PDQ #atozchallenge

All right, so I admit it: occasionally my theme stumped me. Those are times when you have to use two words, abbreviations, or proper names to get it to work. And here is one of those cases.


PDQ (pronounced “pee dee cue”) is an abbreviation for “pretty damn quick” or “pretty darn quick,” depending on your attitude toward mild profanity. You see it used a lot in company names, such as PDQ Printing, that did offset printing pretty damn quick. (Remember offset printing? There used to be a lot of places that did it, until Adobe Acrobat and laser/inkjet printers got cheap. Great for big jobs, though.)

PDQ was also the name of a drink mix made by your friends at Ovaltine.

An ad for PDQ drink mix, which was running a promotion with Mattel that promised an entire fleet of Hot Wheels cars and trucks for $1 plus the inner lining of a jar of PDQ. Ran in newspapers March 12, 1972 (source: eBay)

PDQ was like Ovaltine in that it came in chocolate crystals, but unlike Ovaltine didn’t have malt or egg in it and actually tasted good. Plus, PDQ came in strawberry and egg nog flavors. You could stir it into milk or sprinkle it on ice cream. It was popular during the Sixties and Seventies, then faded from view.

PDQ was the sponsor of a syndicated game show called, of all things, PDQ, with Dennis James as the host. Here is the pilot episode, if you have thirty minutes to spare.

For those of you who like their classical music mixed with a little humor, PDQ is the last, and certainly least, son of Johann Sebastian Bach.

PDQ Bach. Source: Stanton Music

PDQ Bach is the creation of composer, music educator, and parodist Peter Schickele, who often add the honorarium “Professor” to his name. He has recorded numerous albums of music he claims to have been written by PDQ. Here is the “Pervertimento for Bagpipes, Bicycle, and Balloons,” S. 66.

Questions: Are you an Ovaltine fan? Ever had PDQ? Like game shows? What did you think of PDQ Bach?

31 thoughts on “PDQ #atozchallenge

  1. I’ve had ovaltine before but never really liked it. Never heard of PDQ. I’ve never been a fan of game shows (or even board games). I never heard of PDQ Bach before this post.


    1. Peter Schickele, the man behind PDQ Bach, has I think somewhere in the neighborhood of fifty albums of the not-so-great composer’s “music.” I think the guy’s a genius.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’d forgotten all about PDQ milk drink mix. It was pretty good as I recall. But I do like Ovaltine and still buy it if it’s on sale–it tends to be a little pricey.

    When I was in college in the early 70’s I went to see PDQ Bach in concert with the Knoxville Symphony. It was a very funny and entertaining concert. The Civic Auditorium was full which was nice to see. I didn’t go to many classical concerts back then because they were a bit out of my price range, but I guess by today’s standards they were probably ridiculously inexpensive.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out


  3. I think I remember those ads for PDQ but I don’t recall if I ever actually drank it. I know I hated Ovaltine so I might not have wanted to try it for that connection. Now I kind of wish I had! 🙂


  4. I remember PDQ as “pretty damn quick”, however, not familiar with the powered drink. I forgot about Ovaltine – I can take it or leave it.


  5. Very inventive way to do this one:) I had heard of ovaltine and remember it quite well but never used it. I do like game shows but don’t watch them much now or I would really be glued to the tv.


    1. There aren’t as many game shows as there were in the Seventies. We get Buzzr (a game show channel) and I occasionally sit around and watch the old shows, like The Match Game and Family Feud (the one with Richard Dawson). Most of the current game shows are in syndication, so it all depnds on what syndication packages your local channels carry. Most markets have Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy!, and that usually satisfies my game show cravings…


    1. Quik in two flavors, chocolate and strawberry (I always thought that was a little weird). We had Quik occasionally, and also would use Hershey’s syrup (in the can) for chocolate milk. PDQ was one of those that you didn’t know about unless you watched daytime TV…

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It was classical music for people who hated classical music, or who loved it. I’m sure “Professor” Schickele had an extensive knowledge of the real thing, which made it so funny, the way he was able to take themes and just twist them for all the humor he could get out of them. His Christmas carols (“Throw The Yule Log On, Uncle John,” “O Little Town of Hackensack,” and “Good King Kong”) are classics that even legitimate choirs sing at that most wonderful time of the year…


  6. Well, I sure know about stumping… I’m racking my brain over Q tonight… I think I’ll put this one to rest until morning. It’s been a long day… and by the way John… you’ve been chosen as our Spotlight Dancer for Monday’s Music Moves Me. How about sending me a theme you’d like to do. Sure would appreciate it! Big Hugs!!! xmasdolly at comcast dot net !!! THANKS AND CONGRATS!!!


  7. John, I did think I knew PDQ was an acronym for Pretty Darn Quick but I do remember the powdered drink. I actually forgot about it until you reminded me in your post. I can’t recall how well I liked it. Ovaltine was okay. I preferred Hershey’s syrup or NesQuick to make chocolate milk. Is PDQ still available? What an inventive, fun post! Thanks for visiting today’s post Art Sketching Through the Alphabet “P” (Princess & Prince)! Have a good afternoon, my friend.


    1. We uswed to listen to “The Midnight Special” on WFMT Saturday nights, and they always played a lot of PDQ Bach. One of the albums had a game show called “Opera Whiz,” but “An Hysteric Return” was maybe our favorite album.


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