Friday, April 27, 2007

Our Generation, Our Nastalgia

Not so many good things about growing old. However, of all the good things about growing older, Nastalgia is one of them. No nostalgia for kids. In fact, life has exempted anyone under 21 from feeling it. And you really can’t begin to really enjoy it until you’re past 30.

It first hit me when I was 32 and at the SF airport. I was in the music store where they were selling CDs. (remember those?) And there was a 4 disc package of all the Schoolhouse Rock songs. I couldn’t not buy it as “Conjunction Junction” started playing in my head. Before I got to the counter, “Zero, my hero” started, and as I was walking out with my gift box, “Noun is a person, place or thing” was rocking. It truly is a cool feeling.

Websites are great for a nostalgia fix also. Try “Jump the Shark” a website dedicated to TV programming since its beginning-- with a twist: Discussion is about when the show turned bad. For Happy Days, it was certainly the arrival of Chachi, wasn’t it? Sometimes, it seems, shows “jump back,” meaning that they get good again. And then there are the great ones that “never jumped the shark” Monday night football. I still remember watching a Monday night game when I was 12 and John Lennon was shot. A ticker across the bottom reported it first.

As far as movies goes, there is no better source for nostalgia. I bought Saturday Night Fever on DVD a couple years ago. Watched it six times before it was damaged beyond repair. Wonderfully nostalgic. Check this nostalgia review by John Derbyshire at the National Review.

How about The Breakfast Club? St. Elmo’s Fire anyone? Taps. What about that one with Matt Dillon, Jodie Foster and Tatum O’Neil at summer camp? (Deep sigh.)

Yeah, getting old is not so bad. What a wonderful feeling, Nostalgia. Even the bad moments of our past give us fine feelings sometimes. In any case, I’m gonna order SNF again. Just to see John Travolta in that film is a blast.

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