What’s with those kids?

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It’s Happening
Simmons and Winograd

Is the younger generation confusing you? Do you need help translating all the crazy lingo those hippie kids are passing around? Do they ever get haircuts? Inquiring minds want to know. We have featured lots of books about understanding teens, especially those folks who were teens in the 1960s. This book uses anecdotes and stories to illustrate drug culture, style, art, etc. Think of this as the ultimate “what make these kids tick.”

Can you dig it?


hang loose ethicdrug scene

vocabulary of young people


  1. I can just picture a carful of today’s toughs driving by somebody and shouting threateningly, “Why don’t you go fly a kite?”

  2. Kids hollering, “What color’s your dingy?” I don’t know if I want to explore that any further . . . And did you know that cool “implies coping with contingencies and vicissitudes”? Google found two Barry Winograds, both much younger than this author. Perhaps one is the son?

  3. I have trouble believing, even in the 1960s, that parents would “look into the face” of some rando hippie, see “no evil there,” and then willingly let him drive off with their kids for the rest of the day to supposedly fly kites. I was born in 1965, but that would never have happened to me or my friends. Parents were already concerned about talking to strangers, let alone leaving with them.

  4. Is the drawing on the title page part of the book or some patron’s dirty graffiti? Looks like something Billy B. drew in my notebook to shock me in music class one day.

    And, when did “bread” mean maintenance expenses?

    The first few excerpts look pretty good, though — could have been a useful book for thoughtful people back in the day. (But not my parents — they had no clue and they didn’t want any. That actually made some things easier LOL.)

    1. Earning one’s daily bread, i. e., livelihood or sustenance/maintenance, dates to the 18th century, at least. The more general usage of cash or money came in the mid-20th century.

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