Frank

Let the Good Times Roll

Today is Mardi Gras. Or Carnival. Ever been to one of those celebrations? Did you get beads? Eat a King Cake? Wear a carnival mask in Venice?

I got postcards. Let the good times roll.

Bourbon Street in the Before Days (Justin P.)
A Lantern Press celebrating NOLA (Louise)
Another one from NOLA (Justin P.)
Some people might be a little put off by Mardi Gras shenanigans (Dave)
Albert looks ready to let the good times roll (Magda)

And if you’d a movie to watch on this day, how about Dennis Quaid as Remy McSwain and Ellen Barkin as Anne Osborne in The Big Easy. It includes one of the hottest two lines ever said on screen after an awkward encounter with a lot of bashfulness.

Anne: That’s okay. I never did have much luck with sex anyway.

Remy: Your luck’s about to change, cher.

Sasquatch Sunday: February 27, 2022

This is quite a Sasquatch Sunday. I’ve added several items to The World’s Largest Bigfoot Postcard Collection™ this week, including Pie Grande, the first postcard I have of Bigfoot named in Spanish. (Muchas gracias a Daniel por esta postal de Pie Grande desde Cancun, México.)

It’s funny, collecting Bigfoot cards started out as a lark. It was one of those things where I noticed I had a burgeoning selection of cards with that theme. Then that theme built and built and built. And now I have albums upon albums of Bigfoot postcards and ephemera. I’ve even made podcasts about Biggie, like this one with Jamo, and this one where I talk about my pocket-sized grandfather.

I’d say if you want to create a collection — or a theme of anything on postcards — start with a single card. And declare it so. Start looking. Noticing. Commenting on cards with your theme. And then one day you wake up and find yourself with what could be a world-class collection of postcards. As the saying goes: The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second-best time to plant a tree is today.

Have a Biggie day.

Pie Grande enjoys Cancun on this Chibi Gutierrez-designed card. (from Daniel)
That Amber Marimba stamp and hand cancellation make this one extra cool. Check out these kids playing marimba in Oaxaca, Mexico.
I think I need a carved Bigfoot in my office like they have in front of Pacific Crust Pizza Company. (from Rich)
Rich added this extra stamp on the back of this TouchNote card. Biggie and I both like pizza. Coincidence?
There’s Biggie playing peek-a-boo. Do you see him? (from The Lost Postcard Bandit)
The Lost Postcard Bandit cooked up this terrific #WhereIsBigfoot hashtag.
This is a postcard I bought from the Royal Canadian Mint that includes an actual coin encased in it.
Even Biggie takes selfies from above like his friends, the Kardashians.
The Missing Link
Bigfoot. Yeti. Sasquatch. They’re all family. (from Rachel)

Strong Women on Postcards

It’s always interesting to look at incoming postcards in the collective. To examine them from different levels of observation. (Reminds me a a bit like the Charles and Ray Eames film Powers of Ten.) When you stand back and look a while, and have the breathing space to do it without IG tugging at your shirtsleeve, patterns emerge.

Today’s pattern is Strong Women.

I recently wrote a piece called In Space, No One Can Hear You Scream. I featured a postcard of a Storm Trooper in a dirndl that was sent to me by JoAnn. Which led to JoAnn sharing the story with the designer — and to her sending me a gift of five terrific postcards from Allen’s Halsey’s Strong Women Series. You can find Allen on IG with the very clever handle Probably Not Emma Watson. And you can find his other work at InPrint. (I wasn’t able to find a direct link to his postcards, but I’ll keep looking and update this story when I find something. I will say the cards are printed very nicely — velvet touch matte coatings on the front give a really nice hand feel.)

In addition to the Strong Women Series, I also noted I have a few other terrifically strong women on postcards to add to this piece. The Mae Jemison card sent by Betsy is from a box set from Timbuktu Labs called Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls: 50 Postcards of Women Creators, Leaders, Pioneers, Champions, and Warriors. Plus, I added the Fannie Lou Hamer card from Lisa.

And Marilyn. Well, Marilyn. She needs only one name. And that quote I appended to the card with her on it. So was so good.

Here’s to the strong women out there. That’s you. Rock on.
Looking for a Friend
Irish
Stormy C
The Tie That Binds
Strong women don’t have attitudes, we have standards. — Marilyn Monroe (from Debbie)
Fannie Lou Hamer card (designed by Postcards by Lisa)
Mae Jemison, Astronaut & Doctor by Timbuktu Labs (from Betsy)

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A Postcard Moment of Zen

A Postcard Moment of Zen

No need to hurry. No need to sparkle.
No need to be anyone but yourself.

Virginia Woolf

I saw that statement by Virginia Woolf this morning on Inspiring Quotes. Seeing it prompted me to walk away from war coverage TV for a few minutes and look at a set of recently arrived postcards. That act alone gave me a moment to pause. Breathe. A moment of zen. There’s no one unifying theme here except that the cards slowed me down.

There is something particular about postcards (and letters) from others. It’s a message that we’re all in this together. Take a little stroll with me and enjoy some pretty postcards for a few minutes. No hurry. No need to sparkle. Just be yourself. Unless you can be a unicorn; then be a unicorn.

A small Blue Marble in the vastness of space (Rachel)
A Killdeer in Calgary (Maggie)
A Ulysses Butterfly in Queensland (Jill)
A field of Irises from Immersive Van Gogh (Tammi)
A Bridge Over Untroubled Water (Kristen)
A Fannie Lou Hamer image (Postcards By Lisa)
An art piece called Approaching Circumstance by Clarence Morgan (Justin)
Year of the Tiger with my name written in Japanese (Teresa)
Handmade Valentine (Katrinka)
A delimiter strip can make all the difference (Nikita)
And always have a tea. (Teas tasted tested by Nikita)

What would you do if I sang out of tune?

I was 10 years old when 400,000 people went to Max Yasgur’s farm and hung out for three days of Peace, Love, and Music. But I listened to many of the songs over and over again when my friend Paulie’s older brother bought the Woodstock album in 1971 and blasted it on his porch. My dad hated it. I loved it. Check out this three-day set list to see what a wow the music was. Also, if you love music and that Summer of Love, I’d highly recommend the Woodstock documentary that was released in 2019.

What got me thinking about Woodstock? This postcard and pin published by Bethel Woods Center and sent to me from that historic site. Here’s a direct link to the 35 postcards they sell.

Anne from Postmark’d Studio went to Woodstock recently and sent this super cool card.
If you want a laugh today, check out the misheard lyrics to this song.
This pin is attached to the postcard. I want to get a surplus Army jacket and pin it on there.
Two of my favorite stamps ever were part of this package — John Lennon and Woodstock Rocks on Forever

Episode 128: My Postcard Teacher

Did you see the Academy Award-winning documentary My Octopus Teacher ? It’s like a real-life Charlotte’s Web. But instead of a clever spider, there’s a clever octopus that provides lessons that are unexpected. And true. On the surface, the movie is about a man who found joy and purpose through immersion in nature and a remarkable bond with an octopus. And it’s really remarkable. But it’s deeper than the story of just a diver and an octopus. It’s also about how that man created a connection with his son while he built this deep admiration for an octopus. And that octopus taught him so much.

Postcards, in a way, are my octopus. I’ve been thinking about that a lot. You’ve heard me talk about how postcards connect people. Mainly, I mean that in the sense of one person getting to know one other person. That part holds. But there’s more. It’s deeper than that.

Postcards connect people…as in we’re people of the world. They connect us to something larger.

What made me start thinking about all this? Colors. And a postcard. This podcast is about a group of 10 recent incoming postcards and what I learned from them.

Note: If you would like to read a complete transcript, including substantial research links, please click here.

Ana’s Azure Blue Bench in La Boca, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Justin’s Peace Fountain
Jamo and Ashely’s Disney 50th Anniversary
Clocky’s Disneyland Card
Nikita’s Van Gogh: The Meadow with Butterflies
Denise’s Man Near Manhole
Maggie’s La Conquista del Espacio
Melissa’s Real Alcázar de Sevilla
Wild Animals in Hokkaido
Devin’s Stonhenge

Do me a favor, please. Leave me a comment about what you’ve learned recently from a postcard. Also, what do you think about a little postcard club to discuss a couple cards you like?

A Postcard Feast

I realized very early the power of food to evoke memory, to bring people together, to transport you to other places, and I wanted to be a part of that.

Chef José Andrés

Chef Andrés is a personal hero. His World Central Kitchen has fed thousands upon thousands where disasters strike. He uses his amazing skills and global influence for good. And he makes good food. I was reading a biography of him today and then when I took a break to sort through some postcards, I noticed a bunch of recent incoming cards with a food theme.

Food can transport you to other places. And I wanted to be a part of that. Come along with me.

There are few finer foods than a pistachio macaron from Laudurée in Paris. (from Heidi)
Perhaps a few oysters — and maybe a pearl — before a macaron? (from Nikita)
How about Artichokes à la Barigoule? (from Nikita)
How about chicken & waffles at the Screen Door? (from Rich)
In the famous quote from When Harry Met Sally, “I’ll have what she’s having.” (from Rich)
Another almost empty dining room. I still want to go to Limmared. (from Blaize)
And after some raisin cookies, let’s call the the whole thing off. Oh, who am I kidding? (from Teresa)

A Handmade Tale

If it’s a story I’m telling, then I have control over the ending…
But if it’s a story, even in my head, I must be telling it to someone.
You don’t tell a story only to yourself. There’s always someone else. Even when there is no one.

Margaret Atwood, A Handmaid’s Tale

I’ve mentioned many times how much I like handmade postcards. I’m actually really drawn to them. (Yeah, I didn’t mean to get that cute, but I think I’ll leave that in here.) They’re one-of-a-kind pieces of art. I always separate handmade cards from other cards when I get them. The trick is I’m still figuring out a way to display them. Right now I keep them in archival storage boxes. They vary so much in size I haven’t gotten an album approach yet, but I’m working on it. These wonderful handmade postcards will be in that mix.

Rachel laminated this original drawing of Biggie for a Valentine’s card
Betsy got enamel pins for the 50 states; then she made paintings. How cool is this one of the Nutmeg State?
Serece created this Sumingashi floating ink art card. I’m even Zen about the cancellation; it’s another art element.
Russ sent this beautiful card from NYC before Christmas. It took 7 weeks to come 90 miles north. Worth the wait.
Orla sent me a second Imbolc card! This one with a heart attached.
Tara was in a Magical Fairyland in November. This card arrived in February. I hope she’s still in Magical Fairyland. I’d stay.
Justin created this art card for InCoWriMo. Thanks a bunch, buddy!

Imbolc Blessings on a Postcard

Orla Hegarty talked about creating Imbolc postcards on Episode 126 of The Postcardist Podcast. Here’s the wonderful one she sent me. I can feel the magic of it.

The front of the card with the bit of cloth and the St. Brigid’s Cross
The Margaret Atwood stamp and the dory stamp and that St. Vincent’s NL pictorial cancellation — all magical
The provenance of this Imbolc card

My Punny Valentine

Since for me you were born too soon / And I for you was born too late / God forgives him who has estranged / Me from you for the whole year / I am already sick of love / My very gentle Valentine.

Written from prison in 1415 by Charles, the Duke of Orléans, to his wife
(and considered the very first written Valentine)

Nothing so dramatic is imbued in the modern Valentine’s Day cards below as compared to the Valentine’s poem Charles, the Duke of Oléans, wrote after he was imprisoned during the Battle of Agincourt. Sadly, Charles spent 25 years in prison and his wife died while he was in there. He wrote hundreds of poems and love letters while he spent those decades in prison; much of that writing was compiled into The Poems of Charles of Orléans.

About 550 years after that first Valentine was written, I was a kid, and I used to look forward to Valentine’s Day with great anticipation. I’d bring my bag of Valentines to school, with one signed for each kid in the class. And although the nuns would try to enforce the one-kid-one-card rule, they couldn’t enforce the quality of the cards. Back then, each pack of Valentines (I think there must have been 50 in a pack) had one larger Valentine. If you were sweet on someone, they’d get the bigger card. It was a big deal. Alas, I never got a big Valentine.

Those nostalgic days are gone. But happily, Valentine’s cards aren’t. Here’s a selection of Valentine’s cards from the here and now. And as far as I know, no one sent one from prison. (Although that would be kinda cool.)

By the way, as I was writing this I was thinking about Valentine’s songs. And you know what’s one of the worst songs ever written? It’s Frank Sinatra singing My Funny Valentine. Who in the effing hell thought that was a good song? Or that negging some nice person on Valentine’s Day would be charming? Not me.

A classic from Albert & Magda (I think Maggie wrote it)
Sheryl and I were a lot younger when we met
IndySuz made a very nice handmade Valentine with this Pantone postcard
A nice LouPaper card from Louise. Now I want some of those candy hearts.
Bean sent Bluebirds of Happiness. Did you know the origins of Valentine’s goes back to the observation this is breeding season for birds?
Kirsten & Lucy sent happy cats. Purr.
Nikita sent this a while ago about Rocky Horror Picture Show. But now I say, Happy VD.
When I got this sawtooth Rifle Paper postcard from Tracy in Michigan, I thought I hadn’t seen one like that.
But then, voila! This one came from Melissa in Italy. Double sawtooth Valentine’s Day.
Janet asks, “What is Cupid’s favorite band?” She answers, “KISS. Duh.” Haha.
Heres the spirit of the day from Katrinka at Sugar & Kiki. It’s about connections.
And this lagniappe from Sugar & Kiki is an extra postcard!
This is a special Matthew Kirscht (2022) limited edition of 36 that melds two holidays

Happy Valentine’s Day to you. I hope you find connections every day of the year.