Union Ridge Church

Friday, December 4, 2020

by Reverend Dan on December 4, 2020

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever."

                                                            Hebrew’s 13:8


Yesterday we talked about stocking stuffers. Today let’s look at some of the best-selling ones of all time.


In 1929, a hotel bellhop named Pedro Flores wowed crowds during his lunch breaks with a simple and traditional Filipino game that only used a rope attached to an object at the end. Everyone wanted to know what the toy was, and trying to translate from his native Filipino language, he said it was a “come-back”. When they asked him how to say it in his native language, he said, “Yo-Yo”.


In 1936, Charles Darrow, the famed attorney, wanted to teach people the basics of real estate. Since that year, over 750 million people have bought and sold property, houses and hotels during a game of Monopoly.


In 1943 during the war effort, a marine engineer was working on a spring to hold shipboard marine torsion meters steady. One day he reached for one and accidentally knocked it off his desk. When it hit the floor, it started to “walk”, and thus was born the Slinky.


In 1952, Hasbro decided to go out on a limb and buy some TV advertising time for a toy, the first time that had ever happened. The toy cost 98 cents and it came with hands, feet, ears, two mouths, two pair of eyes, four noses, three hats, eyeglasses, a pipe, and a piece of felt resembling a mustache. But if you’ll notice on that list, there was no body included. You see, until 1964, to play with Mr. Potato Head, you had to supply your own potato.


In 1959, Barbara Millicent Roberts joined us. And the folks at Mattel had an idea – aim the marketing at kids, not their parents. And that’s why every little girl had to have a “Barbie” (her nickname).


1975 began the decline of human civilization as we know it. Based on two concepts of marketing by a man named Gary Dahl (1. People want pets that don’t need to be fed, cleaned, or tended to, and 2. People are stupid), the Pet Rock was born. It wasn’t popular long, but long enough to make Dahl a multi-millionaire.


In 1980, someone decided to put nine squares on six sides of a cube, and the headache known as Rubik’s Cube was hatched. The world record for solving it? 26 moves.


Smurf’s, Cabbage Patch Kids, Care Bears, Ninetendo, Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles, Barney, Power Rangers, Tickle Me Elmo, Pokemon Cards, X-box, Playstation, Elsa . . . if you’ve had kids or grandkids in the last thirty years, you know what all of these are.


Trends come and go. Some things last longer than others, some are a flash in the pan and then gone. The beauty of our Lord is that He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Thanks be to God for the toys and memories of Christmas, but our true thanks are for the reason for the season: Emmanuel, God is with us.


"Father, Thank you for being our rock of steadiness in an ever changing world.  In Jesus' name, AMEN."



Christmas Bonus:

Music, Music, Music . . .

-        White Christmas” by Irving Berlin is the best-selling recorded single of all time, with over 100 million sales worldwide.

-        Thurl Ravenscroft, the singer responsible for How the Grinch Stole Christmas' classic song "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch," was also the voice of Tony the Tiger, the mascot for Kellogg's Frosted Flakes.

-        Nat King Cole and Mel Tormé's "The Christmas Song" (also known as "Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire") was written during a summer heatwave in 1944. The very next year during another heat wave in July, Jule Styne and Sammy Cohen wrote, “Let it Snow”.

-        Singer Brenda Lee recorded the original version of "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree" when she was only 13 years old.