Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Upscale Dining

If you're familiar with the address on this ad you might recognize that it's in the same building that became a very popular restaurant called Bogens.  Bogens has since vacated the premises and the new joint is just called 622 North Main, I believe.

The Possibility was a pretty posh place serving French cuisine at upscale prices too.  This is where I had my first taste (and last) of snails.

Friday, January 20, 2012

That 70's Look

Tech students living off campus in 1975

The 70's had a look of it's own in terms of fashion and grooming.  It was much less flamboyant than the hippie scene, not quite farmer or trucker, with somewhat of a "livin' off the land" or "don't need no fancy threads" attitude.

The bar scene inside Mr. Fooz  -  demin, flannel, and  hair
Shopping was pretty easy since the wardrobes seem to consist of various ages and colors of jeans.  Completing the ensemble meant flannel or cotton shirts, and either sneakers or boots.  That was about it.  I think everyone owned a jeans jacket too, probably a Levis or Wrangler.

The guys still mostly sported long hair and if you were walking behind a group of young folks you might be hard pressed to tell male from female from the rear.   Even though when you think of the term "grunge" you immediately think of the 1980's and punk bands, etc, but the 1970's had a grunge of it's own.

A warm house and a couple of extra refrigerators
Living conditions weren't all that different from the style of dress.  No offense to the younger generation of today but it seemed like our standards were a hell of a lot lower back then, and we didn't even care.  In fact I liked my crappy basement apartment on Roanoke Street.  It was so dark down there we even hung a sign outside our door that read "The Edge of Night".

Some of our friends lived at Terrace View one year and it seemed like pretty fancy living to me.  They had green shag carpet and kitchen appliances to match.  Yee-ha.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Gettin' Outta Town

A solitary students awaits the Trailways bus to head home

Transportation needs were a lot different in the 1970's.  Today it seems like everyone over 16 must have their own car (although I hope that's an exaggeration).  So, your choices were to take your clunker home for the holidays OR catch a ride with a friend OR take your chances with your feet and thumb out on the highway OR possibly take the bus.

You know, this made me think .... it really is rare to see hitchhikers anymore.  I can't tell you how many times I hitched rides (either alone or with a buddy) to the DC area, and once to southern Florida.

Anyway, at least a long time ago you could go up to the Continental Trailways Bus Terminal located at 400 North Main, opposite the Hokie House at the top of the hill.  Now you have to go to Christiansburg to catch a bus.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Roads To Blacksburg

An early shot of the Tech bookstore that shows College Avenue (left in photo) still connecting to the drillfield

If you were here in 1970 you might remember, at some point in that decade, that :

*  Prices Fork Road was just a simple two lane country road, and heading east (toward town) it didn't even connect to Main Street.  You had to angle up Turner Street past the Tech electric plant to hit North Main.  Likewise, going west, there was a single street light at the top of the hill just before the Marriott and when you got to the 460 Bypass it was level with that road and only had a stop sign (the same with Toms Creek Road and 460 intersection).

*  When leaving town via South Main you'd pass Hokie Honda then curve down a hill toward Merrimac, then find the ramp to the right which brought you up onto 460.

*  Patrick Henry Drive which connects North Main Street to Toms Creek Road didn't exist.

*  College Avenue passed in front of Squires Student Center and hooked up with the drillfield (see photo above).

*  In 1970 if you were heading to Blacksburg using Interstate 81 you had to get off at the Dixie Caverns exit. The interstate highway wasn't finished then .... you had no choice!  I believe it was completed sometime in late 1971.

Lots of other minor subdivision type roads weren't in place then either, naturally.  But if you think of any other "major" differences, please chime in.