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Classic television advert: For Mash get Smash – a brief tale of the Smash Agreement

 

Alien laughter

Humans are strange – in fact they’re hilarious. They prepare and consume a hard, round vegetable called Potato. They remove the outside with a long of metal device, put it in water and cook it. Now comes the funny bit – they then smash it to bits! Yes they smash the potato to bits before eating. What’s the point of these humans having teeth if they end up mashing their food up – hahahahahahaha – humans are strange!

Cadbury’s to the rescue

Meanwhile back on planet earth, food giant Cadbury heard about the alien piss-take of how humans mash-up their potato before eating. The penny dropped in their research and development department and the lightbulb moment arrived. Why not make the process of mash potato simple for our fellow earthlings? How about powdered, dehydrated potatoes that just needs boiling water, a bit of whisking and Bob’s your uncle?

The Cadbury Alien agreement – The Smash Agreement

The aliens saw the problem, Cadbury had the solution, the next step was to flog the dehydrated potato to the earth people to save time in the kitchen. The Cadbury Alien agreement was signed – Cadbury would made the product and the aliens would appear in advertising that would be beamed to millions of earthlings via a television set.

Success!

A peaceful agreement that took the rigor out of making mash potato from scratch. The aliens slowly began to understand human activity and Cadbury’s became the savour of mash potato in homes across the nation. The message was clear an uncomplicated … for mash get Smash.

The End

Nostalgic Christmas present? The book Section N Underpass features memories of advertising, entertainment and leisure. Essential reading for memories of the 70s and 80s. Available to order now! Get the rundown and order here: https://www.troubador.co.uk/bookshop/humour/section-n-underpass-hb/


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Nostalgic Motoring: Beyond the Bodywork – old school car maintenance

 

AT WEEKENDS it was common to see the neighbours heading to their cars carrying a bucket of water with a few caps of Turtle car wash added. After washing the car, a leather would be used to dry-off the bodywork before polish was applied – bringing out the shine with a clean chamois was the finishing touch before we’d stand back and admire the sparkling motor. The bodywork looked showroom new but what about under the bonnet, wheels and brakes?

Where’s my tools?

Whilst we were never expected to fit our own tyres on the driveway, there were days when we rolled up our sleeves, grabbed the tools and got to work changing spark plugs, oil, air filters and brakes. A lot of the the practicalities of car maintenance have been firmly shifted to the local garage, but here we’ll reminisce on some of the advertising for the essential components that kept the motor running smoothly, safely and efficiently.

My tyres stick to the road like Super Glue 

Gripping the wet road, sweet cornering, long lasting and durable – the attributes we want from a tyre. The advertisers would woo us with boasts about exceptional tyre performance. Motor rallying sponsorship helped reinforce their claims of best in class. Today the manufacturers know that motorists are more likely to search the likes of National, Kwik-fit and Euromaster to find the best deal … price and discounts reigns over brand loyalty.

Oily business

5/40, 10/40 or 15/40? If you’re a motoring enthusiast you’d probably be able to explain these numbers detailing viscosity flow rates and temperatures on an excel graph – for the non-enthusiast these are just some random numbers on the side of the can that looks more like odds in a bookmaker. Shell, Duckhams and Castrol were regular advertisers -liquid engineering that kept the car running smoothly. Again motor rallying sponsorship added weight to advertising. Curious about those numbers? Go find the motoring geek on your street then listen and learn.

I can do it

Spark plugs, brakes pads, oil filters, air filters – the motorist with knowhow had these all essentials clutched in their hands whilst leaving the motor shop. They may have a Haynes manual to help suss out those complicated bits as they got stuck into the challenges beyond the bodywork.

It’s not my job … it’s yours!

As cars become more reliable and hand car wash services are a regular around town, the car bonnet of the next door neighbour stays firmly shut at the weekends. The bucket of water with car wash and sponge is slowly being shifted out of our residential streets – responding to the question of plans for the weekend with ‘washing the car’ or ‘doing an oil change’ will result in raised eyebrows. For many (me included) beyond the bodywork has become a strange, unfamiliar mish-mash of components, wires and pipes – a scary place where where only garages and competent mechanics dare to touch and explore.

 

Nostalgic Christmas present? The book Section N Underpass features memories of the Ford Cortina, Capri and the Austin Allegro. Essential reading for memories of the 70s and 80s. Release date 14th December. Get the rundown and pre-order here: https://www.troubador.co.uk/bookshop/humour/section-n-underpass-hb/

Want more about motoring from yester-years? Check out Yesterday’s Drive: Yesterday’s Drive: A brief review of car advertising in the 70s and 80s

All images in the blog were kindly supplied by Yesterdays Drive via twitter (@YesterdaysDrive)

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Nostalgic Motoring: Beyond the bodywork

Check out my cleaned-up ride

AT WEEKENDS it was common to see the neighbours heading to their cars carrying a bucket of water with a few caps of Turtle car wash added. After washing the car, a leather would be used to dry-off the bodywork before polish was applied – bringing out the shine with a clean chamois was the finishing touch before we’d stand back and admire the sparkling motor. The bodywork looked showroom new but what about under the bonnet, wheels and brakes?

Where’s my tools?

Whilst we were never expected to fit our own tyres on the driveway, there were days when we rolled up our sleeves, grabbed the tools and got to work changing spark plugs, oil, air filters and brakes. A lot of the the practicalities of car maintenance have been firmly shifted to the local garage, but here we’ll reminisce on some of the advertising for the essential components that kept the motor running smoothly, safely and efficiently.

My tyres stick to the road like Super Glue 

Gripping the wet road, sweet cornering, long lasting and durable – the attributes we want from a tyre. The advertisers would woo us with boasts about exceptional tyre performance. Motor rallying sponsorship helped reinforce their claims of best in class. Today the manufacturers know that motorists are more likely to search the likes of National, Kwik-fit and Euromaster to find the best deal … price and discounts reigns over brand loyalty.

Oily business

5/40, 10/40 or 15/40? If you’re a motoring enthusiast you’d probably be able to explain these numbers detailing viscosity flow rates and temperatures on an excel graph – for the non-enthusiast these are just some random numbers on the side of the can that looks more like odds in a bookmaker. Shell, Duckhams and Castrol were regular advertisers -liquid engineering that kept the car running smoothly. Again motor rallying sponsorship added weight to advertising. Curious about those numbers? Go find the motoring geek on your street then listen and learn.

I can do it

Spark plugs, brakes pads, oil filters, air filters – the motorist with knowhow had these all essentials clutched in their hands whilst leaving the motor shop. They may have a Haynes manual to help suss out those complicated bits as they got stuck into the challenges beyond the bodywork.

It’s not my job … it’s yours!

As cars become more reliable and hand car wash services are a regular around town, the car bonnet of the next door neighbour stays firmly shut at the weekends. The bucket of water with car wash and sponge is slowly being shifted out of our residential streets – responding to the question of plans for the weekend with ‘washing the car’ or ‘doing an oil change’ will result in raised eyebrows. For many (me included) beyond the bodywork has become a strange, unfamiliar mish-mash of components, wires and pipes – a scary place where where only garages and competent mechanics dare to touch and explore.

Nostalgic Christmas present? The book Section N Underpass features memories of the Ford Cortina, Capri and the Austin Allegro. Essential reading for memories of the 70s and 80s. Release date 14th December. Get the rundown and pre-order here: https://www.troubador.co.uk/bookshop/humour/section-n-underpass-hb/

Want more about motoring from yester-years? Check out Yesterday’s Drive: https://retro-hen.com/2018/11/03/yesterdays-drive-a-brief-review-of-car-advertising-in-the-70s-and-80s/

All images in the blog were kindly supplied by Yesterdays Drive via twitter (@YesterdaysDrive)

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Nostalgic TV: Wrestling at 4pm

IT’S Saturday and the clock is ticking. We’d dash around finishing the chores in order to hit the 4pm slot. It’s the calm before the storm as Dickie Davies introduced an hour of swinging fists, head butt’s and illegal blows. The dominant force of Wrestling was about to begin. Here’s a few quick highlights …

 

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Emotionally charged

Cheering, booing, chanting, shouting, swearing, fuming – the living room is now brimming with energy as emotions run riot. Inside in ring, the referee attempts to keep order between the good, bad, the pretty and the ugly. The wrestlers entered the ring to a chorus of cheers or boos.  The people’s favourite would stride into the ring to a chorus of cheers whilst the  ring walk of a villain was greeted with boo’s and verbal abuse. Wrestling was about crowd interaction, causing a stir, pulling viewers and filling the halls – skills inside the ring came second.

 

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The female attraction

Wrestling was popular with the women. The wrestling halls were packed with women chanting, cheering and getting wound up. The female wrestler, Klondyke Kate, always got a mouthful of abuse from women in the audience. ‘She needs shooting because she’s dirty!’ was the response of an infuriated lady in the audience when asked about Klondyke Kate. Poor Klondyke Kate was only doing her job by playing the part in the wrestling pantomime.

 

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Heavyweight status 

In its heyday, wrestling  would draw in TV audiences of up to 16 million! Big Daddy and Giant Haystacks were crowd pullers and facing each other smashed audience figures. Big Daddy weighed in at 23 Stone (146 kg) whilst Giant Haystacks was a whopping 40 Stone (254 kg)!

 

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10 memorable wrestlers from the golden age

  1. Kendo Nagasaki
  2. Jim Brakes
  3. Mick McManus
  4. Johnny Saint
  5. Mark ‘Rollerball’ Rocco
  6. Pat Roach
  7. Kung Fu
  8. The man from Paris
  9. Catweazle
  10. King Kong Kirk

 

All good things come to an end

The golden age of wrestling is well and truly over. World of Sport (the programme that included wrestling), eventually disappeared from our screens along with it’s popular host Dickie Davies. Wrestling is still fondly remembered – mention Big Daddy and Giant Haystacks won’t be far behind – mention World of Sport and Dickie Davies will come up in the conversation – Saturdays at 4pm still reminds many of us of the glory days of Wrestling.

 


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An expanded story on the glory days of when sport ruled on Saturdays is featured in the new hardback book, Section N Underpass. Release date 14th December 2018. Order your copy here: Enter the Underpass

Section N Underpass Cover


retrohen – read – remember – reminisce – share

 

 

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1988: The Music and Politics remix featuring Maggie Thatcher and the opposition

 

MAGGIE THATCHER ruled and stood firm as ruler and Yazz insisted that the only way was up! Some prospered in ’88 but Womack & Womack saw teardrops on the faces of the less fortunate. According to Belinda Carlisle, heaven is a place on earth, but it’s also a place where you’d be criticised in you bumped into Alexander O’Neil. Fairgound Attraction told us it had to be perfect, but Kylie added a touch a realism by belting out ‘I should be so lucky!’

Climie Fisher was spot-on with love changes everything as the first BBC Red Nose Day makes £15m for charity. Mandela was always on the mind of the Pet Shop Boys as the concert at Wembley marked his 70th birthday. Transmission Vamp sang ‘I want your love’ and with a nudge from U2, we had the desire to oblige.

Neil Kinnock called for more cash to help the NHS but Bros said ‘I owe you nothing!’ Nurses went on strike for more pay – with a little help from Brother Beyond, they tried harder and eventually the government announced that nurses would get a 15% pay rise. A pay rise especially for the nurses sung by Kylie & Jason.

Exit O-levels and CSE’s, enter GCSE’s. No need to worry as Eighth Wonder stood bold and declared ‘I’m not scared’. After a some initial scepticism, Joyce Sims swayed us to embrace GCSE’s and allow them to come into your lives and the song from Cher proved to be the clincher … we’d found someone.

Scargill got re-elected as leader of the National Union of Mineworkers –  Jason Donavan’s ‘Nothing can divide us’ may have ran through his head during his successful re-election campaign but he didn’t hear The Primitives singing ‘Crash’ in the background. The 6th sense possessed by Phil Collins felt something in the air that night.

The year ended with egg on Edwina’s face and she really should have taken Tracy Chapman’s fast car to escape from the angry egg mob. Instead she declined Tracy’s offer, listened to Danny Wilson and said a Mary’s prayer. Matt Bianco’s stood in her corner and yelled ‘Don’t blame it on that girl’ but the damage was unrepairable. Edwina finally cracked and took the advice of Terence Trent D’Arby by signing her name on her resignation letter. As she left her role as junior health minister, Tiffany belted out ‘I think we’re alone now’ whilst following her out the office.

 

 

 

 


Nostalgic Christmas treat? Section N Underpass is a fun and factual hardback book looking back at entertainment, advertising and leisure from the 70s and 80s. It will have you in stitches whilst reminiscing! A must-have for nostalgia fans. Release date 14th December. Read all about it and order here: Enter the underpass