Tuesday, January 21, 2014

What's the name of that - ?

And if you don't know the name of it, and it's hard to describe, and nobody else knows what the fxxk you're talking about. . .

This was a while ago, and I was going to post on it, then, mysteriously, lost interest and deleted everything I had on the subject. Then, inexplicably, my interest was piqued again.

It was those, whatchamacallits. You know what I mean. Those pictures that went back and forth. ("Back and forth?"). You know, there'd be a picture, then you turned it, and then there'd be another picture! ("Turned what?") The picture!!

When I was a kid, we all had these, these things that flashed back and forth. Some of them were religious, like the Last Supper flashing back and forth with the Crucifixion. The material wasn't paper, but a plastic-y stuff, rough with lines going both ways, kind of . . .

Try googling that.

I got nothing. I got blank stares. Nobody remembered this. I didn't know what to call them, which didn't help. But I knew they were real, I knew I had seen them and even owned them, and that everyone else did too and they just didn't remember! You could get one in the bottom of a Cracker Jack box, for God's sake. Then I just stumbled on a word that seemed to clear the fog a bit.


The word could also mean cloud formations (!) and a lot of other things, but I finally found a teensy bit of material - I just squeaked it out, though YouTube videos were almost nonexistent. Why weren't there gifs of these things? Hadn't anyone collected them, the way you'd collect bubble gum cards or dryer lint or popsicle sticks?

I wish I'd kept mine from childhood, all of them, the Beatles and Fess Parker and Speedy Gonzales (whom I thought was called Speedy Guns Alice, though I wondered why he was a boy). Much more recently, I had some religious ones from the Vatican gift shop (religious gift stores abound with these things), then somehow, mysteriously, I must have thrown them away. I had a packet of stickers that were lenticular, from back when I wrote actual letters on paper and mailed them (and some of them had google-eyes, too). What happened? When did all this disappear?

I still don't have a lot of information on "those things, you know, that flash back and forth with two pictures", except some pretty far-fetched stuff on Wikipedia that says lenticular technology was invented in the 16th century by Sir Thomas More when he was fiddling around in the Tower trying not to go mad with boredom. Or something. The examples looked stupid and unlikely, more like fancy medieval ash trays.

But this one, proving the technology IS pretty old, is nice, and seems to tell the life story of a particular person.

Still and all, like the big tile display above with all the people on it, I'm not sure this is really lenticular. Unless it's going on in secret, nobody keeps these, not the old ones anyway, as if they're somehow ashamed of them, though some are making new ones in 3D that don't count at all because they're too good, not cheesy enough to suit me. For God's sake, they're not supposed to be good!

Then again. Maybe there are some really filthy ones, some private collections not available on eBay, but maybe on Smutbay or something. Involving horses, penises and unseemly acts.

This was the closest I could find to smutty, and it ain't much, but at least they didn't just throw it away.

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