Bicycle or Motorcycle

Everybody has a favourite stamp in his collection, thus also the undersigned.
Personally I am always charmed by stylistic images, and this is also the reason that I gather a collection of "impossible" living creatures (centaurs, angels, Pegasus etcetera), but here we are talking about motorcycle stamps on which there are no real motorcycles.

Number 1 in my collection is the above stamp from New Caledonia, but second best is the St Vincent & Grenadines stamp of May 5th 1994, with the Disney characters Horace Horsecollar and Clarabelle Cow on and in a sidecar combination.

When it was recently mentioned that this concerns a bicycle, I dived into the matter and found the following.

Horace Horsecollar

Clarabelle Cow

First the personal facts: Clarabelle was a creation of Ubbe Eert Iwerks (also the creator of Mickey Mouse) as friend of Minnie Mouse. Ub was hired as cartoon creator by Walt Disney. Clarabelle appeared for the first time in a cartoon movie in 1928: Steamboat Willie. In the early years the Disney movies lasted just 7 minutes, and Clara's act was limited to half a minute.
Horace Horsecollar appeared one year later on the big screen, when Mickey was a farm-hand in the movie Farm boy and got Horace the working horse as mate.

Still from "Farm Boy"

Soon the movies with naked animals were qualified as indecent, and the characters got clothed. With cloths on Horace was the friend of Mickey until 1932, when this position was taken over by the Hillbilly: Goofy the dog.

Back to the stamp. In the cartoon movie published in 1930 "The Shindig" (The Party), Clarabelle is the girlfriend of Horace and he is going to get here from home on his (very simply drawn) motorcycle, to which he mounted for this occasion a wheelbarrow to serve as a sidecar.

Still from "The Shindig"

Unnecessary to tell that the thing off course suffered some troubles and caused some environmental pollution. Once arrived at the stable of C., where she is lying reading in the by court forbidden erotic book "Three Weeks" from 1907, they together hit the road to the party on the combination.

These early cartoon movies have been made in black and white, but when the Technicolor technology really breaks through in the 30-ies with The Wizard of Oz, Disney decides to re-issue all movies in colour. And see: our image.
After that it took until 1934 before before another motorcycle was used in a Disney movie, when an early Donald Duck is chasing a dog-napper, with Mickey driving and both dressed as cops. Alas, there is not yet a stamp with this fragment from "The Dognapper".

Still from "The dognapper"


Hans de Kloet


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