Monday, August 24, 2015

Gaiety Girls

This is one of 804 articles in my book Now and Then Again, The Way We Were and the Way We AreThe book is available from Amazon for $16.95 and also as an ebook from itunesKobo, and Inktera for $9.99. Also from Tolino in Germany. It's fixed format so it's better on a tablet, laptop or computer. There are more articles from the book on another blog, here.

Gaiety Girls


“The Latest fad of women, delicate little paintings on the shoulders when in evening dress, was started by the Gaiety Girls, who now set the London styles. Two of them appeared at a supper party given by a spendthrift young earl at the Lyric club dressed in extreme decollete gowns. And on each shoulder was a delicately painted, small but gorgeous butterfly. The work was exquisitely done by a prominent water color artist.”
— This article, titled The Butterfly Fad appeared in the Carbon County Sentinel, Gebo, Montana, April 5, 1901.



Gaiety Girls were showgirls who appeared in musical comedies at the Gaiety Theatre in London. The extravagant shows were produced by George Edwardes. The eponymous A Gaiety Girl premiered  at The Prince of Wales Theatre in 1893 and led to a series of hit “Girl” shows such as The Shop Girl, My Girl, and The Circus Girl at the Gaiety.

Gaiety Girls were respectable and admired. London fashion designers costumed them and this publicized their fashions much as red carpet movie galas do today. Consider that Gaiety Girl fashions were known even in a place as remote from London as  Gebo, Montana.

Is Sex Necessary?

This is one of 804 articles in my book Now and Then Again, The Way We Were and the Way We Are.The book is available from Amazon for $16.95 and also as an ebook from itunes, Kobo, and Inktera for $9.99. Also from Tolino in Germany. It's fixed format so it's better on a tablet, laptop or computer. There are more articles from the book on another blog, here.

Is Sex Necessary?


Mr. Herbert Televox was a robot first built in 1927 by the Westinghouse Electric Company. It could pick up the phone and listen to instructions given by different notes blown on a pitch pipe and acknowledge with a series of buzzes.

Televox could wirelessly turn appliances on or off or check if the furnace was too hot in a home. Industrial uses included controlling electric loads for the power company. Three Televoxes, Adam, Cain, and Abel ("Eve being omitted because the automatic kingdom has not been divided into two factions"), were employed by the War Department in Washington to report and control reservoir levels.

The New York Times reported June 4, 1928 "Mechanical man now can also talk. Televox gets vocal cords to call up employer and tell him latest news." A few sentences were recorded on film, like a movie sound track. Now it would answer the phone with "Televox speaking" and could initiate a phone call: "this is the Televox calling for Main 5000." The rest of the conversation would then be with buzzes.

Mr. Televox made a special appearance at the American Booksellers' Association convention in 1930. When asked what his favorite book was, he replied Is Sex Necessary? a book by humorist and cartoonist James Thurber.


Copyright © 2015 Joseph Mirsky

Now and Then Again



Now and Then Again
The Way We Were and the Way We Are


I own a jewelry store in Pompton Lakes, N.J. I send newsletters to my customers 3 times a year, 56 four page 8½ x 11 newsletters since I started them in 1997. I compiled them along with many articles on topics unsuitable for the newsletters into three editions of the book of the newsletters,Ornamentally Incorrect, plus articles written just for the book. At this point I have written so many articles about just about everything, I reorganized the material into a new general interest book, Now and Then Again, with jewelry articles pared and put in one section. Included are articles too long or too edgy for the newsletters.

The articles are wide-ranging, about consumer and middle class issues, food, drink, money, economics, politics, and the lighter side of life. It is in newsletter format 300 pages with 804 articles, each with a headline-like title, as well as 70 notes at the end of the book in the same format. Some longer articles are full page. Most pages have 3-5 articles. There are 28 articles of 1-2 pages and 2 articles of 3 pages. There are 243 photos and illustrations.