Monday, August 3, 2009

The Most Important Thing About Nostalgia

I want to know what the hell is going on! Sunday friggin' afternoon at 5 pm, and there were FORTY-EIGHT blog posts on my dashboard. I can barely get myself together to post Monday-Wednesday-Friday and y'all are putting out 48 posts on a Sunday?!?!?

I feel like the kid who goes to kindergarten for the first day and all the other kids know each other from two years of pre-school. Totally screwed and left out, but having no idea how to relate that without biting.

Of all the posts, the one that made me go, "OK, now that needed to be posted today, for sure" was from Chris at Maugeritaville: August 2, 1979. Two words: Thurman Munson. I can't believe it's been thirty years since I stared at the radio in the rental house in Long Beach Island, NJ as if they'd announced a nuclear holocaust. A mixture of OMFG and... no, that's it, just OMFG. Of course, I was 8, so that particular phrase did not spout forth, but with today's knowledge, I'd say that pretty much summed it up.

Just another instance of my childhood poking me in the ribs and saying slyly, "Hey, remember me?"

I've had a lot of those lately. All kinds of odd, where-the-hell-did-that-come-from memories sprouting forth unexpectedly. Is it the grave economic condition of our country and the world that has made me wax nostalgic? Or wishing I could raise my kids in a more innocent (seeming) time. Or my subconscious mind freaking out about getting closer to 40 even though my conscious mind couldn't give a running rat's ass in a rolling donut... I don't know.

I just know that lately I've been longing for the view from my childhood bedroom window, and swimming all day without giving a damn how I looked in a bathing suit. How my aunt had long hair and taught me how to comb out my hair easily when I got out of the pool. I look back and wonder how the hell my mother kept London Broil on the table and the lights & phone never got cut off even once even though my dad refused to pay child support.

I remember when you HAD to go to the movie theater to see a movie. I remember when Easter was not only awesome for the egg hunt, but because that was the week that they showed The Ten Commandments AND The Wizard of Oz (I always ran into the kitchen to my mom when the flying monkeys came on). I remember when you had to get up to change the channel and Superman had a whole phone-booth to change in.

It was back before I did all the screwing-up that got me where I am today.

Now that I think about it... knowing that I could not possibly have made any other choices than the ones I made with all the various factors affecting me at the times that I made them... it's more like wow, thank GOD that I don't have to go through all those learning experiences again!

I already know that double perming over super-light-by-way-of-40-volume-peroxide will leave you with hair that disintegrates in your hands so that you'll have to cut your hair off all the way to the scalp. I also know that if this happens in a time before Susan Powder you will be ridiculed because you are not undergoing chemotherapy.

I already know to check the oil in your 'new' car even if your brothers just rebuilt your engine, otherwise you run the risk of blowing up the engine, and no longer having a cute, freshly detailed Chevette, but having to wait months for a LeMans that looked like it had belonged to felons.

I already know to check that the back of my skirt isn't stuck in my pantyhose when I emerge from the restroom in an expensive restaurant and thinking that guys are looking at me cause I'm Oh-So-Hot so I smile broadly and wink at them on the way back to my table.

I already know to keep extra feminine hygiene products in my purse at all times; that there are heavy flow days, and white shorts are best avoided on those days.

So, no matter how appealing those days of old may be trying to seem, I know one other thing... that even if I could go back and visit those days, they wouldn't be nearly as wonderful as I remember them. And that may be the most important lesson of them all.



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4 comments:

Margo said...

I think it must have something to do with the economy and perhaps our ages. Just recently I've noticed that pictures from around the time I was born look like they were from the 20s and 30s - the cars and old woodie wagons. Do you remember waiting for the tv to warm up?

DG at Diary of a Mad Bathroom said...

I remember those days too. Strangely, I don't yearn for them. I like being on the other side of 40 and all wired up with multiple electronic gadgets. I worried much more then than I do now about how I look in a swimsuit because I'm over 40 and I don't (please let me borrow this awesomeness)"give a running rat's ass in a rolling donut" (Love that!)about anyone checking me out.
Maybe I just had a crappy childhood.

The Retired One said...

True enough! Memories are always embellished as better in our minds because they are our own script. But they do bring forth such a warm nostalgic feeling. Especially now that both of my parents have passed. I look at old family pictures and realize that I did not talk to them as much as I should have to ask them important things about their views and their memories.

Chris@Maugeritaville said...

Hey, thanks for the mention. Most of my posts aren't "time sensitive" . . . or any kind of sensitive, really . . . but that one was. What a sad sad day.