Monday, October 10, 2011

Imflamm* (for Inflamm*)

This public service model, looking at once both hot and cool, seems to be announcing "I'm flammable" as she fashionably demonstrates fire safety awareness with her shiny white go-go boots and flaming red fire extinguisher. Like a cross between Emma Peel of The Avengers, a cartoon superheroine whose special power is putting out (sorry!), and a beauty pageant contestant about to show us how to kick a fire's ass, her appeal is undeniable. Yesterday kicked off Fire Prevention Week, which was established in 1925 by President Calvin Coolidge to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire, which occurred on October 8–10, 1871. Calling the loss of 15,000 lives to fire the previous year "startling," Coolidge stated: "This waste results from the conditions which justify a sense of shame and horror; for the greater part of it could and ought to be prevented... It is highly desirable that every effort be made to reform the conditions which have made possible so vast a destruction of the national wealth." There were seven examples of today's typo found in OhioLINK and 74 in WorldCat.

(Sixties-era photo from the State Library's ephemera collection, presumably a production of the New York State Health Dept.)

Carol Reid

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