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Union 76 started the antenna ball craze way back in 1967. These antenna balls were given out in the millions back then and were very popular back in the day in the greater Los Angeles area. I had one of these antenna balls, and didn’t even own a car and was way too young to even drive one!
A bit of trivia regarding the “76” in Union 76, it stood for the octane rating of the gasoline in 1932. It also referred to the American Spirit of 76 (see Wikipedia link below).
Another side note: Conoco Phillips which owns the 76 brand dresses up one of their huge storage tanks as a giant pumpkin every Halloween. It can be seen off in the distance from the 110 Harbor Freeway near the city of Wilmington, Ca. I believe they also give out treats too.
For some interesting facts about Union 76, visit this link at Wikipedia:
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Remember when you thought it was cool to smoke candy cigarettes & cigars? We didn’t have a care in the world back then and we surely didn’t think or know about the hazards that smoking real cigarettes could cause.
All I remember is eating those sugary cigarettes after puffing on them for a while and chewing on the bubble gum cigars (they were actually quite tasty).
I’ve seen several sites online that still carry nostalgic candies like these and more, remember Abba Zaba? My tooth fillings and dentist surely remember these!
The bubble gum cigars are still popular with expectant parents wanting to carry on the tradition of handing out cigars to family and friends, but not wanting to pass on a tobacco version.
What was your favorite childhood candy?
For more information:
This may come as a shock to many of the younger readers, but there was a time when televisions didn’t come with a remote control. What’s that you say, how did we change the channels on televisions back then? Well, it was really tough, we had to actually get up from the couch and turn the channel selector knob on the TV, phew, what a workout that was. I guess back then, they hadn’t come up with the phrase, Couch Potato yet. But actually, back in 1950, Zenith Radio Corporation had come out with a corded (not wireless) remote, called the “Lazy Bone”.
All joking aside, remotes started coming out in the mid ’50s, early ’60s, that’s when the wireless remote control first appeared for consumer televisions. My first encounter with a remote control was at my aunt & uncle’s house, the remote was very clunky and the buttons had a mechanical click to them. From my research, I believe this was the ultrasonic style remote that mechanically (no electronics involved) hit a bar inside the remote that would sound a high pitched (beyond human hearing) tone that the television interpreted to either turn the TV on or off or change the channel, my we’ve come a long way since then.
Here’s a link to some interesting details about the remote control: