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Wayback machine

It's 1978 and the first IVF baby, Louise Brown, is born. It is a year of wonder. But 1978 is also a year of turbulence, a year of wanton carnage and emotional violence.

I will explain.

In 1978, the Jonestown massacre occurs.

The Bee Gees' "Night Fever" is the year's bestselling single.

Harvey Milk is assassinated for being gay. Twinkies take the rap.

Serial killer Ted Bundy murders his last victim, then is apprehended in Florida.

The Unabomber sends his first mail bomb.

John Travolta cripples cinemagoers with a one-two punch right to the motherfucking groin with Grease and Saturday Night Fever.

The comic strip Garfield debuts in newspapers around the country..

And doctors are handing out these by the thousands.

[Many thanks for the graphics to a benefactor who prefers to remain unnamed.]