Lately it seems like a lot of things from the fifties are making a comeback, like fedoras, the Red Scare, and mainstream racism. One thing that hasn’t resurfaced from that period, however, is zaniness. For those of you who aren’t REALLY OLD, zaniness sounded something like this:
Olde Frothingslosh commercial from KDKA Radio
Olde Frothingslosh, the Pale Ale for the Pale Stale Male was a long-running joke from Pittsburgh radio jockey Regis Cordic about a beer brand “so light, the foam’s on the bottom”. One of the selling points was that it was “brewed from hippity-hops on the banks of the Upper Crudney in Lower Slobbovia.”
I DOUBLE DOG DARE YOU to try to out-zany that.
Anyway, the gag ads ran for years. In 1955, Olde Frothingslosh was defictionalized by the Pittsburgh Brewing Company. They began issuing new cans and bottles every Christmas season filled with their flagship brew, Iron City Beer. Each year’s release featured a new zany label, and many of them even had zany limmericks, such as:
Our Founder, Sir Rege Frothingslosh
Used to bathe in the vats when he’d wash!
“It’s more comfy,” he said,
“Than a fine featherbed,
“Cause the foam’s on the bottom, by gosh!”
The most popular labels amongst collectors are those featuring the winner of the Frothingslosh Beauty Contest (not a real thing), “Miss Olde Frothingslosh” (not a real title), Fatima Yechburgh (a local woman of considerable heft named Marsha Phillips).
The brand remained a Pittsburgh in-joke until 1982 – many years after Cordic left the station. It’s been revived periodically over the years, but seems to be out of production right now. If anyone in the Pittsburgh area knows were to buy a bottle, hook us up!