Monday, May 26, 2008

My Secret Shame #2: Terrific Stickers

After giving you all a taste of the cover of my childhood sticker book, I know everyone was waiting at their home Tandy computer, clicking "refresh" in vain for days on end. Your wait, loyal readers, has come to an end. I present...page 2.

Let's take a close look at some of this page's highlights. The category into which I was supposed to file my stickers, while mostly obstructed, is supposed to say "Terrific Stickers." Taking everything literally was my specialty as a child, so it comes as no surprise that this Terrific sticker, which was received after one of the aforementioned allergy injections, makes the cut. More of this literal mindedness will follow on future pages. I promise.

Here is the sticker that, come tomorrow morning, America will not stop talking about. As you will soon see, the vast majority of the stickers in this collection were free. Free meaning free, as in neither me nor my parents paid any money for them. The one below, however, I'm pretty sure the American taxpayer had a hand in. I believe it was given out as an ominous Halloween preparatory warning. "Don't accept questionable bags of candy from ghosts" is the message I think is trying to be communicated here, but there are several factors that suggest otherwise. First of all, this "ghost" fails in its attempt to skew "molestor." There is nothing predatory about it at all. In fact, he (?) just comes across as confused and pathetic.
Picture a ghost with the voice of the cartoon Frosty the Snowman: "I don't know, there might be razor blades in these apples, but I didn't check very hard. In fact, I can't remember tampering with them at all. But I must have."

Up next is the only sticker that could possibly be construed as "terrific" by any objective measure. Snoopy is awesome. In no way does he create the same feeling of nostalgia the Charlie Brown does, and he's no Vince Guaraldi on the piano, but he still rocks. And he's good at archery (in a motivational sort of way).

Another Boglin (among many). My brain tells me this is the leader, but it won't tell me his name.

One of three Garbage Pail Kids on the page, this is Stoned Sean. You can tell that this is from a very early series because there is an attempt at ironic/iconic humor and not merely a total hammering on your gross-out reflex. I was probably much too young to get the double entendre of his name, but now I can appreciate it on that level.

Was this sticker free? Without a doubt! This was probably one of those free gifts given to try to get you to subscribe to a magazine, in this case Penny Power, the children's version of Consumer Reports. Did I subscribe? No, but I faithfully read up on tips to save money at my local library. Come to think of it, isn't reading periodicals for free at one's local library one of the ways to save money that this magazine should have suggested? Perhaps Congress should look into this.

Was this sticker free as well? You betcha! The small print in the blurred area doesn't have a cuss word on it, but it does say "Wisconsin Recycles," probably the name of some non-profit group that went around to schools. (Cue dismissive tone of voice here.) Recycling...will we ever learn?

Yeah, there's more on this page that I could go into, such as the patchwork heart on the bottom right that proves that I would have stuck anything and everything with an adhesive backing on it into my sticker book back in the way, but I won't. Watch out, Easter Seals! You know what happens when you cross my path!

2 comments:

dayf said...

Stoned Sean was the Garbage Pail sticker that set off alarm bells for my mom. "That kid's smokin' a joint!!! Nah, he's a statue, Ma" I believe was the exact conversation.

And yes, Snoopy *is* awesome.

Kevin said...

Holy crap! I think I had a Boglin when I was a kid, a purple one...I know my best friend had one or two. I loved making their eyes pop out. Dude, I should totally try to find one. Thanks for the trip down memory lane.