Sorry!

Sorry!

The ancient game of strategy called Parcheesi got a modern makeover in the early 20th century, emerging as Sorry! the game that apologized for your woeful lack of skill and/or good fortune. First seen in England, it was imported to America in 1934 by Parker Brothers and a new family institution was born. Hearing your mom saying "Sorry!" in a saccharine, condescending voice as she denied you victory was enough to make you wonder if the notion of motherly love wasn't just a big crock. Continue reading...

Levi's

Levi’s

They are as much a part of American culture as Coca-Cola, probably the most iconic clothing item ever created. And just about every American in the last hundred years has, at one time or another, zipped or buttoned up a pair of the comfortable and highly durable jeans that have come to be known simply as “Levi's.” Continue reading...

The Game of Life

The Game of Life

While life has existed for millions of years on planet Earth, it wasn’t until the mid-nineteenth century that a game was invented to mirror it. Back in 1860, it was considered "America's Favorite Parlor Game" and when it was reintroduced by the Milton Bradley Company a hundred years later, it proved just as popular and remains so to this day. Continue reading...

Puka-Shells

Puka Shells

The unassuming abode of the cone snail might not seem like the type of thing that would get a teenaged girl all hot and bothered. But string a handful of the little shells together into a fashionable choker-style necklace and slap them around the neck of America’s favorite teen heartthrob, and the next thing you know, every teenage boy is dressing to impress with a puka shell necklace. Continue reading...

Lucky Charms

Lucky Charms

If you go by 1960s cereal standards, Lucky Charms was an overnight success. Back in the day, it could take upwards of three years to develop a new cereal from creation to fruition but executives at General Mills had given their researchers a formidable challenge - create a new product within six months. The result was a beloved breakfast cereal that has charmed kids ever since. Continue reading...

Water Wiggle

Water Wiggle

Kids love to abuse their toys, but every once in a while a toy turns the tables and inflicts a little abuse of its own. With its goofy smiling face, the Water Wiggle seemed innocent enough. Simply throw on your bathing suit, attach the toy to the outdoor faucet, turn the water on … and watch all hell break loose. Continue reading...

Chuck Taylor All Stars

Chuck Taylor All Stars

Before there was the Pump or the Air, there was Converse. Before Michael Jordan put his name on Nike's Air Jordans, there was Chuck Taylor's name scrawled across a circular ankle patch on Converse's All-Star high-top. Before high-tech performance wizardry, there was the no-bells-or-whistles canvas topper that guaranteed comfort, the Converse All-Star. Continue reading...

Life Savers

Life Savers

Perhaps you once heard that Life Savers were invented because the famed candy maker’s daughter died after choking on a hard candy. You might also have heard that the hole in the middle is to prevent more deaths due to suffocation, thus the name Life Savers. It's a believable story, as are most urban legends, but it isn't true. Here is the real story behind this iconic candy that's been around for over 100 years. Continue reading...