I’ve been told more than a few times that I seem to be a bit out of time, or in the wrong time. It’s an odd mix. Sometimes I think I’m already too far in the past from where I should be. When others claim it, I am suddenly something that stepped out of the past or such. Perhaps it’s an effect of knowing a bit of history – and sometimes having at least a bit of contact with it. Not just my own age (Which is jarring enough. My car is older than some co-workers now!) but that my grandparents were fairly long-lived, and I’ve met some of my great-grandparents though those memories are faint. Thus I have, or had, at least some near-direct contact with things of perhaps a century ago.
With old movies, classic cartoons, and even some older textbooks – as well as fondness for histories of scientific discovery and such – that gets a bit more background yet. I know full well that nowadays, had I the ability to time travel, I would have a rough time even getting by in years I’ve lived through. But I suspect more than a few people might have the idea that I could visit the 1940’s or 1930’s and actually get away with it for more than a few minutes. I do not believe this to be the case.
I would appreciate the music. The stuff on broadcast radio in the 1970’s didn’t really capture my attention. When an even-then ancient reel to reel recorder appeared and one reel was songs from The Glenn Miller Story it was a jolt as if the Universe suddenly told me, “Here, MUSIC!”
A few songs speak to me a bit of history and things I didn’t experience. Or didn’t experience the first time around, but with recorded media and re-runs and such, I could get a taste of them. I never saw Saturday Matinee serials or such in theaters – but I did follow the adventures of Flash Gordon, Gene Autry at the Radio Ranch, and such when big dishes and C-band satellite was a big deal. A sampling of these tunes:
DEARIE (Gordon MacRae & Jo Stafford)
“Do you remember… when we stayed up all night to get Pittsburgh on a crystal set?”
Get Out Those Old Phonograph Records
“…listen to the music play!”
(Stay Up Stan) The All Night Record Man
“There’s a man you should know, who puts on a show, each night at a radio station. When you’re going to bed, he gets up instead and he goes to his odd occupation.”
These are all interesting to me, but rather historical. That is, I appreciate them and they inspire some feeling but it’s pleasant pseudo-reminiscence, not a jolt. A few days ago I happened across something more recent, but still old and aimed more at those who came before me. It’s pretty clearly for those who grew up in the 1950’s and perhaps 1960’s. There are a few things that might seem ‘universal’ enough that even later they could be experienced. Overall, I did not get or go through those either. Perhaps that’s why, at least initially, it hit harder than might be expected.
It was jarring. I was feeling like I missed out on things I simply could not have experienced (with a couple exceptions where I could have had them – or did have them but didn’t want them). The style of the singing also caught me some. I kinda want a tune like that for the times I really did go through. There might be one, but I suspect if so it’s in a style I dislike. Or perhaps it’s best I don’t encounter such thing? Maybe it would remind me too much of things I’ve missed out on. Then again, maybe not. I did go watch a few “You’re an ’80’s Kid if…” sort of video and found that I didn’t recall several things mentioned, but have no feeling of missing out. And in some cases, such as the Cabbage Patch craze, was glad to have been well outside of it, watching a bit of the world go mad without getting mixed up in the madness.