Coin Operated

I remember staying in a motel, with my future husband, on a road trip where they had these coin operated massaging beds. I swear the label on it said something like “Cyclo Massage” and I tell you it felt more like a jerking earthquake and not too relaxing either. For many years we had our own joke about cyclo massage. I noticed in this image that the company address is in Pismo Beach, Ca. where ” home models are available. ” Be still my heart! Pismo Beach is not too far up the coast from us. Did you know A. Pismo Clam was the name of a character in The Bank Dick, a W.C. Fields film? In that film W.C. Fields’ character is Egbert Souse (pronounced Soo-say).

Just a little trivia inspired by the prompt “coin” for Stream of Consciousness Saturday hosted by Linda G Hill. Featured image of Massaging Bed control by Kenji Ross on Wikimedia. Vote image by

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20 thoughts on “Coin Operated

    1. Deborah Drucker Post author

      It was fun traveling then because gas was cheap and the cost of staying was much less that $100. Nowadays you are lucky if you can find a place to stay, especially in the more desirable locations of California for $100. I don’t think they have messaging beds anymore either and if they do they probably cost more than a quarter. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Dan Antion

        We drove from Seattle to San Diego, as close o the coast as we could get, in 1979 and we stayed in some cheap places. Including one in Bodega Bay that had me worried. We had to stop there because the gas stations closed at 6:00 (during the crisis). We were hoping to get to San Francisco, but we were about to run out of gas.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Deborah Drucker Post author

        Bodega Bay is a pretty cool place to stop. The name Bodega Bay always reminds me of “The Birds,” though. We made that trip in reverse in 1976, from LA to Portland, Oregon and back. We stayed along the coast as well. Beautiful scenery is it not? 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Deborah Drucker Post author

        Yes, you get to see the Mendocino coast, Eureka, and the Oregon coast. We saw Dune country, Coos Bay, Eugene, and a herd of Elk and lumber mills among other things. All the bridges over the Columbia River were pretty intersting too.


  1. Eclectic Evelyn

    When I was very young, my family stayed in a motel on vacation that had one of those. I thought is was the coolest thing to have an amusement park ride in the room and I told everyone we met. My mother still thinks that is one of the funniest childhood tales to tell about me.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. John Holton

        When I was growing up, TV’s were expensive, so one place came up with the idea of a “quarter meter bank,” where you had to feed in a quarter to watch an hour of TV. Once a month someone would come by and collect the money, and when you had paid off the TV they took the bank off. Don’t know why I just thought of that… but maybe it’s the same idea…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Deborah Drucker Post author

        That is interesting. I had not heard of that before.I think you probably got a better deal with the TV. It just shows that things cost so much less back then, even thought it is relative. It would take a long time to pay off a TV with quarters now. The massage was pretty bad and probably not even worth the quarter. I remember it just shook the bed not like the massage chairs now. It would not be worth paying off even in quarters. 🙂


      3. John Holton

        Doesn’t sound like it’d be all that enjoyable. I never knew anyone that bought a TV with one of those banks; in my neighborhood, either we paid cash for one or went without. We got my grandmother’s TV when she died, and when we were done passed it on to someone else in the family. We believed in recycling long before it was cool…

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Deborah Drucker Post author

        I remember when we first got a color TV and how great it was. When I was in college I bought a black and white Zenith because I thought they were a reliable brand and it was probably a good price and I told myself I was ok without color. That little Zenith never broke down and many years later I gave it away. Those were the days when people repaired their TVs as well. Nowadays all our appliances and electronics do not last long and we throw them away when they break.


      5. John Holton

        We’ve had the TV we have now, one of the last with a picture tube, about twelve years, and while there are minor issues with the picture, it shows no sign of breaking down. When we cut the cord, a friend of ours gave us a digital converter box, and with an indoor antenna we can pick up the stations we want with little or no trouble. If either the TV or the converter breaks down, we’ll get a new TV, but so far it’s hung in there. But you’re right: if this TV breaks down, it can’t be repaired.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Deborah Drucker Post author

        The last TV we had that could be repaired was a NEC and they are not in business anymore. That TV was repaired once and never broke down again and we finally gave it away still working. This disposable electronic economy leaves much to be desired. The only good thing is these electronic recycling drives, but I don’t think anything can be done with old TVs.


      7. John Holton

        NEC is still around, but they’re out of the TV business. My guess is that some other company made the TV’s with the NEC brand on them. That happens more than you might think.

        We took a TV to a recycling drive and they took it, so you might want to check if you have a TV to get rid of. Could be local regulations could be different, but hey, it’s worth a try…

        Liked by 1 person


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