#AtoZ 1968 – “Q” is for Mary Quant


“You’re going to get a concept that maybe this really is one world and why the hell can’t we learn to live together like decent people.” ~ Astronaut Frank Borman, on seeing the entire earth from outer space as he and the crew of the Apollo 8 returned from orbiting the moon.

Mary Quant

If you’ve watched “Mad Men,” you’re aware of how drastically women’s fashion changed through the decade. From bullet bras and girdles to hats and white gloves (even on the hottest summer days), women endured restrictive clothing because it’s what was expected. Mary Quant changed that, designing minis, baby dolls, and shiny boots from her King’s Road boutique in the Chelsea neighborhood of London.

As culture changed dramatically during the Sixties, Mary Quant understood. “It was the girls on King’s Road who invented the mini. I was making easy, youthful, simple clothes, in which you could move, in which you could run and jump and we would make them the length the customer wanted. I wore them very short and the customers would say, ‘Shorter, shorter.'” She gave the miniskirt its name, after her favorite make of car, the Mini.

Quant 2

And it wasn’t just clothes – Mary Quant designed new boots. She created “paintbox” makeup palettes. All of this happened prior to 1968 (by 1966 there were plenty of mini-skirted women on King’s Road), but Mary Quant certainly was at her pinnacle in 1968.

A to Z badge 2

BONUS MUSIC!

Here’s the #19 song from Billboard’s Year-End Top 100 Singles of 1968

“Midnight Confession” by The Grass Roots

Advertisements

#AtoZ 1968 – “P” is for Phoenix Program


“You’re going to get a concept that maybe this really is one world and why the hell can’t we learn to live together like decent people.” ~ Astronaut Frank Borman, on seeing the entire earth from outer space as he and the crew of the Apollo 8 returned from orbiting the moon.

Phoenix_Program_(edit)

What you see above is the Vietnamese Phụng Hoàng, a word related to fenghuang, the Chinese phoenix. The Phoenix Program was designed and carried out by the US Central Intelligence Agency, with assistance from other governmental agencies and units.

The program was designed to identify and destroy the Viet Cong by means of infiltration, capture, interrogation, and assassination. The CIA described it as “a set of programs that sought to attack and destroy the political infrastructure of the Viet Cong.” Regional units within the program would capture suspected Viet Cong, as well as civilians who were thought to have information on Viet Cong activities. Many of these people who were captured were tortured in an attempt to gain intelligence. By 1972, Phoenix operatives had “neutralized” 81,740 suspected Viet Cong operatives, informants, and supporters. David Valentine wrote a book about the Phoenix Program, after gaining the confidence of former CIA Director William Colby and getting access to former agents. But when Valentine’s book was published, and the CIA learned that Valentine was not sympathetic to their crimes in Vietnam, the CIA used its influence with the New York Times to effectively kill the book. Valentine’s book is available at Amazon

“For it seems now more certain than ever, that the bloody experience of Vietnam is to end in a stalemate. To say that we are closer to victory today is to believe in the face of the evidence, the optimists who have been wrong in the past.” —Walter Cronkite in an editorial at the close of the CBS Evening News broadcast on February 27, 1968 reporting on what he had learned on a trip to Vietnam in the aftermath of the Tet Offensive.

A to Z badge 2

BONUS MUSIC!

Here’s the #21 song from Billboard’s Year-End Top 100 Singles of 1968

“The Horse” by Cliff Nobles

#AtoZ 1968 – “O” is for Oliver!


“You’re going to get a concept that maybe this really is one world and why the hell can’t we learn to live together like decent people.” ~ Astronaut Frank Borman, on seeing the entire earth from outer space as he and the crew of the Apollo 8 returned from orbiting the moon.

Oliver

The 1968 film, based on the stage musical, which, of course, is based on the Charles Dickens novel, Oliver Twist, won six Academy awards, including Best Picture in 1968. It starred British actors Ron Moody and Oliver Reed, and introduced Jack Wild as the Artful Dodger and Mark Lester as Oliver.

The film earned $10.5 million North American box office and took in $77,402,877 worldwide, making it the seventh highest-grossing film of 1968.

A to Z badge 2

BONUS MUSIC!

Here’s the #22 song from Billboard’s Year-End Top 100 Singles of 1968

“I Wish It Would Rain” by The Temptations

#AtoZ 1968 – “N” is for Nixon/Agnew


“You’re going to get a concept that maybe this really is one world and why the hell can’t we learn to live together like decent people.” ~ Astronaut Frank Borman, on seeing the entire earth from outer space as he and the crew of the Apollo 8 returned from orbiting the moon.

Nixon

After his defeat to John F. Kennedy in the 1960 presidential election, and another loss in the 1962 California gubernatorial election, Richard Nixon regrouped and reorganized. In 1968, Nixon was ready to try again. Winning the Republican nomination didn’t come easy, though – Nixon faced challenges from Michigan Governor George Romney, New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller, and California Governor Ronald Reagan. At the Republican National Convention, Nixon named Maryland Governor Spiro Agnew as his running mate.

Nixon’s theme during the campaign was “law and order.” He ran well ahead of his opponent, Hubert Humphrey, but he refused to participate in presidential debates. In the end, Nixon was the winner, and was inaugurated the 36th President of the United States.

Nixon_&_Agnew

In his speech at the Republican National Convention, Nixon blamed the Democrats for the Vietnam debacle. “Never has so much military and economic and diplomatic power been used so ineffectively,” he declared. “The time has come for the American people to turn to new leadership not tied to the mistakes and policies of the past.” He pledged that he’d seek “an honorable end to the war in Vietnam.”

A to Z badge 2

BONUS MUSIC!

Here’s the #27 song from Billboard’s Year-End Top 100 Singles of 1968

“Love Child” by The Supremes

The Year of Living Minimally ~ Week Thirty-eight


Oh, I didn’t get this posted on Friday morning! I thought I did. Sorry!

My husband’s birthday was this past Monday. He said he didn’t need anything, and I believed him. We have everything we need! So I bought him a bottle of Limoncello (it’s spring!). No longer do we feel the need to show our love for each other with purchases. We’d rather have time together, because time is the most precious commodity.

A couple of weeks ago, I met my friend Lori and bestowed upon her a few items from my ‘former life’ as a fraud investigator. The apex of my professional career was being a Certified Fraud Examiner, president of the local chapter, and Regent for the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. But now I write novels!

So I gave Lori a few ACFE padfolios, and this!

It used to hang on the wall of my office, and even though I had nothing to do with the investigation of Providence’s former mayor, I loved this poster. If you’re not local, you can read about him here.

Little by little, I’m finding it easier to not hold on to things. Things are not memories, or emotions. I know my journey will not end with the ‘Week Fifty-two’ post.

#AtoZ 1968 – “M” is for Miss America


“You’re going to get a concept that maybe this really is one world and why the hell can’t we learn to live together like decent people.” ~ Astronaut Frank Borman, on seeing the entire earth from outer space as he and the crew of the Apollo 8 returned from orbiting the moon.

Miss America

The contest to find Miss America 1969 was held in September 1968. The protest, also known as ‘No More Miss America!’ was attended by hundreds of feminists and civil rights advocates. The organizers of the protest set up a “Freedom Trash Can” on the Atlantic City boardwalk and tossed in such items as mops and brushes, pots and pans, high heels, curlers, and false eyelashes, as well as the restrictive undergarments so many women wore (girdles, corsets, and bras). They unfurled a large banner that read “Women’s Liberation” and that movement suddenly received worldwide attention.

The feminists marched with signs, passed out pamphlets, and crowned a live sheep. They decried its emphasis on an arbitrary standard of beauty.

Note: On the same day, and also in Atlantic City, African Americans and civil rights activists gathered to crown the first Miss Black America. The winner was nineteen-year-old Philadelphia native Saundra Williams, who had been active on the civil rights scene prior to the competition.

A to Z badge 2

BONUS MUSIC!

Here’s the #30 song from Billboard’s Year-End Top 100 Singles of 1968

“Those Were the Days” by Mary Hopkin