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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A Trip back to Yesteryear

I had a lot of fun looking through the Victoria Advocate archives yesterday. I immediately noticed that the newspaper 25 years ago was only 35¢ for its 64 pages but advertisements were in abundance. It wasn’t unusual to be reading one column on page A3 and finish it on page A12 because the rest of A3 was filled with a huge Dillard’s ad.

The big local issue of March, 25, 1988 was a discussion on giving teachers a 6% raise. Of course that was nixed, so the sentiment hasn’t changed in 25 years. I was surprised that nationally, there was a report out against standardized tests for kindergartners. Why did we start testing them in the first place and are we doing that now? Hey, I was in my early forties and raising two teenagers; so I probably didn’t know this was happening.

Nationally, President Reagan was still answering questions about the Iran-Contra scandal. Even back then they were setting up a deficit panel. On the business front, DuPont discounted making CFS (Freon) because it was depleting the ozone layer. The Dow Jones average was a mere 2,026 points and trying to recover from the S&L crisis.

This particular day, Henry Wolff wrote about his latest visit to Matagorda Island and described it only as he could.

Remember the old “Hocus Focus” where cartoon characters would be involved in some activities on two different panels? The object of the game would be to pick out the differences between the two panels. For example, one character might be using his left hand to pound a nail into a board and in the other panel; the character would be using his right hand. I remember it becoming a race between my workmates to find the differences.

The ads were interesting, and it’s a good thing they were because they were everywhere. In this particular edition, Kmart had their plants on sale; a full steak meal at the Sirloin Stockade was only $5.49 and Jerry Lentz had a 25% off on all their sporting goods. Twenty five years ago, Montags  had their round steak on sale for $1.99 a pound, but I would have opted for their tenderized fajitas at the same price.

The entertainment section of the paper was also interesting. Hungry Jacks had their 80¢ draft beer the Armadillo band was playing at Schroeder, but they all had to compete with the local night clubs like Cody’s,Dallas,Peppers,and the Cowgirl Club. We had three movies theaters, Cinema IV, the Playhouse, and Salem Six where you could watch a movie for four bucks.

I used to have my head buried in the sports section in those days starting with the cartoon Tank McNamara and finishing with Julius Ermis’s outdoor section.In between the Cowboys and Astros were in their hey day,so there was a lot of material to read.

Whatever happened to the Town Crier section where you could catch up on the gossip and what was the L.M. Boyd section about?


Edith Ann said...

I remember when the Sunday comics were a pull out printed on pink paper, but that was way back when!

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Mike said...

Oops,I must've had a senior moment because I don't recall the pink paper way back when...I do remember that experiment a few years ago where many complained or was I dreaming that?

You're right things remain the same;all we do is rotate the characters with new ones.

Edith Ann said...

It must have been in the 60's and 70's. Then they went tot he format they have now. I guess they still have the colored comics, 4 pages worth, or has that been reduced to next to nothing, too?

Edith Ann said...

Looked at today free paper--6 pages of want ads, more than half it seems advertising stuff at the VA.

Back in the day they used to have repsorters in other towns who covered the news and gave the paper a real regional feel. I don't get that much any more, but that could be becasue I just scan it online.

Mike said...

Interesting take but I never longed for a regional feel. I guess that's my selfish nativistic view....:-(

On the other hand ,I guess we are fortunate because other papers have closed their doors

The VA is like my smart phone,iPad,laptop and desktop...All can do the basics of what I want, but each has their distinctive advantages...I would miss the VA obituaries, local news and sports,that occasional picture of someone I know and at times a snapshot of what my fellow Victorians are thinking.

Mike said...

Whoa,I guess the public has the right to know but I don't think the VA should publish the civil cases dismissed or ongoing but I'm big on privacy. I'm not on the list nor do I know anyone on the list but where does the public's right- to- know end?

Just curious as to what purpose it serves.

Edith Ann said...

The public's right to know doesn't end as long as these matter are public record. True, the paper could skip printing them, but all one would have to do is go camp out in the District Clerk's office and look through files.

It draws readers and [they hope] comments. It is, for the most part, sensationalism. I know their justification is that it is a reader service, but were that many folks asking for it? Again, anyone who truly wants to know already knows how to go to the clerk's office and get it. You can even get a copy of 'it'!

Another in a long string of decisions made that make one go, "hmmm...'.

Mike said...

I've often wondered if the local paper had a requirement to publish the list.

I hear you about the District Clerk office.

Remember when your Social Security number was attached to your property records until
That changed.?

Edith Ann said...

There is no requirement that I am aware of, except the paper may think it is required to fill the pages.

There are SSNs in divorce papers and on all kinds of things in clerks office. It is a real treasure trove for the nosy!