Jim Woodring's MR. BUMPER


“Mr. Bumper… the very name sends shivers up the spines of renegade natural historians everywhere. For months, he has been but a handful of shimmering photons, a tiny scrim or watercolor particulate, a ghostly ideal hovering in the twilight at the hour of nameless longing.
And now, after so many false starts, so many urgent negotiations, so much clenching and unclenching of eager fingers, Mr. Bumper is about to become a reality in well-appointed homes throughout the world. Yes! Legions of freshly-cast and brilliantly painted Mr. Bumpers are marching into their boxes to get ready for the long sea voyage to these shores.

“Will they be here in time for Christmas? Heh heh… no. A few advance copies have been rushed to selected outlets (like OKOK in Seattle) but when these are gone there will be no more until January.

“However, you can give Mr. B in absentia! How? Simply PRE-ORDER MR. BUMPER NOW. You’ll receive a handsome certificate telling your chosen recipient that his or her very own Mr. Bumper is steaming his way toward them and will be mailed to them just as soon as we receive the lot.
As you can see in the pictures, Mr. Bumper is a complicated two-part entity who conceals his excruciatingly tender bodulation underneath a tough, shiny carapace. And we believe we may say without fear of contradiction that Mr.B is the ONLY toy on the market today with eight legs, three mouths, 37 eyes and a flame coming out of its fore-trunk.
We will be selling Mr. Bumper in two color schemes:
They are $60 each, plus $11.40 for Priority Mail postage and handling anywhere in the US.”

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About Jay Babcock

I am an independent writer and editor based in Tucson, Arizona. In 2023: I publish an email newsletter called LANDLINE = https://jaybabcock.substack.com Previously: I co-founded and edited Arthur Magazine (2002-2008, 2012-13) and curated the three Arthur music festival events (Arthurfest, ArthurBall, and Arthur Nights) (2005-6). Prior to that I was a district office staffer for Congressman Henry A. Waxman, a DJ at Silver Lake pirate radio station KBLT, a copy editor at Larry Flynt Publications, an editor at Mean magazine, and a freelance journalist contributing work to LAWeekly, Mojo, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Vibe, Rap Pages, Grand Royal and many other print and online outlets. An extended piece I wrote on Fela Kuti was selected for the Da Capo Best Music Writing 2000 anthology. In 2006, I was somehow listed in the Music section of Los Angeles Magazine's annual "Power" issue. In 2007-8, I produced a blog called "Nature Trumps," about the L.A. River. From 2010 to 2021, I lived in rural wilderness in Joshua Tree, Ca.