October 10, 1999
No, I haven't fallen into a hole somewhere! If you've been watching "Treasures In Your Home" for the past two weeks, you know that the show has been here in New York, and that I've been busy helping to show America that this town is a goldmine for collectors. Some very rare and fascinating items have passed before the cameras during our stay here, and we hope the visit has provided you with excitement and inspiration. We'll be at The Chelsea Antiques Building at W. 25th Street and Avenue Of The Americas (Sixth Avenue, to you natives)in Manhattan once again this Friday, October 15, and encourage you, if you live within travelling distance, to join us. We'll be doing appraisals of your treasures from 4PM to 6PM. We can't guarantee you'll get on TV, and you are invited to bring ONE ITEM ONLY (forgive me for shouting but, no matter how many times we announce the one-item-only rule, some people still show up with multiple items, and are disappointed when we tell them we can only appraise one).
It is a dreary, rainy day here in New York - the perfect day to sit down
and write to you, my fellow Accumulators!
FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF APPARENTLY, NOT ALL RIP-OFF ARTISTOS ARE IN LOS
Police in Spain have impounded 100,000 counterfeit Teletubbies dolls on behalf of the BBC and Ragdoll Productions, which own the merchandising rights to Laa-Laa, Po, Dipsy and Tinky Winky. Officials say they have no way to explain how these dolls were made - which is pretty amazing, considering they were seized at a penitentiary north of Madrid, where they were being made by women convicts. The women, inmates at Brieva Prison, were being paid approximately $1.60 for each doll produced (the dolls retail for about $25 each). And, lest you think this was some sort of well-guarded covert operation, knowledge of the "factory" was so widespread within the penal system of Spain, that children of various prison officers had actually placed orders for Los Teletubbies with the staff of the prison.
No word on the length of the sentence for the guy who named the characters in the first place.
And, here's another:
US Customs agents in Chicago have seized $50,000 worth of counterfeit Pokemon trading cards and other Pokemon merchandise, all from Japan. The three seized shipments included the "rare" Charizard, the monster card that sells for up to $85 (bear in mind that what makes this card "rare" is that the manufacturer has declared it so, and is making it so by producing very few copies of Charizard. This forces children to buy endless packages of Pokemon cards, hoping to be lucky enough to get Charizard in one of them). None of these items had the official Nintendo trademark. Since October marks the start of the very lovely and sentimental Counterfeit Merchandise Pre-Christmas season, Customs officials expect to intercept many more fake Pokemon shipments.
AN OFFBEAT DISNEY COLLECTIBLE DEPARTMENT
Looking for some unusual Disney thing to collect? How about the various salvos in the ongoing war between Disney and its own animators? I'm talking about the sly off-color and anarchic frames Disney artists keep inserting in films meant as "family fare". A couple of these naughties drawn into "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" have caused Disney to slightly alter the DVD version of the film. One is a rude gesture by a character, Baby Herman. The other is an anatomical cartoon moment achieved by the brief lifting of Jessica Rabbit's skirt. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Disney cut about 30 frames from the film to eliminate the offensive image of Baby Herman, which became visible on laserdisc because of its frame-by-frame viewing capabilities. Disney has stopped selling the laserdisc version. But Jessica Rabbit's still being thrown out of a car in the new version, and you can still see that she forgot to put on undies that day.
A HELPING HAND FROM SWEDEN
A very generous Accumulator from Sweden, one Jan-Erik Nilsson, wrote to me and offered to answer your questions regarding Chinese porcelains. He offers this help to you, absolutely free of charge. Post your questions at his website at Gotheborg.com. Thanks, Jan-Erik!
BRACE YOURSELF - PRETTY BAD COLLECTIBLES JOKE
Back in the 1800s the Tates Watch Company of Massachusetts wanted to produce other products and, since they already made the cases for pocket watches, decided to market compasses for the pioneers traveling west. It turned out that although their watches were of finest quality, their compasses were so bad that people often ended up in Canada or Mexico rather than California. This, of course, is the origin of the expression, "He who has a Tates is lost!"
Thanks for sharing your Sunday with me, Accumulators. I hope the weather
is better where you are. If not, it's a perfect day to visit a museum, or
see a movie that features vintage period furniture, clothing and
accessories. Perhaps Artie and I will do one of those ourselves. Have a
wonderful week, Accumulators. Happy hunting!
© 1999 Judith Katz-Schwartz. All rights reserved.
Antiques and Collectibles Newsletter #102
U.S. Library of Congress
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