Blast From The Past

Posted in Pop Culture on October 3rd, 2009 and tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Being a child of the ’80’s, I definitely remember the California Raisins – they were 3D-ish Claymation figures of singing and dancing raisins, mostly famous for their rendition of “I Heard It Through The Grapevine”.  Thinking about this as an adult has me wondering if this was a successful ad campaign.  I guess successful is not quite the word I’m looking for…  I mean, of course it was ultra-successful in a sense; everyone in the ’80’s knew about the California Raisins, but did they really make kids want to eat more raisins?  Later they began to do commercials for Post’s Raisin Bran (Post only chooses the plumpest, juiciest raisins!), so maybe they helped to sell more boxes of cereal.

In the ’80’s, the California Raisins were celebrities and they had their own line of products that ran the marketing gamut: lunch boxes, stuffed toys, tv specials, t-shirts, Happy Meal toys, you name it.  This is precisely the reason why I came across a California Raisin figure the other day at the thrift store.  I had stopped in to get myself a few more little Halloween figurines for my front hall shelves (had an empty shelf after finally packing away the figurines of the bears playing baseball after the Chicago Cubs were eliminated from MLB’s post-season – that is ALL I’m going to say about THAT!), and at this particular thrift store, you get a free Happy Meal-type toy with every $2 spent.  My husband and I did just spend 5 hours gutting out the girls’ room and donating most of their toys last week, but I couldn’t resist picking out a toy for my favorite little shopping companion – my 3-year-old daughter Disney.  So anyway, we were pressed for time, and I found the California Raisin, so I grabbed him and gave him to Disney, promising her we would watch a movie of her raisin dancing and singing on the computer when we got home.  True to my word, I loaded up youtube and found some great clips of California Raisins, which went over really well with Disney.  She giggled and covered her mouth, and then she put her raisin on the computer to “watch” the other dancing raisins.  He’s been a presence in our household since last week, and of course her little brother likes him too.  He is small enough so that I can put him in our “emergency” car box (full of toys, snacks, band-aids, etc) when the kids tire of him in the house (the raisin, not the little brother!).  He even makes a great bathtub toy!  So anyway, while resurrecting the California Raisins last week, I came across this cute little  commercial that I hadn’t thought about in the 20 years since it was made.  Enjoy this blast from the past!

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Dr. Sanderson’s Game Library

Posted in games on May 14th, 2009 and tagged , , , , , ,

I could kick myself for not taking a “Before” picture of our game closet.  For  those of you who don’t know, my husband and I have a hobby of collecting board games.  We go to area thrift and Goodwill stores, and we buy every game in sight we don’t (think we) have.  It’s gotten out of control, really it has.  In our defense, we have a semi-regular game night with friends where we try out many of the games we obtain.  But the game collection outgrew its closet, and we began stacking games on the floor of the closet until even the floor started to overflow with games.  So, after we cleaned up what used to be the craft room in our house (gonna call it the ‘East room’ for now I guess – we can’t decide if we want it to be a family rec room or a kid-free parents’ cave), we decided to move the game closet into the closet of the East room because it’s bigger.  And now that phase of the project is complete!  And it’s awesome!

We threw all of our props and memorabilia from the community theater shows we’ve worked on in the East room.  Since my husband was the handsome ‘Dr. Sanderson’ in the show Harvey, we somehow ended up with the name plate for his office door.  We stuck it to the closet in the East Room, and that is where our game closet now resides.  Therefore, I’m announcing the opening of Dr. Sanderson’s Game Library!  Pick a game…  ANY game*!  However, the following picture is just a sample of the library – a fraction of the closet.  Not only could I not rotate the image (so imagine the scene as 90° to the right), but I couldn’t get much of the library in the picture!

new-game-closet-5-13-09-001 new-game-closet-5-13-09-002

*unless you are certain game night regulars who are known for kicking butt at the Disney Trivia game – we have “accidentally” misplaced that game, hehe!

Miss Kasandra Scarlet Did It In The Spa With The Dumbell

Posted in Uncategorized on August 23rd, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The classic board game Clue is getting a makeover.  Sure, there’s been lots of variations of it over the years; among them Simpsons Clue, Disney’s Haunted Mansion Clue, Dvd Clue, and Clue Jr.  But now they are giving the game a more modern look by changing characters, weapons, and rooms.  Here are some of the changes:

 – Colonel Mustard is now Jack Mustard, a former football player
 – Professor Plum is now Victor Plum, a billionaire video game designer
 – Mr. Green is now Jacob Green, an African-American
 – New Rooms: theater, spa and guest house
 – Weapons: Hasbro replaced the lead pipe, revolver and wrench with a dumbbell, trophy and poison
 – Each of the characters has a special sleuthing power

Hmm, I’m not so sure about this.  I tend to like things the way they are.  I’ve played both versions of a few board games that have been modernized, like Pay Day and Life, and I strongly prefer the original versions.  I guess we’ll have to see, although it will probably be a long time before I try the new Clue because I buy my games at the thrift store.  The only way the new Clue will get to the thrift store super quick is if it really stinks!