Monday, February 28, 2011

Ode to M*A*S*H : 28 February 28 Years Ago

Twenty eight years ago today on 28 February, 1983 the finale of M*A*S*H was viewed by an estimated 106 million Americans. It was the 251st, 2.5 hour episode of its 11th season, entitled Goodbye, Farewell and Amen, which chronicles a 3 year military conflict that was as much about Vietnam (1955-1975) as Korea (1950-1953). M*A*S*H follows a team of doctors and support staff at the 4077th MASH (Mobile Army Surgical Hospital) unit, Uijeongbu, South Korea. The intent was to highlight the effects of war on individuals with the disruption and havoc it wreaks in their lives all the while nodding to those qualities of human resilience, optimism, and love. It is considered a medical drama/ black comedy or 'dramedy', produced by Larry Gelbart and adapted from the 1970 film MASH, which was based on Richard Hooker's 1968 book, MASH: A Novel About Three Army Doctors. The soundtrack, Suicide is Painless, written by John Mandel and Mike Altman to this day conjures up images of that 407th unit of M*A*S*H. That final episode remains the most watched television broadcast in American history which is a tribute to its quality of content, truth in matter, and sterling entertainment. Goodbye, Farewell and Amen... to 'Hawkeye', 'Hot Lips Houlihan', 'Klinger', 'Trapper', 'Radar', 'The Colonel', 'Reverend' Frank, and Charles...1972 - 1983.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Watt Pottery

Apple pattern (1952), Starflower pattern (1951)

Watt Pottery was owned and operated by the W.J. Watt family of Crooksville, Ohio from 1922 - 1965. Watt bought out the Globe Stoneware Company and from the 1920's through the mid- 1930's manufactured utilitarian stoneware such as crocks, butter churns, jars and jugs. These pieces are marked with an eagle or acorn stamped in blue, with gallon measures marked within a circle. In 1935 Watt Pottery dropped its stoneware line in favor of more lightweight ovenware that could withstand high cooking temperatures. By the 1940's the company concentrated its kitchen-ware glazes of solid colors, impressed clearly below with 'MADE IN USA' and 'Oven Ware' as well as hand decorated patterns containing simple brush strokes in basic two to three color schemes. The classic patterns produced from 1949-1953 include Rio Rose (with three leaves), Pansy (with four leaves), Moonflower, Dogwood, White Daisy, and Cross-Hatch. The hand decorated patterns most collected include: Starflower (1951), Apple (three leaves, 1952), Cherry (1952), Silhouette (1953), Rooster (1955), Dutch Tulip (1956), Tear Drop/American Red Bud (five petals, 1957), Morning Glory (1958), Autumn Foliage (1959), Double Apple (1959), Tulip (1961). From the 1950's through the 1960's Yellow Ware was produced as advertising sales promotional bowls, creamers and pitchers. Watt pieces are well marked and large, often covering the entire bottom, with deeply impressed concentric rings, a mold number and the words 'Watt' and 'Oven Ware USA'. Watt Pottery Company has made hundreds of different items through its 43 year history, until fire destroyed the facility in 1965. Collect a piece of Made in the USA history today and feel the love at home!

A big THANK YOU to Patty Hughes for a window into her collection. Just lovely!

Monday, February 14, 2011


Kind over Matter Art Print by Kate Swodoba

Valentine's Day is celebrated in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, U.K., France and Australia. This celebration of lovers dates back to the Middle Ages with the oldest known written Valentine on display in the British Museum. Composed in 1415 by Charles Duke of Orleans, it was written to his wife while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London following his capture at the Battle of Agincourt. While some believe Valentine's Day celebrates the anniversary of the Martyr Valentinus the Presbyter's death, others claim it was Pope Gelasius in 498 AD who sought to dispel the Roman pagan holiday of fertility and mating, thus proclaiming St. Valentine's Day as a religious commemoration. Valentine's Day as a celebration of love emerged in popularity in the 17th C and by the middle of the 18th C it was common for friends and lovers to exchange small tokens of handwritten affections. Improved technology provided easy access to ready-made printed cards and the ease of forwarding sentiments to loved ones bloomed rapidly. It is estimated that 141 million Valentine's Day cards are exchanged with 85% of these purchased by women....hmmm, interesting little tidbit.... Happy Valentine's Day To All !

Monday, February 7, 2011

Welcome to My Little World of Weather

The windows are veiled against the outside world except for one, with its lazy eye surveying the landscape.........

Junco hymenalis, Dark-eyed Junco , my favorite snowbird of winter

And what a landscape it is right now! It brings to mind the phrase my mom made part of her mantra: 'Man proposes but God disposes' - Thomas a Kempis, 1380-1471, Medieval Monk. Weather has dominated much of the news around the world lately; it does make you wonder about the extreme nature of it all. Try to find the beauty in it everyone, and enjoy as much as possible.
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