mercoledì 19 agosto 2009

Last Tango in Bologna

Yesterday night I went to Bologna for a tango dance, and I finally had the occasion to wear my fringed "fake flapper" dress, and, above all, to try on me the gorgeous 1920-1930s hairdo by Iris, that I always wanted to.

I'll omit the fact that my mom laughed to tears when she came into my room and saw me, mouth full of bobby pins and eyes crossed in the attempt to see what I was doing on the back of my head - but lots of people congratulated with me for the hairdo during the evening, and I was actually very pleased with the result, too.
My mom took those pictures and, being sadic, managed to make my nose feature as the star of the performance - while the rest of my face is here only as a supporting role. I ask you, please, pretend not to see my huge resemblance to Adrian Brody when I'm half-face.
If you have the occasion to go out for an elegant soirèe - try this hairdo, people, it's great!

The dance was not as romantic as one may think - lots of sweaty fat men running one into the other - and the most funny outfits for the ladies - but I had fun anyway.
Someone should tell women that bright green shoes do not match a violet skirt, and even if they did, a brown t-shirt has little to do with the rest.
But I'm pedantic.
I'm quite sure, however, someone should warn women who are over sixties that golden lamè fabric is not what is usually called "sober yet elegant".
I wis I had a camera, because some of the outfits were something psychedelic... Not that I was particularly refined, but at least I left the feather boa home!

mercoledì 12 agosto 2009

I Want Candy (part I)

Just so you know.
I have an insane passion for sweets, candies, chocolates, cakes and sweet things in general.
If I was shipwrecked on a desert island with only an unlimited supply of Nutella (presupponing that I was travelling on a tanker full of Ferrero products), I could survive 'till the end of the days, eating just Nutella forever, maybe just adding coconut for a spurious Bounty Bar.

Talking about Bounty Bars: did you know that their antecedents (Peter Paul's Coconut Mounds, Almond Joy) were introduced in the 1920s and became popular in the 1940s?
And that the Mars bar was created in 1932, and M&M's a few years later?
Can you imagine eating candy cigarettes (sometimes called sugar fags in the UK), colorful sweets named "Chuckles", disquieting "Long Boys" chocolates, funny Root Beer Barrels or squared, bright violet gums?
If you were children in the 40s and 50s, you'd have loved 'em.

I did a little research about vintage candies, and that's what I found out.


Sen-Sen was developed in the late 1800s by T.B. Dunn and Co., perfume dealers. In keeping with its perfumery roots, it was on the market list for many years as a cosmetic: Sen-Sen was to the 19th century what breath mints are to our time.

Any country store worth its salt prominently displayed a box of the handy little packets within easy reach of its customers.

Sugar Daddy was the biggest lollipop of its times.
The Sugar Daddy was originally called the Papa, and was invented in 1925 by a chemist named Frank at the James O. Welch Company. The name was changed to Sugar Daddy in 1932. Sugar Babies were introduced three years later, in 1935.

BB Bats were super hard, little taffy-like candy suckers, and you could get them in strawberry, banana, chocolate, and one other flavor that was sort of like peanut butter. They probably were supposed to be soft and chewable, and once in awhile they were, but most of the time you could build the foundation of a house out of them on account of they were so hard. Despite that, they were super popular, and you could get one for one or two cents max.
(article source:

first appeared in 1924, as a new kind of candy bar, consisting of six pieces of candy wrapped in wax paper, and then packaged in a wrapper.
The candy consisted of almond bits embedded in a honey-flavored taffy which makes for a long-chewing candy.
Practically, when you ate one of these, it would have left you tongue-tied and nearly unable to speak for at least an hour or two, unless you provided with an adequate quantity of water.

Salt Water Taffy
The real origins of how salt water taffy got its name are disputed. However, the most popular story concerns a candy-store owner, Mr. David Bradley, whose shop was flooded during a major storm in 1883. His entire stock of taffy was soaked with salty Atlantic Ocean water. When a young girl came into his shop and asked if he had any taffy for sale, he is said to have offered some "salt water taffy." It was a joke, because all his taffy had been soaked with salt water, but the girl was delighted, and she bought the candy. Mr. Bradley's mother was in the back and heard the exchange. She loved the name and so Salt Water Taffy was born.