Anyone on here from the 60's or 70's????

Discussion in 'Classic Racquet Talk' started by jimanuel12, Jan 27, 2010.

  1. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    Talk about classic rackets????

    how about the jack krammer autograph?
    the little white tennis shorts
    the canvas tennis shoes
    the socks pulled up your knees
    the wear nothing but "white" when you played
    the old wood tennis racket braces
    the old leather grips (that was the thing)
    the rackets that weighted a ton
    the metal tennis ball cans
    the clay courts (i played on them in Georgia)
    the play until you drop and can't play anymore
    blue star tourament nylon strings
    the wilson T2000, T3000
    the first alumimum racket
    the first composite racket

    man, those were the days!!!!
     
  2. galain

    galain Hall of Fame

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    I was born in 1970 so most of my tennis started in the early 80's. However, I can add to your list gauze overgrip (had it on all my racquets, towelling grip sometimes as well), and racquet covers that only came down to the throat of the racquet.

    And I still wear canvas shoes on the dirt!
     
  3. Bigtime

    Bigtime Rookie

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    Still have my T2000. Every once in while a I'll pull it out and play some doubles with it, really gets some interesting looks and comments.
     
  4. atatu

    atatu Hall of Fame

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    Remember when players would tuck a little towel into their shorts and fold it into a square ? I know a guy who still does that...
     
  5. vwfye

    vwfye Semi-Pro

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    I played in Chuck Taylors, and what ever t shirt a shorts were at the top of my drawer. Woodies, then aluminum and finally moved up to a Copper Ace and a Tremont Research stringer. That was my 70s to 80s transition. I remember seeing my 1st T2000 on the wall, it was $50.00! It might as well been made of gold back then. $50 was HUGE!
     
  6. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    yeah i remember

    i bought my first T2000 for $40.00 - man that was allot of money back in the day!!!
     
  7. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    that is a good one, i had forgotten about the gauze overgrips.
     
  8. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    I barely nicked the 60s with my tennis ...not really knowing anything until '72 when I started working in a tennis specialty shop(unheard of back then...before that, you went to a hardware/sporting goods store for your equipment. Unless you belonged to a club...no such luck for me!)

    Folks were very careful not to mix the Jack Kramer WHITE shorts with a CREAM JK shirt. We sold boxes and boxes of Bancroft panties in white, powder blue and 'gasp' yellow. The first exciting colors came from Tom Gorman/Pacific Trails...bold rugby stripes and a really attractive combo of kelly green and navy. We sold bundles of Izod pique knit shirts--extra grand patron for me, thank you. Those shirts weighed a ton when loaded with sweat...tails would hang down to your knees!

    Tretorn Nylite shoes...possibly the worst yet most popular shoe of the time. We thought we would NEVER sell another pair of the Tretorn LEATHA-lite shoe when the retail price went north of $20. Never thought we would sell another Fairway grip when the cost went over TEN BUCKS installed! Tournament nylon installed for $5.95...thought we were killing ourselves when we went up to $7.95 after a few months. Only the 'lower end' natural gut would sell for under $20---Victor Superb, American Eagle seconds, etc.

    The Bancroft ESC racket(epoxy-steel-compposite)...nothing but a wood frame but had an overlay of red, translucent epoxy with visible steel mesh embedded in it--as a laminate for the shoulders. UNTIL it de-laminated within a week! The original Arthur Ashe Competition racket...looked like an old battle ship when the skin began to oxidize.

    Fuschia colored tennis balls. Spalding 'PROFESSIONAL' balls, white with colored seams!

    Ah, the good old days!
     
  9. retrowagen

    retrowagen Hall of Fame

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    Trebling. "Rough or Smooth?" would start a match, not "M or W?" or "P or D?" or even "Up or Down?"
     
  10. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    Our original gauze tape came from Johnson and Johnson, I believe. Green was the only color. When the tan and blue were introduced, the rumor was that the blue absorbed better...people wouldn't buy the green after that! You couldn't get the used roll started again after the heat 'melted' the end into the rest of the roll. Handles would be glued together if left touching in your bag.

    How about rosin powder? Sold a lot of that. SAI(Sports Accessories Inc) had 'snooty' packaging of all accessories related to tennis and some of the best socks of the day.

    Anybody remember their first REAL wristband...not just a cloth but REAL elastic for stretch. How about matching the wristband stripe with the stripe on your socks?

    Remember your first warm-up/track suit? Mine was a White Stag...solid white, zippers on the legs...same one worn by the University team. Man, I thought I was somethin' !
     
  11. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    Yep, had to be careful to match the trebling 'rough or smooth' with that of the knots. (or, if you didn't match, you could "Spin it and win it" by showing the other.)

    Yeah, 'P or D' was a few years into my 'career'...I always liked "Head or Dead". Of course, the early Volkls didn't even have butt caps. Yamaha had the 'tuning fork' for up or down.

    Anyone remember the rumor that Yoneyama changed to Yonex after 'being bought out by Exxon' ? Huh???

    How about some of the 'parents' of the popular tennis companies. IIRC, Sara Lee owned Head Sportswear for a time. AMF owned Head. PepsiCo owned Wilson.

    Remember the very popular "Boasters" shirts and shorts (later shortened to 'Boast') with the 'pot leaf'? (Of course, it was a Japanese Maple leaf but we all knew what it looked like). I'll bet every college team in the Southeast US wore that line at some point in the 70s-80s.
     
  12. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    i still have a rosin powder bag in my tennis bag, i think it has been there since 1980. i kept taking it from one bag to the other, just could not seem to throw it away.
    i had forgotten about that too, until you mentioned it.
     
  13. retrowagen

    retrowagen Hall of Fame

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    ...And the ubiquitous "Todd 1" shiny warm-up suits, which were perfect knock-offs of the ubiquitous Adidas A-15.
     
  14. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    also, don't forget about the first alumimum rackets, they vibrated so bad, i thought my arm was going to fall off, but kept playing with it anyway because it was so powerful.
    i think it was a selisinger (mispelled).
     
  15. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    what about clay courts?????

    did anyone play on clay courts back in the day??
    when i went to college in Georgia that was the first clay court i had ever seen. they play wonderful, a little slow but i loved to play on them.
    then they tore them up and replaced them with the hard courts.
    i miss my clay court, no one has them anywhere now that i know of.
     
  16. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    That's a great story! I have an unopened bag of pink gauze tape, likely from the mid-80s. I also have the SAI 'bike clip'...used to clip your racket to the front fork of your bicycle! Sounds like a horrible accident based video just waiting to happen!

    Someone mentioned the 'Ball Saver' pump. How about the 'ball press', a three-compartment screw-down 'vise' that would keep the balls from going dead. Sold a bunch of those in the old days.

    I try not to keep old wooden presses...have just a couple. But, I remember when the 'Zephyr' press came out. Just a metal 'X' that screwed down to keep the wood rackets from warping. You would have thought it was the greatest invention of the day by the way people bought them!
     
  17. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    Oh, yes...the Adidas(Beckenbauer) 'silky' warm-up suit. EVERY time a new color came out, we would have customers fighting over them.

    Borg wore Adidas for a time early on and my roommate snared a pair of gold/black stripes A15 pants left behind after a practice session. Never saw another pair in that color combo.(Roomie swore he tried to return the pants to BB).

    I actually sold Todd-1 as a rep for a short period---distributed by Century Sports(1984)...there were 'package' programs that had colors and sizes assorted for a 'case' discount.
     
  18. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    There were a few homemade red clay courts in Columbia, SC back then. That was some slick stuff when it got damp!!! I didn't set foot on a 'Rubico' green synthetic clay court for quite a few years(Forest Lake CC in Columbia). We thought we were really cool then!

    Wish we had more soft courts out here in Cen Tex. My knees could use a break!
     
  19. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    I had a Spalding Smasher when others were trying(and I mean TRYING) to play with the T2000/T3000. The throat was riveted in place and would squeak even when brand new! I remember a pretty local college girl who played with a 'Sterling' brand of metal racket. That was one elegant pairing!

    Speaking of elegant...does anyone remember 'Hampton Court' knits? They had absolutely gorgeous knit dresses, skirts, sweaters. They were seriously form-fitting for the day and looked fantastic on the right person.
     
  20. SVP

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    Ball Saver Pump

    That would be me who mentioned the ball saver pump. That was on the other thread about memories of the 60s and 70s. That pump could keep the balls bouncing for months even though they were worn down to the size of racquetball balls.
     
  21. SVP

    SVP Rookie

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    Such detail

    Coachrick, you and the others have such detailed memories. Mine are not so detailed. In the 70s, I remember everyone tucked their shirts into their nuthugger tennis shorts. This was supposed to show a neat and well-groomed appearance. We were slimmer back then, so it wasn't that uncomfortable. I loved the Borg Fila pinstripe shirt even though it was form fitting. Around 1975, a tennis shop employee told me that the 13 oz. racquet I was swinging wasn't all that heavy. Also around that time, my Dad gave me his Wilson racquet from the 50s, complete with racquet press and green plastic cover. He told me to practice swinging it with the press on it so I could strengthen my arm. The grip size was at least 4 5/8" size even though he was 5'4'' and 120 lbs.
     
  22. khw72004

    khw72004 Semi-Pro

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    Can you imagine 50 years from now, people writing on this topic and ask "you mean 2060's?"
     
  23. purple-n-gold

    purple-n-gold Professional

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    Just traveled back in time....COOL. bd1967
     
  24. CollegeBound

    CollegeBound Rookie

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    Yep and I personally believe that the 1970's were the last truly great decade we've had.

    My 1960's

    Shoe Whitener that you applied before every match
    White zinc cream splayed across your nose and cheeks
    A terry towelling bucket hat to ward off the sun (still wear them - I think I'm the only one who does lol)
    Pristine white t-shirts or shirts with collars
    White shorts that were handed down from older brothers
    Dunlop Volleys or Sandshoes - White only, thanks very much
    Ballboying at White City and Kooyong
    White tennis balls - I still think they look better
    Homemade dirt and grass tennis courts
    Idolising men like Lave, Emerson and Stolle who actually were men, not boys (tennis players then were old enough to have interesting things to say).


    My 1970's

    'Hang Ten' racquet covers (they only covered the head) = the height of Aussie 70's cool lol.
    Moustaches - everywhere (facial hair and the 70's went hand in hand). The John Newcombe/Denis Lillee 'stach ruled.
    Hair gradually creeping over ears
    The introduction of coloured clothing, then patterns - the shock of it all.
    Yellow tennis balls - sacrilege.
    Metal racquets (steel, then aluminium) - they'd never catch on.
    Courts made of asphalt
    String tensions of 65lbs+ were the norm
    Hating Jimmy Connors
    Jealous of Bjorn Borg
    In love with Evonne Goolagong
    Fila tennis clothing - European chic
     
  25. atatu

    atatu Hall of Fame

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    Back in the day it was a big deal to use the biggest grip you could handle, so when I was 10 years old I was swinging a head master with a 4 5/8th grip....now I use 4 3/8ths.
     
  26. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    Yep, one of my favorite treats was pulling down a new Red Head Pro...4 5/8L PLUS a fresh Fairway grip= 5" grip. Dropped down to 3/4-7/8" over the playing years. Made it easy when the companies would ask what size grip I wanted. I would just say 'whatever your demos come in, whatever you have the most of'. Easy to wrap a replacement grip on top of a 3/8 or 1/2 and head for the courts. I DO have big hands but my weight would increase during the colder months and the extra 'beef' in my fingers would cause me to drop down a size during the winter.

    Mind you, this was back when men were men and grips were made of leather. One strip of gauze tape just above the butt cap and off we went.

    On the other hand(!), some of my rackets from the early 1900s have bare WOODEN handles that measure over 5". Now, THAT'S a grip!!!
     
  27. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    the 1970's - those WERE the days!!!!

    I remember hating Jimbo too, he was so arrogant and everyone hated that guy, loved to see him get beat.

    i was in love with who else? Chris Evertt and i hated the fact that Jimbo was dating her, how could she be so stupid????
    when they were guys like me around????
    i remember playing in the sun until you were so sun burned you could not move for 3 days but after that, you had a great tan.
    did not even think of skin cancer???
    how about taking your own water jug to the courts, i had the cool pizza hut jug full with ice water. my girfriend, now my better half, would fill it up for me each time i headed to the courts.
    white tennis balls, then colored ones, man those things will never catch on!!!

    I remember having to wait 2 hours to get on the courts!!!
    signs posted at the courts "Please keep your playing time to 1 set only"

    oh, those were the high times for tennis - everyone - i mean everyone played back then.
     
  28. dataseviltwin

    dataseviltwin Rookie

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    more to add...

    Shoe Goo
    Tericloth hats [​IMG]
    Stan Smith auto shoes. Gave way to Rod Laver Auto in the 80's
    3 stripes... gotta have the 3 stripes...
     
  29. Snipergene

    Snipergene Rookie

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    Born in the 60's and started playing in the 70's. Here's one that hasn't been mentioned yet.

    Remember when Jimmy Connors sang a song on the Saturday Night Live with Howard Cosell show back in 1975?
     
  30. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    OK, anyone remember Tred2 ? You could send in your worn out shoes and they would re-sole them and 'renew' the white leather finish, new laces also. K-Swiss would resole their 1000 series shoes as well.

    How about Bata Bullets? The 'moon shoe' was the first poly sole shoe we carried. So slick you could bust your behind just walking to the car! That was the reason they held up so well....NO traction at all!!! They just slid across the court surface! :)
     
  31. Snipergene

    Snipergene Rookie

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    Just remembered this one. I used to get tennis shoes from the Nike Westwood (about a mile south of UCLA) store in 1975. It was a little (about 400 sq. ft.) shop on Westwood Blvd. Back then, Nike's were not yet available at every sporting good store.
     
  32. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    grass courts!!!!

    i remember my neighbor had made his back yard into a make shift tennis court, it was sooooo cool to play on grass!!!
     
  33. Yaz

    Yaz Rookie

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    great thread...Todd 1 - wow that brings back some memories. They copied some of the 2-tone Borg/Fila warm-ups also...I was too poor to afford the real thing so I got the Todd 1s instead...lol. Wish I still had those
     
  34. SVP

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    hey man provide proof

    "Hey man" (commonly used phrase of the 70s), better provide some kind of proof of this, citation to youtube or whatever.
     
  35. SVP

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    hey man provide proof

    "Hey man" (commonly used phrase of the 70s), better provide some kind of proof of this eclectic pairing, citation to youtube or whatever.
     
  36. SVP

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    good one!

    Forgot about that oldie but goodie- shoe goo! I couldn't afford that. I wrapped good ol' duct tape around the front of my shoe to keep it from flapping open.

    Stan Smith shoes were the bomb. Elegant in their simplicity. White with green trim. Too bad they were not durable.
     
  37. vwfye

    vwfye Semi-Pro

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    I use to put shoe goo on pieces of old tennis ball to keep my shoes together in the toe area. very sandy hard courts and soles were not the best of friends. I could get an extra week out of my shoes that way!
     
  38. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    i remember wearing holes in the toes of my canvas tennis shoes, i think i paid maybe $4.00 a pair for them, so i would go through 2 or 3 pairs a season.

    hey man, those were the days!!!!
     
  39. Snipergene

    Snipergene Rookie

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    Last edited: Feb 9, 2010
  40. vwfye

    vwfye Semi-Pro

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    i was going through a pair a week before discovering this trick.
     
  41. dataseviltwin

    dataseviltwin Rookie

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    That, and Tretorn balls...

    Presureless... things felt like a baseball. Later... Dunlop had presureless balls we played with in Europe on the dirt - boxes of 4 (made so much more sense than 3-ball cans...). Guar-on-tee the reason they weren't released stateside was the 3-ball can market. Why put balls out that last weeks when those crazy Americans are opening a new can every time they play...?
     
  42. Snipergene

    Snipergene Rookie

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    We had Tretorn pressureless balls here in the US.
     
  43. SVP

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  44. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    i liked Jimbo when he got older and wiser maybe.
    he was such an A$$hole when he was young. i always rooted against him when he played, i wanted someone, anyone to beat his *** so bad.
    but when he made it to the semi's at the US Open, i think it was 93, everyone was rooting for the old guy, even me.
    he seems to have mellowed out allot in his old age, good for him.
     
  45. SVP

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    mellow Jimbo

    We all rooted for him during his US Open run (I think it was 91?). He was the underdog and the main thing keeping him going was his indomitable competitive spirit.

    This more recent kinder and gentler version of Jimbo is weird to me. It seems like he's trying to change his image for commercial purposes, but I know, so what? Doesn't everybody? Jimbo's softer image doesn't ring true to me. And lo and behold, Jimbo didn't disappoint me. In 2007 or 2008, he got into some kind of verbal altercation with a fan at a UC Santa Barbara basketball game, which necessitated the local cops arresting him for I believe disorderly conduct or a related charge. As far as I can determine, no formal charges were ever filed against him, so good for him. Probably some testosterone-laden punk wanting to take on a middle-aged male, didn't matter that it was the Jimbo. But it says something to me that the Jimbo who is approaching his 60s can still get riled up enough to have the cops called on him. Has he really mellowed? With all the drunken college students in Santa Barbara (even the UC is known as a party school), it still takes something for the cops to arrest some middle-aged dude, especially if he is a tennis legend.

    I guess all in all, he's done pretty well for an iconic athlete. He's still married to his wife of 20+ years. She was a Playboy centerfold; who could've predicted it would last so long?
     
  46. jswinf

    jswinf Professional

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    I remember watching Billie Jean King kick old Bobby Riggs butt in the big made-for-TV challenge match. Embarrassing.

    Somebody beat me to white tennis balls but it took 24 posts or so, I was surprised.

    I was watching the 1975 Wimbledon men's final and getting excited about Ashe beating up on Connors when the TV reception went out in the metropolis of Kingman, AZ.

    Seemed like the only broadcaster working tennis was Bud Collins forever. The guy's got a lot in common with Dick Clark that way, except for being physically attractive and well-dressed.

    I remember feeling pretty snobbish about oversized rackets--"real men wouldn't use such a thing." Got over it eventually, at least as far as mid-sized.
     
  47. Snipergene

    Snipergene Rookie

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    It wasn't SNL as we know it today. It was a variety show hosted by Howard Cosell. I remember seeing it live and thinking you should never wear a blue shirt if you sweat a lot under the pits. :lol:
     
  48. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    at the time i was rooting for billie jean, but now that i look back, she was at the top of her game, he was in his 50's or so, it was not much of a competition when you look at it that way.
    bobby did not practice, did not take her seriously and he lost.
    i wonder what would have happened if he had really gotten into shape????
    well, we will never know, but for his time, he was a great tennis player.
    now that i am older, i can relate to him more i guess.
     
  49. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    I still do the Rough/Smooth thing. I got accused of cheating on the spin by a 20-something year old who just couldn't understand the concept. His partner was my age (50+) and tried to splain it to him, but it did no good. I finally looked at him and told him to decide if he wanted to serve or not. :)

    The grip gauze you used to buy was some quirky stuff. When you first put it on, it didn't do much good, the paint had to wear off (on your hand) and then for a breif time it worked great until it wore out.
     
  50. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    i think i still have some of the gauze in my tennis bag, it has been there since 1980.
     

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