As Kitschmeister General I love, love, love the San Fernando Valley, just inches from the center of Hollywood and pumped full of Kitsch like a buffet line at Trader Vics. This is the first in a series of short films I’m making glorifying the Kitsch monuments that abound around me for Part 1 features everything from Roman architecture and giant submarine sandwiches to clowns, frog families, volcanoes, giant fish, horses, shoe cars and very happy houses.

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For the full glorious and kitschyfied tour:

And check out


I’m assuming this happy fellow is a pear although I’m not the world’s biggest fruit and vegetable eater and he does look wayyyy too green. But he’s too shapely to be a green pepper, too smooth to be an avocado and too leafy to be a lime so I’m sticking with pear and hope that any of them that happen to slide down my gullet are a little riper at point of entry.

I love anthropomorphic anything but especially vintage chalkware fruit as they’re always so happy. I especially love this guy because he’s so obviously homemade – lumpy, sloppily painted and bad teeth.



Once again I don the Easter bonnet I made to go to my friend April Winchell’s mother’s house Easter, 1998 where she had a smorgasbord of international foods, the unrecognizable contents of which were festooned with name tags stuck into the dishes on popsicle sticks, an excellent sign if one likes a side of Kitsch with their holidays.

This was the first Easter bonnet I ever wore, modeled with the Sears Easter Bunny in Detroit in 1952.  It was storebought and wasn’t very Eastery. I vowed to have more festive haberdashery after that.


My current chapeau is made of foamcore, eggs, chicks, peeps, bunnies, roosters, shredded cellophane, bagels and about 10 pounds of hot melt glue. It has held up remarkably well over the years .

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There were recipes for “Eggs In Exciting Ways” from a vintage cookbook under the brim.


I’m wearing the hat now and having a very Happy Easter.  I hope you are too.


To any of you having company over today I’d like to suggest this insane little dip with a sloshed, poorly cut cucumber complete with little olive ring burp bubbles lying in a vat of fruity stuff. I have no idea what this actually tastes like but the arts and crafts aspects of it are spectacular and dips in general tower high on the Kitsch Top 10 of conversation sparking party foods.

Thank you, aKitschionado Nessa, for submitting this gem to the Allee Willis Museum Of Kitsch at! According to Nessa, “This was on the buffet at a church dinner my mom talked me into going to with her. There were little nuns in full habits spreading this stuff on toast.”  Nuns presenting a dip featuring anything drunk is excellence in Kitsch no matter how you dole it out.

I love food art anyway but there are several outstanding features that make me love Drunken Cucumber Man more than anything:
• Of course, the fact that he’s drunk and is served at a church smorgasbord.
• The fact that the arms aren’t attached to the shoulders and the way the shoulders are attached to the torso is so much larger than the little skinny arms that should be attached to that.
• The fact that the dip is “some sort of fruity stuff”.
• LOVE the bottle but couldn’t they have attached it to his hand?
• LOVE the pimento tongue.
• Skinny Legs and All
• Love the inside of the cucumber as a hat texture.

If the nun who cooked this lived in LA I’d invite her to come to my next pot luck party. In the meantime, I’m pretty sure Drunken Cucumber Man dip will be present one way or the other.


This is an amazing movie find, especially for a stamp collecting movie nut (which I’m not but I can appreciate the passion).  Sixty pages of  blank squares, each ascribed with the name of a 1920’s – 50’s star, from Academy Award winners to TV stars, “The Young Set”, International stars, World-Famous Women, Animal stars, Shootin’ stars (Western), Symphony stars, Singing stars, Comedians  and every other category that Hollywood could possibly subdivide itself into.

The Screen Stars Photo Album was made in 1955 by the Harlich Manufacturing Co. of  Chicago and approved by the National Poster Stamp Society with “All Rights to Screen Star Stamps and Stamp Albums fully protected by Hollywood Star Stamps, Inc. in cooperation with the Stars, Studios And Motion Picture Relief Fund, Inc.”.

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When I was a kid I was SO into Leave It To Beaver, probably as much because of the glow from the Sylvania Halo Vision tv I was watching it on and the Velveeta sandwich on white with one thin leaf of Iceberg draped across it that was the ritual meal of my childhood. I’m sure I’ve seen every single show of the original series that ran from 1957-’63. I was also into Lassie, My Three Sons, Dennis The Menace and other series that showed life from a kid’s point of view but I always liked Beaver because he was so inquisitive and annoying.

As an adult, once I moved to California I was elated to find a very kitschy restaurant in the middle of a golf course at the end of the runway of the Van Nuys airport owned by Beaver star, Barbara Billingsley, and named, appropriately enough, Billingsley’s. It was a steakhouse built in 1969 that served blue Jell-O for desset and remained pretty much intact until it finally and sadly closed a few years ago.


I went to Billingsley’s constantly on Sunday nights because of the great Graydon Wayne, ex- Three Suns member who faithfully sang and played three organs at the same time holding court around a classic piano bar. But as much as I loved listening to songs I otherwise never would’ve listened to while munching Surf ‘n Turf and sipping drinks out of a seashell I never lost sight of what excited me most – the fact that The Beav’s mom owned the joint.

P.S. I didn’t do any of this coloring. I was the type who always liked my colors very bold so there wouldn’t have been any of this frail, lighter-than-a-feather technique in any crayon execution of mine:

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In the kountry of Kitsch, there’s no higher honor bestowed upon a President than that of being commemorated as a Chia Pet. Now Chia Obama joins Chia Washington and Chia Lincoln in achieving that honor.

This Special Edition “Chia Obama” comes in two different moods, Chia Obama “Happy” and Chia Obama “Determined”.


Both come with with enough seed packets for three separate plantings with full growth expected in one to two weeks.


My hope on this President’s Day is that things like job creation, health care and other aspirations of Actual Obama get the watering and tender lovin’ care they deserve so they can achieve full growth too.  Come on now and hail to the Ch-Ch-Ch- Chief!

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I can’t think of anything Coke would go better with than a nice slab of liverwurst! Not sure what inspired anyone at the company to pick this meal combo to advertise the drink but I’m awfully glad they did because this 8″ x 24″ Litho cardboard sign has hung happily in my kitchen for almost 20 years. I’ve never done it the honor of munching down liverwurst when I pop the cap on a Coke but the sign inspired me enough that my alter ego, Bubbles the artist, painted a beautiful still life of the meal in 1999…


…and soon after also made this beautiful and appetizing dinner plate.


Both for sale. Actual liverwurst accompaniment is extra.

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I love sculptures like this, especially when they’re crafted by mechanics and stuck out on the street in front of their shops. I’m assuming that “Mofles” means muffler in some language. If not, there’s more that I love about this place than just the metal foliage.


I’ve been known to use a muffler or two in my handiwork as well. Here’s a movie camera prop I made out of a muffler and old vintage LPs for the 1987 MTV Award nominated video, “Right on Track” by Breakfast Club, which I art directed and production designed.



I shared many a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and Vernor’s with Sky King and Penny as nothing could separate me from the TV when they were puttering around the sky in their beloved Songbird in search of bad people, hikers and whoever else roamed the environs near their Flying Crown Ranch. I wish that Sky and Penny were roaming around the skies of LA right now zipping up the clouds so the rain and hail would subside and we could have our nice sunny LA back.

This is a teeny weenie little rubber stamp kit from the early 1950’s. I’m not sure what the tie-in to the show was but this wasn’t a show with a lot of swag so this is a rare piece of memorabilia indeed. I can’t completely make out whose stamp it was either but I’m happy to give it shelter now.

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