1. Ian says

    Cool how the street scenes look almost identical today, except for the cars. Sadly, the biggest difference are the shots of Washington Square Park, which is quickly being sterilized of its soul. How I miss that old fountain!

  2. RW says

    @ 0:45 “Cut! How the hell did that Black man get in my shot?! Alright, we’ll have the narrator call it ‘cosmopolitan'”

  3. alexInBoston says

    ..”the garret of a Bohemian friend” (your local gay artist)! Also this is the era that gave NYC the “Murder of Kitty Genovese – the singular act of an insular community! I’m not going to get involved – It’s none of my business – Someone else will call the police – and she screamed for and begged for help for over 30 mins while being savagely stabbed and raped finally dying in an ambulance! A nice era to live in good old NYC….

  4. jerry says

    I shouldn’t take the bait but I will. Alexinboston the Kitty Genovese attack occurred in Kew Gardens Queens, about 180 degrees opposite from the demographics and sense of comminuity you would find in Greenwich Village ( the subject of the video clip ) as witnessed by the proverbial little old lady in tennis shoes, Jane Jacobs, who took on the powerful Robert Moses to preserve the neighborhood and won.
    I daresay had Jane Jacobs or one of her many colleagues, supporters and followers been awakened that night, the end result would have been significantly less tragic.

  5. WoodyWoody says

    And today’s fashion, judging from the comments? Mind-crushing cynicism. Sheesh. Enjoy the clip for the over-the-top camp at least.

  6. JB says

    Was this a commercial for cotton? I kept waiting for it to sing “Cotton – The Fabric of Our Lives.”

  7. SortOfAnon says

    This must have been an early production of Cotton Incorporated (“Cotton: The Fabric of Our Lives”).

    My grandfather was a cotton farmer and very much involved in the creation of Cotton, Inc. I wonder if he knew about this. And if he knew how sanitized a view it was…

    As for why there are no drag queens… since when did a drag queen ever use cotton for their ensemble?!?! :-)

  8. gr8guyca says

    Yes, of course, this was a promotional film for cotton. Most likely, it was done to offset the rise of synthetic fabrics. That’s why the emphasis is on the fact that cotton is “with it” and “now.” Possibly made for a fashion trade show or clothes manufacturers convention. I can just see the booth – filled with groovy guys in corduroy and hip chicks with “Bonnie & Clyde” berets.

  9. gr8guyca says

    And, of course, there is a guy trying on a Nehru jacket. Nehru was one of the most popular designers of the time and became famous for the distinctive collar he created. He was also a well-known personality; sort of the Michael Kors of his time, and went on to a successful political career.


  10. pretty rat boy says

    Bourgeois radical chic bohemians! Good Christ, what innocence or contrived innocence. Another world, another time.

  11. Danny says

    That “garret” where the party of “Bohemians” took place rented for about $40 in those years. Now it rents for $4,000. Or is part of a co-op with a monthly maintenance of $1,200.

  12. Danny says

    @JERRY: THANKS for taking on Alex in Boston. You can always tell that New York’s most severe critics are people who know nothing about it. I’ve lived in the village since 1982 and have loved every minute of it. That horrible incident of Kitty Genovese which occurred in an area of Queens whose demographic and politics have long resembled what we see in suburbia today gave the whole city a black eye we did not deserve. A similar incident occurred last week in my neighborhood–a woman was screaming for help as she was being murdered and her neighbors frantically tried to intervene but could not figure out where she was. I’ve never, never, NEVER seen someone fall down in the street without a crowd gathering to help, health care professionals appearing and identifying themselves, other people whipping out cell phones to call 911 and all the rest. I’ve seen young guys hit on their bicycles and traffic jams ensuing as people get out of their cars to help. The myth of the insular New Yorker is a lie propagated by people who wouldn’t have the balls to live here.

    Frankly, I think it’s nothing but sour grapes.

  13. Danny says

    @ Jason about Williamsburg: NOT BY A LONG SHOT.
    Williamsburg is a ghetto of the terminally hip whose life-work is being fabulous. In no way is it countercultural as the Village of the 50s and 60s was–or the East Village of the 60s and 70s. Williamsburg is as nauseatingly bourgeois as Lincoln Center has become.

  14. pretty rat boy says

    As someone who was born in NYC and partly raised in it, I agree, most real NYers are not insular and will help others when needed. It is a myth that they’re cold and unfriendly.

  15. pretty rat boy says

    I remember growing up it was no big deal to live in the village, certainly not the lower east side, alphabet city neighborhood, etc. Everybody could afford to live there. My uncle [a hospital technician] and his wife lived in an apartment that today only a Wall St. or Midtown suit can afford. Everything dramatically changed by the early 90’s, and rental costs and everything else went through the roof, especially Manhattan.

    Similar situation occurred in other cities. I remember when Boston’s gay ghetto the South End was looked at similar to the lower east side. Today it’s unaffordable for most people and is certainly no longer a gayborhood. Same with Boston’s other traditional gayborhoods like the Fenway. I remember when even living on Beacon Hill or the Back Bay [million dollar condos and townhouses today, sky-high rents] was no big deal, anyone could have afforded the rents. That all changed dramatically at the same time, late 80’s-90’s.