Category:
1970s

A Horse with No Name in Latin

Posted By: Paul - Tue Oct 27, 2020 - Comments (0)
Category: Animals, Humor, Parody, Languages, Music, 1970s

Mini skirts for road safety

1970: Liverpool officer Lionel Piper urged young women to wear mini skirts. In the interests of road safety. Sure, that was it... road safety!

The Hackensack Record - Jan 14, 1970



Young women in the 1970s dressed for road safety

Posted By: Alex - Mon Oct 26, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Fashion, Highways, Roads, Streets and Traffic, 1970s

Unicorn Hunters

In 1976, a group at Lake Superior State University, calling itself the 'Unicorn Hunters,' released a "banished word list" that cataloged words they felt should be banished from the English language "for Misuse, Overuse and General Uselessness." Every year since then this group has released an updated new list. Words and phrases for 2020 include 'Quid pro quo,' 'Artisanal,' and 'Mouthfeel'.

'Unicorn Hunters' is an odd name, and as far as I can tell, the origin of the name had nothing to do with the banished word list. It was invented by Wilmer T. Rabe, the public relations director at LSSU, who felt the school needed to let people know it was about more than just engineering. (It was best known, at the time, as a feeder school for Michigan Technical University). More info from the Des Moines Tribune (Aug 2, 1976):

To emphasize the college's non-engineering aspects, Rabe proposed a 'poet's fortnight.' Professor Peter Thomas, Lake Superior's poet in residence, embellished the Rabe proposal and 'Unicorn Hunters' — later refined into Unicorns Ltd., Conglomerate — was born.
"From there," says Rabe, "it kind of just grew and began to embrace more and more things."
Loosely put, unicornism — Lake Superior State style — is an abstraction seemingly devoted to the pursuit of joy.
Conglomerate stationery explains: "The Hunters are dedicated to the proposition that every man has a unicorn which he is predestined to hunt. It is not necessary that he actually find or slay this unicorn, merely that he diligently seek it."

To this day, you can still download a Unicorn Hunting License from the school's website. The Banished Word List was one of the ideas created by this group.



The irony is that, in recent years, the term 'Unicorn Hunters' has come to acquire a very different meaning. Googling the term now brings up this definition:

"Unicorn hunting" is where a male/female couple look to find one person who they can permanently invite into their relationship. They form a "triad" with the couple and the three people have group sex.

Maybe it's time for LSSU to add 'Unicorn Hunters' to its banished word list.

Posted By: Alex - Fri Oct 23, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Languages, 1970s

Have a Good Day, Dear

The office as deathtrap.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Oct 15, 2020 - Comments (1)
Category: Antisocial Activities, Bad Habits, Neuroses and Psychoses, Business, Death, Destruction, 1970s

Flush Ratings

In 1974, the Lafayette waterworks in Louisiana revealed an apparent correlation between drops in water pressure and television viewing habits. In particular, the water pressure would drop immediately after popular shows and movies had aired... presumably from viewers waiting until the end of the shows to relieve themselves:

The record drop in water pressure to date, a plunge of 26 pounds per square inch (PSI) of water pressure, came at the end of the TV showing of the movie "Airport." The movie "Patton" chalked up 22 and "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly" checked in with a respectable 19.

So, the idea was floated that flush ratings might serve as a surrogate for the Nielsen ratings.

I had always thought that the idea of popular TV shows having an impact on sewage systems was an urban legend. However, while Snopes dismisses the idea that any shows such as the Superbowl have ever broken a city's sewage system, they allow the lesser claim that massive simultaneous flushing can put an observable strain on a city's waterworks, noting: "toilet use during breaks in large-audience programs can certainly be much higher than average."

Related post: Flush Polling

North Adams Transcript - July 5, 1974

Posted By: Alex - Fri Oct 09, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Bathrooms, Television, 1970s

The Rainbow Swash

1971: Boston Gas commissioned artist Corita Kent to decorate a gas tank next to the I-93 in South Boston. Her design featured a series of rainbow-colored stripes. But once her artwork was done, people began to claim that they could see the bearded silhouette of Ho Chi Minh in the blue stripe. The suspicion was that Kent, being an anti-war activist, had purposefully put it there. Kent always denied this.

More info: The Boxer Boston



The colorful tank was the idea of the colorful chief executive of the Boston Gas Company, Eli Goldston. He commissioned Corita Kent, the widely known pioneer in pop art silk-screen prints and art education, who some years ago left her convent and the Immaculate Heart College in Los Angeles and now works in Boston. Her signature, "Corita," printed in letters 5½ feet high, appears almost small on that huge alfresco painting that consumed 555 gallons of paint and the labors of four painters working nearly six weeks.

Now here, brightening drab and messy industrial surroundings, is something we would call "magnificent and fitting." But some people, alas, were upset. In Corita's free-flowing brush strokes, they professed to detect the profile of Ho Chi Minh. The mayor of Quincy, Mass., in fact, declined an invitation to attend the dedication of the rainbow colored gas tank on the grounds that he did not want to pay "homage of any nature to a communist."

Corita just laughed. "Some people see faces in the clouds," she said.
The Montgomery Advertiser - Feb 3, 1973

Posted By: Alex - Thu Oct 01, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Art, Delusions, Fantasies and Other Tricks of the Imagination, 1970s

Reverse Streaking

"Reverse streaking" is defined as the act of running clothed through a nudist colony. During the 'streaking epidemic' that hit college campuses in 1973 and 1974, there were scattered reports of 'reverse streaking'.

Calgary Herald - Apr 18, 1974



Portland Daily Register - Mar 9, 1974

Posted By: Alex - Wed Sep 30, 2020 - Comments (1)
Category: Fads, 1970s

S&H Green Stamps Motorboat Redemption

Folks of a certain age recall "trading stamps," tokens with a certain value given out to shoppers when they made a purchase.

This site has a nice summary of the phenomenon, with lots of pictures of pages from the redemption catalog.

Here's an ad from 1968 which reveals you could get a Chrysler motorboat with Green Stamps.

Source.



I got curious about how many books of stamps that might take. So I did some very rough calculations, fudging the different years, etc.

This site reveals that a similar boat cost about $1500.00 when new in 1969.

In the catalog at the previous link, an Admiral Color TV demands 150 books.

Here's the likely price in dollars of such an item, as seen below.



So the boat cost six times a TV, and might, I'm guessing, demand 900 books of stamps. However, I also read that each filled book was worth $1.20, so that would require 1,250 books!

That's a lot of weekly shopping trips to your local IGA, since you got only a handful of stamps with each purchase. I wonder how many people ever took advantage of the offer.





Posted By: Paul - Mon Sep 28, 2020 - Comments (5)
Category: Boats, Business, Loyalty Programs, Shopper Incentives, Coupons and Other Discounts, Television, 1960s, 1970s

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