Why We Say…

15 09 2008

ATOM
Originally uploaded by Paula Wirth

Ever wonder about the history of various common American/English idioms and expressions? An adventure in exciting educational etymological entertainments can be YOURS!

I will be sharing illustrations and anecdotes from this vintage 1953 book by Robert L. Morgan, illustrated by Peter Hoffman.

Expect to see various examples, in no set alphabetical or thematic order, appearing in my “Why We Say…” flickr set, in the upcoming days and weeks, starting with ATOM and BABY DIAPERS. (The combo of atomic baby diapers comes to mind, and that is not a pleasant thought!! Luckily, in this case, they are separate entities. Thank goodness.)

Much thanks to Glen Mullaly, who pointed out a great 2004 Interview with Pete Hoffman (by Dave Karlen), and found out that this book was based on a single educational feature panel strip series (that lasted 28 years!)

More about Pete Hoffman:

WHY WE SAY… A Guidebook to Current Idioms and Expressions — and Where They Came From
By Robert L. Morgan, Illustrated by Peter Hoffman
Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.,  New York, 1953.
(out of printget your own copy on AddAll)

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Caricatures, Covers & Cha-cha-cha

21 11 2007


Game & Gossip, May 1932
Illustration by Xavier Cugat
Originally uploaded by Paula Wirth

You may be familiar with the name Xavier Cugat as the “Rhumba King,” the Cuban-Catalan bandleader who was largely responsible for popularizing Latin American music in the United States. You may not be aware that Cugat was also a talented cartoonist (and even worked for the Los Angeles Times)!

Recently I came across some of his 1932 covers for Game & Gossip, and a fold-out with 74 caricatures of the most popular Hollywood celebrities of the time. These included such diverse characters as (see list and key) Will Rogers, Rudy Vallee, Mary Pickford, The Marx Brothers and Charlie Chaplin.

See more Game & Gossip illustrations, covers and advertisements

Read more about Xavier Cugat…