You probably think, given all the gleeful posts I’ve done (like here and here and here and here and – oh, this is getting ridiculous) about finding and buying mid-century stuff for the Manse – stuff that reminds me of my mid-century childhood there – that I am a silly spendthift. There are many days (especially when the credit-card statement comes in) that I feel exactly the same way. But just to prove to you all (and to myself) that I can resist temptation, at least occasionally, I want to show you two wonderful things that would have been just perfect for the Manse that I did not buy this past weekend.
(Am I kicking myself for not buying them? Of course I am.)
So the first is the vintage Easy-Bake Oven that you can see at the top of this post. I found it on a high-up shelf while wandering happily through the Stratford Antique Warehouse in Stratford, Ont., this past weekend. I remember as a little girl growing up in the Manse in Queensborough watching the ads for the Easy-Bake Oven on our black-and-white TV and just wanting that thing more than anything. And I never did get one. But last weekend I could have. And it was the turquoise model to boot – it would have matched the Manse kitchen’s mid-century colour perfectly!
But you know, I opened the box and inspected the parts and thought: this is not going to be a useful or fun toy for any current or future kid. It probably doesn’t work, and it was a dumb (though wildly popular) idea in the first place, way back then in the early 1960s. (Unlike the classic Fisher-Price toys that I have found myself collecting in anticipation of a visit from Raymond’s new grandson, which were great then and are even greater now.)
And so, people, I showed restraint. I did not buy that turquoise Easy-Bake Oven.
And once I got going on the restraint thing, I also managed not to purchase a vintage Tinkertoys set. Which was, in restrospect, a victory of common sense over The Right Thing To Do. Why on earth did I not buy that vintage cylindrical tin full of Tinkertoys, exactly like the one I remember opening and scattering the contents of on the kitchen floor as a very young child? I loved those wooden Tinkertoys.
You know what’s wrong with restraint?
Open Channel D, please. Get me the Stratford Antique Warehouse on the line, and have them send down the Tinkertoys. Oh, and while they’re at it? The turquoise Easy-Bake Oven.