The other evening I was visiting with my lovely and talented blog topic muse, Max, and we started talking about things we miss from our childhoods. As a child of the 70s and 80s -heavily influenced by reruns of the 50s and 60s, it turns out TV and the people who were on it topped the list, along with a few odd items. (For instance, has anyone seen my sense of optimism lately? I think I misplaced that in the early 90s.)
I miss Johnny Carson. And the Carol Burnett Show. And Saturday Night Live. (The one that had Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, and Gilda Radner in it.) Oops. Sad face. I miss Gilda too.
I miss after school TV like Gilligan’s Island, Bewitched, and The Dick Van Dyke Show. (Re-runs all, but new to me.) While we’re at it, I miss getting home before 4:00 in the afternoon.
I miss phones that were actually connected to the wall. With a little effort I could get half way down the hallway, as long as I kept a tight grip on the receiver. If I didn’t, the cord, which was stretched almost to the point of ripping out of the phone itself, would fly straight out in the air – smashing against both walls of the hallway before landing with a crash on the kitchen floor.
I miss Miami Vice, (or more specifically, Don Johnson,) the Solid Gold Dancers, and the SANE Mel Gibson from Mad Max. I miss Bosom Buddies (Tom Hanks in drag), and sometimes, in a tiny corner of my heart, I miss Star Trek and my first crush – 1960s William Shatner.
I miss the Hustle (and disco in general), Boston (the band), Asteroids, mood rings, records, and summers off.
I miss getting exercise by simply existing – riding bikes to the lake, walking to a friend’s house, playing frisbee in the park – that sort of thing. The only way I exercise now is if I pay a gym to guilt me into it.
I miss my love of Hollywood and all things celebrity. REAL stars, like Katherine Hepburn, Bob Hope, Jimmy Stewart, Elizabeth Taylor, Elvis, John Wayne, Bette Davis and Marilyn Monroe. The advancement of Kate and Jon Gosselin, Snooki, and Paris Hilton to celebrities signaled the end of my Hollywood-itis. Plus, they all started sharing their THOUGHTS about politics and the universe. Who told them they could speak without a script?
I miss my first car. My green ’78 Mustang. White top, white leather interior. I never should have sold it. A 20-something-year old boy ended up with my pristine Pony-car and did unmentionable things to her. The last time I saw her, one side was totally smashed. Pony deserved better.
I miss feeling that everything was easier. Friends, relationships, “work,” decisions, EVERYTHING. Of course, back then, someone else was in charge of me and I just had to do what they said. (More or less.) I wonder if my mother would like her old job back?
There was just something more comforting about those days. Maybe it WAS because we were kids. Maybe it was a simpler time. Maybe we had fewer choices, thus more satisfaction.
Or maybe, just maybe… Johnny really DID make everything better.
Here is the clip I always think of first when I remember the Tonight Show. My parents and I laughed so hard we cried. Enjoy!