Saturday, May 2, 2009

Star Trek & 1960s Design, 9: The "Tomorrow" Party

From the "Party Themes" chapter in the 1969 Better Homes and Gardens Guide to Entertaining:
"A tomorrow theme lets your imagination take over. What will the future be like? Imagine it, then have fun putting your tomorrow party together. The future theme lets you try daring new recipes..."



"To add to the merriment, asks guests to come dressed in their interpretation of styles of the future."
[continued] "There are many ways to entertain your guests or let them entertain themselves using the "tomorrow" theme. Project the future of each guest or have each one write a story of what life will be like in the 21st century. Science fiction buffs could bring a favorite book and retell the tale or read special passages aloud.
... The feeling is one of space and definitely of time to come."
On our way back from walking around the lake today, bink and I passed a garage sale, where I pulled the 1969 Guide to Entertaining out of a pile of moldering books. I forked over a whole quarter for it.

Of course I was thinking of this Star Trek/1960s Design project as I flipped through it, walking on. But it was bink who got all excited, looking over my shoulder, when she saw the deviled eggs. She pointed out their design similarity to Spock's IDIC (Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combination), which he wears in the episode "Is There in Truth no Beauty?" (1968). And once again I prevailed upon her knowledge of tomorrow's technology today and asked her to scan it in and photoshop out the ugly broiled Bacon-wrapped Shrimp and hot Peppy Beef Dip, leaving only the Olive-stuffed Eggs and sharp cheese.
[Thanks, as always, to for the Star Trek screencaps.]


Annika said...

Hee, the cheese pieces do look like the little multi-coloured food cubes that seem to be served everywhere in the 23rd century.

I used to do a lot of daydreaming about how to create a ST buffet, and I still think it'd be a great thing to do. I'd cast various boiled root vegetables as the nutrition cubes and use a lot of romanesco cabbage for its alien looks, especially the rarer, purple variety.

Also, I love vintage recipes and food photo. Few things look tasty in the bright colouring of pre-1980s food photography, and not too many in the greyer colour scheme of the '80s either. Furthermore, Swedish cookbooks rely on what is available in Swedish supermarkets at the time of printing, and it makes the older ones rather quaint.

On a side note, because I feel like chattering on this fair morning: I saw a vox pop in a weekly mag of the variety that's heavy on knitting patterns and cake recipes, in which middle-aged Swedish ladies were asked about their favourite herb or spice. EVERY one of them, except one, said "salt and pepper", sometimes adding something to the effect that you shouldn't complicate things. The woman who deviated from this salt-and-pepper norm said that there were two pizzerias near her, one of which used oregano on their pizzas while the other didn't, and there was such a difference, so oregano apparently was a hell of an exotic herb in her household.

fresca said...

Hi, Annika!

What a great idea for a ST party--boiled beets and sweet potatoes and so forth, with cubes of different colored melons, perhaps.

I don't know how much people normally think of food as design, but of course it is, and like all design, as you point out, it changes with the times. The very idea that "Peppy Beef Dip" would be a good name is the mark of an era!

Salt and pepper--ha! And yet, if I could choose ONLY two for my cupboard, of course those would be the non-negotiables.
I got so tired of oregano, after a lifetime of it, that I gave it up when I was about ten years ago and have only recently bought some again--if all one ever ate was salt and pepper--wow!--it is an exotic!

I have a little cookbook called "Cooking the Norwegian Way" and though the book designers tried hard, basically it's photos of white food: potatoes, fish, rice....

It's a nice morning here, too--a few hours later. Sunny blue skies, fresh new green leaves, and cool enough to wear my favorite light jacket...

poodletail said...

I need to send this egg picture to my Mary.

Wasn't there a '60's era appetizer that had something (a melon? a mound of paté?) with pretzels sticking out, each pretzel topped with an olive??? It resembled a Sputnik and was oh, so space-age.

fresca said...

I thought of Mary's excellent eggs too! Perhaps at your next party, they will have new design elements?

I'd love to see that appetizer!