Somewhere along the line, I acquired a random copy of a Woman’s Day magazine from August 1977. Every so often I take it out and page through it. Although 1977 wasn’t THAT long ago, it’s like paging through a manual for another way of life. What I love most are the products, most of them long gone, the poor design and the absolute innocence of the copy. It was enough to say, “Emeraude. The liquid jewel no one can see, yet no one can ignore.” Would that work now? Probably not. Now we’d have something more along the lines of “Emeraude. The liquid that will get you laid.” Well, something like that.
So, here are some snapshots of Woman’s Day from 1977.Â Settle back with a cup of coffee or tea and enjoy… but wait… what’s this?
- COFFEE, TEA or VIVARIN? There are times when nothing beats sitting down and having a cup of hot coffee or tea. Particularly first thing in the morning. It tastes good and gives you a lift. But if, as the day wears on, you sometimes find yourself having a cup of coffee or tea just for the lift [yeah, it’s called being tired] you should know about Vivarin. Vivarin is a gentle pick-me-up [read: speed!]. If you purchased some Vivarin in August of 1977, it came with a pill box with a butterfly on the front.
- “What To Do When Your Hair Won’t Behave”Â Coarse hair is fat and strong, sometimes almost wiry. It is a joy to have… Fine hair is neither a problem nor a disease… Thin hair generally looks best cut in short in or medium lengths… Straight hair may end up looking stringy…
- NEW FRESHNESS DOUCHE ad:Â We’ve just taken 99% of the chemicals out of douching so we could bring you a product that’s back to natural, only better [er, uh, so you’re selling water in a douche bottle?]
- Robert Ringer promotes his self-help books entitled Looking Out For #1 and Winning Through Intimidation (which was one of the two top best-sellers of 1976). Having trouble with a friendship? Let Ringer help you out. “Regardless of the degree or variety, what it all boils down to is that a friend is a person who fills a need for you. And from her standpoint, your function is to fill a need for her. It’s losing sight of the latter that causes so many friendship problems.”
- “50 Ideas for Making Time On The Job At Home” [er, uh what?] Working women around the country tell how they cut corners to get housekeeping done…Â [there are fifty ideas here on how to save time and not one of them is “share household chores with your partner and kids” because then they wouldn’t have needed another 49 ideas] Don’t make the bed, just close the door, an anonymous working woman says. [Check. But leave the door wide open] “I sit down to prepare food and to iron – it saves a lot of energy,” airline stewardess Martha Fox of Atlanta says [ how about skipping the ironing?] Carpeting the kitchen to save scrubbing and waxing its floor is a recommendation of accountant Carrol Pierpont of Denver [yeah, just those bits of food pile up in the shag!]
- Summer Fiction Bonus: “The Perfect Robot Baby” by Lynda Gilmartin. about a couple who adopts a robot baby except the robot baby is far from perfect but it turns out… they love her anyway! Excerpt: “‘She’s been a horror today,'” Mrs. Harding cried, wringing her hand and panting like a sprinter. “She refused to eat her dinner, she broke my favorite Aztec ashtray, and when I put her in the tub for her bath, she splashed water all over me and ruined my hairdo.'”
- Viva Vegetables! Super Swift Super Special Ice Cream!
- “25 Decorating Makeables under $25” Ideas include: velcro-ing floor pillows to the wall when not in use to create an instant wall graphic; hang an Indian rug on the wall; planters out of old rain gutters; gift-wrap ribbon glued on cardboard in stripes, then cut and recombined to create a wall graphic; wood blocks strung on monofilament to create a room divider; stuffing brown business envelopes with dried flowers and attaching them to a wall in various groupings [this is hideous] and making kitchen curtains from jewel-toned napkins [bonus – no bottom hem needed!]
- “Slick Tricks For Smart Cooks” Here are some from under the heading “Mother Never Taught You These.” BACON will lie flat in the cooking pan if you prick it thoroughly with a fork as it cooks… If you add 1 tablespoon vinegar to the last water in which TONGUE is cooked, it will be easier to peel [uh… let me just mark that down on my tongue recipe… but what exactly needs peeling?!?] Open a CAN OF ASPARAGUS [wtf?] from the bottom so you can pull out the spears without breaking the tips… A CAKE will be less likely to stick to the pan if you put it on a wet towel to cool as soon as you take it out of the oven [OK, OK, that’s kinda useful] You can get ORANGE SECTIONS without white membrane clinging to them if you cover the unpeeled orange with boiling water, let stand 5 minutes, then peel [or you could have finished eating your orange 20 minutes ago].
- An actual article [!!] about a single mom called “A Young Mother Goes It Alone.” Marsha Hall Joyce, a Dallas schoolteacher, tells how she raises a daughter, runs a house, manages her money and makes time for some personal life too. [Isn’t that called… life?]
- RATH MEATS ad: “Here’s Home Cookin’ in no time when you have no time for home cookin'” Recipes in this ad include: Sliced Meat Crepes, Crusty Ham Sizzler, Weiner Fondue [yes, they want you to heat up some processed cheese spread, cut up some RATH WIENERS and make a sort of hobo fondue out of it], Mushroom-Sauced Bacon Sandwiches and Ham and Bean Salad.
- Did you know that SPAM had a competitor called TREET? That’s right “Country-style Treet in the easy open can.” I can imagine the epic SPAM/TREET ad battles… Kind of like Coke vs. Pepsi.
- STOVE TOP ad:Â Jan Adam from San Francisco said “With chicken my husband prefers potatoes. He’s just a potato man.” GUESS AGAIN Jan Adam! “Stuffing! You’ve got to have stuffing with chicken.” – Braun Adam Was Jan Adam surprisded! It never occurred to her that her husband would prefer stuffing to potatoes. But honestly, isn’t delicious, perfectly seasoned stuffing a natural with chicken? Bet your husband would prefer it, too! [or he could just stop at Chipotle and get some burritos on his way home – even better Jan Adam!]
- And, finally, an ad for MAX CIGARETTES: Is this a good example of flawed logic or what?