Sunday, 3 June 2012

The Queen and the Smell of the Saturday Evening Post

We're enjoying our morning coffee while watching the royal hullabaloo on BBC. It is kind of neat, if only for a chance to see the London land marks one always reads about. That Thames is some river.

The weather is miserable, as befits a celebration of stoic British character.  One could question the wisdom of spending money on pageantry in the midst of a depression. On the other hand, since it is happening, why not get into the spirit and enjoy it.  As a friend of mine here said about the 2010 Winter Olympics: "If you wait till all social problems are solved you'll never have a party."

Now what does this have to do with the Saturday Evening Post?

Well....around the time of the coronation my mother's women's magazine ran a series on the childhood of Liz and her sister. I remember lying on my stomach on the rug in the living room reading about "The little English princesses".  At that time  Libelle was printed mainly in black and white, on non-glossy paper only a step up from newsprint.

In contrast, my father would occasionally bring home copies of  The Saturday Evening Post.
It was in full colour, gloriously glossy, and it had a rich smell about it. I remember that smell whenever I see the art of Norman Rockwell.

The contrast between the two publications is a perfect illustration of the difference between the Fifties in North America and post-war Europe.