East Coast Thoughts

Aug 30th, 2009 | By | Category: Spirituality

Five posts from this blog were recycled to provide five ‘thoughts for the day’ for the Sundays during August for East Coast Radio – this is the fifth

Do you remember the days when you would cut figures out of cardboard, and hang accessories on them with tabs, and think that this was something great to have?

Perhaps it was much more a girl’s thing, cutting out models from comics and dressing them in different outfits, but there must, at one time, have been a market amongst boys.

The makers of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes obviously believed that there was interest amongst small boys in cutting things out of card, because in the late 1960s they ran a series of pictures of knights in armour on the backs of Corn Flakes packets. The knight was in his battle armour and skilful fingers were meant to cut out weapons to be attached to the figure with folding tabs. A shield for the left arm, a belt and sword for the waist, a lance to attach to the right hand; strips of card below the figure could be cut out and inserted at right angles into slits at the bottom of the figure so that he would stand up.

How many thousands of these boxes did they print?

Despite the huge volumes of each figure that must have been printed; there seemed to be one of the knights that was very hard to find. One could have any number of Black Princes, but one of the lesser known characters was very rare.

Staying with my grandparents on their farm in August was always a special treat.

Breakfast was a dietician’s nightmare; cereal was immersed in milk scooped, still warm, from the top of the churn. A number of Jersey cows added to the richness of the milk from the Friesians, and along with the warm fresh milk, there would have been a pink Tupperware bowl from which to spoon cream over the top of the plentiful sugar that had already been sprinkled on the corn flakes.

One summer’s morning, having poured a mountain of corn flakes into the bowl, with the necessary amounts of milk, sugar and cream. I sat back on the wooden chair, the bright light of the August day coming through the kitchen window behind me. I turned the corn flakes box to read the back (do people still read cereal packets?) and there it was – the missing knight.

The delight of that moment still remains. Who he was, I have no idea. Greens and browns on his armour remain in the memory, but a search of the Internet provided no clues. Kellogg’s seem not to have an archive of old corn flakes boxes, perhaps there would be little demand for such information.

There have been many times since when I would have wished to have recaptured such a moment – such an unalloyed innocent delight in something so commonplace and simple.

Leave a comment »

  1. Cereal boxes had all sorts of wonders when I was a kid. Now it’s just nutritional information, no wonder kids don’t want to eat well. I remember getting little glass animals actually inside the cereal. And see, all that milk and cream didn’t do you any harm. The world at large would have us believe they’re killers . . bosh!

  2. Ah, I’m a slightly later vintage, I remember scenes from ET with luminous transfers in the packet.

    Mmmmmmm, cream. My grandfather used to put cream on his Alpen. Hardedning of the arteries was an inevitable result, but I have to agree, it is tasty!

  3. My Nan died in her own bed in her farmhouse two years ago – at the age of 94 – having spent a lifetime eating ‘bad’ food.

Leave Comment