Friday, March 4, 2011

Flashback Friday - Fads

What fads were popular when you were growing up? Which were seen as "must-haves" and which as simply silly fads? Did you like them or hate them? Which ones did you have? Which ones did you long for but never get to have? Were your parents pretty tolerant of fads or did they resist them? Were they the type to be sure you had whatever "the" Christmas gift of the year was? What about fad speech? Were there particular phrases or words that were common to your generation? Have any of these fads made a reappearance in your adulthood?
As I've been mulling this over, I've realized there are different definitions, or at least levels, of fads. Some are short-lived, here and gone almost before you realize it. And some overstay their welcome have a bit more longevity. Feel free to define them however you wish for the purposes of this flashback!

When I think of my earliest years of awareness, which were the late 1960's and the very early 1970's, the word fad is synonymous to me with the word hippie. Those were the days of flower power, peace signs, Hang Ten feet, and neon colors. Because of their association with the rebellion and demonstrations of the hippie generation (which were particularly unsettling to me as a little girl), I didn't much like them then, and when I saw them reappearing in stores in the last few years, it didn't particularly thrill me. In fact, just the other day I saw a yellow VW beetle (new model, not vintage) and it had decals of flowers and peace signs and smiley faces all over it. I felt like leaving a note on the windshield that said, "We're in a new century now." One thing I particularly remember about the Hang Ten feet (wish I had that groovy font!) and the flower power were the anti-slip decals folks put in their bathtubs. Our shower was separate from the tub, so we never had any, but relatives and friends did and I always hated them. (The decals, not the relatives and friends!) And if you wanted to take a bath, nothing felt grosser than sitting on one of those! (It was "grody to the max!")

Oh, and go-go boots. Which I never got to have. Because of course, my parents thought those were scandalous and sinful. If I had a pair of those I'd just be one step away from a life of a bargirl.

This would be a good time to insert that my parents were absolutely not into fads. They pretty much thought it was all a bunch of nonsense, and there wasn't money to spend on frivolous things. And they would certainly never have gone to the store at some ridiculous hour in an attempt to get a Cabbage Patch doll or a Tickle Me Elmo or whatever the "must-have" toy was, so it's just as well that those were long past my "toy" years!

The fads of my middle and high school years that immediately come to mind are pet rocks and mood rings. I guess my parents must have rubbed off on me because I couldn't believe that people actually paid money for a rock! And mood rings did make me slightly nervous. I know they were just heat-sensitive, but it was inching a bit too close to the world of palm-reading and fortune-telling for me!

Thinking of fads in the '70's would not be complete without pausing to remember the fashion disaster known as the men's leisure suit.

I mean, seriously! How could everyone in the entire nation lose their fashion sense at the same time?!

But I guess even leisure suits were better than another fad related to clothing (or the lack thereof!) that was popular in the '70's. Fortunately, I never saw one of these in person. But this song always made me laugh!

I don't remember a lot of fad talking when I was little; I'm sure we said groovy, far out and right on.

When I was in high school, it was a little more prevalent. Things were cool and we did things to the max. It also seems like for sure was a big one. There were lots of phrases from movies, especially Star Wars. And I remember Yo Adrian! being a common greeting (from Rocky).

Fortunately, I was out of high school before the Valley Girl talk was popular. I do remember in the '80's that my friends and I would say gag me and gag me with a spoon. One friend and I, when we were really horrified at something, liked to say gag me with an entire place setting. I think that was our own original creation; I never heard anyone else say it. (Oh, we were so clever!)

My brain is totally fried, so I'll close out my fad-tastic memories and give you a chance to link yours here.


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Susan said...

Oh my goodness now you're taking me back to the day! My mom was the same, she didn't want to waste money on that "nonsense" as she'd call it. My favorite saying was "like". I couldn't form a complete sentence without saying "like". I don't quite like know when I like got over using that like word so much but now I find that when I'm like on the bus and evesdropping on the like young kids conversations, they like are just as bad as I was! Ugh! LOL

I'll get my post up to this in a minute and will like link up ok! LOL

Jim said...

Hi Linda ~~ Thank you for you neat reminder of 'how things were' back in the 60's and 70's. My kids grew up through those except for our younger one who was born in the early 70's.

I am glad your mom kept you pretty much on the straight and narrow. My kids did that path too.

Myself? I was a little different being set free (divorce) in the late 60's. For some reason my hair grew longer down to my collar at least and a motorcycle appeared for me. I would listen to music with the hippies in the parks on Sundays. And I had a VW bug but kept it pristine.

I did not do drugs, drink a lot, or be dirty. I had a respectable job at NASA Houston and was going to college at night. In a differential equations (calculus) class my seat mate was barefooted and minimal in dress.

She kept her yellow dog out front on steps and we sat in the next to back row. Watching her I discovered that she did homework for other classes in our math class. But she aced all our tests while I scraped by getting a "C" of which that was one of the few "C's" for me.

I will read your own review comments later. We are finising up traveling and need to do some things this morning. The introduction makes it sound very interesting. Our county library doesn't have any of his books but our church library might.

Kathy said...

It's funny how you and I have such a different view of the 70's! LOL I wasn't a "hippie" or a "bar girl", but I loved the fashions! I was a "good girl" who found a way to express herself, and I'm glad my parents trusted me enough to allow me to "be me". Those are my best memories of growing up :)

Robin Lambright said...

This was Far Out Man!

Mine's up!


bp said...

Pet rock....that made me laugh!!

I'll get mine up today sometime! Have a great weekend.

Linda said...

OOOOOOH! Those leisure suits are groovy! NOT! Forget those things. Just as back were plaid pant for men.
What a ride you gave us!

Carolyn said...

Oooo my...FIRST, I have to ask you to delete # 5(Carolyn Hittle)...I accidently posted WRONG link to my name...but it's a great blog nonetheless...SORRY. MINE is next(#6) Backyard Beauty and Book Boutique
Anyway...LOVE your blog and Flashback Friday. I have one as well...pop on over and check me out!

Thanks and BLessings!

Joyce said...

Better late than never-I linked : ) This one was fun! I had something close to go go boots-they were black and my legs were like toothpicks back then so it would have been hard to look scandalous. My dad was not into fads but my mom could occasionally be persuaded. I got those boots for a birthday. I loved them.

TamTam said...

I remembered all of those. I loved that song The Streak by Ray Stevens. I remember playing it over and over time after time.

quilly said...

I wanted Go-Go Boots and I begged for them daily. I finally got a pair -- right after they went out of style and the second hand stores had a glut of them!

Sandy@Jesus and Dark Choc said...

That was fun to read!!! Oh that song the Streak still cracks me up! :)