May 1959 Popular Electronics
Table of Contents
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics. See articles
published October 1954 - April 1985. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged.
This series of comics describes
the reactions you might expect to receive from various kinds people who, while visiting
your home, are introduced to your new stereo setup. Although they appeared in a
1959 edition of Popular Electronics magazine, the scenarios still hold
true today, only now you can extend the equipment types to include a gaming computer,
a wide screen television, a personal robot, and other modern electromechanical wonders.
Now, however, while "admiring" your equipment, he/she will simultaneously be referring
constantly to his/her smartphone. It is rare to see this kind of entertainment in
newer publications - probably for fear of being sued by an overly sensitive person
who sees himself/herself as being lampooned.
Other Carl Kohler masterpieces: "The
Great Electron-Pedantic Project," "Dig That Reel Flat Response,"
a Superheterodyne," "Unpopular Electronics,"
"Thin Air, My Foot,"
"High Tide in the
R/C Cloud," "Hi-Fi Guest List,"
," "Boner Box," and "McWatts." Also, be sure
to read "Carl
Kohler's Life & Times per Son, Christoverre."
Hi-Fi Guest List
By Carl Kohler
Sooner or later the avid hi-fi and stereo enthusiast begins inviting friends
over to admire his latest equipment acquisitions and enjoy his newest recordings.
Portrayed here are a handful of guests any stereo-loving host may encounter to his
Becoming strangely affected the moment the music begins, this guest fancies himself
something of an impromptu conductor. He sometimes breaks into interpretive dance
routines ranging from quasi-ballet to the common waltz-clog, and has been known
to do a fandango to locomotive sound recordings. He can be persuaded to sit still
only if test tones are played.
He seems to derive an almost sadistic satisfaction from finding minor flaws in
his host's equipment and pointing out that the same turntables, tuners and amplifiers
are selling for half of what the host paid, elsewhere. A genius at discovering minute
damaged areas on cabinets which have escaped the attention of his host.
If not closely watched, he will quietly begin "investigating" any piece of hi-fi
stereo equipment he can put his paws on. He can easily be spotted since he invariably
carries a miniature tool kit in his hip pocket and is given to loitering around
the backsides of cabinets.
This guest hasn't really approved of any recording since "Cohen On The Telephone"
was issued. He listens to his host's latest and most unique records with utter dissatisfaction
and frequent grunts of derision. Always giving the strong impression that he has
been shanghaied into lending ears (which may be true), he has been known to stalk
out during the first bars of music which keeps other people rooted to their chairs.
Caring little for his host's splendid library of recordings, he is quite impressed
with the cataloging and cross-filing system. He has a dismal habit of insisting
upon discussing record-classification methods in detail while his host's most enthralling
musical selections are vainly being played for him.
Displaying a flattering interest in anything and everything his host may suggest
be played, this type actually wants only background music so he can find the most
comfortable chair in the room and take a nap. He demonstrates a weird ability to
doze off no matter what kind of music is offered him.
Posted September 8, 2022
(updated from original post