Yesterday’s Junk?

Recently I borrowed a book from our library. If it had been read, it had not been read often. It dated from 1976, an edition under the imprint of Catholic Book Clubs.

A couple of bits of paper fell out as I opened it. Someone’s jottings? A letter or postcard? No; rather they were two flyers inserted by the Catholic Book Club—the sort of stuff that comes by forest-load in the weekend papers.

However, they fascinated me. What a marvellous little slice of social history they comprise.

Book club 1Book club 2Book club 2aBook club 3

You can see Mammon singing its own siren song here. What tempting treats: jelly and paté(!) moulds, bathmates, deluxe manicure sets in Austrian embroidered cases, a roll-and-bread holder shaped like a flower and of course, the deal-sealer, the hermetically-insulated 1-pint snack jar. The Venus pencil set catches the eye too, and so would easily have snared the wallet. All those posh colours: Lawn Green (or is it Lorne Greene?), Hollywood Cerise, Photo Brown (indeed colour photos from the 1970s went brown very quickly) and Barasota Orange. Very heaven in the austerity Britain of 1976.

In the 1976, Bonanza having been cancelled, he began a new career as a colour

Now see if you can find what won the “much-coveted ‘Gift of the Year’ award at recent British trade exhibition.” What a backwater Sydney in 1976 was by comparison. How provincial. How tame.

A cosmopolitan Melbournian matron slums it in provincial Sydney

I cannot think why the Catholic Book Club did not survive.

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  1. Oh Father I love it—as I am in the process of cleaning out my dad’s home of the past nearly 60 years—I have found what I suspect was a late 19th century Sears catalog that some great grand family ancestor chose to use as a scape book, pasting their things of interest over adverts for all sorts of mail order goodies—both are amazing to peruse.
    As I often find myself waxing over what seems to have been a simpler time….
    Did you ever find me and fetch me out of your spam rubbish bin? I so hate not being able to converse with those who are important to me!

      1. I’m glad and happy to be out of the trash as I have that trouble as of late with either me being in the spam or regulars to me being in spam– such is life in WP land I suppose– hope all is well your way and that Spring is springing! 🌻


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