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Once Considered "Hip"

by Eva Pasco 

Once Considered Hip - Eva PascoFor Goodness' sake I got the Hippy Hippy Shakes, the contagious lyrics to "Hippy Hippy Shake" written and recorded by Chan Romero in 1959, and made popular by the Beatles in 1963, makes a perfect intro for things once considered hip in the Sixties. It was once considered hip to watch NBC's Hullabaoo (1965-66), a musical variety show for the leading pop acts of the time, and its ABC competition, Shindig, hosted by a different celebrity each week. We enjoyed the rapid-fire gags and comedy sketches chock full of sexual innuendo or political jabs on Laugh-In (1968 - 1973), highlighted by the witty exchanges between Dan Rowan and Dick Martin. Just when we were diggin' Tommy and Dick's edgy comedic pot shots aimed at religion, recreational drugs, sex, and politics, The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour on CBS (1967-1969), was doomed as a result of censorship battles and hammering by a conservative press.  


The number 1 tune on the American charts in 1965, Petula Clark rendered it hip to be seen "Downtown"--where the neon signs are pretty, and we could forget all our troubles at the movie shows or other little places to go. The in-crowd at my junior high took it to heart by loitering in the capital city on Friday evenings, wearing their hip berets, and bragging about their worldly exploits the following Monday.  The only place remotely resembling a downtown area in the town of  Lincoln was the citified burb of Fairlawn which had a movie theater. The most prominent place to hang out would have been the hardware store--not hip at all.


By the time I became a high school freshman, circling the outer perimeter of hip, girls going steady with upper classmen showed off rings the size of doorknobs on their dainty fingers.  Other crazies not yet linked with anyone, hell-bent with scissors, would sneak up behind boys and cut off the "fruit loop" from the back of their shirt, presumably to covet as a trophy.  


I never got the hang of making those silly gum wrapper chains from discarded chewing gum wrappers. However, I found my niche through another popular fad of threading apple seed necklaces.  Creative to the core, I strung out on my own hip movement—stringing acorn necklaces.  After having gathered the finest specimens from the ground, my dad drilled a hole through each acorn, enabling me to string them along.  My necklace complete, I dipped a little floor wax onto a cloth and rubbed the residue along each acorn to impart a shine.  My acorn accessory resembled a strand of wooden beads one could envision displayed on a jewelry counter at Woolworth’s.   


My hip enterprise attracted so much attention I strung along even the hippest of the in-crowd into ordering their own acorn necklace.  Too caught up in the hippy hippy shake, I neglected to see the entrepreneurial opportunity to make a profit while defraying the cost of twine, electricity, and floor wax.



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Underlying Notes by Eva Pasco  An E. Quiche by Eva Pasco



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