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Monthly Archives: May 2016

Odd Jobs of Bygone Days: Match Sellers

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Street vendors were a common sight in cities in bygone days, selling everything from milk or live chickens to pots, matches or ink.  They also sold services, such as shoe repair, catching rats, sweeping chimneys, or even writing letters for those who could not write (this service is still provided in some Second- and Third World countries).  Such jobs provided vital income for families, but meant long days on one’s feet, regardless of the weather, with perhaps little to show for the effort.

Match Seller, Greenwich 1884, London

Match Seller, Greenwich, London 1884.  Photo:  Pinterest

Odd Jobs of Bygone Days: The Lector

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lector is simply someone who reads. However, they were often hired with money pooled from workers to read to large rooms full of manual laborers to keep them entertained 2

A lector is simply someone who reads. Long before the days of MP3, smart phones, and even in the days before widespread access to radio, they were often hired with money pooled from workers to read to large rooms full of manual labourers, keeping them entertained as they slugged away at repetitive tasks.

Flashback: 1947

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This amazing cake is Queen Elizabeth II’s wedding cake, 1947.  Can you imagine the anxiety the royal bakers must have felt any time anyone came near the cake?  If that was toppled just before the ceremony, it probably would have taken a week to replace it…

Queen Elizabeth's Wedding Cake, 1947

Vintage Political Incorrectness: Cola

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weird funny marketing ad failsThe fine print reads:  “How soon is too soon?  Not soon enough.  Laboratory tests over the last few years have proven that babies who start drinking soda during the early formative period have a much higher chance of gaining acceptance and “fitting in” during those awkward pre-teen and teen years.  So, do yourself a favor.  Do your child a favor.  Start them on a strict regime of sodas and other sugary carbonated beverages right now, for a lifetime of guaranteed happiness.”

  • Promotes Active Lifestyle!
  • Boosts Personality!
  • Gives Body Essential Sugars!

There are just so many things wrong with this ad; from today’s perspective, each and every claim this ad makes is bogus at best, misleading or damaging at worst. I wonder how they proved with laboratory tests that teens fit in better after drinking sugary drinks?  And how much damage did they do to the nation’s overall health when mothers began putting their pre-teething babies on a strict regime of sugary, carbonated chemical bombs?

We’ve come a long way, baby!


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