Few people have heard of it, yet many consider John Blankenbaker's KENBAK-1 to be the first commercial personal computer.

Koss introduced these headphones over 40 years ago, and they remain affordable favorites to this day.

Crafters Love The U.S.A. One Stitch At A Time

Do other countries do this?

As night falls this July 4th, lots of Americans will hit the streets to set off all manner of fireworks and (unfortunately) illegal ordnance. Calamitous events of recent years have renewed patriotic ostentation - especially the kitschy kind. We've featured many classic examples of such - we still get email about the Marx Plastic Presidents from my earliest days at Retro Thing. It's easy to see that this country has a long rich history of political & social innovation... commemorated by tacky crap.

Our nation's proud symbol ready to issue you a snot rag. My mother is a witty little knitter. I mean it, she's a machine at the artful tangling of yarn and thread and turning out breathtaking artisan work. That's why I've never understood plastic canvas cross-stitch. A staple of the roadside craft fair scene, these plastic canvas productions always seemed like a project for juveniles or the recuperative set on their way to more advanced crafting. Clearly this is a far more popular hobby than I thought as thrift stores are piled high with this stuff. Mostly you find these opuses in the form of decorative wall hangings, but occasionally these projects take advantage of the plastic canvas' stiff structure to build 3D functional objects... like a patriotic tissue box cozy for example.

For a country that is very sensitive about display of the flag, and what is and isn't appropriate behavior around Old Glory, we're sure content to put our flag on darn near any piece of junk. I don't begrudge anyone for expressing their patriotism through their craft, but it seems odd to think that the drippy-nosed among us will feel our souls stir every time we reach for a tissue.

"Bless you."
"God Bless America, too..."

Puzzle version of the U.S. by Hasbro

Presidents immortalized as aftershave
Cross-stitch your own heirloom clock


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