Back in the days of yore, I lived with 2 friends on the 2nd floor of a 3-family house in the city. It was a great couple of years and we laughed pretty much all of the time. The 3-family was definitely older and could have used some updates, but it was liveable and we had a surprisingly high tolerance for cold and mice, so we were pleased as punch. It also didn’t hurt that we had friends living on the 3rd floor of the house AND next door…we had kind of taken over the block at that point and it was great.
An unexpected perk of the house was the “vintage” stove that we could only assume was one of the original features. It was called the Frigidaire Flair (the Custom Imperial, to be specific) and it was glorious:
“The Happiest thing that ever happened to cooking…OR YOU!” <– actual tagline
The picture doesn’t do it justice, but the stove top actually slides back into the unit, leaving a completely flat front. How modern! And did you notice the 2 separate ovens? Cook dinner AND dessert at once? Yes, please!
To say that this stove was the selling point of the apartment for us wouldn’t be completely inaccurate, which is funny because we didn’t even know what it was when the landlord was showing us around. We toured the apartment and then went to a Dunkin’ Donuts to discuss our options, where we agreed that while none of us could remember seeing an oven (or a refrigerator, for that matter – turns out it was in the pantry) and we couldn’t figure out why there was a bookcase in the kitchen, we still think we wanted the apartment. Only later did the landlord explain that yes, that was the oven, and demonstrate all of the features like the “Roll-To-You cooktop” and the “meat probe” (what?). As my roommate put it, “It’s a housewife’s dream!” The stove was a conversation piece when people came over and those 2 ovens turned out to be hugely convenient (especially after someone (read: me) accidentally pre-heated one of the ovens with a plastic platter inside, melting said platter and perhaps starting a small fire).
One of my roommates was taking classes while we were living there and came to us with an intriguing proposition: could we be the actors/models in a video that she was making for one of her classes? We wouldn’t actually have any lines and we would get to dress up, and she would pay us in adoration and maybe some cake. Sold!
The assignment was to make a How-To video. Between our friend the Flair and our curious collection of 50’s-style garb, my roommate decided to go with a video based on the Coronet Instructional Videos (look them up on YouTube or something, they are an absolute hoot) called How to Make a Cake…and Friends! The video shows a housewife going through the steps of making a cake (including finding ways to pass the time while it bakes) while her husband is at work, at the same time fending off her pesky neighbor who drops by unannounced and tries to dig right in. And pay close attention, some of you might recognize the husband!
I know what you’re wondering:
Yes, my roommate made this video and she is incredibly talented (especially considering the “talent” with whom she was working).
Yes, we all took acting classes before we started filming. And no, I’m not telling the truth about taking acting classes.
Yes, I pull that egg out of my pocket in the first scene.
No, while we were making the video it never occurred to me that one day I might have a blog on which I feature instructional posts on how to bake (cup)cakes.
Yes, I do wish that I had taken the Flair with me when we left.
Flair picture found here