"Call me the hunter, that's my name. Pretty young thing like you is my only game." -Danzig/The Hunter

Recently I spent a few days sorting my giant tub of LEGO bricks by color into smaller containers. During this process I ran across several things that weren’t actually LEGO. Here are three of those things, along with a bonus photo at the end.


One of the first things I found mixed in with my LEGO bricks which was not a LEGO was this big, plastic block. It took me a while to find the name of these building bricks on Google, which turned out to literally be “Building Bricks.”

I can’t remember if I had these at home or not, but I do remember playing with these in my grandma’s living room floor. The picture I found online shows red blocks with white windows and doors and green roof tiles. I am sure I did not have the green pieces, and the ones I played with had both red and white blocks. My strongest memory of these involves building houses for my Star Wars figures and garages for my Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars.


Another obviously named toy were these blue (and black) girders that came with little plastic panels, called “Girder and Panel Building Sets.”

There were only two types of girders: horizontal and vertical. The plastic panels had small holes centered in the top of them that allowed them to be attached to any horizontal girder. These toys seem to have been around for a long time. The ones pictured above were made by Kenner in the mid-50s, although the line was brought back from 1974-1979, which is where these girders came from. While researching these I found this page that covers the history of these toys, which are still being made today and are available on Amazon.


TENTE was a competitor to LEGO, which was in business from 1972 to 1993. Although they looked similar to LEGO bricks, they were not compatible and could not be connected. All the TENTE kits I remember owning were boats for some reason.

You can see both of the pieces I found attached to the ship above. If you take a close look at that ship, TENTE was actually pretty cool. Check out that radar dish mounted ot the top and the helicopter on the rear of the shop parked on the helipad!


Down in the bottom of the tub I found these three LEGO bricks. The small 1×2 one was chewed to bits, either by a dog or a kid. The flat 2×4 is broken, which is nearly impossible to do. I don’t remember this happening. My favorite is the pink homemade computer LEGO. I definitely did not do this and it must have come from one of the collections I picked up from a garage sale, but man did that make me laugh. How desperate that kid must have been to have a pink computer!

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This morning as I walked down the hallway on my way to the bathroom, the laundry room light turned itself on.

“Hello, Uncle Joe,” I said as I walked past the laundry room.

As of this past August, Uncle Joe has been dead for two years now. That’s around the time our laundry room light started randomly turning itself off and back on. Even though the room is small there are two light switches in the room, one on each end, hooked to the same light fixture. Even after four years I’ve never quite figured out what configuration the switches need to be in order for the light to come on. I think when they’re both up or both down the light is off, and when one is up and the other is down the light comes on, but I’m not completely sure. Lots of times, the switches don’t do anything at all. Sometimes the light stays off and no matter what you do with the switches, they stay off. Then, just as you climb into bed and lie down, the light turns itself on and fills our bedroom with light.

Uncle Joe sure has a sense of humor.

This morning, the dryer door was open. Last night, the “kid door switch” had been flipped on my truck. Occasionally I go outside and find the garage door open, even though no one will admit to leaving it open. There are a litany of events that take place around here that nobody seems to know anything about.

When I was a kid those strange events were attributed to Ida Know, Not Me, and Nobody. As an adult, I know who’s responsible. It’s Uncle Joe.

Now, I’ll confess, we don’t really think Uncle Joe is behind all of these things. One of the kids probably left the garage door open, the cat may have been the one to open the dryer door, and the wiring in the laundry probably has a wiring short.


That being said, we miss Uncle Joe, and this is a lighthearted way of keeping him around in our thoughts. Whenever I can’t find the remote I just had or set down a drink that magically disappears, Uncle Joe will continue to get the blame.

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While Kenner only offered one creature each for Star Wars (the Patrol Dewback) and Return of the Jedi (the Rancor), for The Empire Strikes Back they offered two: the Wampa and the Tauntaun, both of which originally retailed for $8.99 in stores. As you can see, I paid almost three times that ($24.99) for this one in a fairly beat up box a few years ago.

Note the vintage sticker price of $7.77 on this particular box. Like other Kenner boxes, the back of this one shows you suggested ways to play with your tauntaun. You can move his arms and legs and insert a figure into the trap door on the tauntaun’s back to create the illusion that they were riding the creature.

In the movie, tauntauns were two-legged “reptomammals,” native to Hoth and ridden by members of the rebellion. In the film we see both Han and Luke riding around the frozen landscape on the creatures. In fact, Luke, while riding a tauntaun, is the first character we see in Empire.

Aside from transportation, in the movie we also learn that a dead tauntaun’s belly is a good place to stick someone to prevent them from freezing. When Han discovers Luke passed out face down in the snow and nearly frozen to death after escaping from the Wampa’s lair, Han saves his friend’s life by cutting open the tauntaun’s belly with Luke’s lightsaber and stuffing him inside. This leads to Han’s classic line, “I thought they smelled bad… on the outside!”

Somehow over the years I ended up with three of these smelly beasts.

The original tauntaun toy went on sale in 1980, the same year Empire was released. In 1982 the toy was updated to include a slit open belly that allowed children to pretend it was dead and shove an action figure inside. That’s kind of gross, now that I think about it. Unfortunately, none of the ones I own are the 1982 updated version. The one on the left is the one I originally owned as a kid. The one in the middle was inside the box I purchased. I’m not sure where the one on the right came from. It’s missing its bride and saddle, so I’m sure it’s not my original one.

While tauntauns certainly seemed alive on the big screen, the illusion was created by using a few different techniques. The ones that ran were miniatures, animated using old school stop motion effects…

…while the other ones that appeared with actors were built out of wood and foam and had people rocking them from underneath:

In 1998, Hasbro released a new tauntaun as part of their Power of the Force line of toys. I have one of those, too:

As you can see, the sculpt is much more detailed and less cartoonish looking. Unfortunately, the legs are positioned in such a way that occasionally getting the newer ones to stand upright is a real pain in the asteroid. Then again, the legs on the vintage tauntaun tended to loosen as well (at least one of mine’s legs have been glued into place), so they both had their problems.

Approximately the same price as three action figures, tauntauns were a pretty common toy among Star Wars kids. While it’s pretty common to find loose models with the bridle and saddle missing, other than that there aren’t really any other parts to lose. Lots of these survived, including the three I own.

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After visiting barcades all over the country, we finally have our own right here in Oklahoma City: the FlashBack RetroPub. Last Friday, Susan and I attended the pub’s official grand opening.

That’s not my DeLorean, but it is my 8-bit tie…

The FlashBack RetroPub is at 814 West Sheridan, several blocks away from Bricktown. There are a few trendy businesses and restaurants nearby, but it’s also less than a block from the City Rescue Mission and right down the street from the scariest McDonald’s I’ve ever set foot in. It will be interesting to see how this part of town develops over time.

There are a few different business models for modern arcades: there’s the “pizzacade,” which combines food with arcade games, the “pay-at-the-door-cade,” where gamers can pay one entry price and play games all day long, and then there’s the “barcade,” establishments that combine arcade gaming with a full bar. FlashBack RetroPub is definitely a barcade, as we were carded at the door.

The front half of the pub is where the bar and arcade games are. Then there’s the dance floor, DJ booth and lounge area, the restrooms, and an unused area that I suspect will have seating in it soon.

A rough guess, I’d say the pub has 30 arcade games. The front right is loaded with classics (Robotron, Defender, Centipede, etc) and the rest of the machines run down the opposite wall. The oldest game I remember was Asteroids and the newest was NBA Jam, with most of the machines belonging to the awesome 80s. Directly across from the games was the bar, with bar tables standing between the two. Those tables became a problem later in the evening.

With a couple of drinks in hand, we took a few bills over to the change machine. “OUT OF ORDER.” We then went back to the bar and bought five dollars worth of tokens. Then we went back to the machines and found most of them had dozens of free credits on them. So, there was a little confusion there.

Beyond the bar and the games was the dance floor, the DJ booth (that giant boom box) and a lounge area. Some of the benches had signs on them saying they were reserved for VIPs. As the crowd piled in, all available seats were taken very quickly.

My biggest complaint with the place was with the games. Centipede and Tetris, Susan’s two favorite games, were powered off. Popeye couldn’t punch. Kung-Fu Master couldn’t punch. Player Two’s joystick on Mario Bros. didn’t work. Donkey Kong didn’t have sound. The joystick on Zaxxon was a little wonky. At least ten of the machines we tried had serious issues, which is 1/3 of their machines (and we weren’t able to try them all).

The other problem we had was this:

As people continued to file in, we got stuck. We couldn’t get to the games, we couldn’t get to the bar, we couldn’t even get out. It took us a solid ten minutes to make our way from the back of the pub to the front. Granted, the place will not usually be this crowded, but the bar tables in between the machines and the bar completely stopped foot traffic. Worse, it blocked access to the bar, which prevented us from getting more drinks or tokens.

One thing this place has going for it are the employees. We ordered drinks from two or three different bartenders and each one was super nice. The two doormen were also overly polite, thanking us for coming in. I suspect in the near future a few changes might be made to the floor plan to help the crowd flow. As long as they can get (and keep) the games in working order, it looks to me like they might have a winning combination.

FlashBack RetroPub, a great place to go party like it’s 1999. Er, 1989.

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I have less and less to say about Czech Day each year. This year Susan and Morgan were part of the Girl Scout Float and Mason ran off to shoot pictures for the yearbook, so I sat by myself and shot pictures. I ended up sitting next to Danny (a friend of my dad’s) and a row in front of my niece and her boyfriend, so I wasn’t completely alone. I took pictures of a lot of the same things I took pictures of each year. I always enjoy hearing the marching bands, seeing the new floats, and watching the kids scramble for candy.

I tried taking a picture of every single car and float this year, so if you or your kids were in the parade, there’s a good chance I caught one of them. If you would like to see another 275 pictures of the Yukon’s 2015 Czech Festival Parade, CLICK HERE.

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I grew up during arguably the greatest era of professional wrestling, the 1980s. I, along with all the other kids in my neighborhood, watched Mid-South Wrestling every weekend and occasionally attended the live events when they passed through town.

Now of course I liked the action in the ring — who didn’t cheer when Kabuki temporarily blinded his opponents by blowing smoke into their eyes or when Hacksaw Jim Duggan would clear the ring of bad guys with his trademark 2×4 — but my favorite part of wrestling was the promos.

Each week between the matches, wrestlers would deliver promos: short interviews or skits performed in character and designed to advance wrestling plots. In the golden days of wrestling it was enough to simply have a perfect physique or possess spectacular ring skills, but over time those with unique personalities began to rise to the top. There were a lot of talented wrestlers that performed well inside the ring, but the ones that became mega-heroes and super villains were the ones most outlandish in front of the camera.

We didn’t know it back then, but those promos, no matter how electrifying or energetic, had nothing to do with the outcome of the matches. The endings of the bouts were determined before wrestlers ever climbed into the ring.

Boxing, martial arts, and mixed martial arts (MMA) all took something from this. Sure, there have always been fighters with charismatic personalities like Muhammad Ali, George Foreman and Conor McGregor, but for every athlete that stuck out from the crowd there have been hundreds of nameless faces climbing into and out of the ring.

And while they’re not always memorable, there’s something to be said for a fighter who walks into the ring, says nothing, and simply destroys his opponent. I like that. I like guys who refrain from all the pre-fight shouting and name calling. I mean sure, that stuff’s fun to watch, and I’m sure every time two fighters publicly announce how much they really hate each other both ratings and ticket sales soar, but I don’t know — there’s just something I enjoy about a guy showing you he’s a bad ass instead of telling you he is.

I’ve always fantasized that if I were a professional fighter who managed to knock out my opponent, I would simply turn and leave the ring with no pomp or circumstance. Perhaps it’s bad form to leave before they raise your hand in victory (and woe to the bloody fighter who doesn’t follow protocol!), but I’d like to see that. Just once I’d love to see a fighter knock a guy to the ground, shrug his shoulders, and then leave. No post-fight interview where the victor quickly throws on a hat and t-shirt blanketed with advertising logos while he thanks God for helping him beat someone else to a pulp. Nope. Just POW, flop, and adios.

Is he going to talk about writing? Please tell me he’s going to eventually talk about writing!

As you may know, I recently enrolled in a college writing course and I’ve been attending class for four or five weeks now. My professor is super knowledgeable and super experienced, having published more than 40 novels. I sit in the back row and write down everything she says in class. I don’t really know anyone else in class — they’re all nice, but I’m roughly 20 years older than all of them. To them, I can only presume, I’m the old fat weirdo sitting in the back of class.

And there’s that moment before you get into the ring and turn in your first homework assignment where you have to decide, are you going to cut a promo? Are you going to stand in front of a camera flexing your muscles and publicly announce that, despite never having sold a single work of fiction, you think you’re a pretty good writer? In a room full of fifteen other writers, do you show your hand before climbing into the ring or do you simply walk in swinging and hope for the best?

I did the latter, and we got our first short stories back this week. POW. Flop. Adios.

That’s not to say the paper wasn’t filled with plenty of red marks (it was) or was perfect (it wasn’t), but it served its purpose. I plan to start my journey through the Masters of Professional Writing program in the spring and I really wanted someone there to know that I belong in that class. (I suppose I also wanted to reassure myself that I belong there, too.)

I tell my kids all the time, “Actions speak louder than words.” Don’t just tell people you’re a decent human being: act like a decent human being. And don’t simply tell people you’re good at things: show them you’re good at things. And most of all, don’t waste your time flexing your muscles and telling everybody you’re awesome: just be awesome.

Inside the ring and out.

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(I shortened this weekly feature’s name from “Star Wars Wednesday” to “Star Wednesday” — it’s no less horrible, just shorter.)

On this week’s Star Wednesday, I’ll be taking a look at this metal Boba Fett coin bank.

I own hundreds (if not thousands) of Star Wars collectibles that offer no real world functionality. They sit on shelves, and I enjoy looking at them, but they don’t do anything. I have shelves and shelves of items like that, which is why over the past few years I’ve started looking for Star Wars related items that I can incorporate into my daily life: coffee mugs, t-shirts, or in this case, a coin bank.

I got this coin bank (along with the R2-D2 one) at Big Lots a couple of years ago for somewhere between $5 and $10. According to Amazon there’s a third one featuring Darth Vader, but because the shape of Darth Vader’s mask is nothing like the top of this bank (like Boba Fett and R2), it’s almost unrecognizable. I wouldn’t go (and haven’t gone) out of my way to pick up the Vader one. According to a sticker on the bottom of the bank these were made in 2012.

The bank itself is cylindrical, with a dome on top that pops off and two arms attached to the sides. All three banks (Fett, R2 and Vader) are physically identical with different paint jobs. The graphics on the Boba Fett one are nice, both front and back. It’s missing his iconic blast damage on the front of the helmet, but does have his traditional Mandalorian insignia on the chest plate and some nice shading overall to give the appearance of some depth to the helmet and armor.

As far as coin banks go… it’s a coin bank. You drop coins in through a slot on the top of his head and they stay inside until you pop the top off and empty the coins out. There just aren’t a lot of ways to mess up the design of a coin bank. I have on occasion managed to accidentally shove the lid down inside the bank when trying to snap the lid back on, which causes the tube to temporarily bend out of shape. The metal is slightly thicker than that of a standard can of soda, but not much. When empty, you could easily squeeze and crush the bank, though I don’t really recommend trying it.

I don’t know how I acquire so much loose change but I do. I always seem to have a pocket full of it and yet I never seem to think to spend it unless whatever I’m buying is just a few cents over the even dollar amount. For years I’ve stored all this change in a bowl on our table (or, more commonly, in my truck’s center console) but this little bank gives me a place to put it. I like the fact that you can stick this on your desk either at home or work and not take up a lot of space while still representing Star Wars with a functional item.

Fett’s almost full of republican credits now and I can’t wait to carry this guy into my local credit union, pop the top of his helmet off, and buy myself a drink in the Mos Eisley cantina.

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I like being involved in weird and unusual things. Sometimes I get involved in weird and unusual things by saying “sure” when I get invited to such things. Last week my friend Dean invited me to attend the inaugural Track and Field World Championships at a local private arcade. Dean told me a few well known competitors would be flying in from California for the event. He also told me that local video wizard Drew Stone would be documenting the tournament, and wanted to know if I would provide audio commentary for the proceedings and interview the competitors.

I said “sure,” which is how I ended up attending the 2084 Arcade in Beggs, Oklahoma with a wireless microphone system threaded through my shirt while watching some of the best Track and Field competitors in the world battle it out on the vintage game.

Track and Field is a classic arcade game, released by Konami in 1983. The game’s unique controls and social competition aspect (allowing up to four players to compete against one another) were enough to make it a good game, but the hype surrounding the 1984 Olympics (which took place in Los Angeles, California) certainly didn’t hurt the game’s popularity.

Each competitor in Track and Field must use three buttons to play the game. There are two RUN buttons that must be hit repetitively to propel your feet in the running events, and a third JUMP/THROW button that does just that. Not only does the game require quick reflexes and pixel-point accuracy, but also maniacally fast fingers (with tough forearms to match). While many classic arcade games only require good hand/eye coordination, Track and Field adds those RUN buttons to the mix. Literally, the faster you can mash those buttons, the faster your little man goes.

And Hector “FLY” Rodriguez is the fastest of the fast, although technically speaking he “flicks” the buttons instead of mashing them, as do most of the world’s top players. In 2008 Hector scored 95,350 on the game, breaking the former world record of 95,040 which was held by Kelly Kobashigawa for 23 years.

But Hector was not the only competitor in town. Jack Gale, also from California, arrived with his eye on the trophy. Gale is no stranger to winning — he is currently first in the world in games like Enduro Racer, Mad Crasher, and Vs. Hogan’s Alley, and holds (and has previously held) many others. Gale’s world record on Zoo Keeper stood for nearly twenty years.

Jack Gale and Hector Rodriguez discuss strategy outside the arcade as Mason looks on.

King of Kong did a disservice to the arcade community by prominently displaying the negative side of rivalry instead of the friendly competitive spirit I’ve witnessed at every single arcade competition I’ve attended. I’ve met several of the people featured in King of Kong (including Billy Mitchell) who have been nothing but polite and genuinely kind, not only to me but their other competitors. Anyone expecting anything less from a gaming competition (hosted in Oklahoma, no less) should be surprised. Rob Walker, one of the contestants and the owner of the 2084 arcade, cooked enough burgers and dogs to feed an army. My only complaint of the day was that so many people brought so many pops and drinks to share that there was no room in the ice chests for us to add our twelve pack. The vast majority of people I’ve met in this circle are generous and kind; in Oklahoma, doubly so.

(When some of the competitors noticed Mason taking an interest in the game, they began giving him tips and encouraging him to enter. While we all knew Mason’s chances of winning a tournament that included the world record holder were extremely slim, it was very nice for them to include him, a gesture that truly shows the real generosity and kindness of most arcade enthusiasts.)

With our bellies full of burgers and hot dogs, it was time for practice to begin. On any other day, everyone’s focus would have been on Walker’s immaculate collection of games… but not on this Saturday. On this Saturday, machines like Journey, Robotron, Joust, and Bubbles sat untouched as the contestants warmed up their chops on the three practice machines that had been moved into the center of the arcade.

As the sun went down, the competition lit up as nine hopeful competitors entered the qualifying round. Each qualifying round was played on the same machine. The machine had two cameras mounted on it, one rebroadcasting the screen to a large flat screen television mounted behind the player and another one recording each player’s face. Additional action was recorded by two or three additional cameras. All of this wizardry was concocted and coordinated by local television media Drew Stone.

After the prelims, the field was narrowed to five finalists: world record holder Hector Rodriguez, Jack Gale, event co-organizors Dean (owner of Arcade Sales and Rentals) and Rob, and Rob’s son Brad. Less than 10,000 points separated the top five scores.

Although Mason did not advance to the finals, he had another job to perform. Mason randomly picked each finalist’s name from a plate to determine the final order.

Although the competition was always friendly, it was also intense as each player flicked, tapped, and occasionally bashed the buttons as furiously as possible in order to propel their runners toward the finish line. Each competitor pulled out every trick they knew in order to obtain as many bonuses as possible. With gamers this evenly matched, a winning score could come down to earning a single 1,000 point bonus.

By the end of the night we were all hot, sweaty, tired, and having a blast. Dean and I, with our wireless microphones attached to our lapels, gave commentary on each player’s performance as they pushed their scores higher and higher. And while every competitor did awesome, at the end only one person could be the ultimate winner.

At the end of the night, pictures of the competitors were taken surrounding the Track and Field machines. The machine used in the competition along with a few additional Track and Field marquees were autographed. Trophies, leftover from the original Classic Video Game Tournaments in the 1980s, were obtained and distributed to the winners.

Oh, and speaking of winners, at the end of the night the points were tallied and the winner…

…will be revealed when the video is released. Sorry, I’ve been sworn to secrecy!

Thanks to all the competitors and spectators who attended the event, and special thanks to Dean and Rob for organizing the event in Rob’s wonderful private arcade, and Hector and Jack for coming all the way from California to attend the event. Talks are already underway in regards to a bigger event next year. Mason is hoping they do; he spent the morning practicing…

PS: If you want to hear me talk about the Commodore 64 version of Track and Field, I covered it a few months ago on my C64 game podcast, Sprite Castle.

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I learned a lot about computers between 1980 (the year we got our first one) and 1993, and doubled that knowledge between 1993 and 1995. In 1993 I built my first PC, in 1994 I got my first dial-up internet account, and in 1995 I began learning about computer networks.

I first gained access to the internet in the fall of ’94, thanks to a generous co-worker who shared his college dial-up internet username and password with me. You must understand how valuable this was at the time, back when people gladly paid by the hour for access to America Online. The college account I used was limited to text-only — no World Wide Web for me, not yet — but it was unlimited and it was free, granting me access to an entirely new world. Soon I was learning all about and exploring IRC, FTP, and Gopher sites.

It all started when a friend of a friend taught me how to download the college server’s list of usernames and passwords. The passwords were hashed (meaning you couldn’t directly read them), but another friend of a friend showed me how to crack them. Before long I had another computer running 24/7, dedicated to revealing those passwords. It guessed the short and simple ones first and then burned cycles for days and weeks trying to break the more difficult ones. My friend’s internet account had a limited amount of storage space. Having access to more accounts meant more storage space. Eventually I gained access to admin accounts with unlimited storage space and the ability to create other accounts. I ended up with many more accounts than I needed, because cracking them seemed dangerous and exciting.

Then I met other people who were inside other systems, doing similar things and willing to trade some of their accounts for some of mine. Once that number of people grew to half a dozen or more, we decided to meet in person to trade information and share knowledge at JJ’s Pizza.

A few of the shady members of this circle also happened to attended classes at the University of Oklahoma, and so JJ’s Pizza, located next to the campus, became our official meeting place. Once or twice a month, our little group of hooligans descended on JJ’s and, over a couple of large pizzas and pitchers of beer, took turns acting as both teachers and students. JJ’s had a side dining room and we were always the only people in it. At that time I owned a portable radio scanner, and sometimes I would turn it on and we would listen to the local police talk to one another over their radios as one guy soldered modifications to electronic devices and another wheeled and dealed in stolen internet accounts as a used car dealer might. Some people said a lot and others said barely anything. Over time I learned that the ones that said nothing at all were the ones to really be afraid of. Some people who aren’t very good with dealing with other human beings are dangerously good at dealing with computers.

I don’t remember how many times we met at JJ’s — a dozen, dozen and a half, tops. Like a lot of computer groups, things got to the point where everybody had shared everything they were willing to share with one another and the fun fizzled soon after.

The picture above of JJ’s Pizza was not taken twenty years ago when all this tomfoolery took place; I snapped it yesterday. I now drive past JJ’s Pizza every Tuesday and Thursday on my way to and from OU. I haven’t been back inside (I’m sure the old Rastan arcade machine is long gone), but I may stop by for lunch sometime soon to see if anything inside seems familiar.

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Welcome to a new feature here at RobOHara.com I’m calling “Star Wars Wednesday,” in which I talk about a Star Wars item from my personal collection each Wednesday. (Okay, so the column title isn’t going to win any awards for originality…)

This week’s featured items are a pair of The Empire Strikes Back mugs, released by Deka in 1980. Deka released a series of plastic mugs and breakfast bowls for all three Star Wars films. Four different mugs were released for Empire: one with R2-D2, C-3P0 and Chewbacca; one with Yoda; one with Boba Fett and Darth Vader, and this one featuring Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Princess Leia. A cereal bowl featuring several characters from the film was also produced. Deka also released cups and bowls for Star Wars and Return of the Jedi, many of which can be seen on this seller’s page.

As you can see (specifically in Leia’s face on the top photo), the mugs often faded and changed colors after repeated washings. These are the original mugs I had as a kid and they definitely held their share of chocolate milk!

Star Wars wasn’t Deka’s only line of plastic mugs; they also produced mugs and cups for Strawberry Shortcake, the Smurfs, The Planet fo the Apes, Care Bears, the GoBots, Buck Rogers, Star Trek, Pac-Man, E.T., Popeye, Punky Brewster, the Muppets, and even for the 1976 remake of King Kong! If kids loved it, chances were Deka had a mug available for it.

While it appears their website is no longer available, the earliest trademark for Deka Plastics, Inc of Elizabeth, NJ, I could find was in 1960, and the last one I could find was in 1992. If you’re interested, you can still find tons of these mugs and cups for sale cheap on Etsy and eBay.

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