A box of old magazines, a scanner, and some server space.
Gypsy Creams is lovingly scanned and written by Tanya Jones.
Men Only /
Given recent events in the Crimea, this feels oddly timely, but of course it’s another part of the campaign that this ad comes from. By the way, I think the illustration is of hand grips on the Tube stock of the day, but it took me a couple of minutes to work it out!
Tags: emotional blackmail, scary thoughts, social history
Woman's Own /
17 August 1968
Don’t say that I’m not good to you. Here, we have a real treat; major stars of the 1960s give us an exciting glimpse into their lives via their cooking. Nowadays, this sort of feature is commonplace, especially on TV, although the ‘celebrity chef’ phenomenon had just about begun, with Fanny Cradock already an established star. However, the more relaxed approach was gaining popularity, as we can see in this feature, and it’s worth considering that The Galloping Gourmet was soon to become well-known in the UK.
For me, the use of the word ‘pace-setter’ in a pop culture sense, the explanation of brunch, and the definition of gazpacho as a cold soup is a lovely sign of the times, (although the serving of mixed salad as a separate course is still not common in the UK), and the whole feature is topped off with the phrase “NEXT WEEK: Supper with Engelbert Humperdinck and lunch with Dilys Watling.” What a hectic social calendar!
Tags: cathy mcgowan, cookery, dave clark five, lulu, richard todd, social history, wendy craig
Men Only /
Some UK politicians have made a great fuss recently about foreign nationals visiting the country and benefiting from free healthcare provided by the NHS, but it may interest you to see that these were mainstream fears a mere 2 years after the NHS’ formation. This article from the Independent explains that foreign visitors are more likely to pay to use NHS services than to have them for free, but the total cost from foreign visitors using the NHS for free (e.g. acute, unplanned care) is far less than the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt would have voters believe.
Tags: social history, xenophobia
Men Only /
No, I don’t know either. But the discount for ex- and serving forces members is very canny, given the time of the ad. Another thing I don’t understand is the shoe polish ad. Is it trying to sell to women by making them paranoid about their shoes, or support men judging women by their appearance, therefore getting an indirect sale? It’s all too complicated for this woman, frankly.
Tags: adverts totally made of wrong, dodgy advice, social history
Men Only /
Here, dear readers, is the precursor to the UK’s ‘flag carrier’ airline, British Airways. Unsurprisingly, Wikipedia has an excellent summary of BOAC’s history, but the main topic of interest for this site are the old names for what were, in some cases, still parts of various countries’ empires, or newly-independent countries. Perhaps the thing that strikes me the most is the blanket terms for huge areas of Africa, something which Westerners still do without really realising, and was clearly just one of the reasons why independence movements were in full swing in so many areas of the continent. Frankly, just thinking about the Horray Henrys that this advert was aimed at jauntily shooting and patronising their way across Empire makes me feel a bit ill.
Anyway, it’s also notable for the alliances mentioned with Qantas Empire Airways (now just Qantas), South African Airways (still operating under that name) and Tasman Empire Airways (forerunner of Air New Zealand). These alliances presumably were to ease long-haul journeys to these countries, as BOAC were the first to enter the jet age in 1952, two years after this advert was published (the De Havilland Comets are fascinating in themselves). Not only were Horray Henrys the only people able to afford foreign travel at this point, they were also the only people with the time available!
Fun fact: BOAC became British Airways just before the operation of Concorde, with the first Concorde delivered to British Airways having the registration G-BOAC.
Tags: retail, social history, transport
Men Only /
Ah, nothing like a bit of emotional blackmail to help a government hedge its bets in a brave new post-WW2 world.
The Territorial Army is the official reserve armed force for the UK, although the situation in 1951 was complicated by the fact that conscription into National Service for 17-21 year olds wasn’t to end until the early 1960s. However, the advert here is aimed at men who served in WW2 and had been sent home after the war to either continue to support their families, or to start one. Given that some conscripts weren’t sent home until 1949, it seems rather unfair to immediately haul them back, just because Britain wasn’t getting its own way in the post-WW2 world.
But then, for men brought up on the idea of British Empire, the early 1950s would indeed have been frightening; the various conflicts related to the Cold War, such as the Korean War lasting from 1950-1953, the Malayan Emergency lasting throughout the 1950s, and the chaos of Indian independence in 1947 would have all contributed to a feeling of the world order as most Britons knew it falling apart. No wonder some feared that they’d have to go through it all again.
Tags: dodgy advice, emotional blackmail, scary thoughts, social history
Men Only /
I think the copywriters might have sunk several pints themselves in the sun, because this advert has many words, few of which make any real sense. The comment referring to ‘womanlike’ is very confused, and it’s hard to make out who is actually being sold to. Perhaps this is the sort of rambling mess these ad men offered their own wives when stumbling back from a long liquid lunch.
Tags: blatant sexism, dodgy advice, emotional blackmail, marriage, retail, social history
Men Only /
Will’s Cut Golden Bar, a product of a bygone age (in the UK, at least). The advice is also from a bygone age, when pipe smoking was a sign of manhood, and smoking a routine sight in British offices.
Tags: dodgy advice, retail, social history
Men Only /
Well, this is a fascinating snippet of history. I was given two issues of the pocket-sized magazine Men Only from 1950 and 1951 as a marvellously well-judged birthday present, which, at this point, bore no relation to the current pornographic magazine. Men Only from 1935-1970 was rather akin to GQ, although less concerned with pictures of women, the one nude in each issue being a ‘tasteful’ colour illustration. As this is pre-’lad’ culture, the emphasis is more on being a responsible man; but not *too* responsible.
Hence, we have this advert for BP (at this point, called the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company), which appears to be referring to the nationalisation of oil production in Iran in 1951, causing Britain to organise a worldwide embargo of Iranian oil. Therefore, no BP (or Anglo-Iranian) products were available. This advert seems to be a remarkable ‘keep the faith’ message from the company, which at this point had withdrawn from Iran, only to return in 1953 when a Western-sponsored regime change had been installed. Petrol rationing in the UK had only ended in 1950, so the company could afford to sit things out back home, due to mass motoring not really becoming popular until the end of the 1950s onwards. As the excellent Wikipedia article shows, this wasn’t to be the end of the company’s troubles in that area.
This advert also appears to be addressing the development of the UK road network, which had been started in the 1920s, with the 1950s seeing the construction of motorways. All of great interest to the predominately male motorist, of course.
Tags: retail, social history