Doug: Last Tuesday I was contacted by the Community Manager for Man Crates. She'd done some homework on blogs that deal with 1970s and '80s nostalgia, and felt the Bronze Age Babies and its readers would be a good landing point for some help. You can check out the company's website and offerings by clicking here. Personally, I think this is a great idea! In fact, I'm going to suggest my new daughter-in-law take a look at the website. Apparently the folks at Man Crate would like to add to their product line and introduce a new crate -- one geared to "people of a certain age". That's where we come in!
Doug: I was asked to lead this off with my own opinions on what I would like to receive in such a gift package. So I'm going to throw out some suggestions, not really knowing if some of these things are still being made -- but they make me think of my childhood and high school years!
- Candy bars like Reggie, Whatchamacallit, PB Max... I can recall a time in college when the Mars company did a test market in the Peoria, IL area. Peoria's one of the slice-of-America cities that has demographics that make it perfect for such things. Anyway, my mates and I rolled into the lunch room one day to find a nice lady holding a basket of these PB Max candy bars. We'd never heard of them, but let's face it -- chocolate, peanut butter, and crunchies is a formula for success. Being brash young men, we asked if we could take more than one. She said "help yourselves". Whoa... so we each grabbed a couple, and 3-4 more on the way out. We spent the afternoon listening to music and eating candy. And we were so sick I don't recall that we went to supper that evening. But those candy bars were awesome. Other novelties from the corner store included wax lips and candy necklaces.
- I'd put a copy of one of the Panini Marvel Pocketbook digests in the crate. Again, Edo Bosnar turned me on to these things some months ago, and I now own four with a fifth pre-ordered. They're just great -- the price is unbeatable. Here's a link to those books, on sale from the Book Depository in the UK. I'd definitely toss in one of the Spider-Man or Avengers books, as they're quite Bronze Age.
- I'm trying to think of movies that I just love -- films that I'll stop and watch whenever I see them on TV. My first inclination is Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, but since that's not Bronze Age I'll offer up any of the Planet of the Apes movies, Jaws, Animal House, Stripes, and of course Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, Superman The Movie, and Rocky. You couldn't go wrong with a DVD set of the $6 Million Man, either. Or the original Battlestar Galactica. And here's a thought -- what about a couple of actors who link the beginning of the Bronze Age to near its end? Take Harrison Ford: American Graffiti, Star Wars, and Raiders of the Lost Ark. Or John Travolta? Welcome Back Kotter, Saturday Night Fever, Grease, and Urban Cowboy?
- I think a toy of some sort should be in the crate. My go-to back in elementary school was of course the line of Mego action figures -- the World's Greatest Super-Heroes, but beyond that too. DC recently made some retro facsimiles. Another sort of toy I played with through junior high and high school were the various games from Mattel Electronics. I had the second version of the football game and played it endlessly. Many years later, Mattel revived the line and my wife and I, both with fond memories of those, bought a couple for our sons.
- Lastly, I'd put some snacks in the crate. But old stuff -- Bugles, Hostess Twinkies or fruit pies, Fresca, maybe a Jiffy Pop.