Cycling Nostalgia & Trivia Time

Years ago when I was in an art history class I did a presentation contrasting and comparing how characters used in marketing had evolved over the years to suit the clientele they were being marketed towards. A few days ago when I was going through the basement, I chanced across a box with some of the slides in it and found this gem…

In this classic poster, Bibendium, or the Michelin Man as he is now known is shown not as the baby-hugging family man he is today, but as a crass individual smoking a cigar, stealing the girl, and destroying public property by riding straight through someone’s pumpkin patch. Apparently people back then went out every evening and placed a glass globe over the top of all the produce in their garden in the evening to protect it from the frost, and the best way to test the durability of your tires is to ride it straight through it.

His friend should have sprung for some Michelins too.

I love the details. I always throw my hands up in amazement when I see a large inflatable man riding a bicycle through a garden.

I’m not sure what force is keeping his girlfriend on the bike. Maybe she can fly. If the original had been a little larger, this would make a nice poster for the rec room, but the quality was too poor. I’d cite the source, but it was from some 20 year old book in the darkest corner of the MICA library.

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