Retrotisements — 1980 Pontiac New Car Lineup

It’s been a looong time since my last new car ad gallery — just over three years in fact since my 1970 Dodge post. For the return of this series, let’s fast forward one decade to the dawn of the ’80s and the lineup for GM’s Pontiac make.

The theme for these ads was a pretty clever twist on the MPG initialism. In this case it stood for:

  • More Pontiac to the Gallon
  • More Pontiac Excitement to the Gallon
  • More Pontiac Excitement for the Great Ones

The only model I wasn’t able to find a good print ad for is the Sunbird, so if anyone can help me out please let me know.

(To see other car lineup advertisement galleriesclick here. Got a request for other years and makes? Let me know in the Comments section.)

1980 Pontiac Compacts

1980 Pontiac Phoenix ad

1980 Pontiac Phoenix

1980 Pontiac Mid-Sizes

1980 Pontiac Grand Prix, Grand LeMans, Grand LeMans Safari ad

1980 Pontiac Grand Prix, Grand LeMans, Grand LeMans Safari

1980 Pontiac Full-Sizes

1980 Pontiac Bonneville ad

1980 Pontiac Bonneville

1980 Pontiac Bonneville ad

1980 Pontiac Bonneville

1980 Parisienne ad

1980 Pontiac Parisienne

1980 Pontiac Station Wagon

1980 Pontiac Safari ad

1980 Pontiac Safari

1980 Pontiac Muscles

1980 Pontiac Firebird ad

1980 Pontiac Firebird

1980 Pontiac Trans Am ad

1980 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am

Absentee Moms Choose Kool-Aid!

From 1959 through 1962, Kool-Aid (and its parent company, General Foods) ran a print ad campaign to showcase its various flavors. Each ad had the same setup — a family member (usually mom) had to leave the house for a while, wrote a note for those left behind, and mixed a pitcher of delicious Kool-Aid.

Visually, it was a very attractive campaign. And judging by the fact that it lasted for several years I’m guessing it was pretty successful too.

Now of course I’m joking about the absentee mom thing, but it does seem odd that several of these ads feature notes from a missing parent. As a latchkey kid myself, I know all about that.

Anyway, enjoy the ads! There are 17 of them in case you’re counting.

For more great slideshows, click here.

The Art of Activision Atari Covers

I can’t even begin to calculate the hours I spent playing Activision games for my Atari 2600. I think they probably had the most fun games on average out of any gaming company back then.

One of the crucial parts of Activision’s appeal was their artwork. I’m referring specifically to the great use of simple drawings with those bold, rainbow motion patterns. There was a real sense of thematic unity behind a lot of Activision’s games, which really helped them so stand out from the pack. Not all of their titles shared that unity, but many did.

So in tribute to the great (and not-so-great) Activision games with the brilliant packaging, here is my Atari 2600 Activision cover slideshow gallery. Here’s what we have here — Boxing, Enduro, Fishing Derby, Freeway, Grand Prix, Ice Hockey, Kaboom!, Laser Blast, Megamania, Oink, Pitfall, River Raid, Skiing, Stampede, and Tennis.

(post image courtesy Atari Age)

All-Time MLB Franchise Rankings, 2016 Edition

I’ve upped my game with franchise rankings and introduced some new technology to the process — namely, Tableau. To see some other examples of me putting Tableau to good use, check out the Infographics section of my site.

Other than making things look snazzy, however, the methodology behind how I’m ranking all MLB franchises remains pretty much intact. So for those who don’t know the rules, here they are again:

The Criteria

The categories and point values are as follows:

  • 20 points for a World Series title. Pre-1903 titles are not counted.
  • 15 points for a league pennant.
  • 6 points for a playoff series win (e.g. Division Series or Wild Card Game).
  • 4 points for a division title.
  • 3 points for a regular season winning percentage of .556 or higher, -3 points for a percentage of .444 or lower.
  • 1 point for a winning season, -1 point for a losing season.
  • Consecutive winning regular seasons are worth 2 points starting with the second, 3 points for the third, 4 points for the fourth, and so on. The counter is reset after any non-winning season. So if a team has three winning seasons in a row, they get a total of 5 points.

One thing that has changed is that thanks to Tableau, I’m able to dig into the numbers in different ways than before. Here’s the graph showing how all current franchises stack up after the 2015 season:

All-Time MLB Franchise Rankings, 2016

As has been the case ever since I started this project, the New York Yankees hold what looks to be an insurmountable lead over the rest of MLB. Despite losing the AL Wild Card Game to the Astros, the Yanks are still feasting on their incredible 23-year streak of winning seasons.

Here is the full top 10 for this year. For teams who have changed positions from last year, their previous spot is indicated in parentheses.

The Top 10

#1. New York Yankees — 23.23 pts.
#2. San Francisco Giants — 8.46 pts.
#3. St. Louis Cardinals (#4) — 7.77 pts.
#4. Boston Red Sox (#3) — 7.57 pts.
#5. Los Angeles Dodgers — 7.21 pts.
#6. Oakland Athletics — 5.68 pts.
#7. Atlanta Braves — 5.65 pts.
#8. Detroit Tigers — 4.85 pts.
#9. Pittsburgh Pirates — 4.75 pts.
#10. Chicago Cubs (#11) — 4.70 pts.

The Cubs’ Cinderella run to the NLCS allowed them to crack the top 10, sending the Arizona Diamondbacks into the middle tier.

The Mediocre 10

#11. Arizona Diamondbacks (#10) — 4.60 pts.
#12. Toronto Blue Jays — 4.56 pts.
#13. Chicago White Sox — 3.74 pts.
#14. New York Mets (#16) — 3.61 pts.
#15. Cincinnati Reds (#14) — 3.57 pts.
#16. Kansas City Royals (#18) — 3.47 pts.
#17. Cleveland Indians (#15) — 3.37 pts.
#18. Baltimore Orioles (#17) — 2.97 pts.
#19. Miami Marlins — 2.45 pts.
#20. Philadelphia Phillies (#21) — 2.06 pts.

The World Series champion Royals moved up for the 2nd consecutive year, while the NL champion New York Mets went up two spots.

The Bottom 10

#21. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (#20) — 2.06 pts.
#22. Houston Astros — 1.86 pts.
#23. Tampa Bay Rays (#24) — 1.85 pts.
#24. Minnesota Twins (#23) — 1.63 pts.
#25. Texas Rangers — 0.89 pts.
#26. Washington Nationals (#27) — 0.52 pts.
#27. Milwaukee Brewers (#26)  — 0.51 pts.
#28. San Diego Padres — 0.28 pts.
#29. Colorado Rockies — 0.01 pts.
#30. Seattle Mariners — -0.14 pts.

The Angels drop to the bottom third based on rounding, while in the rest of this group several teams swapped spots. The biggest point gainer was the Astros, whose run to the postseason netted them almost a quarter point.

Team of the Decade (So Far)

Here’s a look at how the total scores are shaping up for the 2010s across all of MLB. Click on the chart to see the live version and play around yourself.

MLB Team of the Decade (2010s)

The Royals have propelled themselves past the league average for the decade, but so far it’s the San Francisco Giants’ title to lose. Hot on their heels are the Cardinals, with the Texas Rangers, Royals, and Detroit Tigers not far behind.

Airline Memories #3: Aer Lingus Potpourri

In Airline Memories, I share aviation items and curiosities from the long history of commercial flight. You’ll see everything from ephemera to souvenirs and other branded items from various U.S. airlines. If you have a request or anything else to share, leave a comment or contact me directly.

Not only is today St. Patrick’s Day, but we are just weeks away from the 80th anniversary of the founding of one of the world’s most iconic national airlines — Aer Lingus. So to celebrate both occasions, here is a collection of some cool, vintage Aer Lingus items I’ve come across.

As always, click on any item for a larger version.

1981-82 Aer Lingus airline timetable

1981-82 Aer Lingus airline timetable

Aer Lingus BAC One-Eleven postcard, c. 1960s-70s

Aer Lingus BAC One-Eleven postcard, c. 1960s-70s

1969 Aer Lingus print ad

1969 Aer Lingus print ad

1950s Aer Lingus luggage label

1950s Aer Lingus luggage label

1960 Aer Lingus route map

1960 Aer Lingus route map

Aer Lingus – Irish International Airlines ticket jacket

c. 1950s Aer Lingus ticket jacket