Musing Over The Mailbag

Once in a while,
I get told that I
think too hard
about simple

Is it possible ?

I dunno –
it seems like
we’re surrounded
by so many folks
who don’t think
at all about
anything ..

So I ask you –

Can there still be such
a thing as ‘overthinking’?


Sure, I guess
it’s possible….

Let me mull it over a
couple years and
I’ll get back to you
on it.

Hmmmm —
where’s my
graph paper ? 



It’s early on Friday
morning, which means
it’s time we give our
dear readers a
heapin’ helpin’
of whatever goodies
lie deep within
our mailbag’s
murky depths.

If you could visualize
a sea-bag full of gym
socks and old skivvies
that’s been sitting in
the dusty, damp attic
since the 1980’s,
you’ll get some
idea of just what
happens when
we go too deep.

Almost exactly the same
as when I start thinking too
hard about something.

Why those two allusions
seem so related is another
thing I’m gonna have to
think about, I guess.

Brain food ?

Not quite.

And neither, I think,
will today’s post be.

!!! HOY !!!!



Friday Mail Bag

No matter hep you are
to the lingo back then,
it’s hard to say what
some of this early
1900’s stuff even means,
ya know ?

handing over
your pay envelope,

in one way or another,

– we all do
pretty much
every week.

And of course,
‘peace at any price’ also
has implications that run
deep through history ,
and at the turn of the
century, maybe
even more so.

There was a very strong
movement in the
United States
at the time to keep
out of hostilities overseas
about the time these
were printed —

— it seemed to many
that the problems of Europe
had very little to do with
the average American’s
everyday life, and have
should remained so.

But as we’ve learned,
and to quote Eve Curie:

” We’ve discovered that 
peace at any price is no 
price at all. ” 

I wonder if the same can
be said of domestic affairs.

I think the artists of these
vintage cards are aiming to
find out .

!!! HOY !!!

Really, You Needn’t

yesOn this post —

We have a unique set of antique postcards for you.

These were from a
very popular series
of cards called:


they were a type of
Penny Dreadful

Otherwise known
as a:

Reverse or Vinegar
Valentines card,jealous

that you could send
all year long,

to express a certain disdain
for a person or their behavior,

without being too
overt about it.

While they might seem
rather tame to us today,

they were considered to be
real zingers
in the early 1900’s–

They usually implied
certain thingsask
about a person
that maybe weren’t
their BEST qualities
or even all that nice….

….. then or now.

all that ‘virtue’ stuff
gets old, ya know.

you have to kinda
read between the lines
on these cards,

….. in order to get the wait
sender’s full meaning.

It usually had to do
with some aspect of
the person’s character
or behavior that was
out of the social norm,

or went against the
grain of the sender —

Maybe it was a
commentary about:

your choice of friends,
your work ethic,
your housekeeping skills,swear
your personal appearance,
your sexual preferences,
or how busy your love life was.

Maybe they’re were
trying to say you were:

a cheapskate,
a bum,
a lothario,
a bad dresser,
a pain in the ass,
a loose woman,
a gambler,
a sponger,
a whiner,call
a sissy,
an undesirable,

…… or perhaps
that you might
potentially gotten
someone pregnant.

Whether dropping
one of these cards
into the mail
was the sender’s way
of providing moral
or simply an act of revenge,rubber

… well …

I guess
we’d have to take
that on a case by case basis.

Either way,
it was sure to hurt
somebody’s feelings.

Probably pretty
embarrassing, too.

You’d never know
who sent them —

or what they really knew,
or didn’t know about you.freeze

There were several
excellent artists
involved in producing
these cards,

but one of the
most famous,

was our old prolific
friend Dwig —

Clare Victor Dwiggins.

There were a good
of these produced,

but I think I’ve included
the ones that are most
striking in the series.

And I’ve got more in
my archive if you like them.

They certainly are a unique
way of expressing ones
feelings about another —

But I imagine most of them
were sent anonymously.

Which just goes to
show you that
judgmental snobs
are not only usually

— but also that they
have always been with us.

the cards have a
strange, humorous quality
that really is compelling.

The artwork is also very interesting,
and period specific.


I always enjoy a peek
into the mentality of
our predecessors…

Even it is the meaner side
of their temperaments.

Hoy !!!!!



Football And Spooning

I know that around
the New Year, a lotta
folks turn their attention
to the noble sport of

Of course, most folks
overseas don’t think
of the same thing
when they think of

we call THAT
game soccer.


I say, if you don’t need
a mouth guard, helmet
and pads, you ain’t hitting
and being hit hard enough
for it to be real football.

But my European, Asian
and South American friends
do go just as ape-shit for
their game as we do ours.

So be it, man.

Our American football
has a long and storied
history –

especially College Football.

Although I am not
exactly what you’d
call a team-sports
fanatic, I do still fly the
blue and gold when
Notre Dame is playing
in a big bowl game,
and I ain’t ashamed
of that, one damn bit.

I used to be a Miami
Hurricanes fan, too,
until I just couldn’t
stand any more
showboating, baiting, and
unsportsmanlike conduct —

sure, the green’s a bit
different, but I liked it
cause they were the local
college team for me
as a teenager.

But, Sebastian’s flying
a bit low these days,
if you ask me.

Still, football has been
very, very good to me.

Ok, so that’s not the
right reference, is it?

Well, in a way it is —
my buddy Big Mike
saw my blog on
baseball and spooning,
and realized that he had
some football ones just
like that.

And voila.

A post about vintage
football-spooning cards.

Life’s good.

I have looked
high and low
for the rest of the set,
if there is any ‘rest’,
( I dunno )
and I haven’t
come up with em-

but if you have one
or more,
I’d love to get
my greedy eyeballs
on em –

— if you can manage
to email me
a piccie or two.

But either way,
we got some cool
ones today
to share.

I hope you
enjoy em.

!!!!! HOY !!!!!!




It’s Magic, Man

adeliadeI’m not a magician.

I don’t even play one on TV.

But I do enjoy magic,

–especially the vintage posters
from the golden age of stage magicians —

There’s something very compelling
about them that I find irresistible.

In the history of stage magic,
there is this legend —

Well, ok,
it’s more like a curse —
a cursed magic trick .

catchthisThe trick is called ‘the bullet catch’ —
and it’s ‘curse’,
if you believe in such things, has killed

— you know, like DEAD —

at least 12 very talented
and skilled magicians
who have attempted to perform it.

Basically, the illusionists
keep getting killed by the illusion.


… some trick, huh ?

Harry Houdini was said to be considering
adding the trick to his repertoire,

when his friend and fellow magician
Harry Kellar gave him this advice:

” Don’t try the bullet-catching trick.
There is always the biggest kind of risk
that some dog will ‘job’ you.
And we can’t afford to lose Houdini.
Harry, listen to your friend Kellar,
who loves you as his own son, and don’t do it! “

torriniAnd he never did.

But plenty of others did try it.

Another one bites the dust.

What’s supposed to happen
is that the magician stands
on one end of the stage holding
some kind of fragile object in front of him,

while at the other end,

a marksman takes steady aim
with a loaded gun
and a specially marked real bullet—

—- and then fires,
from about 30 feet away.

herrman(That doesn’t sound at all dangerous, does it?)

Now, theoretically,
the bullet crashes
through the fragile object
( a plate, a glass, etc )
the magician is holding
in front of him,

but he magically catches the
offending bullet between his teeth.

(I’m not sure you need
all that lead in your diet… )

1920Of course,

if the Muscleheaded Blog was one
of your typical media outlets,

— you’d now get a 10 minute lecture
on how you should never
try any of this at home.

But my philosophy is that :
if someone’s dumb enough
to wanna try this at home,

— let’s let ’em go right ahead and do it.

The gene pool always could
use some chlorine, ya know.

I’m pretty sure that
none of that would apply
to the obviously intelligent,1920a
and very discerning readers
of this here blog, anyway.

enough kissing ass….

— back to the Bullet Catch Trick.

The fact that this trick
keeps going wrong,
and killing the magicians that try it
has obviously caused
some consternation among performers,

and as I indicated,
has caused the gag
to acquire a mystique,
— a mythology — if you will,
all it’s own.soo

The most famous example
of this trick going completely
horribly horrible was in London, in 1918.

A very popular magician of the time,

— an American by the stage name
of Chung Ling Soo
(no, he wasn’t of Asian descent)
decided to use the trick in his act —


guns being guns,chung

…. and bullets being bullets, well…

It weren’t pretty.

In front of a crowd of over
2000 paying customers, too.

All that blood ain’t good for business, ya know.

herrmannSo, the trick went pretty
much silent for about 70 years….

A couple people trying it here and there,
….. some hits, some misses ….

It was revived for a TV special in 2012,
by magician Steve Cohen.

Now, this guy IS really skilled,
very proficient–
a student and teacher of magic —

— so this ‘curse’ was finally
gonna be put to bed for good, right?

Well, sure,
think that if you want.

On a New York City shooting range,
with a small audience in attendance
and cameras taping every second of the event,

Cohen took his place
in front of a glass plate,
and a guy with a Glock 9 mm
about 30 feet away —

and when he dropped his handkerchief,
the shooter took his shot.carter


Screaming in pain,
(actually, the word
‘squealing’ comes to mind)

Steve Cohen hit the floor,
and was quickly taken to the hospital —

He had been hit by glass shards from the panel,
— as the bullet shattered it.

He ended up bruised,
and swearing off the trick.

The curse continues ? ?



Give me the lady
with the disappearing dress
trick every time.

(Keep the boots, please)

It’s magic, man.

HOY !!!!!


Crushing and Tearing

asoulaCall me utopian
and quixotic
if you will….

But as it seems
this society
has gone kinda
ape-shit hostile…

I think
it’s time
for a little
Ars Amorata.


I have always
believed that,
no matter asoul
how difficult
the challenges that
we would be faced
with in society,
or in life in general,
that a healthy dose of
love and respect
could solve them.

I still believe it.

As Don Quixote once said:
” I will tear up trees
with my bare teeth – 

I shall crush mountains athrill
with my fists – 

I shall go crazy for love !! ” 

Ok, maybe my dentist would
have something to say about
that first one,

but ……
in my own insipid way,
I figure that I’m
helping the cause
by posting more
of these old
romantic postcards.

Sure, they’reajax
100 years out of date.

Maybe some simple
samples of antique
dilection will remind
us of just what we’re
missing out on when
we choose to
fuss and fight,
instead of expressing
and compassion.

Hey– the differences
between us aren’t nearly
as many as our similarities,
ya know.

moreI mean,
in terms of music,
you can choose
your approach:

” Bow Down Bitches ” 
” Love Is The Answer ”


I have no respect
for anybody who thinks
they always have to
have the upper hand,
even in terms of speech.

Cause if
everybody’s a bitch –
what are you?

Uh huh.

Or maybe I’m just
barking up the
wrong damn tree.

vintage schmaltzy
romantic postcards
mightn’t exactly be
the most effective
bully-pulpit for
this purpose, I guess.

But I’m still
posting ’em,

!!! HOY !!!!