Writer’s Workshop: Not Exactly Perfection…

Last year the prompt “Write a blog post inspired by the word: perfection” came up, and I wrote a piece on it. The same prompt has come up, and as I really don’t have anything for any of the other prompts, I’m going to use the same prompt, but I have a whole different angle on it. I went out to The Free Dictionary, and as I read through what it said, the Spanish word perfecto started showing up in the section that translates things into Spanish. And I had my inspiration.

Source: ebay

When I started kindergarten back in the early ’60’s, we (or, more correctly, our parents) were told that we needed a cigar box, sans cigars and covered with something like Con-Tact paper, for us to put things like crayons and other art supplies in. Nowadays, there are boxes made for that exact purpose, but this was back before we had things like that. Anyway, I forget whether Mom or Dad or Fabulous Auntie Jill (who was living with us at the time) got it, but I trudged off to kindergarten with my cigar box, covered with blue Con-Tact paper to hide the fact that it once held Perfecto Garcia cigars. Virtually no one covered the inside of the box, so whatever art was printed on the lid was visible when we opened them. When I was bored in kindergarten (which was the entire time, and thank heaven it was only a half day), I would glance around and see what kind of cigars everyone else was advertising. And I’d see one or more of these:

Of course, by then Mrs. Comeaux was telling me, “Johnny, pay attention.” And she’d go on blathering about whatever it was she was blathering about and I’d go back to checking out cigar box lids.

I’ve always been a fan of artwork done for advertising, packaging, and product logos, and I wonder if it started back when I was in kindergarten. No, I was already into all that by the time I got there. I’m still fascinated by it. I think I missed my calling.

20 thoughts on “Writer’s Workshop: Not Exactly Perfection…

  1. I love the fact that everyone else had cigar boxes. I never thought of artwork in a cigar box until I saw an episode of Antiques Roadshow and they discussed these boxes and how some a4e quite valuable now.

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  2. Boy I sure can’t sneak repeating prompts passed you! 😉 I’m glad you were able to come up with an additional topic even though you already used this prompt once before because otherwise I might never have learned that cigar boxes used to be on kids back to school lists! I am so entertained by that…the fact that cigar boxes were so common in households enough for teachers to assume everyone had one laying around to use for school! I bet those would sell for big bucks on ebay these days. Vintage!

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    1. They do sell for lots on eBay (https://ebay.to/2tonmVc), especially considering we just used to throw them out. They’re quite useful. My stepfather, who was a cigar smoker, used them all the time for things like screws and fuses (we didn’t have breaker boxes at the time). The day he died, one of the big fuses (one that controlled the current in the house) went out, and Mom didn’t know what to do; he had handled all that up to then. Knowing his “filing system” helped me find them.

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  3. Okay, comin’ from left-field here… my grandpa had cigar boxes and he also had those tin tubes I use to save dimes in. Grandpa was from Sicily need I say more? Yep, he smoked stogies YUK & PU!!! I hated them, but loved the boxes they came in. I would decorate them and play with them by putting my Barbie Dolls in them or rather their belongs went in there. ~hehehe~ Wow, what a memory, right? Only thing is don’t ask me what happened yesterday or even an hour ago because I don’t have a clue, but ask me what happened 20 yrs ago or a guy I met and I’ll tell you what color socks he had on!!! bwahahahaha Happy Valentines Day my friend! Hugs!

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    1. I hear ya. Mary and I can sing the theme songs from I don’t know how many TV shows from the ’60’s (and earlier), but ask us what we did with a screwdriver or hammer, and we have no way of knowing. I’m at the point where I have to write myself notes to remember what I did from day to day, but then I’ve always been a bit absentminded.

      My stepfather smoked cigars and used the boxes for all kinds of stuff. I smoked cigars (and a pipe) for a time, and so did my dad. Gave up smoking and drinking when I discovered I had enough blood pressure for two people…

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  4. We had cigar boxes, too, but I don’t remember where we found them. Nobody in my family smoked cigars…at least not in the house! I used them for keeping letters, doll clothes, and my prized possessions of things I found in the front yard! I loved them and wished I would have kept at least one! Thanks for stopping by No Excuses and for your kind words. At our age, we seem to be saying goodbye to more and more people. That’s okay because I have faith that they are in a very happy place, and if I am supposed to see them again…I will! Happy V Day!

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    1. Drug stores used to sell individual cigars and would keep the empty boxes because parents would come in asking for them around the beginning of school. The start of school was a neighborhood-wide undertaking.

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  5. I bet your love for that kind of art DID start back in kindergarten! I remember cigar boxes, too….I never got to carry one, but by the time I started school, there were cardboard boxes shaped like cigar boxes, but with different designs and obviously not having previously held cigars. By the time my kids were in school, there were plastic boxes and zippered pouches for such supplies. The cigar box was great, though, because it held ALL the supplies.

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    1. Fabulous Auntie Jill, who’s my godmother, was an artist, and used to point out shapes and pictures to me even before kindergarten. It got me looking for art where most people don’t, like on packages. The skull-and-crossbones on iodine bottles scared me…

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  6. I also enjoyed that as a child. I also had a cat who sat on mine until the lid bowed. Good memories.
    When my son was maybe 6 or 7, Papa gave him a wooden cigar box and told him to decorate it. It’s modge-podged with red, blue, and orange tissue paper. It’s quite pretty. Moo has it in her room. Prolly rocks in it 🙂

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  7. For a while, my hubby smoked Arturo Fuente cigars and they came in small wooden boxes which I kept aside for some future project. I found out these, and other cigar boxes, are a big collectible for people making handbags. So, I took a chance and listed the boxes on eBay and was more than pleasantly surprised with the sales response.

    It was short lived. The hubby stopped smoking cigars shortly after. Which is a good thing.

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