08 July 2009


Lately I've had some very vivid memory recalls from my childhood. Listening to Funkytown during Emi's birthday party 2 weekends back (we included it on her surprise birthday playlist) made me think about the small black Radio Shack transistor radio that I listened to in the summer of 1980 when I SHOULD have been sleeping. The thing is, I COULDN'T sleep because whenever I closed my eyes, images of a demon-possessed little girl popped into my brain. I would lay in my bed with that radio under my pillow as close to my ear as possible trying to drown out my thoughts. My imagination won a lot, but occasionally I managed to get some sleep and Funkytown was among the oft played songs that I heard way too often that summer. [Note: I would also read until my eyes crossed (Beverly Cleary and Judy Blume as I recall) and the family dog was trapped in my room just in case. If I was visited by a demon it would go into the dog, or so I was told. I KNOW! What were my parents thinking by allowing me to watch The Exorcist at such a tender age? And then comforting me with the dog bit when I asked how to protect myself from demons? I am pretty sure I can trace all my neuroses back to that particular summer.]

Reminiscing about that radio made me think about just how far technology has come. Whereas my newly-turned-7-year-old has an iPod and can hear a song on TV/radio/internet that she likes, download it and own in within a few minutes [with parental permission, of course], I at 11, had to either wait for the song to come on the radio and hit the Play & Record buttons on my cassette player a split second later OR wait until someone was going to the mall, hitch a ride and buy the 45 at Record Bar (if I had the funds). I, at 7 years old had a Zenith transistor radio that I listened to on occasion - I distinctly remember listening to Feliz Navidad on that radio. I was not neglected - nosiree - I spent most of my days outside playing in my treehouse, riding my bike, fishing and roaming the woods behind our property. In those days a girl could truly be alone with her thoughts and really ponder things. These days it takes less than 17 seconds of being home before I hear "I'm bored" uttered. Really? Let's take away the HDTV with satellite dish and DVR, iPod, computer/internet, DS - all electronics, in fact - and the pool. Now, the concept of being "bored" can be imagined but not quite felt because there are all these books and board games to keep boredom at bay.

Speaking of technology, last weekend I was rooting through a box of old pictures that my Uncle Jay gave me to scan (from my Nanny's and PawPaw's collection) and I ran across these pictures.

They brought back memories of things I haven't thought of in almost 30 years! (I think The Exorcist images/sounds scorched the innocent 5th grade memories from my brain!). The first picture is of the first friend I made when we moved to Oklahoma from Florida in 1979. The 2nd is a photo of me and my sisters (taken by whom I do not know).

Both photos were taken with an Argus Seventy Five camera that I had recently acquired at a neighborhood garage sale. That camera sparked my interest in photography and I am pretty sure I hocked it to buy beer and cigarettes! (Later on in high school, not later that summer! C'mon!) . So I am on a quest to find me another Argus 75 and set things right....capturing clearer more quality photos this time. E-bay and craigslist (and garage sales) here I come!

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