The 1970s: What the heck were we thinking?

posted at 11:01 am on July 15, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

And you thought disco was the worst thing about the 1970s.  In a palette-cleanser for a slow newsday Sunday, BuzzFeed takes us back 40 years to the fashion nightmare that was my youth.  Believe me, this will make all of us appreciate just how far we have removed ourselves from the haute couture of the Me Generation.

For instance, feast your eyes on this advertisement of sartorial splendor (via Jonah Goldberg):

The slacks displayed in the foreground are — I kid you not — called “Horoscope fun slacks.”  Apparently, this is intended for the man who wants women in bars to know that he’s serious when he asks, “What’s your sign, baby?”

Considering the fashion trends of the time, these guys had the right idea — well, almost:

We have to give the 70s a little credit here … because no one would hire that bald guy at the top for a fashion shoot these days.  This looks a little like the old Sesame Street game, one of these things is not like the other.  If this was the Village People (another 70s atrocity), he’d be Accountant Man.

One theme seems to dominate in these advertisements, some of which I dimly recall from my youth, and that is … androgyny.  It’s remarkable how the fashions for men and women look so much alike.  The US in this decade experienced enormous shifts in gender-role expectations, with the liberation of women and their rapid expansion in the workforce, so it’s not surprising that this social upheaval got reflected in fashion and popular culture.  As Buzzfeed puts these ads together, it’s not even very subtle.  Take a look at how similar the designs are for men and women in these two separate ads:

Imagine that the models were swapped between the two photos.  Would anyone notice a difference?

In a couple of these ads, the fashionistas seem aware that men might balk at looking too feminine.  An ad for a men’s jumpsuit showed a model with a beard that rivaled that of Fidel Castro, aviator sunglasses, and this text to sell just how doggone masculine women would find a man who wore it.  See if you can find all the sexual references in this classic (#12 on BuzzFeed’s list):

Because one is enough, when it’s you.  Show where you’re headed in the ultimate fashion climax.  Fits so tight it shows all you’ve got … you’re a walking turn-on.  And treats your body as well as she does.  Easy on, easy off, quick as a flick of her tongue.  Sexy cool crinkle cloth for those hot nights to come.  Designed with your desires in mind … she’ll eat you alive in it.  …

Are you man enough to fill it?

Er … overcompensate much?

This one from Jon Gabriel on Twitter is more straightforward in its unisex approach, with less self-consciousness:

On the other hand, another ad overtly celebrates the unisex movement in fashion, with his-or-hers see-through lace pants … but note the name of the brand at the bottom:

That’s almost a parody, isn’t it?  Big Steel Unisex See-Through Lace Pants.  It would have taken sheer nerve to wear these in public, even in the 1970s.

Still, a lot of us wore clothes like these, and worse.  I myself owned two pair of the Angels Flight slacks shown in the last ad on BuzzFeed’s list.  Thankfully, they had as much lasting power as the rest of the fashions of the 1970s.  Let’s hope we never see its like again.

Actually, given the chance (and some adjustments in size), I’d wear this one again … especially the watchband.

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You do know how to look things up your friends don’t tell you about, right, Little follower.

Bmore on July 15, 2012 at 7:50 PM

Also known as Silks or Silkies. DP. Funny!

Bmore on July 15, 2012 at 7:51 PM

You think Soundgarden or Nirvana were “fun” bands, who thought much about their craft?

No, I think they’re talented bands who put out quality music. They Might Be Giants are a “fun” band. Barenaked Ladies are a “fun” band. Weezer is a “fun” band, I suppose. Not all pop music has to be “fun,” though.

They aren’t uplifting emotionally in any perceivable way to me, and they’re almost depressing – as workingclass artist said, “GRIM”! Unlike ’70s bands who didn’t shy away from the pursuit of pleasure, I see that Grunge bands did/do, and I find that to be an unappealing trait.

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 7:29 PM

Since when is music supposed to be about “joy”? I’m not saying you have to listen to Joy Division in a dark room while you cry yourself to sleep, but there’s a lot more to music than “joy.”

Is Adagio for Strings joyful? Schubert’s Ave Maria? A lot of classical music could be considered “depressing,” yet still emotionally uplifting.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 15, 2012 at 7:51 PM

petefrt on July 15, 2012 at 7:00 PM

Oops, sorry if I was being too fixated on the musical aspect – I agree with you in a broader way as well.

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 7:52 PM

I just remembered something about Dallas (well I think it was in 1980 to be exact) at that time. I was in the back seat of our car and Mom and Dad were up front. We were driving north on Lemmon Avenue and Love field was to our left. Off about 200 yards was Sewell Lincoln car dealership and you could see a man with a big cowboy hat out front. My Mom told my Dad “That’s J.R.”. My Dad said “no way”. She insisted we drive up and he complied. Sure enough it was Larry Hagman. I remember her saying “Oh JR…Oh JR can we have your autograph?”. He shook my hand and then said “How about a $ 100.00 bill?”. He then handed me a fake C Note with his picture on it. I wish I still had it.

Reggie1971 on July 15, 2012 at 7:53 PM

Pop music has basically morphed into commerce and nothing else, which hasn’t always been the case.

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 7:42 PM

That’s a mild way of putting it. :)

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 7:52 PM

Thanks. Got ya the first time, I think.

petefrt on July 15, 2012 at 7:58 PM

Pop music has basically morphed into commerce and nothing else, which hasn’t always been the case.

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 7:42 PM

That reached its apex in the mid 2000s…ex: Ashlee Simpson.

Things have gotten a bit better in the 2010s, but not much.

Reggie1971 on July 15, 2012 at 8:00 PM

One reason I loved the ’80s was that men started looking like men again, instead of prancing around in skin-tight Haband polyester dude-slacks with the no-belt, Banroll waistbands. Man, that was awful. And don’t get me started on the lank tresses and ‘burns on the ’70s male. Or the “leisure suits.”

Of course, for women, ’80s fashion had its drawbacks. Confession: I did actually have a double-breasted coatdress with the linebacker shoulder pads. Had a perm throughout the ’80s. Had those appalling double-pleated high-waist pants with the peg legs. Wore them with puff-sleeve sweaters. I should have been committed.

Thanks, Ed, for a trip down memory lane. And yes, I had a sloppy suede shoulder bag with fringe in high school, in the ’70s, and multicolored suede tie-on platforms. Long hair, bangs, and pink lipstick. What a time.

J.E. Dyer on July 15, 2012 at 8:09 PM

And yes, I had a sloppy suede shoulder bag with fringe in high school, in the ’70s,

J.E. Dyer on July 15, 2012 at 8:09 PM

I did too. It matched my suede western-style jacket with fringe hanging from the sleeves.

Flora Duh on July 15, 2012 at 8:18 PM

Pop music has basically morphed into commerce and nothing else, which hasn’t always been the case.

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 7:42 PM

I couldn’t tell you what the current No. 1 pop hit is now, if that concept even applies any more. But I’ve found more music available from the 60s and 70s on the Internet that I never heard on the radio when it was contemporary to those years. In the process, I’ve discovered a ton of good, interesting, well-written and composed pop and rock tunes, some from established musicians, but others from one-or-two hit wonders, so it’s nice to know that some of these musicians are getting their due and maybe reaching a wider audience than they had imagined.

PatriotGal2257 on July 15, 2012 at 8:23 PM

My son’s girlfriend buys and sells vintage clothing. I love when she comes by sporting one of her finds.

VINTAGE/HIPSTER——translation “Old crap that we saw at flea markets down at Critter Creek on Saturday morning in the 1980′s.”

PappyD61 on July 15, 2012 at 8:25 PM

LOL, that proves I don’t know how to set up a link.

if you click on that above it will take you to “cars of the 1970′s”.

Mammy needs to take me outside fer a while. I needs some fresh arr.

:-)

PappyD61 on July 15, 2012 at 8:31 PM

Hillary is feeling the Islamic love, haha. HA should blog this.

Dollayo on July 15, 2012 at 8:36 PM

No, I think they’re talented bands who put out quality music. They Might Be Giants are a “fun” band. Barenaked Ladies are a “fun” band. Weezer is a “fun” band, I suppose. Not all pop music has to be “fun,” though.

Since when is music supposed to be about “joy”? I’m not saying you have to listen to Joy Division in a dark room while you cry yourself to sleep, but there’s a lot more to music than “joy.”

Is Adagio for Strings joyful? Schubert’s Ave Maria? A lot of classical music could be considered “depressing,” yet still emotionally uplifting.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 15, 2012 at 7:51 PM

Since I like Joy Division, and am not bothered by them in the same way I am bands like Soundgarden, Nirvana, and especially the Grunge bands which followed them, I’ll try to explain myself better.

Remember when I compared Grunge bands to atheists singing hymns of praise? To me, Grunge is the rock music of the distressed, unempathetic, self-centered Me Generation, which is why I find it such a departure from the past & so uninteresting – I don’t believe entertaining/relating to others through music is much of a priority to Grunge groups.

I would say is that what I am getting at here is “soul”/”human spirit” – I believe Ian Curtis was in touch with it, Soundgarden/Nirvana was very little in touch with it, and Grunge bands are completely out of touch with it. This also has to do with the difference between hopeful people who are good-humoredly sarcastic, and hopeless people who are bad-humoredly snarky – how could anyone reasonably expect the snarky type of person, who has an unnatural relationship with pleasure and can’t relate to genuine happiness, to positively connect with those who don’t suffer from that same problem?

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 8:40 PM

And yes, I had a sloppy suede shoulder bag with fringe in high school, in the ’70s,

J.E. Dyer on July 15, 2012 at 8:09 PM

Yep, nearly every girl I knew had one of those, or a purse made from old blue jeans. My personal favorite was a patchwork one with a really long strap.

One of my friends had bells tied onto some of the fringe. We always knew when she was coming, lol. Of course, we called her “Jingles.”

Jvette on July 15, 2012 at 8:41 PM

So where did the cool kid DP go? Getting all DP’d up I reckon. Still funny though!

Bmore on July 15, 2012 at 8:46 PM

And what was that doll that had the long hair that you could pull out of the top of her head?

PappyD61 on July 15, 2012 at 8:30 PM

The doll was the Crissy doll.

My little sisters’ friends had them. They broke, like, the third time the hair was pulled. But watching the hair retract was kind of fun, when you encountered a Crissy that hadn’t broken yet.

J.E. Dyer on July 15, 2012 at 8:54 PM

Chicks were digging the fashions….so what’s the problem?

Hening on July 15, 2012 at 8:56 PM

The 1970s: What the heck were we thinking?

The clap, that’s as bad as it gets.

/buh….BoooooW!

roy_batty on July 15, 2012 at 9:03 PM

I would say is that what I am getting at here is “soul”/”human spirit” – I believe Ian Curtis was in touch with it, Soundgarden/Nirvana was very little in touch with it, and Grunge bands are completely out of touch with it.

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 8:40 PM

Well, I disagree, and apparently so do lots of other people. I don’t think all grunge was depressing, either. What about STP?

I think you’re making a relatively arbitrary distinction between what has “soul” and what doesn’t. Can you name a 90′s band you enjoy? After all, Joy Division is 80′s.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 15, 2012 at 9:14 PM

This also has to do with the difference between hopeful people who are good-humoredly sarcastic, and hopeless people who are bad-humoredly snarky – how could anyone reasonably expect the snarky type of person, who has an unnatural relationship with pleasure and can’t relate to genuine happiness, to positively connect with those who don’t suffer from that same problem?

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 8:40 PM

Yeah, because clearly, when I think of people who are psychologically complex and “genuinely happy,” I confirm it by making sure they like “Disco Duck” more than “Interstate Love Song.”

This just seems like a lot of psychobabble rubbish to legitimize your dislike of certain bands.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 15, 2012 at 9:19 PM

Sharke I vacationed in the UK & Ireland in 1980 as a teen yoot and budding new wave fan. In 79, I got Joe Jackson’s I’m the Man album and still listen to it every week. Ditto London Calling and the Pretenders, the Jam etc.

My older bro was a new wave rocker too and as we’re walking around London that summer all we saw were billboards and music store displays for a band called Secret Affair.

We bought one of their cassettes and judged them to be OK, but not anywhere in the Big Leagues and we couldnt figure out why Secret Affair got half the store while the big boys got one or two small displays.

Also, no kid in the burbs I grew up in were wearing that stuff but i laugh my ass off every time i recall Jr High dances and the “silk” shirts we wore. Oh Marone!

Sacramento on July 15, 2012 at 2:57 PM

I’m The Man is a fantastic album and I listen to it regularly also. I love the way his music has evolved from hard edged New Wave guitar all the way through fully orchestrated movie scores. I’m also a big fan of his “Body And Soul” album from the 80′s – it’s one of the most finely mastered records of all time and its audio quality really stands out from most of the over-compressed crap you hear today. It’s the kind of album you have to crank up to get a good volume out of because it has such a wide dynamic range.

As far as I know Jackson has some libertarian tendencies too, at least that’s what I can tell from reading some of his articles in protest of the smoking ban in bars and clubs. It’s always great to hear that one of your musical heroes isn’t a freaking Marxist, as is usually the case.

Sharke on July 15, 2012 at 9:24 PM

You were thinking in the 70′s?

I wasn’t, it was a Hell of a ride, like a force of nature you just rode out like a hurricane, and hung on for dear life..

I actually miss the attitude, if not the Carter years.. and all the left wing stupidity. The balls to the wall go for broke what the Hell joyride of the 70′s..

that.. and I was 18 in 77 and hadn’t suffered through two broken back episodes.

so there was that.

mark81150 on July 15, 2012 at 9:25 PM

Reggie1971 on July 15, 2012 at 9:13 PM

My brothers had the Evel Knievel stunt cycle.

Dad got a blimp “for the family,” then did most of the playing with it himself.

J.E. Dyer on July 15, 2012 at 9:34 PM

I’ll see your “Knock Three Times,” by Tony Orlando and Dawn and raise you yet another gag-inducing 70s teenybopper pop song with “Heartbeat (It’s a Love Beat)” by the DeFranco Family. LOL

PatriotGal2257 on July 15, 2012 at 3:54 PM

Folds my hand and runs…RUNS to bow at the Porcelain Goddess

Liam on July 15, 2012 at 9:39 PM

Hillary is feeling the Islamic love, haha. HA should blog this.

Dollayo on July 15, 2012 at 8:36 PM

Dollayo:Yup,i sent it in to tips!:)

canopfor on July 15, 2012 at 9:44 PM

Reggie1971 on July 15, 2012 at 9:13 PM

I didn’t have either, but my Bicentennial Year memory was our high school yearbook, which was my introduction to the world of print production and how not knowing how to spot a problem beforehand could really mess up a nice idea. It was our advisor’s (one of the English teachers) idea that we not include all kinds of cheesy, cartoony clip art throughout the pages, but instead have the senior class photos — of which I was a member — printed on parchment paper, as an homage to the Bicentennial Year and as distinct from the glossy pages in the rest of the book. We all loved the idea, along with the specially illustrated cover with a variation of the school colors — blue on a silver background.

We were all anticipating its wow factor, so when they arrived, I helped distribute them. The first problem was that the illustration on the cover was flaking off onto my hands, so by the time I and the other people on the yearbook committee were done, our hands and some of our clothing were covered in flecks of blue ink. The second problem came when I opened the book to view the senior class photos. There was the parchment, all right, but it stopped at the letter L. The rest of us, whose names began with M through Z, got the regular old glossy paper that the rest of the book had. Apparently, no one knew what a press check was. LOL

PatriotGal2257 on July 15, 2012 at 10:07 PM

Liam on July 15, 2012 at 9:39 PM

Yep … it inspires exactly the same reaction in me. LOL

PatriotGal2257 on July 15, 2012 at 10:10 PM

Wow, lot’s of memory lane here! I had a cb radio that I put in my little chevy luv pickup before I could even drive. The communication with the outside world before computers. My call name….tall city tumbleweed…. Guess where I was from.

Aggie85 on July 15, 2012 at 10:13 PM

DP must really be going for a stretch.

Bmore on July 15, 2012 at 10:16 PM

Nobody I knew wore that ridiculous crap in the 1970′s.

Generally, I wore Levi’s, Chuck Taylors, and a Genesis T shirt.

Rock and roll was our “internet”.

My girlfriend looked like a young Demi Moore, and we weren’t even 20 yet.

Good times.

Buck Turgidson on July 15, 2012 at 10:35 PM

*channels The Sixth Sense*

I see old people.

Laura in Maryland on July 15, 2012 at 10:40 PM

Rome Burning, Nero Fiddling……..etc……

williamg on July 15, 2012 at 11:04 PM

Did Ed do this thread because BMore was talking about Go Go Boots?

SparkPlug on July 15, 2012 at 11:06 PM

I just posted some “Secret Affair” songs, in Friday’s QOTD thread, I’ll have you know! :)

Bizarro No. 1 on July 15, 2012 at 3:05 PM

Huh. I missed that.

Wow. There’s people besides me who actually remember Secret Affair?

Life continues to amaze me.

Dreadnought on July 15, 2012 at 11:21 PM

I was twenty one in 1970 and wearing jungle fatigues.

bluesdoc70 on July 15, 2012 at 11:41 PM

70′s music anyone? Your favorite 70′s tunes. Load them up!

Void!

Bmore on July 15, 2012 at 11:51 PM

Faeries.

Bmore on July 16, 2012 at 12:03 AM

remember the old 930? oof.

t8stlikchkn

the DC 9:30 club? had friends in bands in DC but i was in jr high in the late 70s, high school in the early 80s in MA. a friend used to send me all the early dischord record stuff- teen idles, minor threat etc. by the 90s people were offering me 100s of dollars for just one 45 of DC hardcore- all gotten for free from the extensive network of snail mail pen pals really into the music. no one cared about those bands at the time- the grungies were just getting all worked up about them. new wave definitely over shadowed hardcore and that was ok-it weeded people out.

all the places we used to sneak in to see the punk rock in boston are gone. sigh. “no such thing as rock n roll/ only ss decontrol…”

i’m not sure what part of the 80′s anyone claiming that the ‘men started looking like men again” in the 80s was experiencing… but the influence of androgyny was overwhelming and trickled into the popular culture. annie lennox . boy george. the huge influence of david bowie( it bleed into the 90s with nirvana even covering bowie.) .there was a whole new romantics club scene with men in dresses and frills. the men started looking like eccentric rock n roll industrial drag queens. but that’s what everyone was saying in the 60s and 70s too- that the long haired male flower chillens all looked like girls.

my grandmother was always asking me why my girl friends all wore combat boots…

mittens on July 16, 2012 at 12:06 AM

Wall of Sleep/NIB

Bmore on July 16, 2012 at 12:09 AM

Did Ed do this thread because BMore was talking about Go Go Boots?

SparkPlug on July 15, 2012 at 11:06 PM

*whispers to Sparky*…(you don’t think…he’s wearing them do you…you know…when we’re not around?)

KOOLAID2 on July 16, 2012 at 12:13 AM

For our Dr. Paul fans. They have to be a bit out of sorts right now. Maybe this will cheer them up.

War Pigs

Bmore on July 16, 2012 at 12:25 AM

Platform shoes, bell bottoms, and a polyester paisley shirt. Time to hit the disco.

-or-

Sneakers, white bib overalls, and a red/blue horizontal striped polo shirt with a white collar. It had ‘Bay City Rollers’ written all over it.

I am sure glad those days are over.

Timothy S. Carlson on July 16, 2012 at 12:54 AM

The best thing about the 1970′s were the 1960′s British sports cars that were now used but not yet classics, and were available for pennies on the dollar. My first, a 1964 Sunbeam Alpine Mark IV, I picked up for $835. My second, a 1963 TR-4, I got for $900. Sold both for more than I paid for them, but golly I still miss those cars.

HTL on July 16, 2012 at 12:56 AM

because i guess the thread needs it:

billy zoom the guitarist of X identifies as a conservative.

as does, strangely enough, the lead singer of one of the most influential bands of the 70′s( especially in england among the punk rockers and their many off shoots)- roxy music’s bryan ferry.

mittens on July 16, 2012 at 1:35 AM

Ahhhhhmigaaaaaaahhhhd.

Can we please erase the 70′s? Every time I recall the 70′s all I can think of is the movie “Devil’s Rejects” and/or “House of 1000 Corpses”.

The 70′s was a 10 year long horror movie.

Wolfmoon on July 16, 2012 at 2:11 AM

5 years Let 0 kept the WH and you’ll wish you never heard this.

Bmore on July 16, 2012 at 2:11 AM

Eh…what I wore in the 70′s is pretty much what I wear today.

Not that garbage in those ads, my older brother was wearing that crap. I wore jeans and a t-shirt most of the time. Same as now. The only difference, thankfully, is that now my hair is shorter and I drive an F-150 Raptor.

Wolfmoon on July 16, 2012 at 2:14 AM

Those 70′s sure had wierd clothes, not like today with Lady Gaga and Katy Perry.

Johnny 100 Pesos on July 16, 2012 at 4:06 AM

Ah, the 70′s….

My fashion choices were my daily decision made in front of my locker…shall I wear the army green fatigues or the army green fatigues, today. And sometimes, on TDY or when assigned to a major unit HQ, I got to decide if I wanted to wear regular khakis or TW’s…depending on the locale and local commander’s preferences.

Now, on weekends, it was a bit less difficult, really…the PX offered a limited amount of “fashion” so one was essentially in uniform when off duty, especially overseas….could spot as group of GI’s a block away from the similarity of their PX “haute couture.”

coldwarrior on July 16, 2012 at 5:37 AM

No need to be stuck in the negative. Just remember those tight bodied braless young women in natural cotton belly shirts and blue jean cutoffs on hot summer days. They made up for every polyester pants suit ever sold.

elfman on July 16, 2012 at 6:41 AM

My first, a 1964 Sunbeam Alpine Mark IV, I picked up for $835. My second, a 1963 TR-4, I got for $900. Sold both for more than I paid for them, but golly I still miss those cars.

HTL on July 16, 2012 at 12:56 AM

It wasn’t the cars you miss…

My wife keeps telling me how she misses living on the Central California Coast. Two kids and 12 years later, I tell her the same.

elfman on July 16, 2012 at 6:47 AM

elfman on July 16, 2012 at 6:47 AM

Gotta admit, spending a year or so in Monterey…with Big Sur right down the road…Pfeiffer Beach and all…was compensation.

Now, about those tight bodied braless young women…

:-)

coldwarrior on July 16, 2012 at 6:54 AM

I dunno…great muscle cars and Aerosmith or ZZ Top blaring out the speakers whilst drinking a longneck on a Texas beach.

workingclass artist on July 15, 2012 at 11:21 AM

Thanks for the memory – Crystal Beach TX, Sea Rim State Park (where I worked for a summer)…

elfman on July 16, 2012 at 6:59 AM

Monterey…with Big Sur right down the road…Pfeiffer Beach and all…

coldwarrior on July 16, 2012 at 6:54 AM

I’m with you on all three. Monterey while in the USMC, Big Sur camping later while at Santa Barbara Community College, and finally Pfeiffer Beach with my then girlfriend who as my wife wants her ashes eventually scattered there.

elfman on July 16, 2012 at 7:10 AM

Desert boots! I almost forgot. Nice recall! Silk

HoustonRight on July 15, 2012 at 11:44 AM

Ha! Haven’t heard that word in 30 years! They were actually cool…

elfman on July 16, 2012 at 7:19 AM

Ahh the 70′s. Takes me back.
What ever happened to Shaft? He was one bad mutha.

vinceautmorire on July 16, 2012 at 8:22 AM

Wow, what bad memories. I’m still recovering from that evil decade.

WannabeAnglican on July 16, 2012 at 8:42 AM

Joy division was 1978 to 1980 so not quite “eighties” though New Order was able to make that transition well.

We can debate which music was better but the reality is that music is subjective. A majority would claim today’s is just terrible and I think this is a growing trend. We no longer have one hit wonders which many of these “artists” should be considered. But instead they hang around for five or ten years because… I honestly don’t know why. I guess people love being asleep at the wheel.

Music today is very cold and robotic. They can sing up feeling and love but it comes across as destitute and pathetic.

RDE2010 on July 16, 2012 at 9:13 AM

*about not up though both are prepositions

RDE2010 on July 16, 2012 at 9:14 AM

The funny thing is that we geeks who wore straight leg jeans and button down shirts were hounded daily for our lack of coolness. (Fulkl disclosure, I admit I had a sleeveless down vest) But I’m not embarrassed to show what I was wearing in my YB pictures. :-)

(Well, there was that awful powder blue Prom Tux)

Never mind. :-(

hawkdriver on July 16, 2012 at 9:59 AM

Dude!

Seriously, the 70′s Sear Catalog has been a subject of chain e-mail for years, now.

As well as the Olan Mills spoofs :-)

MNHawk on July 16, 2012 at 10:00 AM

And what was that doll that had the long hair that you could pull out of the top of her head?

PappyD61 on July 15, 2012 at 8:30 PM
The doll was the Crissy doll.

My little sisters’ friends had them. They broke, like, the third time the hair was pulled. But watching the hair retract was kind of fun, when you encountered a Crissy that hadn’t broken yet.

J.E. Dyer on July 15, 2012 at 8:54 PM

And her little sister, Velvet (with blond hair). I still have my Crissy (and my sister’s Velvet). Not sure I’m going to let my daughter play with them … yet.

JoAnn1965 on July 16, 2012 at 10:19 AM

Both fashion and music in the 70s were the result of new technology, new (common) materials, and new techniques–and people wondering what to do with it while building and making adjustments from what they had before. Just like every other decade.

VerbumSap on July 16, 2012 at 10:32 AM

The problem was drugs were too cheap in the 70s. Still, in 40 years 4 years we’ll look back on the 2012 Olympics “outfits” and shudder.

kirkill on July 16, 2012 at 10:37 AM

Where are the psychedelic neckties for hip middle-management?

stillings on July 16, 2012 at 10:59 AM

I think the ugliest thing of all during those times was the afro. My brother, sister, and mother all took on that look for awhile. It was hidious.

scookam on July 16, 2012 at 11:31 AM

I’m gonna harsh this whole thread.

“Bay City Rollers”

BobMbx on July 16, 2012 at 11:54 AM

Both fashion and music in the 70s were the result of new technology, new (common) materials, and new techniques–and people wondering what to do with it while building and making adjustments from what they had before. Just like every other decade. LSD.

VerbumSap on July 16, 2012 at 10:32 AM

FIFY

BobMbx on July 16, 2012 at 11:56 AM

To the person who asked what was good about the 90′s?

Jordan’s Bulls, the Sega Genesis, Grunge (even if you don’t like the music, you have to thank them for putting the final nail in the Hair Band coffin), and Pulp Fiction.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 15, 2012 at 5:32 PM

I’ll give you Sega Genesis. Grunge and “Pulp Fiction” were as bad as anything bad in the 70s.

rickv404 on July 16, 2012 at 12:11 PM

and my favorite…..ELO.

PappyD61 on July 15, 2012 at 3:52 PM

I thought I was the only one who loved ELO. How can anyone not like “Rockaria!”

Deanna on July 15, 2012 at 5:20 PM

Loved them best from “Discovery” on.

rickv404 on July 16, 2012 at 12:15 PM

I thought I was the only one who loved ELO. How can anyone not like “Rockaria!”

Deanna on July 15, 2012 at 5:20 PM

I loved ‘em, too. “Rockaria!” is hilarious. And I loved the snippets of recordings, talking, etc. spliced into the beginning of “Fire on High,” then segueing into that fabulous instrumental.

PatriotGal2257 on July 16, 2012 at 12:26 PM

Thankfully, they had as much lasting power as the rest of the fashions of the 1970s. Let’s hope we never see its like again

You kidding? All that polyester is going to be dug out of some landfill in 1,000 years by some archeologist. I fully expect my Dad’s green-with-planets-on-it leisure suit to be completely intact.

crazy_legs on July 16, 2012 at 1:19 PM

Well, I disagree, and apparently so do lots of other people. I don’t think all grunge was depressing, either. What about STP?

I don’t consider STP to be grunge.

I think you’re making a relatively arbitrary distinction between what has “soul” and what doesn’t. Can you name a 90′s band you enjoy? After all, Joy Division is 80′s.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 15, 2012 at 9:14 PM

Joy Division started out as the punky Warsaw in 1976, changed their name in ’78, Ian Curtis/Joy Division died in 1980, and New Order arose from the ashes!

Dada and Built to Spill are 2 bands from the ’90s I like – there are others, too, but, they come to my mind first.

My talk about “soul” might seem arbitrary to you, but there is some reason why I like Joy Division a lot, but not Soundgarden, and I’ve been trying to articulate why.

Yeah, because clearly, when I think of people who are psychologically complex and “genuinely happy,” I confirm it by making sure they like “Disco Duck” more than “Interstate Love Song.”

This just seems like a lot of psychobabble rubbish to legitimize your dislike of certain bands.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 15, 2012 at 9:19 PM

LOL which of us is the person who brought up ‘It’s a good thing grunge came along to kill ’80s glam metal!!!‘? That wasn’t me, was it? :)

You like grunge and don’t like glam metal, which is the opposite of me – what could be improper with examining that difference of appeal, and then making a conclusion about it? I must admit, I find your implication that my assessment is “psychobabble rubbish” to be greatly amusing to me! :)

Bizarro No. 1 on July 16, 2012 at 1:26 PM

I don’t consider STP to be grunge.

Fair enough, but most people consider them grunge, if only because of geography.

Dada and Built to Spill are 2 bands from the ’90s I like – there are others, too, but, they come to my mind first.

Are you the guy who stands outside the record store and taunts people for buying R.E.M’s “Green” instead of “Murmur”? :)

My talk about “soul” might seem arbitrary to you, but there is some reason why I like Joy Division a lot, but not Soundgarden, and I’ve been trying to articulate why.

Everybody has their own personal tastes, but it doesn’t mean castigating an entire genre and passing judgment on its fans. I never said “Disco is for soulless losers who don’t know genuine happiness.”

LOL which of us is the person who brought up ‘It’s a good thing grunge came along to kill ’80s glam metal!!!‘? That wasn’t me, was it? :)

If glam metal deserved another decade of success, it wouldn’t have died off like the horse and buggy. Grunge put the *final* nail in the coffin. Glam was already in intensive care.

You like grunge and don’t like glam metal, which is the opposite of me – what could be improper with examining that difference of appeal, and then making a conclusion about it? I must admit, I find your implication that my assessment is “psychobabble rubbish” to be greatly amusing to me! :)

Bizarro No. 1 on July 16, 2012 at 1:26 PM

When did I say I don’t like glam metal? I love the early stuff, but it was a dying genre that needed to be put out of its misery. I can only put up with so many power ballads, after all. Sure, I might have enjoyed another decade of Aldo Nova selling out MSG, but I think once Damn Yankees put out “High Enough,” it was time for someone to pull the plug.

I think it’s amusing that you think you’re *not* being a judgmental d-bag, though. You must be a riot at cocktail parties.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 16, 2012 at 1:39 PM

I’ll give you Sega Genesis. Grunge and “Pulp Fiction” were as bad as anything bad in the 70s.

rickv404 on July 16, 2012 at 12:11 PM

I disagree – grunge was worse than disco even!

Bizarro No. 1 on July 16, 2012 at 1:41 PM

I’ll give you Sega Genesis. Grunge and “Pulp Fiction” were as bad as anything bad in the 70s.

rickv404 on July 16, 2012 at 12:11 PM

Pulp Fiction’s a great movie, and the 70′s didn’t lack for great cinema. The Godfather (and part 2), Rocky, Taxi Driver, Jaws, Apocalypse Now, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Chinatown, Annie Hall, Star Wars, A Clockwork Orange, Network…actually, the 70′s might be one of the greatest decades ever for movies.

Pulp Fiction wasn’t the best movie of the 90′s, though. Just a good representative movie for the decade. We also had The Shawshank Redemption, Schindler’s List, Silence of the Lambs, American Beauty, Toy Story, Jurassic Park, Fargo, The Matrix, Goodfellas, Forrest Gump….lots of good stuff.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 16, 2012 at 1:44 PM

I disagree – grunge was worse than disco even!

Bizarro No. 1 on July 16, 2012 at 1:41 PM

It’s easy to say that when you self-define the genre and throw out good bands like STP.

What about post-grunge stuff like Foo Fighters, Collective Soul, Better than Ezra and Bush?

Good Solid B-Plus on July 16, 2012 at 1:49 PM

Also, Bizarro, since you liked glam so much, can I assume you’re a big Lady Gaga fan? :)

Good Solid B-Plus on July 16, 2012 at 1:55 PM

Fair enough, but most people consider them grunge, if only because of geography.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 16, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Er, I screwed that up. I mean most people consider them grunge, but the people who don’t likely think that way because of geography. You know, “it has to be Seattle to be grunge,” that sort of thing.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 16, 2012 at 1:58 PM

I’ll tell you what we were thinking…

That girls in tube tops were the greatest thing since the invention of fire.

Buck Turgidson on July 16, 2012 at 2:30 PM

That girls in tube tops were the greatest thing since the invention of fire.

Buck Turgidson on July 16, 2012 at 2:30 PM

Certainly beats the 80′s Cyndi Lauper look.

Good Solid B-Plus on July 16, 2012 at 2:32 PM

That Esquire Socks ad is easily one of the greatest photos ever taken.

Blacklake on July 16, 2012 at 2:34 PM

At least the Big Steel lace pants had the decency to limit them to waist sizes 24″ to 34″–there seems to be no limit anymore, and as much as I don’t want to see anyone in those abominations, I really don’t want to see a 54″ waist in one.

DrMagnolias on July 16, 2012 at 3:13 PM

I’ll tell you what we were thinking…

That girls in tube tops were the greatest thing since the invention of fire.

Buck Turgidson on July 16, 2012 at 2:30 PM

I agree. And just like fire, it’s most remembered for its tragedies: the middle aged women who thought they still looked adorable in them.

elfman on July 16, 2012 at 5:02 PM

Ed, how dare you steal my aunt’s couch!

MechEng5by5 on July 16, 2012 at 6:55 PM

My parents had nearly matching powder blue leisure suits.
My eyes are bleeding just @ the though of those things.

annoyinglittletwerp on July 16, 2012 at 7:55 PM

People love to bash the 70′s. Perhaps, in some ways, deservedly so. Not me. My teenage years were great. I was young, thin, and had great hair. I was blissfully ignorant of politics and the fate of nations. I was broke, but cool, and was involved in many great activities with many good friends. I had a beautiful young girlfriend and had only minor responsibilities. I had it made.

There were many things about the 70′s that were better than any time that came afterward.

So post all the hideous so-called fashion ads you like. I was there. It was a pretty awesome time to be a teen-aged guy.

Buck Turgidson on July 16, 2012 at 10:01 PM

New complaint: Foul Hot Air just forced me to sign back in, losing my text, dammit!

I was going to object that the ’70s weren’t necessarily that bad, & then I found Buck Turgidson had stolen my thunder! My teens also fell in that decade. I never “had it made”–my weird individualism perhaps working against me there–but my attitude toward life then may have served me better.

Unlike BT I’d begun picking up on politics & history–learning conservatism, as it turned out. One of my greatest disappointments since then, regardless, is how my artistic/creative faculties seemed to atrophy.

Olo_Burrows on July 17, 2012 at 4:19 AM

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