A few weeks back I was noting the volumes of Omni Magazine. Omni Magazine was a publication about Science, Technology, Science Fiction, the Mind, Computer, UFO’s, Robotics, and beyond. It first began printing in 1978. The covers were captivating. On one, you might find a jockey riding a horse that has a one-hundred dollar bill printed on it:
As you can see, this cover is from the May 1989 edition. I wondered why there was a horse on the cover. In May 1989, American Jockey Chris Antley ended a record of 64 consecutive winning days on the race-track. Antley made headlines as a jockey by winning the Kentucky Derby in 1991 and 1999 (on horses ‘Strike the Gold’ and ‘Charistmatic’, respectively). Could that be Mr. Antley and Strike the Gold depicted on the cover of Omni?
On another Omni, I found an insect crouched on a leaf, but on second glance noted that the insect was made entirely of computer parts.
Not only were the cover illustrations unique, but the titles and headlines were cleverly worded. They got my attention in the way that they sounded playfully cutting edge, but of the 80’s, early 90’s computer-science-mixed-with-popular-culture tone. For me, that tone was made appealing from movies such as Tron, Back to the Future 2, the neon illustrations of Dire Strait’s “I Want My MTV” video, and much more.
A futuristic composition, which has that dated feel to it, was a cover from June 1990. An infant child is hovering above earth’s atmosphere, floating on a robe, with a computer keyboard in front of her and her finger delicately posed over what I suspect is the F10 key.
So when I was dallying through the pages, I enjoyed reading tidbits from the articles. Each publication provided a UFO update, which, for Star Trek fans like myself, was delightful.
A quote from the update reads:
“Thirty years ago the Soviets gave the world a new word for “space traveler”: kosmonavt, Anglicized as cosmonaut. They are now trying to do it again with the word enlonavt, only this time the travelers are not human. The enlonavts (or UFOnauts, as we would say) are aliens from space. And they’ve landed in the USSR.
‘Although the Soviets have come to the UFO arena fairly late in the game, they are making up for lost time. Take the story recently publicized around the world by the Soviet news agency Tass. This past October (1989), the agency announced, scientists confirmed the arrival of 9-to 12-foot -tall extraterrestrials with tiny heads. The aliens allegedly strolled around a park in the city of Voronezh.
Because the magazine seemed to be aimed at science and science-technology enthusiasts, the pages were rich with early cell phone, fax machine, Tandy computer, and Compuserve advertisements. A smart phone from “Sharp”:
A cell phone from “Panasonic”:
A Tandy Computer from 1989:
and an endorsement for the old online provider and technology computer Compuserve:
All advertisements shown above came out of volumes 11-12 available here at the library. A lasting thought from Omni: