Monday, June 29, 2009

Wasn't that yesterday?

Oh god, the Internet is trying to make me feel old today. I'm normally pretty good about not angsting over my age and pining for my youth. It doesn't require much of a smack to the head to remember how much I hated my teen years and would prefer to vacation in scenic Iraq rather than relive high school again.

But then you start reading little anniversary stories that come up and you go "Oh holy fuck, really?" I mean, the notion that Thriller is a 27 year old record was a slightly disturbing realization. Which means when I was 12, when it came out, it would be the equivalent of asking me to get excited about an...oh god, Elvis record. It all just comes full circle, doesn't it?

But no, then some bright little bastard at the BBC got a clever idea. What if we went up to a 13 year old kid, swiped his iPod and made him use a Walkman for a week. And why would they do that? Because today is the 30th anniversary of the invention of the Walkman.

Thirty....years. Granted, I don't think I owned a Walkman until I was 15 or so, but still.

The article is actually hilarious, especially the part where it takes him three days to realize that you can take the tape out and flip it around. And that Normal and Metal switches mean different things than he believed. And what's up with those clunky buttons....

Bastards. But funny.

Then there was this story, which came out last week, marking the 20th anniversary of Tim Burton's Batman and the impact it had on the movie industry. It's an interesting read, actually. In terms of how movies are marketed and make money, Batman, Jaws and Star Wars are among the most important of the past 50 years. The article is worth a read just to see how movies have changed because of Batman.

But it was more of less the whole 20 years thing that kind of floored me. I don't think the movie has aged particularly well, and looks just awful compared to Batman Begins and The Dark Knight (if you thought Katie Holmes was bad, she's Meryl Streep compared to Kim Bassinger), but it was such a big deal at the time. It was the rare movie based on a super hero that didn't suck outrageously. It's so easy to find good comic book movies these days it's hard to remember that most were terrible. Up until Batman there had been exactly two - the first two Superman movies.

Plus, there was all the toys and comic books. I was 19 years old at the time with probably a bit too much disposable income that comes from living at home and making good money as a waiter. Plus, I was, and still am, a big old geek. So I bought t-shirts, every Batman related comic book I could think of, toys, you name it. My girlfriend at the time even put up with the madness.

Anyway, crazy times. It's probably best not to dwell on how much I spent on Batman stuff that year.

Do people just notice these strange anniversaries the closer they get to 40 or is it just me?

Last Five
1. Canyon - Mark Bragg
2. Level - The Raconteurs
3. Flash - Queen
4. Buffalo - Kathleen Edwards
5. I drove all night - Cyndi Lauper*


Nancy Crozier said...

No, it's not just you. And it won't get any better AFTER 40!

Anonymous said...

At forty the days blend into weeks and the weeks into years. And every day moves quicker from that day forward. Nice to take time to remember the milestones. Paul

Adam Snider said...

OK, I have to admit I would have had no idea what the "metal" button was for on the Walkman. I don't remember metal cassette tapes at all.

I never had a Walkman (we were too poor back in the day), but I did have tapes. I don't recall ever seeing a metal cassette.

Then again, I didn't really start getting into music until CDs were starting to become popular, so maybe I just never bought enough tapes.