Further Back, Thanks

Saw this at Powerline last week, but while I agree with the sentiment, it doesn’t go back far enough.  So I’ve altered it slightly:

For the record, even though the early parts of the 70s were fair —> poor for me, the latter half absolutely rocked.  (I’d give details, but I’m not sure the statute of limitations has expired yet.  Yes, they were that bad.)

The 70s to me meant this:

…and this:

…even though what I was actually driving was one of these:

Also in the 70s:  no PC speech or behavior constraints;  no venereal diseases that couldn’t be treated by a couple shots of penicillin;  a body that not only worked to perfection, but could withstand any kind of ill-treatment I threw at it;  and girlfriends who didn’t have any kids.

Ask me again why I miss those times.


  1. If you take that off-ramp, I’ll be the old guy, shuffling along down the side of the road, and I could use a ride. My old body has me wishing I was in my 20’s again.

  2. I did the 70’s from age 15 to 25, probably the best decade of my life. Worst too, in some ways. Carefree, roamed the world, did pretty much what I wanted, didn’t think too far ahead. I got the scars to prove it. I bought a used Les Paul Black Beauty in 1973 and a used blue 1970 Camaro SS in 74 and managed to hang onto both til the early 80’s. Wish I still had em.

  3. Oil embargoes killed the automotive world in 74 so you might want to make it early ’70s. The corvette .427 engine in the late 60’s was producing 435HP. After Carter was elected and OPEC started their silliness the corvette dropped to a dismal 180HP out of the .350. This is 4hp less than the Honda 2.4L 4 cylinder of late. Another example is the much celebrated Bandit edition Trans Am with it’s 6.6L (.402 for those that still don’t forgive Carter for his metric misstep) engine only produced 1/2 HP per cubic inch of displacement.

    Don’t get me started on 11%-13% interest and runaway inflation.

    1972. Yeah, that would be good. Wait a minute!! Can this time machine stop in the ’80s and pick up Reagan and Thatcher?

    1. LOL in the 70s I didn’t care about any of that stuff. I was too busy playing loud rock music, driving too fast, drinking too much and shagging. Then I graduated high school and got serious about excess…

  4. I was born in 65, so I was just a kid in the 70’s, but still if kids today did what my friends and I did then their parents would be charged with child abuse.
    I’m talking about riding our bikes and skateboards without helmets, pads or adult supervision. Car seats for small children didn’t exist. 12 year olds heading to the dump with our .22s to shoot rats. If we were in the house on a nice summer’s day it was because we did something wrong and were being punished. “Dangerous” toys like slingshots and pocket knives. (I still have the jack knife my dad gave me when I was 10). Learning to drive my uncle’s farm truck in his hay fields when I was 12 so the adults could load the bales on. The list goes on and on.
    Plenty of minor injuries and a few major ones, but nobody died. When did the world get terrified of skinned knees and a few stitches?

  5. You better be talking about the 1870s.

    Everything in the 1970s was garbage. The only good music was either holding on to the 60s or ushering in the 80s. The clothes were absolutely terrible (not even talking style, I’m talking materials and construction), everything was shoddy and poorly built, the television was absolutely seditious and satanic, all the jobs sucked, everything you could buy with money sucked, anything that didn’t suck wasn’t around to buy, and they elected Jimmy Carter.

    The only good thing made in the 1970s was me and my brother.

  6. Every time I see that picture of you I grin — it’s just too cool. I can’t help but think of this, though, when I see it:

    Breathe deep the gathering gloom
    Watch lights fade from every room
    Bedsitter people look back and lament
    Another day’s useless energy is spent
    Impassioned lovers wrestle as one;
    Lonely man cries for love and has none
    New mother picks up and suckles her son
    Senior citizens wish they were young

    1. (He’s one of us!)

      Cold hearted orb that rules the night
      Removes the colors from our sight
      Red is gray, and yellow white
      But we decide which is right
      and which is an illusion

      I couldn’t memorize poetry in high school if you put a gun to my mother’s head, but I remember so much music lyrics from the ’60s and ’70s.

      I have long used the Moody Blue’s line “another day’s useless energy spent,” often confusing or just flat pissing off a number of bosses and supervisors.

    1. The gov combined all the motorcycle makers into one group, then decided that they needed to thin the field down to one, so they tossed the only one that was profitable: Norton. They kept Triumph, that had no imagination in their engineering group. POS is what that bike brand was. The fact that the labor unions were so bad that virtually nothing ever made it out of their ports, even when they bothered to build something, didn’t help.

  7. dunno. I lived through the seventies but I think further back was better. maybe the 10’s or the 20’s. I was born in 55 but wanted to live a century earlier most of my youth.

  8. The simple lives of Heroes
    The twisted lives of Saints
    They just confuse the sunny calendar
    with their red and golden paints

    Yes the 70’s were dire, I was glad to see the back of them

    You can still buy a new Norton, they look OK

  9. Ah yes, the 70’s.

    I came of age at the beginning of the decade and spent most of it in the Navy.

    Politically, the 70’s came in with tricky Dick, went through Gerald Ford, (the best of the three IMO, but that’s not saying much) and went out with Jimmy Carter. 77 to 81 with Carter is what gave us Reagan. The decade started with the Vietnam war and ended with the Iranian Hostage crisis.

    It also gave us disco and leisure suits.

    I do not have the red-hot hatred of disco like a lot of my generation does. Mostly, it was over-played on the radio and was a bit silly, but it was also catchy and you could dance to it. (Confession: To this day I still like ABBA.) If you haven’t already, check out the YouTube video of the North Korean military parade as they goose-step in time to the Bee Gee’s “Staying Alive”. It’s a scream.

    And I actually have, in my closet as I type this, a genuine 1975, vintage polyester, leisure suit. My mom gave it to me for Christmas that year when I was stationed in California. I wore it once, (okay, maybe twice,) and it spent most of the intervening years in a suit bag in one of my mom’s closets. We rediscovered it about 30 years later, and I took it off her hands. I STILL have it. (no hope of it ever fitting me again.) It will probably get donated to a museum when I die – or not.

    The 70’s was the decade when the American muscular automobile went into decline. Detroit kept trying to sell us massive land-yachts during a fuel crisis, while the Germans and Japanese marketed smaller, but still comfortable, fuel efficient cars. Check out the 1974 Ford Thunderbird for a good example. It was huge! That thing weighed in at 5000lbs! You didn’t pull away from the curb in that massive automobile, you got under way. The “fuel efficient” cars Detroit marketed were cars like the Ford Pinto or the Chevrolet Vega. It was the best thing to ever happen to Toyota and Nissan (…Datsun in those days.)

    Remember the national 55 mph speed limit? Some blame Carter for that, but it was enacted in early 74 when Nixon was president. It is my opinion, that the stupid 55 speed limit is what really started us on the road to becoming a nation of scofflaws. I mean *nobody* drove 55. Indeed, it kicked off another 70’s fad – the CB radio craze. (Do you remember CW McCall’s “Convoy” and Bert Reynolds, Jackie Gleason, and Sally Field in “Smokey and the Bandit” .) Yeah, I know, the Citizens Band existed long before 1974 and still exists today. But it was and is nothing like it was in the latter half of the 70’s. So many people bought CB radios in those days that the FCC had to drop the license requirement. (I still have one of those too, but it’s on a shelf in the garage and hasn’t been used in years.)

    Nostalgia is fun.

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