“Dad, what’s a hippie?” My daughter wonders about such things. I reply, “A hippie is the opposite of the straight, narrow-minded, war-mongering people and peace and love were the code words of those days.” Also, groovy, cool, hip, dude, chick among many other slang words.

Then, what’s a yuppie? My mind flips into overtime, well… they’re nearly the same as hippies, except with suits and sweaters with letters on them. No wait that was before the hippie days. Anyways, when you look back, hippies changed the world and altered the way we think of the world around us.

For us up north, we lagged a little behind. A number of years went by until someone realized that headbands were out, the same for those garish bellbottoms that were the rage for a period of time. Around those days, the world was changing so rapidly, but that universal peace feeling lingered on for some years back home. But a revolution was heading our way, something that would change our little Shangri-La forever. Yes, it was development and an almost futuristic mind-boggling type of development.

Almost overnight, a massive project changed our lives and futures forever. This was bigger than the hippie movement. Hey, whoever heard of a hippie with money? Money and more money flowed constantly through the hands of workers who never really made money. People and massive machines were everywhere. All of a sudden, everyone owned suburbans and trucks. These were vehicles that could take off-roading to another level, as most roads had to be built first. The term SUV was never heard of as we learnt how to drive the treacherous paths we liked to call roads. Driveways? Never heard of them.

As our little world had nothing around you could call a driving school, you could always depend on Simon or Johnny, George or Eddie to show the sleight of hand they liked to call changing gears. Although these guys might of heard of John Lennon, the most radical music to listen to was “Jesus Christ Superstar” which at that time was battling against the hard western music style and big band stuff versus Elvis and the Beatles. Ahhh, those were the days.

Okay, what about those punk rockers and guys who slam danced? Well, it’s sort of like the whole world doesn’t like swarmy nice stuff all the time and once in awhile, you gotta listen to this stuff just to appreciate the great music that hippies listened to. Also, the world belonged to the record player and I belonged to that era. An eight-track player and ferric oxide tape was high tech, especially since you needed electricity to use those things (most of our players were battery driven). I could see that I was talking gibberish to my child and ended with… you could always tell who a hippie was in those days, when he flashed a peace sign.

Hippies often wore jean jackets and every tear and hole in them had a story behind it. Jeans were in too, and the more worn out they became, the more they were worth. I used to wear jeans that had patches on the patches. I believe that Levi’s were the toughest to wear out and the embarrassment of wearing new jeans could be solved with Javex. But hey, jeans were cool.

Then the world was forever tarnished by disco music and the horrible “no jeans allowed” rules for disco bars. Thankfully, I never had much exposure to disco so I never changed. My daughter nods her head knowingly.