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richard lopez

hadn't heard of spain rodriguez until day before yesterday. great work here. fucking beautiful details and the subject matter gets to the meat of an earlier counter-culture. i find it odd that many people look back to the 1950s as an era of stability and solid 'family values' while i remember -- from my vantage of a child in the 1970s when there was a wave of '50s nostalgia -- that popular media warned of the dangers of greasers, dungarees, and rock&roll that will bring an end to the american way faster than you can say nuclear war.

Ed Baker

nothing very "stable" about the 50's...

here in D.C. I think in 1952 Ike used D.C. to test-run integration
which (I think) became U.DS law the next year... my best friend
at that time was the son on one of our grocery-store customers:

Winfred Brown. he got beat-up when he tried to go into school.
Mrs Strawn a racist teacher said something to a black girl student
and the girl slashed her with a knife...

the 50's ? HORSE SHIT Ozzie and Harriet CRAP !

I was going to Stuart Junior High


I lived in an all Jewish neighborhood in Chicago in the 50s. We were not "integrated". When we moved to California in 1960, people tried to get my folks to sign a petition to keep the neighborhood all white. My dad told em to fuck off. My folks made sure I watched all the civil rights movement that made it on to tv. I think that there were two political turning points in my life, really The first was the Cuban Missile Crisis, at which moment I realized that the human race was terrifyingly insane. The second was Selma, at which moment I took sides.

I remember talking to a woman once, older than me, who lived on an Air Force Base, and who I assumed was conservative just from her association with the military. Until she said, "Oh, the 50s? You mean the time when NO ONE COULD DO ANYTHING?"


No one could do anything of course doesn't mean that no one did anything. The 50s were crazy.

What I think people look back on nostalgically was that fact that white protestant folks were (ostensibly) in charge of everything.

Ed Baker

best thing about the 50's was
my very first lay in the
front (bench) seat of
my used 1959 Buick Special

it was her graduation from high-school
present to me ....

give me a minute and I will recall her name ... an Italian girl

half Jewish, half Catholic but I never figured out which half was which ... or cared.

the 50's were live on tv The McCarthy investigations...

was neat to see two young lawyers working for and kissing McCarty's ass:
Dick Nixon AND Robert Kennedy !

now ? let us prepare for "going over the cliff" it's just
'pay-back' time for all of our our Bull-Shit Westward Ho the Wagons,
Damn the Torpedoes Full Speed Ahead, and Praise rhe Lord and Pass the Ammunitions attitude:

doesn't really matter who or what is "Collateral Damage"

and "dig it"

1959 was BEFORE the Pill AND before Aids ! about all you got was either
Crabs, of the Drip... or pregnant... and, if she got pregnant
there was this "doctor" over on U Street who for $25 would
do an abortion.... I think he used a coat hanger.... boy

those where the days, eh ?

Ed Baker

it was a 1955 Buick not a '59 Buick
just like this one (but white and Blue:


neat chrome around the windows... Fats Domino on the radio... Anita
in the front seat.....
I wonder why she dumped me for a fireman ?


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Manish Nair

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