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Tacky Treasures Road Show 2018

Julie displaying KISS mug
Here I am, in all my tacky glory, as host of the Tacky Treasures Road Show. (LR)

Intro - Winners - Also Rans

It's considered tacky to discuss the following in public: sex, religion, politics, and bodily functions. Being that this was the Tacky Treasures Road Show, we hit all four out of the park. It's what we do.

This year's road show took place on April 14, 2018 at the Silver Spring B&O Train Station. There were 26 fabulously tacky entries and about 42 attendees.

Before presenting the winners and the also-rans, I'd like to thank the following:

  • Our judges, Liz Roll and Ellen Walsh,
  • Everyone who contributed to the donation basket, and
  • The entire audience, whose participation in the shenanigans is what makes the Tacky Treasures Road Show so special.

Key to the photographers' codes on the photos: BC=Bob Cantor; LR=Liz Roll; Photos not marked were taken by Julie Mangin.


The Winners

Polish Can of Sexiness
Polish Can of Sexiness
entered by Abbie Grotke
& Denis Malloy

Contents of Polish Can of Sexiness
Contents of Polish Can of Sexiness

First Place: Polish Can of Sexiness

Abbie and Denis came across this gem during a visit to a Wroclaw, Poland department store and decided that they had to bring it home to the United States. Alcohol may have been involved. I don't know how they resisted the urge to open the can the moment they bought it, but they did. Lucky for me, and all the attendees, Abbie and Denis waited until the night of the Tacky Treasures Road Show to open it on stage.

If I can believe the Google translation of the label on the can, the product is "100% canned woman." It goes on to proclaim that the contents are: sexy thong, sexy spoon, 100% women's pen (?), a ticket for a lollipop, and erotic condoms. On the other side of the can could be found an inscrutable warning that the contents were "wretched gadgets for the sexy woman." (This might actually be a failure on the part of Google Translate.)

After we opened the can, this is what we found: a sleep mask with "Be Naughty" in English, a penis whistle, a penis key chain, a spoon with a handle in the shape of a penis, and a coupon for a lollipop which proclaims, "Because every woman will admit that the best licks are sexy men." The coupon is certified as genuine by the Polish Corporation for Pleasure. Apparently, they don't have the same truth-in-labeling laws that we have here in the U.S.

I have so many questions about this product. Where's the sexy thong? Where are the all-important erotic condoms? What is a 100% women's pen, and would it help me get my book published? If this is supposed to be a can of 100% woman, why are 3 of the 5 items in the shape of a penis? (That would make it 60% sexy man.) And what is a person to do with that spoon?

Disappointing as these contents were, they produced a lot of laughs at the show. And later, as you will see, they were put to good use!

For first prize, Abbie chose the "MAW" West Virginia souvenir mug.


Ceramic Balloon Animal
Ceramic Balloon Animal
entered by Liz Madden (BC)

Second Place: Ceramic Balloon Animal

Liz called this "the best office grab-bag gift ever." I'm inclined to agree. But is it tacky? I think it's cute! However, as noted in the rules, the judges' decision is final.

Achieving second place in the road show yielded Liz a ceramic mug in the shape of a cow's udder. I think that's a fair exchange.

Smiling Megacolon
Smiling Megacolon
entered by Ellen Walsh

Third Place: Smiling Megacolon

This is a souvenir of the Mutter Museum, a museum of medical history located in Philadelphia. It is based on an item in its collection, the world's largest colon. Sometimes, being the largest is not a good thing. The man whose colon it was died of the condition.

A plush colon with a smiley face on it is certainly tacky. But, as Ellen pointed out, it can also be used as a neck pillow. Like the items in the Polish can of sexiness, it was put to good use later in the show.

Ellen's prize was a small photobook called "50 Sad Chairs."

Beauty Contest Talcum Powder (from Nigeria)
Beauty Contest Talcum Powder
entered by Anita Finkelstein

Fourth Place: Beauty Contest Talcum Powder

This is one of those products you look at and just go, "Huh?" All we know about this product is that it is from Nigeria, and there are three different beauty contestants on the other side of the can.

The bathing suits seem to be from the pre-bikini era, perhaps the early 1940s. But the can is in remarkably good condition, so who knows when it was made. No word yet on if Anita has tried to use the talcum powder, or if it makes her feel like a beauty contestant.

Anita selected for her prize the book, Kitsch: 20th Century Icons, by Wayne Hemingway.


The Answer:  A Gymnaires Musical
The Answer: A Gymnaires Musical
entered by Mark Brochman

Fifth Place: The Answer: A Gymnaires Musical

This is Mark's second road show, and like last year, He brought another weird LP. Last year's entry, Cutting Loose, featured a girl in hot pants with a rainbow that appears to be coming out of her cooter (I'm sure it was just an accident). This year's entry is much more tasteful.

From the album jacket:

Life
Its hang-ups and rebellions
outreachings and aspirations
mixed-up images and broken wavelengths
What or Where or Who is the ANSWER to it all?
Youth today ask lots of questions...

The Gymnaires were a gymnastic group from the 1970s that had teams at various Seventh Day Adventist colleges. So, as you might have guessed, "The Answer" is God.

Mark's prize was the "Bug Out Bob" salt and pepper shakers.


Jesus at the United Nations
Jesus at the United Nations
entered by Ed Engel

Sixth Place: Jesus at the United Nations

This kitschy print is of a 39-story high Jesus Christ knocking at a window at the United Nations building in New York. Ed remarked, "Well, at least it's not John Bolton at the window."

This image evokes the following Bible verse:

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. (Revelation 3:20)

I'd like Jesus to have a word or two with John Bolton, but maybe that's just me.

For his prize, Ed left with a genuine tacky treasure, the Hawk Shot mug, which you can read about here: http://tackytreasures.com/topics/hawkshot.html

Donald J. Trump Piñata
Donald J. Trump Piñata
(how it looked not long after it arrived)
entered by Liz Roll

Donald J. Trump Piñata
Donald J. Trump Piñata
(how it looked by the end of the Tacky Treasures Road Show)

Honorable Mention: Donald J. Trump Piñata

Liz Roll's entry deserves an honorable mention for the way it was used throughout the show. Even before the show got underway, it was noticed that another entry featuring the Russian newspaper Pravda (or Правда, if you will) was placed in front of The Donald. It was totally an accident, I swear!

When the Polish can of sexiness was opened, the sleep mask, the dick whistle, and the dick spoon somehow made their way to the Trump piñata. Next, the Happy Dolls gravitated in his direction (such clueless bimbos). When Ellen suggested that the Smiling Megacolon could be used as a neck pillow, it ended up around his neck. It seemed to belong there, curving toward his mouth as if it was a pipeline for his verbal output.

Liz claims that the piñata is not filled with candy but with miniature bottles of liquor like you get on an airplane. When I suggested that we break it open, she said, "Oh, no, I'm saving this for the impeachment party." Good thinking, Liz.


The Also-Rans

Gene Simmons KISS mug
Gene Simmons KISS mug
entered by Julie Mangin

This mug commemorates the renowned tongue of Gene Simmons, front man for the band KISS. I have coveted this mug for many years, having first seen it at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore. No, it was not in an exhibition. I found it sitting at the check-out counter in the gift shop, where it is used to hold pens. Sadly, theirs is not for sale. Thank goodness I found one on eBay!

Poo-Pourri Master Crapsman
Poo-Pourri Master Crapsman
entered by Julie Mangin

Poo-Pourri, a product to eliminate bathroom odors (specifically poop odors), is not a joke...it actually works. Still, I have to appreciate the whimsy in their packaging and graphic design. This box designed to look like a toolbox, contains two different fragrances of the product: Trap-a-Crap, with a distinctly woodsy scent, and Royal Flush, featuring eucalyptus and mint. I was blown away by the intricate designs on the bottles.


Julie, the Queen of Tacky, closely examines a bottle of Poo-Pourri (LR)

Blue Boy of Derwood
Blue Boy of Derwood
entered by Lauren Hubbard and Bill Kilgore (LR)

Last year, Lauren and Bill moved into a house that had some of the previous owner's things still in it, including this nearly completed rendering of Gainsborough's Blue Boy. They were surprised, and perhaps relieved, that the painting went home with Bob and I. Bob, the artist, has plans for it. The result is likely to be tacky, but in a good way.

Girl Clown Playing Fiddle with Annoyed Boy Clown
Girl Clown Playing Fiddle with Annoyed Boy Clown
entered by Ed Engel

This print was particularly appropriate for the road show, because so many of my friends are fiddle players. There was an old-time music jam before and after the performance. As far as I know, no offense was taken. Old-time musicians are thick-skinned, if not outright oblivious to criticism.

Our fabulous audience
Our fabulous audience (BC)

Big-headed Salt and Pepper Shakers
Big-headed Salt and Pepper Shakers
entered by Bob Cantor

Their heads are bigger than their bodies, which inspired Bob to paint their portraits. I find them kind of creepy, but who am I to tell an artist what should or should not inspire them?

Happy Dolls
Happy Dolls
entered by Ellen Schwab

Ellen picked these up at Monarch Novelties, possibly DC's strangest store. It is billed as a carnival supply store, and these do look like the cheap prizes you might find on the midway. Each of the dolls has a comb, a tight dress, boots, and impossibly skinny arms.

The Queen of Tacky explains that Bob does paintings of his collection of salt and pepper shakers
The Queen of Tacky explains that Bob does paintings of his collection
of salt and pepper shakers and pencil sharpeners (LR)
See Bob's work at http://bobcantor.com/

Polish 18th Birthday Card
Polish 18th Birthday Card
entered by Abbie Grotke and Denis Malloy

Roughly translated, the card inside says, "Now that you are 18, you can have cigarettes, vodka, wine, and porn. So party all night! Now that you are an adult, you can enjoy life!"

Pravda Wedding Card
Pravda Wedding Card
entered by Margaret Gonglewski

Carnations wrapped in a copy of Pravda. I wonder if Trump gets a card like this every year on his wedding anniversary or perhaps on the anniversary of when he met Putin.

Bionic Boogie - Hot Butterfly
Bionic Boogie - Hot Butterfly
entered by Mark Brochman

Mark thinks she looks like Julia Roberts, I think she looks like Cher. No matter, Mark assures me she's a drag queen. This is actually a well-produced disco album, if you like that sort of thing. Guest artists include Luther Vandross and Cissy Houston, and feature the hand-clapping of the Disco Dykes. Check it out on YouTube.

How to Develop the Power of Enthusiasm
How to Develop the Power of Enthusiasm
entered by Anita Finkelstein

Despite the title, the hatchet imagery on the album cover makes me less than enthusiastic. Anita calls it "cutting-edge advice for today's world." If it's so great, why did the public library cut it from its collection? The tracks on side one include: Why Enthusiasm, The Heart of Enthusiasm, The Source of Enthusiasm, and Enthusiasm Sells. Side two: Interest, The First Step to Enthusiasm. Thanks, Captain Obvious, we'll stop right there.

Sour Flush Candy
Sour Flush Candy
entered by Margaret Gonglewski

The plungers on either side of the toilet bowl are hard candy lollipops. You're supposed to plunge them into the bowl, which is filled with sour powder. Margaret says, "you'll be bowled over by the flavor!"

Uncle Sam Chattering Teeth
Uncle Sam Chattering Teeth
entered by Bob Cantor

As Bob says, "Nothing says patriotism and the 4th of July like wind-up chattering teeth!" He has a point.

Fancy sequin dress
Fancy sequin dress
entered by Carolee Rand (BC)

Carolee calls this "My Grandma's 'fancy' dress," which she wore to all kinds of special occasions, such as weddings and bar mitzvahs. Every sequin was sewn on with her own hand on what was previously a plain, aline dress. One has to admire her perserverance and dedication to fashion.

 

Also entered:

  • Outhouse soap dispenser, John Heins. "Skip to my loo and get pumped, too!"
  • Pan Am inflatable jets, Bonnie O'Lenic. Another fine purchase from Monarch Novelties
  • Gargoyle finger puppet, Linda and Winston Davis
  • Guitar pick earrings, Posey Eitzen
  • Puffer fish Christmas ornament, Lauren Hubbard and Bill Kilgore

That's all folks!

Julie the Queen of Tacky.

Julie, the Queen of Tacky (LR)

Copyright © 2000-2010, Julie Mangin. All Rights Reserved. April 19, 2018