Today we have a little doodlewash of a Fisher Price Chatter Telephone, which was their best selling toy during the 60s and 70s. The original was made of wood and soon this was changed to plastic. Over the years attempts have been made to “modernize” the design, but since phones like this no longer exist today, it’s more of an alien creature than something your mommy might use.
The phone was actually a pull toy so it was also like having a strange little pet. One of the ideas behind the design was that it encouraged toddlers to talk by mimicking what they saw their parents doing. It was originally designed to actually show little kids how to use a phone, but again, this is no longer applicable. The coolest part was when you pulled the little phone across the floor it made a chatter sound while the googly eyes moved up and down.
Though I’m not a fan of talking on any sort of phone today, back then, this was the coolest thing ever. Of course you had to imagine voices on the other end as there weren’t any there, but that was also part of the fun. When push button phones appeared, there was an attempt to change it to this, but after consumer complaints, it was returned to the rotary dial. So today, he’s a persistent and colorful reminder of just how difficult dialing a phone used to be back in the day.
About the Doodlewash
M. Graham watercolors: Pyrrol Red, Azo Orange, Cobalt Teal, Sap Green, Quinacridone Gold, Cobalt Blue, Cobalt Teal, Permanent Green Pale, Ultramarine Blue, and Neutral Tint. Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon black ink in a 5″ x 8″ 140 lb. (300 gsm) Pentalic Aqua Journal
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