Big G" characters. Many years ago, they were also the mascots of the now-closed Opryland theme park in Tennessee.
General Mills developed many creative (and sometimes unusual) cereals over the years (especially in the 1980s). Check out more at Topher's Breakfast Cereal Character Guide.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
My first trip to Walt Disney World in Florida was in 1981. My parents, my older brother and I had just weathered a hurricane during our visit to Venice, Florida. We drove the two hours from Venice to Walt Disney World, and were very excited about what was in store for us at the Magic Kingdom.
The first thing we did was visit the Walt Disney World Shopping Village. The best part of this place was the Character Shop. At the time, an animated figure of Winnie the Pooh holding a balloon could be seen floating through the store. I was allowed to get a small, inexpensive souvenir, and I chose a Disney Book Pet of Winnie the Pooh. This was a 3-inch tall bean-filled plush toy with a vinyl head that was packaged in a small, book-shaped box that could slide open to reveal the character.
My choice probably had a lot to do with the animated decor in the store. Also, at that time, Winnie the Pooh merchandise was not easy to find, as it was exclusive to Sears stores, as well as the stores in the Disney theme parks.
The box encourages children to collect all the Disney Book Pets. I can remember seeing Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, and possibly Donald Duck. I'm not sure what other characters were offered. Thanks to TokyoMagic! over at Meet The World, I know that Disney Book Pets were also available at Disneyland in California.
Here we can see the scuffed-up Winnie the Pooh toy. He is nowhere close to being Mint in the Box.
After our visit to the Walt Disney World Shopping Village, we returned to our hotel in Orlando. We stayed right across from the long-closed Circus World theme park (we did not visit Circus World, but it did look like fun).
My brother woke up that night with a severe ear infection (he got it from swimming in unclean, post-hurricane pool water). We left the hotel and went to the Emergency Room. Then we went home. So we didn't get to experience the Magic Kingdom theme park. Since I behaved myself, and didn't complain, my parents got me five Disney records when we got back home. Jackpot!
In 1983, we returned to Walt Disney World and got to experience the Magic Kingdom AND the brand-new Epcot! So, it was worth the wait.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
The day after I saw this parade, I got to visit with Disney Archivist Dave Smith at the Walt Disney Studios. What a fantastic trip!
Aladdin's Royal Caravan was based on the "Prince Ali" segment of the film, which was ideal for a theme park parade.
Aladdin's Royal Caravan was great fun, and could also be seen at Walt Disney World in Florida at The Disney MGM Studios.
Thursday, May 13, 2010
All this and more can be found at an absurd Gonzo the Great Theme Park called Gonzo Land. The Summer 1988 issue of Muppet Magazine featured a great park map of this bizarre Weirdo World attraction.
Are you hungry? Try some Peanut Butter Pickles, Marshmallow Stuffed Olives, Spam-On-A-Stick, or some Liver and Whipped Cream.
Don't forget to visit the International House of Anchovies, the Spaghetti Toss, and the Tunnel of Rugs!
Monday, May 10, 2010
The Nebraska-based 311 got started in the early 1990s. In 1995, their "311" record with the popular song, "All Mixed Up" became a big hit.
"Don't Tread on Me" from the 2005 album of the same name is one of my favorites (I also love "Speak Easy" from this same record).
311's sound is very unique. Their music can be calming and soothing, and also very intense, exciting and vibrant.
Doug "SA" Martinez also provides vocals, and is a very energetic performer, constantly moving about the stage.
Tim Mahoney is on guitar, Chad Sexton plays the drums, and Aaron "P-Nut" Wills plays the bass guitar. They all clearly enjoy what they are doing.
The decal and picture of the band shown here are from 311's great 2009 album, "Uplifter."
I listen to music all the time these days, and I often check out Internet-based radio stations. I frequently visit Pandora Radio, and there I have set up a 311 Radio station. Pandora selects songs that it thinks you may like based on your music preferences. This has expanded my horizons quite a bit (here I found a great song called "Your Face" by Pepper).
Saturday, May 8, 2010
Those familiar with MAD Magazine Fold-Ins should appreciate this wonderful 1997 ad for Cheetos. It's really too bad that the artist responsible for this image did not get a credit here. This ad is from a Cartoon Network Dexter's Laboratory comic book.
Per the request of Darrin at Dad's Dish Retro Blog, I included the folded image (through the magic of Photoshop, I did not have to bend up my comic book).
Chester Cheetah was introduced as an animated character in 1986. He's in good company with characters like the Pink Panther and the Warner Brothers character, Cool Cat.
I can remember a Chester Cheetah set of toys available at Kentucky Fried Chicken years ago. This was fitting, since Pepsi owns Frito-Lay (the maker of Cheetos) and KFC. Synergy at its finest!
These days, Chester Cheetah can be seen as a puppet character in some new TV commercials.
It's not easy being cheesy, so Chester Cheetah has been willing to adapt to change over the years.
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
The character of Mrs. Deagle in "Gremlins" was played by actress Polly Holliday (she was "Flo" in the TV series "Alice"). I went to college where she went to school, and she visited the campus when I was there. I am happy to report that she was very nice and friendly!
I have a Gremlins activity book that has some outstanding drawings. The artist is not credited, which is a real shame.
This illustration recreates a scene with Gizmo, Billy (Zach Galligan) and Pete (played by Corey Feldman).
There was talk years ago of Warner Brothers developing an animated version of "Gremlins" into a TV series, and I had wondered if they would use the great character designs shown in this book.
Corey Feldman is great at playing rascals, but he was also the innocent voice of young Copper the dog in the 1981 animated feature, "The Fox and the Hound" (which is one of my all-time favorite Disney cartoons).
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Animator Sally Cruikshank let her imagination run wild with this creative ad. She was responsible for main title animation in a number of live action films, including "Ruthless People" and "Mannequin." She also had some cartoons featured on Sesame Street, like "Your Feets Too Big." Sometimes her work has a dream-like or nightmare-like quality that is fascinating.
I have lost count of how many times I have played this commercial. I love the song!