Sunday, July 20, 2008

Bassett Place


Jim Holbel's recent visit to Flint brought back a lot of memories of the old neighborhood. I wondered if I had any photos of my house at 2402 Bassett Place. I did a little digging and found this shot from June 1972, taken the day my older brother, Matt, graduated from Powers.

Whose idea was the orange graduation gown? Rumor has it there was a rigged election at the high school that led to the color selection. Can you say "voter fraud"? My brother asked me not to name any names. The good news is that the gowns could also be worn for deer hunting, highway construction work or Denver Broncos games.

That's me in the left corner, acting up in the looming shadow of my 6' 5" brother, and sporting a classic seventies outfit — red pants and a purple shirt. My grandpa, Verne McFarlane, is in one of the suits he wore every day except Saturday. My mom is in front with my grandma, Leone, in one of her many stylish sweater ensembles. And the house itself features the green aluminum siding that I've heard it still has today.

You might also notice the lawn chair in the lower left corner. This was back in the days when you could sit on the front lawn in the shade and watch the baseball games across the street.

10 comments:

  1. Love the orange graduation gowns with the blue 'racing stripe'! I recall my cousin saying that it looked like a pumpkin convention at her graduation!

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  2. I didn't even notice the racing stripe...it really gives the whole outfit a sleek, streamlined look.

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  3. Gordie, how come I always thought you were an only child? I don't remember you having a brother...

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  4. Great pic! I'm a huge fan of those square snapshots that seemed to disappear sometime in the mid-70's, and I think every grandmother or great aunt over the age of 60 had at least a week's worth of those sweater ensembles. Man, I can't remember the last time I sat outside in a lawn chair at home. In the front yard we have little sun and in the back we'd probably end up witnessing drug deals rather than watching baseball games on the street behind us.

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  5. The only-child myth may be explained by the age difference between me and the rest of the family. My siblings are 8, 10 and 12 years older than me, respectively.

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  6. That photo really brings it all back. I do remember the little blonde boy next door. I was probably looking out the window while that photo was being snapped.

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  7. What a great photo! Brings back great memories of your grandparents, who offered to pay for Matt to stay in a hotel all year after visiting him at our house in East GR. He bravely hung in with us for the duration.

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  8. Phil, I believe one of the key co-conspirators in the orange robe voter scandal may have lived in that house at one point, or at least attended the infamous parties there...a certain soccer goalie with a large afro, perhaps?

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  9. Gordie,
    When did your family leave Bassett? Do you remember who still lived on the street when you left? My favorites were The Rumbaughs and the Wallaces.
    All the kids in the neighborhood would go to Mrs. Rumbaugh's back door for a daily piece of candy. Were you one of them?

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  10. My uncle Bill Swirtz graduated the same year from Powers and we have a picture of him in the same ugly Orange gown. Except my 4 year old brain thought it was "pretty."

    Gordie - your mother is so beautiful in that picture!

    Also - anyone ever heard the term "Michigan Porch Sitters"? Above said Uncle Bill married a girl from Peoria Illinois where apparently it is "uncommon" to sit on your porch. Thus, she was amazed when she came to Flint in 1976'ish and saw people sitting on their porches. She used the term like she had heard it before.

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