Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Let Your Pictures Do the Talking

You'll note on the right-hand side of the site that I've done some alterations and additions -- most notably updating the links list, a task I had successfully managed to put off for a good couple of years. I dare say it looks a bit more robust now.

But enough administrative talk! None of that is nearly as important as what I am about to share with you, because I am here tonight to tell you guys about my lunch-hour trip to the Goodwill Store in the Exchange District earlier today.

I can feel your excitement from here. Humour me, at least!

This week is half-off all red-tagged items in that particular store, so I took the opportunity to poke around and grab a few ties. (I've found that I have to actually dress like a grown-up these days, now that I have a grown-up degree and a grown-up job, so it makes sense to build up as wide an array of neckwear as fiscally possible.) Then I skimmed the book section for a couple of minutes, headed along the store's main corridor towards the cash tier, and came by chance across the relics of a long forgotten age.

Oh! Snap! (See what I did there? I used the--ah, never mind.) All aboard the express train for Nostalgiaville! You can click those images for a better view of them, if you'd like, just so you can get the full experience of such snappy banter and highbrow wit as "I TOT I TAW A PUDDYTAT", "DA AGONY OF DA FEET!", and "REAL CATS DON'T EAT LASAGNA". Copyright was a distinctly greyer area in those days, I guess.

There is absolutely no information available about these things online, so I don't even remember for sure which era these are even from, but these sticker sets definitely hearken back to simpler times. Have you read that Telegraph article on 50 things that are being killed by the internet from a month or so ago? If we were to add a fifty-first entry to that list, I think "monkeying around with photographs by hand" would definitely be a strong candidate for eligibility.

Just think! Back in the day, if you wanted to add some o' the ol' belly-laughs and knee-slaps to a freshly-dried Polaroid, you 'n' yer best buds'd need to fork over the bread for a crisp new set o' stickers every time y'wanted to "get the goat" of yer buddy 'n' his stodgy still-lifes! All that fuss, that muss, the effort it took to get that sticker in just the right spot! Funny how that worked. No, when the fine folks at Sooter's (is Sooter's even still a chain any more, oh my god) printed these sheets of stickers out way, way, way back when, they couldn't possibly have foreseen the world that lay ahead -- because now, having bought two of the sets for a quarter each, I can use the magic of digital manipulation to generate a theoretically infinite supply of "amusing" stickers for a theoretically infinite supply of pictures. And I didn't even open the plastic wrap.

So I think it's safe to say that this medium of comedy is pretty brazenly obsolete. But is the message still viable? How well can born-analog funny-word-balloons survive in this crazy, madcap digital new world?

If you pointed at your computer screen upon reading that and blurted out "LET'S FIND OUT!", then you are my kind of people. Let's put these suckers to the test! I put them through the grueling rigour of trying to make our provincial politics any more entertaining, so view these sample cases and draw your own conclusions. We distort, you decide!

And one bonus round, because I inevitably laugh at this picture every time I look at the front page of CJOB's website:

And there you have it! Vigorous intellectual scholarship for our modern times. In conclusion, REAL CATS DON'T EAT LASAGNA

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