Monday, August 17, 2020

Town Square, August 1965

When I discovered that Town Square was actually more of a triangle, I sued the Disney Company for 300 million dollars (for "pain and suffering"), and won! Don't you wish you had thought of that? I guess I should mention that I settled for $5 and a free popcorn.

This first one is almost "postcard worthy", even though it's a little bit over-exposed. Hey, some vintage Disneyland postcards were over-exposed too. I like the young kids looking at the horse - maybe they'd never seen a real one before! The slightly faded quality of the image makes this feel more vintage, like an Instagram filter. 

Another view of Town Triangle, with the good old Wurlitzer store, the Hills Bros. Coffee House (Hey, that house isn't made of coffee! Time to sue again!), and three Children of the Corn.

I think that popcorn vendor must have been from New York City. "Hey! Take a picture, it'll last longer. Yeah, I'm talking to you, grandpa! I'll knock your block off!". (Makes rude hand gesture).


Nanook said...

"Children of the corn" - and the popcorn cart-! (Oh, Major). I too noticed that rather belligerent popcorn vendor - so much more disgraceful than the mere 'single finger pointing'-!

Thanks, Major.

TokyoMagic! said...

I wonder if the popcorn vendor could have been trying to tell someone, "Hey, I'm out of popcorn" or "I need a roll of quarters!" At Knott's Berry Farm, management would often forget to check on you, while working at a cart or popcorn wagon. You would run out of inventory, or change in your till, and you'd have to try and get someone's attention somehow. Of course, I never used the single finger salute to get noticed. A frantic waving of both arms in the air would usually work.....eventually.

Melissa said...

Lots of fun hats on those streetcar passengers. And the matching hair on the sisters in front of the cannon in the second picture were enough to ping my twinsense, even though one girl is clearly older. I’m guessing those are homemade haircuts.

Near where my Hrandma had her lakeside cottage, there was a triangular patch of land where three roads came together - we always called it “Triangle Square.” It contained a restaurant called the Triangle Diner.

Melissa said...

On closer look, I think those kids look more like the kids from Village of the Damned than Children of the Corn.

K. Martinez said...

Organs! I didn't know they sold organs on Main Street. I'll have brain salad on toast, please! Hold the mayo. You can have the Coke Corner. I'll dine and listen to the pianist at the Organ Refreshment Corner.

Melissa, The strange blonde hair on those kids is definitely "Village of the Damned". Love both the original film and John Carpenter remake.

Whether it's the "Children of the Popcorn" or "Town Square of the Damned" the adults are sure in for a heap of trouble.

Thanks, Major.

DrGoat said...

M & K, I've always been a fan of George Saunders. To be honest I don't remember the remake, but I know I've seen it.
I always wondered if anyone actually bought an organ from the Wurlitzer store.
Nothing much to say, I've got nothing. I think I've entered the doldrums, but nice way to start the Monday.
Thanks Major.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, nobody realizes the stress that comes with being a popcorn vendor, and we are fortunate to have a photo taken at the exact moment that this fellow officially LOST IT. He was dragged away by Mickey and Donald.

TokyoMagic!, I was wondering the same thing - maybe there was somebody in the distance (or out of frame) and popcorn boy was frantically trying to tell him that he was running low on artificial butter flavor product. When trying to get attention, try bellowing like a bull moose. It works!

Melissa, I beg your pardon, but those girls had their hair cut by none other than Monsieur Jacques from Paris France! Normally he only worked on Hollywood celebrities such as Phyllis Diller and Ruth Buzzi. I wonder how many actual triangular foods were served at the Triangle Diner?

Melissa, maybe it was Children of the Damned Corn?

K. Martinez, sometimes I just liked to carry a nice kidney around in my pocket while at the park, which is why they put that store right there as you entered. There was a time when my hair was almost that white/blonde, especially when I could ride my bike to the beach (I’m still amazed that my unlocked bike was never stolen there). About two seconds after the second photo was taken, all three kid’s eyes started to glow. “There’s something you don’t see every day!”, thought most passers-by.

DrGoat, if it’s as hot where you are as it is where I am, then the doldrums are to be expected. Tomorrow is supposed to be especially hot, yeesh. It seems like electric organs were pretty popular when I was a kid, I knew several families that owned one. My great aunt and uncle had one in their basement in Minnesota, and my aunt would play for us occasionally. Good times!

stu29573 said...

The boy in the first picture has just told his little sister that horses eat children. "Come on, let's pet him!" Of course the joke was on him when he was eaten instantly.
The second picture is rare documentation of Ricky Spencer's last day working at Disneyland. I think this image was captured right between "I" and "quit!"

Anonymous said...

Nice clear shots of Main Street, with most of the reasons why we love it clearly displayed.

Notice how it looks like a real place (just cleaner), not an illustrator's psychedelic fever dream.

Thanks Major.


Chuck said...

This Town Square looks "right" to me, probably because the photo was taken around the same time as the 1962 Main Street View-Master set.

Village of the Cornsarned seems like a family-friendly mix of two films I've never seen.

zach said...

Late again. As I looked at the photos I thought of all kinds of clever comments but you all took them! Except Village of the Cornsarned. I did not think of that.

I will say it's sweet how the young boy is keeping his sister safe from the horse. He grew up throwing his coat over mud puddles to the confusion of his friends. They are grandparents by now, I hope.

Phew, it's hot again,


DrGoat said...

Major, I usually take the weekend off from computers so I missed the tiki post! That is a funky looking tiki Kim has there. Looks like a Marquesan tiki. Very distinctive. Bell, Book and Candle is a fun movie. Jack Lemmon is great in it along with Ernie Kovacs. Wish they would put on some of the old Ernie Kovac's shows.
TCM had Arsenic and Old Lace on this weekend. Another one of my favorites.
Speaking of hot, it's been 105 degrees and over for the last 2 or 3 weeks with hardly any rain in Tucson. Lots of rain all around us but none in the old pueblo. Along with everything else makes it easy to slip into the doldrums.
Lou & Sue, thanks for the compliment on my tiki. You're being kind to a scruffy old tiki.
Thanks again Major.

Major Pepperidge said...

stu29573, that sounds almost like something I would have done, though in my memory I was protective of my little sister. Not sure she remembers things the same way! My little brother though? Sheer hell. Maybe Ricky Spencer had been asked if he sold hamburgers one time too many. It gets old.

JG, Town Square is definitely a place that I didn’t truly appreciate until years later. Like most of Main Street, it was just a thing to walk past really quickly to get to the “good stuff”.

Chuck, I wonder what subtle cues are the ones that make you associate the photos with the Viewmaster set? The size of the trees? The fashions? For so long Main Street didn’t change a whole lot! And a note to movie producers: Americans want more corn-related films.

zach, you need to set your alarm to 12:01 AM, when each post publishes - then you will always be the first. It almost looks like the boy and his sister are wondering if they could go up and pet the horse, but… dang, he’s a little intimidating! I used to watch my sister feed apples to a horse that lived near my grandmothers, and those big teeth made me never want to try it myself.

DrGoat, I don’t even understand taking a week off from computers. What else do you do for those two days? Computers give so much, but ask so little! ;-) I thought I mentioned “Marquesan” tikis in one of my comments. From the Marquesas, presumably. Wherever those are. Off the coast of New Jersey, I think. I forgot that Ernie Kovacs was in Bell, Book and Candle. It’s almost weird to see him in vivid color! I’ve seen Arsenic and Old Lace many times - it was based on a popular play, and there is one scene in the movie - Raymond Massey steps through a window into the room - I could just imagine a theater full of people screaming with delight! My mom asked, “Do you think we’ll ever get rain again?”, and I said, “Probably not until next year…”. Which is a bummer.

DrGoat said...

Major, you did indeed mention Marquesan, so I apologize for repeating it.
I try to stay offline on weekends. I sit in front of 2 screens at work during the week so I like to rest my poor, tired eyes. Can't go outside after about 10am or you will become pixelated with the heat, so I catch up on old movies or read.
Computers do give much and ask little until something goes wrong and they take that enjoyment right back and replace it with misery. That did happen a few weeks ago at home. Took me about 5 hours to figure out what went wrong so my wife could get back online to do her stuff.

Major Pepperidge said...

DrGoat, I can never forgive you! I know it's harsh, but that's just how I am. It's probably why I don't have more friends. I was joking of course, I envy your ability to avoid the computer for two days straight. I probably spend too much time futzing on the 'pooter - much of it related to scanning/cleaning/adjusting slides and writing posts for GDB, the insatiable beast. I'm happy to be able to say that I haven't had any big computer issues for years, but now that I have put it in writing, I am doomed.

Dean Finder said...

I wonder if in the future, there will be people restoring old digital pictures by reversing the Instagram filters.

Chuck said...

Major, I think it's the size of the trees, the color scheme on the buildings, the overall color cast and contrast on the image itself, and even the fact that it's a "morning light" shot, perfectly-chosen to highlight the front of City Hall, that all contribute to that View-Master impression. I guess I was thinking of this picture.

The weird thing about this looking "right" to me is that I was -3 when this was taken; I never saw it this way in person.

And something I forgot to mention earlier today - shoutout to the Bekins van in the background!

Major Pepperidge said...

Dean Finder, personally I find those Instagram filters to be annoying, but that's just me. I say reverse 'em!

Chuck, those are all good clues! I am very familiar with that particular Viewmaster photo, as they used it on the cover for Main Street packets for years. Take a look HERE. My guess is that (like me) you've looked at so many vintage photos of Town Square that it's extremely familiar, even from years before you were hatched. Funny you should mention the Bekins van, my friend Mr. X emailed me about it and wanted me to send a scan to his Snapfish account so he could make a print of that photo.

"Lou and Sue" said...

Major, you commented: "zach, you need to set your alarm to 12:01 AM, when each post publishes - then you will always be the first."

I chuckled reading that because I did get up last night at about 2:01 AM (12:01 AM your time) to get a drink of water and look at your new post. When I walked into the kitchen, I was greeted by a large black spider on the kitchen counter. After 'putting its lights out,' I went into the bedroom and found another one on the wall, near the window and curtains. That ugly thing ran behind the curtains and then I COULD NOT find it. As you can see, I haven't posted any comments until now - as I have been very tired at work and all day, due to lack of sleep last night - lying in bed wide-awake with the light on, staring at that window and curtains, for a couple hours!

DrGoat, btw, scruffy old tikis are the best!

Melissa said...

I didn’t know they had tikis in the Marquesas! Of course, if Gauguin didn’t paint it and Jacques Brel didn’t write a song about it, that’s about the extent of what I know.

Pilsner Panther said...

Major, do you or anyone know if they actually sold pianos and organs at that Wurlitzer store? It seems like a strange thing to do, to go to Disneyland to buy a piano!

"Help me lift, dear, and we'll get this concert grand into back seat of our Volks. Won't the kids be surprised when we bring it home!"