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Topic: Perspective

How Swanson’s TV Dinners Made It to the Digital Age

Thank American Airlines, 260 tons of turkey and dudes who still can’t cook

C.A. Swanson & Company had a big problem. It was just after Thanksgiving 1953, and the frozen-food brand had wildly overestimated the demand for turkey. Now, 260 tons of frozen…

The Myth and Magic of WD-40, the Cold War Lube That Changed America

Admit it: You’ve got at least one can at home

According to the most recent census, there are 115,227,000 households in America, and they don't have a lot in common. Only 33 percent have kids, 18 percent are millionaires, and…

How Starving Artists, Students and Strivers Made Cup Noodles Great

The 3-minute meal that’s been eaten 30 billion times

See if you can identify the product associated with the following directions: "Pull back lid. Fill with boiling water. Let stand for three minutes. Stir well and enjoy." Well, you either…

Why Cuba’s Best Cigar Is Still Hot (Despite a 52-Year Embargo)

The full-flavored story of H. Upmann, JFK’s favorite smoke

It was Friday, Feb. 2, 1962, and President John F. Kennedy summoned his press secretary Pierre Salinger into his office for an urgent meeting. "I really need some help," said Kennedy. "What…

How Sony's Walkman Changed the World

Before CDs and MP3s, this little machine made music portable

Andreas Pavel was getting tired of being laughed at. It was 1977, and the German-born inventor had made appointments at all of the major electronics companies—Yamaha, Grundig, ITT, etc.—and each…

Why the Magic 8 Ball Still Holds Our Fascination

Can a classic toy stay relevant? Signs point to yes

Abe Bookman's toy was a flop. He should have seen it coming. After all, the toy was a fortune-telling device. It was 1950, and for the previous four years, Bookman's company…

Why So Many People Are Suddenly Wearing $600 Canada Goose Coats

Thank Sundance, Kate Upton and penguins

Supermodel Kate Upton is already known for her enormous … accomplishments, but her most impressive by far took place in December 2012. Wearing little more than boots and a bikini…

How an Ordinary Coat Lining Became Fashion’s Most Stylish Scarf

The checkered past of Burberry’s perfect plaid

As the story goes, the invention of fashion's nattiest scarf was a complete accident. In 1967, the manager of Burberry's Paris store was arranging a group of the brand's signature…

The Tall, Cold Tale of the Big Gulp

Thanks to 7-Eleven, large will never be the same

The average American citizen will drink 44 gallons of soft drinks this year, and a good many of them will head off to the local 7-Eleven to fill up. In…

How a Naked Woman, a Horse and a Family in Belgium Created Godiva Chocolate

America's most coveted confection

If you're not among the 54 percent of Americans planning on celebrating Valentine's Day, you may wish to reconsider. Some 53 percent of women surveyed a few years ago reported…

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