The Sixties

Author: Valencia Higuera
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Slang Terms of the 1960's

Slang is not a new concept. Teenagers and young adults growing up in the 21st century may be unaware that most of their favorite expressions and lingo originated over 40 years ago. For the most part, popular slang terms from the 1960's era are no longer in use. However, a few timeless expressions continue to circulate in this day.

Young adults in 2005 may be unable to decipher the meaning of many classic slang terms from the 1960's. Slang terms such as "ape," and "all show and no go," have little meaning to today's generation. However, for teenagers growing up in the 60's "ape" was a term used to describe going ballistic or becoming irate over a situation. Moreover, "all show and no go" was used when referring to a nice, but non-functioning automobile.

Additional slang terms from the 1960's that would leave today's young adults bewildered include "a gas," which was used to describe having fun. The term "bag" had a dual meaning and often referred to stealing. Individuals in the 60's could have their wallet bagged, or they could bag someone else's car. "Bag" was also used when inquiring why someone was upset. For example, those living in the 60's would commonly ask, what's your bag?

Although the 1960's included many foreign slang terms, this decade also saw the birth of common expressions that are still used today. For example, "bad," "a blast," and "bitchin," all meant good or awesome in the 60's, whereas "crash" meant going to sleep and "cruising," was commonly used by those looking for girls.

Fashion Trends of the 1960's

Today's young adults may view fashion trends from the 1960's, then inquiry about the mental sanity of that decade's young adults, who ironically are now their parents. However, despite the seemingly odd taste in clothing, the 1960's were a classic period that left many older adults reminiscing about the good times.

Fashions of the 1960's are a huge contrast to the styles of today. Although, the late 90's saw a re-birth of 60's fashions, the majority of teenagers and young adults were not quick to adopt the trend. A popular clothing trend from this decade included bellbottoms. Those who are unfamiliar with clothing styles of the 60's may mistakenly think that bellbottoms were a fashion trend of the 70's. These pants were common of partygoers and singers of the disco era. However, singers such as Elvis and Cher were among the people who helped make bellbottoms a popular trend in the 1960's.

Another fashion trend that became increasingly popular during the disco era, but originated in the 60's, is platform shoes. These shoes consisted of one, two, or three inch high heels that were worn by men and women. Trendsetters often chose shoes with a much higher heel. Unfortunately, platform shoes did not provide enough support for the ankles, which resulted in many falls and twisted ankles.

Women who lived during the 1960's likely recall mini skirts. Initially, mini skirts caused a huge uproar by individuals who felt women were improperly dressed. However, for the millions of teenagers, young adults, and women who wore mini skirts, a mini revolution signified freedom, and was a means for rebellion.

Pantyhose of the 1960's

The 1960's saw the birth of many timeless fashions and styles. These include bellbottoms, mini skirts, platform shoes, and dyed shirts. Young adults and teenagers in the 21st century may feel fortunate that these styles and trends have died. However, some clothing trends from the 60's remain today, and actually serve a useful purpose.

When pantyhose were introduced in the 1960's, women across the country were thankful. Pantyhose are undergarments worn by females, and consist of underpants with attachable stockings. Prior to pantyhose, women had to rely on girdles and suspender belts in order to keep nylon stockings from falling. In the early 60's and years before, women mostly wore long skirts, thus stockings were appropriate. However, the birth of mini skirts made stockings appear unattractive, which forced many women to leave their homes bare legged. During the 60's, bare legged was considered in-modest, hence the birth of pantyhose.

There were several advantages to wearing pantyhose. A huge benefit centered on the fact that the majority of women wore mini shirts during the mid to late 1960's. Pantyhose were ideal because darker shades made the visible legs appear slimmer, and sexier. Additionally, slightly brown pantyhose created the illusion of tanned legs, which suited women with pale skin.

Pantyhose were also ideal because they provided warmth during the winter months. In regions that experienced milder winters, some women continued to wear their mini skirts despite falling temperatures. During this time, women could select a dark color, or thicker pantyhose that would help keep her legs from becoming cold.

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