Sign of the times:

This is new. The hallway was previously empty. It connects the larger hallway to the men’s bathroom. Why so long? Two storage closets, proximity to an elevator bank. The configuration is odd - elsewhere in the building the mens / women’s bathroom are in mirrored configurations so they share the same pipes. This means that when someone sits down on the doppelgänger throne on the other side of the wall, the commode on which you are sitting rises some. It’s like a teeter-totter.

Anyway, this bathroom has a long hallway, with two sets of doors. After you’ve opened the first door with a paper towel, you open the second door, turn around, and toss the paper into the bin.

As I said, it’s new, because now everyone is opening doors with paper towels. Also a sign of the times:

People are advised to wipe down the surfaces with bleach.


These actions seem rather desultory, but it’s better than nothing. On the other hand - hah! Because we have to wash them right? Ha - I’ve been noting the fluid levels in the Purell dispensers. They’re not going down at a rate that suggests everyone takes a pump on the way past. I do. I do not, however, take a pump when I am in other parts of the office, because that’s their Purell, and I know how I’d feel if the guys in sports drained theirs in a few days and started drifting over here, casually helping themselves to the hand-sanitizer. Then again, I can’t image the guys in sports using any in the first place, because hey, guys, and sports, right? Ha!

We have to keep our spirits up, friends

Laughter is the best medicine

In those situations in which no actual medicine is available, that is





I could rant about this incredibly depressing documentary I’m watching, the unspoken message of which is massive, unionized bureaucracies are remarkably ineffective at taking care of people. (Note: since I wrote that, I started another documentary about a massive, unionized government institution that ignores the cries of the citizens, and is in fact complicity with their pain. Who knew Netflix was so suspicious of statism!

But instead, something nice.

Unless you're Canadian and, well, old, or interested in old Canadian things, this is a new one.

I’m fascinated with this stuff, from this era, the way Canadian culture is a mirror of Yank culture but with a completely different cast of characters, and a somewhat more . . . Canadian tone, which I appreciate. Compared to the American versions, it’s like driving down the freeway with your parking brake on.

The host:

THIS. GUY. Mr. 1963, right here.

Alan Manning. He was an American, and was a writer and TV producer. Co-created (with his wife) a little show called One Day at a Time.

Another panelist:

Anna Cameron. No wikipedia entry.

So why is this of particular interest here? The Mystery Guests:

Astrid - the Ethel to my Albert, and I should explain that. You know this, right? She’s the daughter of Peg Lynch, and we’ve done some shows performing her mother’s work, and doing a presentation on her life and accomplishments. I feel presumptuous saying “my Albert,” but hell, I’m the only one in the business at the moment.

After a few more performances I will be in fourth place for Albert status, behind Alan Bunce, Bob Dryden, and Richard Widmark. At least the verifiable Alberts. There were others, but they may have been proto-Alberts. Anyway, it’s a role I’m still trying to make my own; it is damned hard to do dialogue so specifically tailored for another actor’s style. More practice will help - and if all goes well, brother, I’ll get it. But that’s another story.

Astrid sent me a video she retrieved from the archives of the CBC. Holllleeee Bleep

I don’t know if it’ll ever be posted on the Peg Lynch site, but I hope so. Peg is all business in the interview, as usual, although I can’t help remembering how she’d always describe these things as situations where she got thrown into something and had to act like she knew what she was doing, or make up something on the spot. I mean, she knew what she was doing. But having heard her tell tales of those days, I know there was backstory, and it was funnier in her telling than anything that went on the air.

They do the Paradise Room sketch we do:

As for the dress . . . well. It’s in a small town museum in Minnesota now. I saw it last spring.




It’s 1908.

When did this technological innovation disappear from the scene?

The lie-flat toothpaste is a thing of dreams; we’re back to mashing it down with our tongue. And to think it was once not always so!
Bad sleep leads to crusty business.

Still around - or, rather, back. The brand was revived as a high-line hand-made product. Fifteen bucks then; Ten Thousand today.

The website is standard stuff, but . . . You’ll see it. Eventually, you’ll see it.


Now the candidates could speak directly to the people, albeit in one-way chats. The whole 20th century, foreshadowed.
Twelve by Taft, ten by Bryan? BIAS! No wonder he lost!
The pace of technological change is swift and sure; every year, people become accustomed to something that was previously a miracle.
We might be able to imagine what it was like to have these devices change your life, but I don't know if we can imagine what it felt like personally to know this tech now existed. How it changed your view of the world, and what was possible.
I was all set to buy ‘em when the guy said they had a dainty effect. I ain’t buyin’ nothin’ dainty
It would be a meme today.


Perhaps we could make that happen! Or is it too archaic?
If you drove one of these by yourself around town, with no one else, people would start to wonder.

Then one day, you’d fill it with children! And then the next day, just you.

The address comes back as nothing but residential today, and old residential at that. A year after this ad ran, Rapid was acquired by GM.

We’ll ship this to you for no money for a 30-day trial, because we’re not particularly keen in staying in business:

It’s preferred by doctors!

Cars, telegraphs, telephones . . . and still the buggy.

That'll do. Obligatory tiresome hardy har about handwashing and not looking at your 401(k) etc.



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