Volkswagen Beetles? That’s so last decade, at least where Best Buy’s Geek Squad is concerned: the tech support service is trading in the retro, kitschy appeal of the VW Beetle for the environmentally-friendly Toyota Prius. [More]
I’ve always been intrigued by the Flowbee, the hair cutting vacuum attachment heavily promoted on late 80’s late night infomercials, but I was never quite sure how it worked. Now a new, edited for maximum comedic impact, version of the original instructional video has surfaced and all my questions have been answered.
Remember that Bieber track that turned into a symphonic masterpiece once it was slowed down 800%? Yes? No? Well you might as well kill yourself, Brian Eno, because here’s an old-school dial-up modem slowed down 700% , becoming an epic soundscape of terrifying drones and robotic wails, punctuated by tsunamis of static. Ah, it really captures the essence of what connecting to AOL in 1995 felt like.
If you fetishize the look of old technology but are frustrated by how it can’t actually be used to perform present-day tasks, it’s time for a party. Commodore is making new PCs running Windows 7 housed in those familiar and beloved beige Commodore 64 shells.
This curious 1960’s ad for a Bank of America personal loan portrays needy borrowers as jerky junkies twitching for a fix. Thankfully, BofA has a storehouse of jars of “instant” money (that operate suspiciously like a cup of cappuccino) that is the balm for your frayed nerves.
Here’s a page from the history books of consumerism history: Back in the early 90’s, Prego gave out 12,000 free posters to classrooms across America containing a “lesson plan” for a “scientific” experiment in which they would test whether Prego or Ragu Old World Style was thicker. The poster came with a free slotted spoon and a coupon for a 30 oz jar of Prego. In the September 95 issue of Harper’s Magazine, David Shenk lampooned this blatant insertion of commercial messages into the classroom under the guise of learning about the scientific method:
Citing “dwindling demand,” Sony announced it’s terminating the floppy disk for good. It has already stopped selling the 3.5 inch disks in most areas, and will stop selling them in Japan in March 2011. I have fond memories of copying shareware games to play on my Mom’s Macintosh Plus in the 80’s. Ah, those were more naive times. Share your floppy disk reminisces in the comments.
Let’s step into a time machine and travel through the mists of chronos to an ancient yesteryear. It was a different era, Britney Spears shaved her head, Boris Yeltsin died, and people learned how to print images on toast from the comfort of their own workshops. Oh, and a lil’ thing called an iPhone came out. The year was 2007, and Verizon and Sprint were so scared that they issued these ridiculous sheets to their frontline reps with talking points for discouraging people from buying an iPhone:
Take a gander at page 24 of this vintage FOH catalog from 1964, scanned and uploaded by Flickr user “What Makes The Pie Shops Tick?”. Their 2-for-$17.99 deal is actually more expensive than buying the items individually. It’s good to know retailers are consistent, we guess.
Man, cigarettes were awesome in the past, if these old ads collected by Stanford University are to be believed. They calmed your nerves so you’d stop humming nervously! They soothed your throat! They made you a movie star and helped you capture animals on your big game hunt! We don’t know what tobacco was made of before the mid-80s, but no wonder everyone smoked.
Sometimes gentleness is required of your toddler. Sometimes ill-tempered old folks get too agitated and threaten you with canes. That’s why sometimes the best solution is a good old fashioned thorazine pill, or a barbiturate elixir. Weirdomatic has a collection of bizarre ads like these from the past. Our favorite, aside from the drug ads, is the one showing Olympian speed skater Jack Shea taking a break from his skating to enjoy the rejuvenating effects of a Camel cigarette. So that’s how Phelps did it.
Did you know that before he hawked for Priceline or regaled us with the adventures of T.J. Hooker, William Shatner had another TV career? Yes, he appeared in commercials for the Commodore VIC-20: “Unlike games, it has a real computer keyboard.”
One of Copyranter’s readers found this disturbing old-skool ad for asbestos, featuring the former World Trade Center.
Here’s a classic (i.e., 9 months ago) video demonstrating the ease and reach of the Telesteps 12 1/2 Aluminum Telescoping Ladder. Not recommended for consumers maladroit at landing on their feet…
Consider it Christmas in September. The Action Figure Archive has a few choice scans from the Sears Wishbooks of ’79 to ’87.
Twenty-five years ago today, Sergeant Pepper taught the band to play. One year ago today in The Consumerist, uh, we didn’t exist yet. BUT several months ago, we had some cool posts. To pluck your heartstrings, here’s some sepia tinted Consumerist.