A friend’s Facebook post today of his infant self, garbed in velour, got me thinking about my days of velour, which, incidentally would be a great autobiography title. I stumbled across this 1979 Sears catalog image, and was reminded of a velour green dress I donned at Christmas that year (with a white satin blouse underneath-trust me, ’twas all the rage), in the final vestiges of the unseemly 70s. Or was it velvet or velveteen? Who can discern the magic of textiles?
Listen, I could collage up this joint and post all kinds of velour images across this page, but honestly, it’s overkill. I think we get the gist of velour off of just this one plush-fabric pic. It’s a lipglossy, pre-Working Girl meets Studio 54 (I almost said Area 51; Freudian slip) era, with the skinny belt, skirt slit, and stilettos, to boot. I can’t tell if they’re 13 or 43. But look at Miss Purple’s jutted elbow. She is NOT having sassy backtalk today. You flip through that Rolodex, girl. Fierce.
Now should we bring velour back? Heavens, no. When I see it in the wild nowadays (once just this year at church), I shake my head. The moment is over. It only whispers “Goodwill reject bin” from the fibers of its sheen. And we all know the only relevant sheen in 2018 is a Netflix Martin.
But can we take two minutes to appreciate it today? Even just saying the word is fun. Velour. Make it rhyme with sewer. Is it flattering? Heavens, no. It makes pre-teens look four months pregnant. Does it keep you warm? Yes. Did it take these girls from playgrounds to champagne? Or is the lyric “from crayons to perfume”? Whatever. Velour does that. That’s the power of velour.
Such is the caption in this 1968 Nat Geo, as I call them. Evidently, it was a common practice for motorists to attempt to cross the Rio Grande River at its low points in fall and winter, though I would personally advise to NEVER ford a river by car. Yes, the wheels get wet, but so does the engine.
Cue the enterprising young Mexican boy on the burro, who offers round trip rides for 75 cents to get across the river. Often, they neglect to mention that a dirty half-mile ride to Boquillas then awaits them. If they have another 75 cents.
I don’t understand people who enjoy cliffs. I don’t get it. I need Wide. Open. Spaces. A place to breathe. This cliff is like a skyscraper all up in your face, forcing you to crane your neck like a tourist in NYC. As Debra Winger said in Urban Cowboy,“For-GIT it!”
The pic is actually the US of A on the left and Mexico on the right. Pretty much looks like there already IS a wall, with that whopping slab of 1500 ft high limestone in Santa Elena Canyon. Nothing about that two-day Rio Grande float those folks are on looks appealing to me in the SLIGHT-est.
Here’s a more modern-day image of the same canyon.
Still looks terrifying and creepy and like all the weight of that limestone is gonna come crumbling, tumbling down upon those fragile little canoes.
We’ve all been there, right? Stuck in a boat, wearing our wifebeater and cuffed dungarees, wrestling a half-naked man for rights to the Galapagos Island sea turtle… Actually, these were 1949 National Geographic staffers, who had initially been searching for land turtles, but came up empty-handed. Nice work if you can get it.
In case you didn’t know it, today is National Cheeseburger Day, and Fuddrucker’s is offering their 3-Pound Burger Challenge. If you can finish your burger and 1 lb of fries in ONE HOUR, then you will receive a $25 gift card. Woot! That’s enough to buy some Pepto and Tums. At least now we know where the beef is.
And as far as the image up top, well, that’s actually football coach Bo helping Indiana University beat Minnesota’s Golden Gophers in the fall of 1942.
Vance Redfern. Now THAT is a name worthy of an athlete, a news anchor, even a politician.
Those of you have visited The Blog of Funny Names already know my fondness for amazing names, and this ranks on the list of grand ones indeed. Have you ever met a Vance? It’s better than a Vince. Actually, the name Vance is of English origin, meaning “someone who lives near marshland.” I don’t think marshland when I think of New Mexico. I think Louisiana, which is technically where the Red Fern grows. But not where the Vance Redfern grows.
He graduated from Western New Mexico University in 1963 and still holds school records for his prowess on the golf course. His 73.6 stroke average is the lowest single season mark posted by any Mustang player, a fact not lost on these hat-donning ladies who witnessed said prowess.
Today we salute this awesome name. Together, we can encourage fertile young people to take this name from its current ranking of #838 in boys’ names and push it up where it belongs. And Vance (if you cannot surmise from the broad shoulders and the standard issue NASA astronaut flat-top) is second from the right.