day 34
easton, pennsylvania

"I was raised on scrapple."
- Man in diner.
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Downtown Easton:
Main Attraction: Crayola Factory
Attached to: Canal Museum
Buildings: 1
Admission: $8.00

Claim to Fame: The inventors of "colour".

Zip Code of the Day
Crayon Farmers?
During the Great Depression, Binney & Smith hires local farm families to hand label crayons. Each farm becomes associated with a different crayon colour name. This tradition continues beyond the Depression and supplements winter incomes for many years.

Friends for Life!
Joseph Binney retires. His son, Edwin, and nephew, C. Harold Smith, take over the business forming a partnership called Binney & Smith. The cousins begin producing a high-quality carbon black pigment, which quickly becomes the main ingredient in printing and marking inks, as well as stove and shoe polish.
A Star is Born!
Binney & Smith representatives show off slate pencils and dustless chalk in local schools. They notice a need for better quality, affordable wax crayons. The company quickly adapts its industrial marking crayons for school use by making them smaller and adding coloured pugments to the paraffin wax. The crayons are an overnight success with children and teachers!

Binney & Smith ensures that the new crayons are of the highest quality and above all, safe. Soon after, the first box of Crayola crayons sells for just a nickel and includes black, brown, blue, blue, red, purple, orange, yellow and green.

Colour Me Bored
Sept 29 - First off, when you go to a factory tour, aren't you expecting to be within the factory? At the very LEAST, you'd expect to be within a few blocks of the factory. Hence the name, "Factory Tour". Also, one would expect that one isn't charged up the wazoo for engaging in another company's promotional tour. Not so the case with an enterprising company called Crayola. These bastards get you coming and going.

When you enter the factory-that's-not-a-factory, you're hit with the high admission price of eight bucks a head. They claim that it's for both the Crayola Factory Tour and the Canal Museum. Like anyone wants to go to the Canal Museum: "Oh yeah, I'm here with my six year old for the Canal Museum. What? Oh? Crayola?"

And no, you can't just buy the Crayola Factory. They're a sneaky combo deal. Have they ever checked the demographics of the people who want to see crayons vs. those who want to see canals? Actually, they probably have and that's why they've combined them. So they up the price and make it a "combo". I'll bet the marketing guys had a field day.

How do they get away with the 'factory' title? They've got two machines set up that show you how crayons are made. They claim this is how it's currently being made, but after seeing the process we think there's just no way that a modern company would have such an antiquated process. It's as though they're trying to tell us the crayons are molded by hand by elves. Luckily for us, the explanation is given by a man who has apparently lived in his glass tour box for about 5 years to long. He just wasn't funny, and didn't try to be. Yet he appeared to be astounded (and tried to get us excited) by the minimal automation of the crayon-making process. Does Crayola realize that we've passed through the industrial revolution?

But our purpose is not to complain but rather to educate. Let us step away from the ugly feelings of being cheated out of $16 bucks by a wax maker and enjoy the history of Silly Putty.

The Silly Putty Story
While trying to develop a synthetic rubber to aid the allied war effort in 1943, James Wright combines silicone oil and boric acis and accidentally invents a gooey substance that bounces, stretches and can be molded.

No practical use is found for Wright's "Bouncing Putty" but it continues to be passed around at parties until 1949. That's when Ruth Fallgatter, owner of the Bock Shop Toy Store sees it with her advertising consultant Peter Hodgson and they decide to sell it in Fallgatter's catalog.

After a successful debut in the Bock Shop Toy Catalog as bouncing putty, Hodgson decides to go national. He repacks it in plastic eggs, names it Silly Putty and brings it to the 1950 International Toy Fair.

Following Toy Fair which gets Silly Putty into a few major stores, New Yorker Magazine runs an article about Silly Putty and Hodgson gets 250,000 orders in three days! Silly Putty is on its way to success!

More than 25 years after its introduction, Silly Putty continues to be a favorite with kids. In 1977, a year after Hodgson's death, Binney & Smith, maker of Crayola products, acquires the rights to Silly Putty.

In 1990, Silly Putty marks 40 years of providing children with hours of creative fun and play, longer than other toy classics like Barbie, Slinky, G.I. Joe, and the Hula Hoop.

makin' stuff...

I wax poetic while you're waxing your legs

We all live in a yellow something something

I just wanna fly, put your arms around me baby

Bom ba ba bom ba dang da dang dang da dinga dong ding blue moon
more photos in the archive...

Current Location
(get out your push pins)

Easton, PA

Next Stop: Lambertville

see the full map...

Today's Weather:
Friggin' cold and rainy.

Daily Stats
Gas: $0.00
Tokens: 3
Crayons: 0
Markers: 1
Colour: Green

Our 5000th Km!
Just outside of Easton we hit the big 5000! And for those of you still using the archaic imperial system of measurement, we've just hit the big 3125!

Sleeping Quarters
D&R Canal State Park

We set up the tent on a red ant's nest and awoke to geese honking outside the tent. We also froze our asses off all night. But other than that, it was pretty nice.

Cost: $10.00

Waffle and Pancake House
Off Route 209
K's Order:Pancakes
Eggs, Bacon
A's Order:Pigs in a Blanket
D&R State Park

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What is Scrapple?
Why, pork scraps of course! Whatever they can scrape off the grill after cooking the sausages becomes scrapple. The name "scrapple" stems from the root word, "crap".

© 2001. Kevin Beimers and Aimee Lingman. Painting the Town Flesh, I mean Peach.