Wednesday, May 31, 2017
1977 vs 2017
For several months I have been a part of a planning committee that is planning The Wheeler High School Class of '77 (Class Motto: "Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps, Mister") Forty Year Class Reunion.
Forty years. Boy, that sounded like a longer period of time back in 1977 than it does now.
Back in 1977, here's how backward we were.
We had to get up off our butts and change the channel on our TV. Yes, I said it, butts (in 1977, butts was a semi-cuss word.). In the Atlanta area, your choices were channels 2, 5, 11, and 17. If you were some kind of nerdish-hippie-pinko, you also had channel 8, which featured shows where everybody sounded British.
Chances are you found something to watch. It may have not been very good, like "Ironside" which was about a disabled chief of police in San Francisco who bore a strange resemblance to Perry Mason. Or you happened upon "Cannon" which was about a fat private detective who really didn't do too much except eat and kind of jog after the bad guys.
Back in 1977, your phone was on the wall at home and not in your pocket. People used to travel, believe it or not, without having a phone on them. People just assumed you would call when you got there.
Your phone at home was not a camera. Your camera was your camera and it used "film". Once the film was used, you took it to the drug store and the drug store would send the film off to be "developed". Most of these pictures you took were horrible. Out of focus, heads cut off.
If you did have a picture that was in focus with good lighting, someone always had their eyes closed.
Computers took up city blocks. The thought never crossed your mind that you would have a "personal" computer. Now, you can carry one around in your pocket.
In 1977, "vinyls" were called "records". "Records" were sold in "record stores". "Record stores" were all over the place and not just in Seattle. You did not know when your favorite band or singer was going to release a record unless you worked at the record store, which you didn't because a) you were not cool enough and/or b) you didn't take drugs.
Just imagine the excitement. Mom is at Penny's scoping out the latest fashion and you're at the record store and you see the just released "Captain and Tennille" album. Your month is made right there. (Of course, I'm joking. I would have never bought a Captain and Tennille album.)
Now I bought plenty of Neil Diamond records. Something about a Jewish guy from Brooklyn singing "L.A.'s fine the sunshines most of the time. And the feeling is lay back. Palm Trees grows, rents are low, but you know I keep thinking about making my way back" spoke to a pimply seventh-grade southerner. I blame my mom.
The music of the '70's taught me many things.
For instance, if you are running down the road and you're trying to loosen your load, it is good to have seven women on your mind. The two that want to own you. The two that want to stone you. The one that is your friend. This is important because you have to find a lover who won't blow your cover.
Facts are fact: our music was just better back then. Hands down. No contest. Our music didn't suck.
Until disco, of course. For that, we apologize.
Suck. There's another 70's cuss word except is was spelled "sux". You could get detention for saying "that sucks" in school. Your mother would have gladly come down to the school and sign a permission slip allowing the Assistant Principal (in my case Mr. Hipsher) to poke you with a cattle prod. ("Nah, ah'm gonna poek ewe wid dis here cattle prod and mahbay ewe want cuss no mo".)
Now you have a Carvana commercial which shows people singing and dancing about buying a car through Carvana and "it doesn't suck". Mr. Hipsher needs to poke them with a cattle prod.
Our plans with the reunion committee are coming along nicely, thank you.
We hope our fellow classmates will come, October 14 at The Marietta Conference and rock and roll all night. And we'll party every day.
In reality, we will party every other day. Okay, maybe we will party every other week.