Archive for January, 2012

Do You Have a UPG Product Idea?

Monday, January 30th, 2012

We’d love to hear it… but we can’t.

It’s sad but true. “Do a Miss Piggy puppet” is not an idea. Even if it were an idea, it would be Jim Henson’s idea and now Disney’s idea.

Anyway, even if we have the rights to make a puppet, we’ll only make one that will sell quite a few. Yes, you believe Joseph A. Pattin’s air-pump was a triumph (frankly, we believe that, too), and he should be made into a puppet and 100,000 Pattin fans should buy them every year, but unless it seems very likely this will happen, we are more likely not to make the Pattin puppet. We’ll make the Dr. H. Geissler (of Bonn) puppet because his pump was superior to Pattin’s. Kidding. We’d make the Traill puppet. Don’t pretend you’ve never admired his apparatus.

Frank Lloyd Wright in Buffalo

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

Get out the tissues and hear of the tragic end to an inspired building. (featuring our Wright Magnetic Personality)

Now go out and buy some soap before they destroy another masterpiece!

Another Letter to the PhLOG

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

Dear PhLOG:

This morning I found my datebook.  It was lost for nearly six months.

When I checked my schedule for today, I was horrified to discover I was scheduled to be at a baby shower in only one hour’s time – but I didn’t have a present!

Lucky thing I always keep several Magnetic Personalities on my refrigerator to remind me I’m on a diet and I’m supposed to be thinking.  After a few minutes alone with my finger puppets and an ordinary coat hanger, I found myself with a really unique last-minute baby shower gift in a hurry.


As you can tell, the expectant mother was absolutely speechless!


Crafty Crafter

It’s Civil War Generals Week!

Saturday, January 21st, 2012

In case you want to visit some Civil War generals today:

Civil War General’s Week – Lost Opportunity

Friday, January 20th, 2012

Lost Opportunity

Union General Winfield Scott Hancock had an identical twin.  This advantage was unfortunately not used by the Union.  If only they had foresight, the Union could have terrorized the rebels with a general who appeared to be everywhere – a general who could fight on two fronts at once!

Civil War Generals and YOU

Friday, January 20th, 2012

What Civil War General are YOU like?
Here’s a quiz we found online that will tell you:

Civil War Generals Week – Match the General to his Nickname

Thursday, January 19th, 2012


1 Winfield Scott Hancock A the Rock of Chickamauga
2 Thomas J. Jackson B “Curly”, “Fanny” & “Autie”
3 Richard S. Ewell C Grumble
4 John Magruder D Bobbin-Boy
5 William L. Jackson E Baldy Dick
6 George Armstrong Custer F Stonewall
7 James Ewell Brown Stuart G “Bad Old Man” & “Old Jube”
8 William E. Jones H Mudwall
9 George B. McClellan I Little Napoleon
10 George H. Thomas J Hancock the Superb
11 John Mosby K Prince John
12 Nathaniel Banks L Jeb
13 William Rosecrans M Gray Ghost
14 P.G.T. Beauregard N Old Rosy
15 Jubal A. Early O Little Creole
16 Joshua L. Chamberlain P Lion of the Round Top

[Answers: 1) J, 2) F, 3) E, 4) K, 5) H, 6) B, 7) L, 8 ) C, 9) I, 10) A, 11) M, 12) D, 13) N, 14) O, 15) G, 16) P]

Civil War Generals Week – Trivia

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

U.S. Brig. General Alexander Schimmelfennig had the longest name of any general in the war (14 letters).

George Custer was the youngest general in the Union army (age 23).

Ulysses S. Grant inherited a slave named William James.  Often in need of money. Grant could have sold him for cash, but instead he freed him.

On February 24, 1914, General Joshua Chamberlain, the “Lion of Little Round Top” died at the age of 85 in Portland, ME. His death was largely the result of complications of his wounds, making him the last Civil War veteran to die from wounds received in battle.

It’s Civil War Generals Week!

Tuesday, January 17th, 2012

In honor of Robert E. Lee’s birthday (January 19th), we’re posting about Civil War Generals this week.

Our first entry:

General Means Presidential

Being a Civil War General pretty much assured you a chance to run for President.

Besides Ulysses S. Grant, Benjamin Harrison, Rutherford Hayes, James Garfield, and Chester Arthur held the rank of General.  And lots of Generals ran and didn’t win.  Most notoriously, General George McClellan ran against Lincoln during the war in 1864!  Winfield Scott Hancock ran as a democrat in 1880 and lost to Garfield in the closest vote in U.S. history.

The one that got away was William Tecumseh Sherman.  He refused to run although the Republicans begged him over and over again. (He would probably have been better at the job than Grant.)  He resisted so vehemently that his type of unequivocal denial to run for the office has been termed “the Sherman pledge”.  In 1871 Sherman declared: “I hereby state, and mean all that I say, that I never have been and never will be a candidate for President; that if nominated by either party, I should peremptorily decline; and even if unanimously elected I should decline to serve.” In 1884, he was forced again to state: “I will not accept if nominated and will not serve if elected.”

David Hume: Limburger

Friday, January 13th, 2012

Ah, the pungent notes of limburger cheese!
Be there finer song ‘pon morning’s breeze?
– Alfred, Lord Pizzle-Thorne

While reading the remarkable verse of Lord Pizzle-Thorne, we can’t help but wonder if his contemporary, David Hume, enjoyed cheese.

“Reason is, and ought only to be, the slave of the passions.”

These are the words of a philosopher who indulged more than once in a heady wedge of limburger and wasn’t above a scandalous flirtation with a naughty morsel of Gorgonzola.  Did he enjoy it?  No doubt!