Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Who Wants a Moustache Ride?

So, I was reading a newspaper from 1987 yesterday at work, because I found it in a drawer and thought it would be cool. It was neat to read all the articles, that is for sure, but really I was in it for the ads and the pictures.
First of all the ads. I love looking at old advertisements and I am not sure why. It started years ago with National Geographic magazine. I got my hands on some old National Geographics and I noticed that back then they had a lot more car ads than they do now, and it was always cool to see all of the cars that they were peddling back then. And for cheap, like you wouldn't even believe, although back then a dollar was worth a vastly different amount than it is now. So anyway, there were always a bunch of other sweet ads in there too, for like Curtis Mathis televisions and Hi-Fi systems and Sprint back when they were always calling your house and asking you if you were happy with your long distance. So the old issues of National Geographic got me hooked on the old advertisements.
So I went digging in the friendly local newspaper from 1987 and I was scoping all the old ads. There were a lot of businesses that weren't around anymore, like plumbers or electronics stores or an old car dealer or two. It was cool, but a little bit sad especially when Dr. J came around and started telling me who owned which business and when they died. So I was scoping out the ads and sort of looking at the news articles and the community announcements and whatnot and that's when I remembered the pictures. So I started scoping out the pictures and there were all sorts of neat pictures of high school basketball games from 22 years ago and they glorious but seriously disturbing short shorts (that was way before the Fab Five at Michigan made baggy shorts cool, and by way I mean two years) that sort of made me not want to look anymore. Anyhow, I was looking at all those pictures and I turned the page and that is where the engagement announcements were located.
Yeah, the engagement announcements. I don't normally read this part of the paper, but since I had scanned the obituaries I thought I would look through the engagements to see if there is a name that I recognized. There weren't, but there were a lot of pictures of men and women. And you know what was perched on the upper lip of just about every man? That's right, a glorious moustache.
Oh yeah, not just any moustache, they were all 70s porn-star style moustaches about a decade too late. When paired with a Bill Cosby sweater and some white-guy-using-Soul-Glow hair it was truly a thing of beauty. Even more so now though the lens of history. I am sure that back then they were a dime a dozen, just like goatees and shaved heads are now; in fact I know that they were everywhere because just about every respectable man, from 12-82, in those pictures had one perched there like he fell asleep in a hammock on a summer day and a caterpillar had fallen from a tree and landed there without him knowing. It's that fantastic.
So yeah, everyone had one and they were glorious, in a sort of way that I would say that mockingly because really, they look strange through today's eyes. And we mock what we don't understand, now don't we? There were a few guys with full beards, especially in the pictures of the men with their deer and their hunting beards. But those moustaches were still there, waiting patiently for the end of hunting season and the return of the razors. Oh man. I don't mean to make fun of those guys in the past and their facial hair, I really don't, because I know that it was in style at that time. But it is not in my era so it looks goofy to me, just like my kids will mock me when they see my picture in a 22-year old newspaper. So it's okay. But seriously, moustaches?

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