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#36 :: Pirate treasure

March 13, 2004

about it prescription ‘popup’, more about ‘width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0’); return false”>He is Russian, I think. Sure, he’s a Mattellian icon made (at least until recently) right here in the USA. But he’s got that Dostoyevskian brow, those sledgehammer fists, and he glows with a fiery red when the morning sun hits my office window. He’s a 6-inch Burger King knockoff with a thumb-lever for a spine. The original Rock’em Sock’em Robots were about 10 inches high, and connected to sets of dual thumb-powered triggers via sleds slotted into a bright yellow thermoplastic boxing ring. When I was 8 or 9, I desperately needed a set in my life, so that I could yell like the boy in the TV commercials, “Hey, you knocked my block off!!!” and then push the spring-loaded, ratchet-mounted skull of cubist plastic back onto those burly shoulders and go at it again. No, my folks replied coldly – as they did with Creepy Crawlers, Lite-Brite, Monster Magnet and just about every other disposable must-have toy – “It’s a piece of junk.” And so it was, according to this review.
dosage ‘popup’,’width=600,height=600,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>The U.S. military detonated at least nine nuclear bombs on little Eniwetok Atoll in the 1950s. They ranged in size from the world’s first hydrogen bombs – the 10.4-megaton twins, Mike 1 and Mike 2 on Halloween, 1952 – down to the smallish 8.5-kiloton Blackfoot bomb, set off on June 11, 1956. These were just a handful of the 1,125 test shots set off by the U.S. over the years. Somewhere along the line, someone must have figured the work at Eniwetok would be worth remembering with a solid little keepsake in the fine tradition of gold retirement watches and Chinese-laquered executive desk sets. Being mostly practical, calculating military men working in the ultra-remote, often storm-swept Marshall Islands, they opted for a windproof cigarette lighter. This particular one surfaced at a swap meet, its rich cloisonné badge all but glowing amid the crap-smeared Vietnam Zippos and Mack gimmes in the vendor’s case. The badge commemorates the member departments in Joint Task Force Seven – Army, Navy, Air Force and Atomic Energy Commission. And the back shows a mushroom cloud rising over a little palm-tree-shaded map, naming the places that were wiped off of it. Bogallua. Engebi. Rujiyoru. Piiai. Japtan. West T-Spit. Libiron. Igurin. And Eniwetok. All are carved in the faux-steel finish, bitten through to the brass case beneath. The embossed base proclaims it to be “HIGH QUALITY LIGHTER” – a Penguin brand Zippo knockoff made in Japan, No. 19531. I can’t say whether that’s its model number, or the issue number out of untold thousands made. But it has served me faithfully, igniting camp fires in Joshua Tree and Sequoia National Parks, cigars and clove cigarettes, etc. at Burning Man and on board the Straylight, the doughty little Hobie Cat I sailed for many years. It is a good, reliable tool, its history throbbing from within as you hold it and flick the wheel. Please do click the pictures. I made them extra-large for this one.
viagra sale ‘popup’, sale ‘width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0’); return false”>Mystery takes peculiar forms. Sometimes it’s the center of war or religious zealotry. Sometimes it’s an upperclass strange-o in a deerstalker hat and houndstooth cape poncing about with a magnifying glass. And sometimes mystery glints from your palm as an almost impracticably small, yet completely functional tool. This might have been a manufacturer’s sample, or it might have been exceptionally useful in a shop specializing in building miniature balsa-wood architectural models. It is exquisitely machined, with a drop-forged, hand-finished body and a cast-nickel set screw that controls the sharp steel ruler’s ability to slide. And it sings – of dado, miter, rabbet, dovetail and joints that might have been.
this site ‘popup’,’width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>My father made this for – I think – my first communion at age 7. He found slabs of ebony, hand-joined and -finished them, and sliced a little block of ivory from one of the elephant tusks that he had come by in the antiques market on London’s Portobello Road. Upon this, he painted the Alpha and the Omega – symbols of the unending holiness of Christ, and to the top he affixed a little brass picture-ring so it could be hung. It stayed over my bed for many years, and remains among the most achingly beautiful pieces of art that I own.
tadalafil ‘popup’, viagra order ‘width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0’); return false”>These have the feel of a Hammacher-Schlemmacher wannabe – a must-have gadget for the avid sports fan or optics freak. You can picture him sitting there with a pair of ’em on at Dodger Stadium, replaying the braying marketing boilerplate in his mind between innings – “Hundreds of uses! For birdwatching, auto racing – and at any sporting event, enjoy the sensation fo being right on the field!” He reaches up to fiddle with the diopters, swiveling the well-greased objectives to bring the pop fly into sharp focus in the precision-ground glass lenses. Congratulating himself on his savvy purchase, he turns to his buddy – Hey, did you see (extreme blurry closeup of nosehair) GAAAAHHH!” They came in a hand-stitched leather case lined with red felt.
‘popup’, ask ‘width=500, more about height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>Miranda turned 2 last August, and we had a pirate birthday party – little eyepatches, telescopes and riches for all. The stuff is flashy, shiny gold pieces, cast-molded and plated with the same mirror-bright stuff they put on lowrider hardware. The inscription is beyond cryptic: AVAG CO BEPSIG CHINA a declaration of fealty to the hollow-eyed, corkscrew-maned ur-Grecian god thereon. These things are all over the house now.

As I say, I have no idea what it means. It’s plastic – a toy.

Filed under: Toy | Comments (1)

1 Comment

  1. Taina Vale April 10, 2004 @ 11:39 am

    What is this coin and what does it mean?