Thursday, October 13, 2011

McDonalds Part 2

I remember eating many, many meals from here especially when the "Happy Meal" surfaced.

A "Happy Meal" was marketed for children. A toy is typically included with the food, both of which are usually contained in a small box or paper bag with the McDonald's logo.

McDonalds Part 1

I remember back how small Apopka used to be and how the only real places for fun back then was the park or McDonalds Playground.
McDonald's playground was awesome, it had the whole cast of characters from McDonald. The cast was Grimace, Hamburglar, Fry Guys, Mayor McCheese, Officer Big Mac and good ole Ronald McDonald.

Grimace was a bounce and bend.
Officer Big Mac was a climb in jail.
Mayor McCheese was a round-a-bout.
The Fry Guys were bouncers.
The Hamburglar was a swing, I think.

This was called McDonald Land and was behind the McDonalds in Apopka.

Fisher Price Movie Viewer

The Fisher-Price Movie Viewer was introduced in 1973 as the Movie Viewer & Cartridge. The Movie Viewer was very popular both because it does not require batteries, bulbs, nor any other replacement requirements and because Fisher-Price manufactured several popular movie cartridges that appeal to children.

I remember having two or three of these from garage sales. I loved them and they were so easy to operate. No batteries needed, just slide in the cartridge and turn the crank.

Toys, Toys, Toys Part 2

Here is another round of toys from when I was a little tike....

Toys, Toys, Toys Part 1

Here are a few toys that I had as a small child but do not remember them fully.


Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Godzilla Shogun Warrior Mattel 1979

Here is another toy that was snagged at our local flea market, Godzilla. The Shogun Warriors were the central characters of a line of toys licensed by Mattel Inc. during the late 1970s that included Godzilla. The Godzilla figure stood at 19 1/2" tall, had wheels on his feet, a flashing tongue with pretend "flame" and claw that could be launched.


Frankenstein Halloween Costume By Ben Cooper

Ben Cooper, Inc. manufactured Halloween costumes from the late 1930s to the late 1980s. It was one of the three largest Halloween costume manufacturers in the U.S. from the 1950s through the mid-1980s. The company's inexpensive plastic masks and vinyl smocks were an iconic American symbol of Halloween from the 1950s to the 1970s.

I remember having a new one of these each year. I remember the Frankenstein the most out of all the costumes. I remember looking back through all the costumes online while researching all the 70's style Halloween costumes. I also remembering how hot these masks were back then. It was visit a house and lift the mask, visit a house, lift the mask. I also remember how fun it was to see your friends and not be able to recongize who they were. Halloween used to be pure and simple. I used to love Halloween when I was a kid.

Funstuf Frankenstein 1978-79

I bought this one from the flea market. It did not come with the box or the labortory table, just Frankenstein. His head and arms glowed in the dark. I do not recall what ever happened to him.

Funstuf Dracula 1979

So, when I was growing up, things were so much different. There were all sorts of stores back then that were borderline thrift stores. Some were called 5 & 10 stores, meaning you could get stuff for 5 cents or 10 cents in certain areas of the store, some called them clearance items. I remember the neighbor across the street opened one in the old store beside his house. It was called the 5 & 10 store, it looked like a collection of junk pulled from their house next door.

But it was a neat because we would wrangle up change, all the neighborhood kids and run across the street to see what treasures we could find. I remember collecting a few rare odds and ends. The first one was a Dracula figure, it was missing in his cape, his face and hand would glow in the dark. I lost it out until many years later, my father was cleaning up under the house and discovered it buried in the dirt. One or two things could have happened to it, a friend threw it under there or one of our many dogs did it. But it was a great treasure to see again.

I did research on it and came up with the company name and year it was made. The company was called Funstuf and the year it came out was 1979. Mine was missing the cape and coffin when I bought it and it was only dime.

This is the original Dracula with the actual box when it was new, this is not a picture from the one I own.

The Six Million Dollar Man Vs The Bionic Woman (The Toys)

The Six Million Dollar Man Vs The Bionic Woman

The Six Million Dollar Man is an American television series about a former astronaut with bionic implants working for the OSI (which was usually referred to as the Office of Scientific Intelligence, the Office of Scientific Investigation or the Office of Strategic Intelligence  It aired on the ABC network as a regular series from 1974 to 1978, following three television movies aired in 1973. The title role of Steve Austin was played by Lee Majors, who subsequently became a pop culture icon of the 1970s. A spin-off of the show was produced, The Bionic Woman, as well as several television movies featuring both eponymous characters.

Jaime Sommers played by Lindsay Wagner became "The Bionic Woman", Jaime was critically injured in a skydiving accident and, at Steve's request due to his love for her, was equipped with bionic implants similar to his own (with the exception of his bionic eye, as Jaime was equipped with a bionic ear instead). Unfortunately, Jaime's body rejected her new bionics which ultimately lead to her death.

I watched both of these shows. There was even action figures of both of these characters. I remember not buying them new but from a flea market. I even owned the Bigfoot character, from "The Secret of Bigfoot" episodes. I barely recall the bigfoot character from the show but I do recall owning the figure.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mini Monsters

As I look back on my massive toy collection, I am surprised by the number of toys I had and didn’t have growing up.  But another favorite of mine was the “Mini Monsters” collection with the play case. I have loved doing this research seeking toys from the seventies era because it has reconnected me to some of my most prized toys growing up.
I have forgotten about so many of these, it’s just nice to flashback and view these all over again. This was one toy that I played with constantly and I remember Dracula was the only one I had left out of that collection as I grew older.

Monster Machine

Here is another toy that I did not own but one of my friends owned, "Monster Machine". I remember making one or two of these monsters back in the day. Once again, I do not recall why I didn’t own this one either; it was right up my alley. But at least I had a friend that had one to play with at the time.
The “Monster Machine”roto-cast toy by Gabriel .You would fill the mold with the instant plaster, and clamp it into the roto-cast machine then crank until it sets. This gives a hollow plaster head that can be turned into a bank with the addition of a slot. Five molds include Frankenstein's Monster, Bigfoot, Hornagor, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and Galaxogg this was from 1977.

Mighty Mo Cannon

One toy that was very interesting was the “Mighty Mo Cannon”; this was purchased from a flea market. It was used and it only had one canon ball with it. I do not recall it how the cannon operated but I do remember how much fun it was to shoot that cannon ball from it. I searched every garage sale and flea market for other cannon balls but never found any more.
This cannon was from 1963 and it measured 27" long.  It needed no batteries. It featured a breech loading & spring action remote control firing.  To operate you had to open the breech door, remove cartridge and place cannon ball on rod, push down with plunger. Load the cartridge into breech (there is a tab that matches the slot), Close the door. Cannon is ready to fire by remote control or manually.  The spring action remote is held on by two screws, one on each side, if that is broken the cannon can still be fired by pressing the button. Cannon can also be elevated or lowered in different positions.


I loved the game of “Perfection”, I remember playing this game with my family and friends. It was highly entertaining. I remember we played it so much that the time eventually broke but that was after years of owning it.
The idea behind the game was to put all the pieces into matching holes on the board (pushed down) before the time limit runs out. When time runs out, the board springs up, causing all or at least many of the pieces to fly out. In the most common version, there are 25 pieces to be placed within 60 seconds.

Creepy Crawlers

This was one toy that I wished I had growing up; it was called “Creepy Crawlers”. I do not recall why I did not own more toys like this but maybe it had to do with the price of the toy when it was new or maybe I already had so many other toys that this one was not needed.Even though, I did not own this toy, one of my friends did and I actually got to stay the night at his house and make different types of these creepy crawlers.

Thimble City

“Thimble City” was a magnetic city where people and cars moved like magic. I bought this used from a garage sale and it did not have the people with the set. But I loved the fact that it was a city with streets and buildings you could put down on it. I do not recall getting the cars either, but my “Hot Wheel”cars worked great. Later on, other types of these cities surfaced and this one became a city of the past. 

Jet Disc Tracer Gun

As a kid growing up, you play games such a “Cowboys & Indians”, “Cops & Robbers” and “War”. There are several ways to plays these games. But one of the best ways to play these games was with the “Jet Disc Tracer Gun”, these actually shot little discs out and they would shot them pretty far. This was when you shot someone, you could see the disc hit them and knowing this, they were out of commission.
I cannot recall how many of this little plastic discs went missing around several yards and nearby woods around our neighborhood. I do not even know how many guns, I had but I do know that we bought many packs of discs; sometimes we could hunt and find the ones we shot do their colors. We would get a hundred in the pack and buy two or three packs for back up.
These discs were safe to shot at one another without any one being hurt. These were great to even shot at random stuff around the neighborhood. But thinking now, its crazy to think about them many of these discs we left on the ground.

Magic Shot Shooting Gallery

This was another game that I loved to play was the “Magic Shot Gallery”, it was purchased from a flea market and it was not in the best shape but it worked very well. The gun had a magnetic tip which is used to drag one of the 25 steel balls up the plastic face of the toy. Pulling the trigger pushes the ball at one of the 12 targets. The biggest problem with this toy is that the plastic face gets mighty scratched up by dragging the gun against it for each shot. My plastic face was not bad until the very end and then it was pitched.

Sea Diver

I do not recall much about this toy from Parker Brothers called “Sea Diver”. But I remember it was not a new toy, it was bought from a garage sale and I do recall it missing a part or two. I did not get this toy until much later, it surfaced in 1973 but it had to be close to 1979 before I got my hands on it. I do not even remember how it worked, even after reading the history behind the toy. I only used this toy a few times and grew bored with it rather quickly.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Bumpershot, I remember how much I loved to play this game. I purchased the game from a garage sale and it was in mint shape. It was still in the original box in came in, the only date I found online was 1973. I bought this game several years later. I remember the box and all. I could not believe it when I found it online. It looked identical one I had. This is not much history behind this toy but I had great times playing this game with my friends.

Super Jock

This was another toy that was picked up from a garage sale, called “Super Jock”. It was Super Touch Basketball, you would aim the basketball player and hit his head and he would shoot the basketball in the basketball. I do not recall playing very much with this toy, the first few days; I was non stop shooting the baskets.  This was another item that was mint shape, it was around the 1979 era and there were several types of the athletes to choose from but I only had the basketball player.

The Rats Hole, Daytona Beach

One place that I remember going when I was younger was over in Daytona Beach called “The Rat’s Hole”. I was so fascinated with these place, it had all sorts of neat stuff from a guy name “Big Daddy” Ed Roth, he was an artist and cartoonist who created the hot-rod icon Rat Fink and other extreme characters.  This store was inspired from all his Rat Fink art work, I loved the grotesque caricatures that were typified by Rat Fink and they  were depicting imaginative, out-sized monstrosities driving representations of the hot rods that he and his contemporaries built.
I remember buying a couple of patches with these caricatures driving hopped up hot rods. This was really the only thing my parents allowed me to buy when I was in the store. I remember seeing all the shirts and posters that he created, it was not a store a small kid should have probably been in at the time, I remember see some very seedy people roaming through this store.
I remember how much I loved that crazy art work and each time, we went to Daytona Beach, I wanted to go there. I remember seeing or touching something once that lead me out of that store and never returning again. I cannot remember what it was but my parents were yelling something at me and each other which ushering me out the door.
I would have never guessed how much of a real icon “Big Daddy” Ed Roth was back then until much later on when I older and could see his impact on the art world. He was and still legendary.

Friday, January 7, 2011


When I was growing up the only sport that I liked to watch was wrestling. I grew up watching “NWA” Championship Wrestling Of Florida and at the time, I did not know it was fake. It all seemed real to me along with all the blood and story lines to follow, I was hooked. My father turned me onto it; he used to watch it as a kid growing up and knew some of the older wrestlers that were soon to be fading away because of their age. Some of these guys are still associated with wrestling today and still wrestling.
I watched wrestling for a number of years, but this era was to me the best. I am sure it was because of the close bond they all shared as I look back on it and discovered these guys were all friends behind the scene. I started actually going to see the matches live at the “Eddie Graham Sports Stadium” and this is when my passion for wrestling grew even stronger. I was actually seeing the guys that I watched when I was young; wrestle right in front of me, there was the blood, sweat and tears. This was going on every single Sunday night. This was huge, seeing the real live matches, from the barb wire matches to the cowbell match to the cage match. This was not like watching it on T.V., this was the real deal and sometimes these guys would get into the audience watching them and fight.
I later discovered that they would all meet at the local bar down the road from the stadium and hang out; this is when I discovered the bond they all shared when the show was over. I also started seeing how fake wrestling was from a broader spectrum.  Even though this guys were face to face in matches beyond belief when the lights when out, they shared beers with one another. I did not care if it was fake, it is a highly physical sport and not every person could handle performing to this caliber every single night.
I had many favorite wrestlers from this era; my favorite was the “American Dream” Dusty Rhodes.  But as time grew and new wrestlers emerged, it changed, but Dusty was still my all time favorite. He had something about him that just made him stand out. He had this jive smack talk they would just make you laugh and his moves were just the same way. He was for sure a, bleeder. Almost every match he was in, there was blood. But he was electrifying in that ring; he made you want to watch him.
Here is a short list of wrestlers that were loved and hated. Kevin Sullivan, Abdullah The Butcher, Blackjack Mulligan, Kendo Nagasaki, The Road Warriors, Harley Race, Ric Flair, Barry Windham, Superstar Billy Graham, Chief Wahoo McDaniel, Bugsy McGraw, Ronnie Garvin, The Freebirds, Outlaw Ron Bass, Arn and Ole Anderson, The Assassin, Brusier Brody, Billy Jack, Scott Mcgee, Magnum T.A.,Terry and Dory Funk Jr, Sweet Brown Sugar, Don Muraco,  The Super Destroyer, Dick Slater, Rocky Johnson, Ernie Ladd, Thunderbolt Paterson, Black Bart, Midnight Rider, Yellowdog and The Sheik . The wrestling commentator was Gordon Solie.
Thinking back to those days of wrestling and how wrapped up as a kid in their world is amazing. My friends and I followed every wrestler along with each story line; we would even square on in my front yard against one another and use our water hose squared off as the ring. What a great memory.

Mighty Mouse

"Here I come to save the day!" was the popular saying from “Mighty Mouse”.  I remember watching this show every single morning.  I cannot remember one episode now but I remember back how much I loved watching that flying mouse. I watched the black and white ones and then they changed he over to color.
Mighty Mouse was Mighty Mouse originally had a blue costume with a red cape, like Superman, but over time this outfit changed to a yellow costume with a red cape, his most popular colors. As with other imitations of Superman, Mighty Mouse's super powers include flight, super strength, and invulnerability. He has demonstrated the use of X-ray vision in at least one episode, while during several cartoons he used a form of telekinesis that allowed him to command inanimate objects and turn back time. The other cartoons have him leaving a red contrail during flight which he can manipulate at will like a band of solid flexible matter.


I loved Pong. I remember I was in the fifth grade when a friend of mine told him he had all these games for sale, I gave him fifteen dollars for a bunch of used video game consoles. I never got the Pong game new but having it used was close enough, I remember giving this kid money way before getting the games. I made countless threats against him and even my close friend did too, he was going keep my money and all his consoles.
Then one day after class, I walked outside my classroom and there they sat in a box in a tangled mess of pure confusion. My friend spotted them right when the class bell rang; he yelled to me that he left them outside class. I ran outside and there they sat, I took them home and went to work on them. I had five video game consoles and I think Pong and one other one worked. It was a great deal, even though it took over a month of harassing him and threatening him to budge. But it happened, crazy part is, we never saw him again after that. It like he dropped out of school.
But I did not care; all I cared about was having Pong. I think I even sold the other games to a friend of mine, once we got Pong untangled we left the others for weeks. Pong was a great game.
Pong is one of the earliest arcade video games, and is a tennis sports game featuring simple two-dimensional graphics. Pong was one of the first video games to reach mainstream popularity. The aim is to defeat your opponent in a simulated table tennis game by earning a higher score. The game was originally manufactured by Atari Incorporated (Atari), who released it in 1972.