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Slow News Day:laugh::laugh:

Beanbag Chairs! When we think of furniture from the groovy era, beanbag chairs immediately come to mind. These casual furniture icons came on the scene in the late 1960s and early '70s. Made out of leather, and later, corduroy, denim and Naugahyde, they were filled with polystyrene beads or “beans.” These cheap seats not only fit our lives but fit our groovy lifestyle too!

Beanbag chairs were groovy and conformed to every shape and size of user… even more than 1 person on occasion!
In the era of non-conformity, bean bag chairs conformed to each user allowing various positions of sitting and reclining. Let’s face it, in our groovy pads filled with cinder-block and wood plank shelving, re-purposed lawn furniture and other hand-me-downs, beanbag chairs were the most comfortable and stylish things we owned. Whether in our college dorms or basement apartments, we enjoyed hanging out in beanbag chairs...not to mention, they were the perfect height for our milk crate end tables!


Beanbag chairs were a staple piece of furniture in any hip and modern home back in the day! They also made great portable seats for all the groovy lawn concerts and yard parties we used to go to.
Beanbag chairs were the brainchild of Italian designers, Cesare Paolini, Piero Gatti and Franco Teodoro. The Italian leather clad Sacco, as it was known, debuted in 1969 and was immediately dubbed, “appealing, comfortable and unique; Italian modernism at its best.” However, at that time, there was no market in Europe for the non-traditional chair, making the designers look to the U.S.A. The trio re-made the chairs out of inexpensive materials, specifically to appeal to the counter-culture of the groovy era. Paolini, Gatti and Teodoro reasoned that “hippies were known to be very relaxed and not interested in conforming to the norms of previous generations.” Their critics, in 1969, accused Paolini and company of an “attack on good bourgeois taste,” but the joining of hippie and beanbag chairs is the stuff groovy legends are made of.

Everything old becomes new again… or so the saying goes! Beanbag chairs are case and point for this argument!
Today, beanbag chairs are making something of a comeback especially with younger kids, who don’t really appreciate their history, as well as adults who do and have aches, pains and specific sitting needs, which is perfect for those of us who help make groovy history. Also, today, all those “beans” are made from recycled materials. The construction has also improved. The seams of the spherical shape beanbags are reinforced and the beans are now contained in an inner bag.



Every groovy guy or girl who ever had a beanbag chair “explosion” will appreciate this development of the new wave version.
By the way, it takes approximately 1.75 kilograms to 2.25 kilograms of beans to fill an adult beanbag chair, depending on the size, and about 1 kilogram for a kid’s beanbag chair. If you’re thinking about redoing your groovy digs or cruising to a concert or a camp out in your psychedelic microbus, you can’t go wrong by including a couple of new again bean bag chairs!
 

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Freebies from the Groovy Era – Definitely a “Thing” of the Past



Free Antenna Balls with a fill up I miss them days....:|

Whether your memory is accurate or not, isn’t an issue. The truth is that perception is reality. With the holidays coming, how many of us remember sitting down at our family tables set with the “good dishes?” You know, the dishes that Mom and Grandma proudly displayed in the dining room china cabinet. If they weren’t on display, you can be sure they were stored somewhere else in the house and only brought out on special occasions and holidays.

In the groovy era, businesses, especially filling stations, gave dishes away as a marketing ploy! They also pumped your gas, checked the oil and cleaned your windows!
Back in the '60s & '70s, for the price of a box of soap powder or a tank of gas, you could receive a plate, a bowl or a glass. If you made a weekly purchase, in time, you could collect an entire set, so businesses just knew you would be back. Once a person started their collection, businesses knew they’d have to come back to keep adding pieces for a complete set. This was a clever and very lucrative marketing tool that really got results! These dishes, platters and glassware we love and have inherited, are still making appearances on many holiday tables, even still. Bringing out the vintage dishware brings back fond holiday memories of an era past.



One of the most recognizable giveaways from the groovy era was the iconic American Currier and Ives turkey platter. The huge plate used to serve our turkey and all the trimmings was usually decorated with a distinctive Currier and Ives lithograph of a tom turkey or a winter scene. These freebies were given away at supermarkets with the purchase of a turkey.

Another popular giveaway pattern was the Homer and Loughlin Company wheat pattern dishes that came free in boxes of DUZ soap powder. The elegant ivory colored china pieces were trimmed in 22-karat gold and featured a 22-karat gold etching of a head of a ripe grain of wheat. If you bought enough soap, you could get the serving platter, serving bowls and even the gravy boat. The wheat pattern giveaway dishes are still around today and can be had from yard sales and antique shops, only they are not free!

A guy could stop by the Esso station to gas up his muscle car and pick up a piece of dinnerware for Mom…
Other memorable giveaways included Anchor Hocking teacups and saucers that could be collected with the purchase of Quaker Oats. Gas stations like Esso and Union 76 gave away complete sets of glassware. Buy jelly and, eventually, you would have every Disney character on a tumbler or drinking glass. Brands like Pepsi, Coca-Cola and local hot spots also got in on the giveaway action.

These days nothing in life is free…not so in the groovy era!
Other “freebies” cost a little bit of time, but where well worth it. By saving a certain number of box tops, lids and other container wrappings and following the manufacturer’s instructions, you could get free dishes and glassware in the mail. Purchase frozen orange juice, mail away the plastic seals and in 6 to 8 weeks a cheery orange decorated carafe would arrive at your door. The foil seals from cigarette packages could be exchanged for artistic glass ashtrays, ceramic cigarette holders and coasters.

Trends and fads come and go… and come back again! The same is true of the giveaway dishes of the '60s & '70s. Many of these very dishes are being sold now in antique stores and thrift shops today. That’s right… ironically, the dishes our mothers collected, for free, are now being SOLD… after years of use. I also think it is safe to say that these same dishes were of higher quality than what we buy today and will be around long after we are all gone. So with the holiday season approaching, you just may sit down to a table full of vintage place settings that were once free but are now valuable, if only in our memories.
 

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The Charm of the Lava Lamp





Although Lava Lamps are not a thing of the past, they sure do take me way back. Lava Lamps were first invented in 1963 by a British accountant named, Edward Craven-Walker. Oddly enough, his inspiration came from, of all things, an egg timer. This particular egg timer had been a homemade project fashioned out of a glass cocktail shaker filled with liquid. The egg timer, which was used in a local pub, was sitting on a stovetop bubbling when it caught his eye. It intrigued Craven-Walker and the wheels started turning.

Craven-Walker combined a mixture of wax and water which was sealed in a glass tube/globe. The wax is the matter that is referred to as the “lava”. The globe filled with the wax and water combination sits on top of a metal base containing a light bulb.

Lava Lamps function by the wax mixture expanding as it heats up, resulting in it having a reduced density that causes it to rise. When the wax mixture rises, it moves to the top of the globe which is cooler than the part of the globe closest to the light bulb. When the wax cools a bit, it contracts and sinks back down where it heats up and rises again. As the wax expands and contracts it creates blobs of color that float up and down within the globe.

The charm of the Lava Lamp is that it all you have to do is plug it in and wait. For some reason, it is fascinating just to watch. Each time the wax separates, floats up and falls again, a new shape is formed. Just like human fingerprints, no two lava lamps are the same

Back in the 1960s and 1970s, Lava Lamps were all the rage. The first time they were seen on television was in the Doctor Who series. After being seen on television, people were intrigued by the novelty.

Before long, Lava Lamps were flying off the shelves. They were popular pieces of home décor at the time. Adults and children loved them. It wasn’t unusual to go to someone’s home and see a Lava Lamp proudly displayed as a focal point in the room.

Lava lamps were especially popular with teenagers. I remember going to house parties as a teenager and the only light amid the smoke was the soft glow of a psychedelic Lava Lamp. Depending on a person’s state of mind, it wasn’t unheard of for someone to get totally lost in the allure of the lamp with all of its mind-blowing, ever-changing, futuristic shape formations.

Lava Lamps were probably most popular in the 1970s and 1980s but they made a real comeback in the 1990s and are still produced and purchased today. They were originally called the “Astro Globe”. They have also been referred to as, “Lava Lite”, “Liquid Motion Lamp”, “Bubble Lamp” and “Lava Lite Lamps”. In addition to different names over the years, the Lava Lamp has evolved and is now available in a variety of shapes and styles.

The tallest known Lava Lamp in the world is 4 feet tall and holds an astounding 10 gallons of a top-secret lava formula. The most expensive Lava Lamp was reportedly sold for a whopping $15,000.00. That is a lot of lava!
 

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PET ROCK – Did you have one?





Los Gatos, California: Gary Dahl, 39, creator of the 'Pet Rock,' one of the best selling novelty items this Christmas season, gets ready to pack the 1,000,000th Pet Rock sold to date. (Getty Images)

Have you ever admired a novelty and asked yourself, “Why didn’t I think of that?” Gary Dahl, the inventor of the famous PET ROCK, may have said that too, at one point. The difference is, though, that he acted on his thought.

Dahl, reportedly during an evening out at a bar with friends in the 1970’s, jokingly came up with the idea. Plenty of people enjoy pets. Let’s face it, they are part of the family. They are also a lot of work. Dahl had devised the perfect solution! A PET ROCK!

The PET ROCK was seemingly the perfect pet. It was hypoallergenic, didn’t bark, bite, shed or poop on the floor. It could be left alone for extended periods of time without imposing on a neighbor to let it out or feed it. It got along with your other pets and, best of all… no vet bills!



The pet was a smooth rock that came nestled on a soft, shredded paper bedding, in a handy cardboard box with a handle (just in case you did decide to take your pet on an outing). Don’t worry, though… the box had air holes, so it wouldn’t suffocate.

All responsible pet owners need to make sure they are properly educated on how to care for their pet. Too many people don’t take the time to do this resulting in the pet being mistreated. Fortunately, Dahl had the foresight to include an instruction pamphlet to ensure that the PET ROCK would be properly cared for.

The pamphlet for “care and training,” included illustrations of the rocks in (in)action along with the following information:

“Your PET ROCK will be a devoted friend and companion for many years to come. Rocks enjoy a rather long life span so the two of you will never have to part -- at least not on your PET ROCK’s account. Once you have transcended the awkward training stage your rock will mature into a faithful, obedient, loving pet with but one purpose in life -- to be at your side when you want it to, and to go lie down when you don’t."

The PET ROCK was a popular fad in the 1970’s and you can be sure it was on many a Christmas list. As with all fads, it eventually fizzled out but the phrase, “gone but not forgotten,” comes to mind. I’m sure I’m not the only one who remembers them!

While this novelty was originally developed to be humorous, it ended up being a huge success and extremely profitable. The PET ROCK sold for approximately $3.95 each (for a rock). When it was all said and done, a tongue-in-cheek idea had made Dahl a millionaire! Why didn’t I think of that?
 

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Atari’s Pong – The Pioneer of Video Games!



In this day and age, you would be hard-pressed to find a child, or even adult for that matter, that was not familiar with the concept of video games. What we know as video games today, however, is in stark contrast to the way they began. Atari, the company that gave us Pong, probably had no idea what they were about to introduce the world to.

In 1972, Atari released its first arcade style video game, Pong. The game itself was classified as a sports type game that simulated table tennis. Games could either be played against another human competitor or against the game system itself, not unlike today. Players controlled electronic paddles and attempted to volley a small dot back and forth for the winning score. The winner was the player who reached the score of 11 points first. Points were scored when an opponent failed to return a volley. The game had a black and white display, was slow and painfully basic, but we fell in love with it just the same! At the time, it was state of the art. It was such a treat to find yourself in a bar, a bowling alley or some other public gathering place where there was an opportunity to try your skill; so we all shamelessly lined up with our quarters to wait our turn.



The Pong arcade video game console was big and bulky, not unlike something you would expect to see in an arcade, even now. The game screen itself though was minimal; about the size of a small television. Ironically, it was billed as a “Low Key Cabinet, Suitable for Sophisticated Locations.” The game was easy to spot but even if you didn’t know what to look for, you could usually just go to wherever the largest crown was forming. It was a huge hit!

A few years later in 1975, Atari rocked our socks and released a home version of Pong. The game console sold for somewhere in the neighborhood of $200.00 - $250.00. Fortunately, or unfortunately, they were released just in time for the Christmas/holiday shopping season that year. Parents across America were scrambling, not only to find one, but to scrape up the money to purchase one. In 1975, the average, monthly mortgage payment was probably less than the cost of the home version of the Pong video game. For this reason alone, it would have been quite a thrill to find one under the Christmas tree. I remember the year my friend’s brother got one. I couldn’t wait to check it out!



America had been bitten by the video game bug and it all started with Atari’s Pong. Following, it really goes without saying what happened next. Other companies began developing and releasing their own video games. Both arcade games as well as games for home entertainment had been redefined. After the technology was developed, it took off from there. Over the years, Atari continued to develop and refine their video games systems and a variety of games were available. At one time, the game system was even available in a modern wood-grain console… Fancy! It was truly mind blowing.

Although I definitely appreciate the technology, I, still for the life of me, will never understand how the brains of the electronic video game creators work. Forget about the inner workings… I still can’t figure out how to play them! Video games are no different than any other electronic in that they are constantly evolving.
As soon as we get the latest version, the next one is about to come out! It’s a never-ending cycle… GEESH!
 

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Lava lamp more fun to watch.

I was going to put an ebay link to pet rocks, but when I had a look, it was too much.
Reproduction pet rocks, albino rocks, mini rocks, on and on and on. 57 flavours of rock.
I understand the joke, I just don’t understand why
everyone felt the need to buy one, make someone else rich, to be in the joke.
 
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