Saturday, March 13, 2010

Stuck in 1984

My oldest sisters's mother, my dad's first wife, died giving birth to my sister. My dad remarried my mother a few years later and went on to have 7 more kids with my mother. My parents treated us all equally when we were growing up but my paternal grandmother always had a soft spot for my oldest sister. I never minded as a kid. I thought she was pretty special too. She was the oldest and the coolest of us by far.

So what does that have to do with music? My sister was into music. She was the coolest person I knew. So logically all cool people were into music.She was the only one with a cassette player and my Grandma would buy her cassettes so if we wanted to listen to music, we listened to hers. I didn't mind. I loved it when she shared her music with us. Her friends would come over and sit and listen and hang out. Luckily for me, most of her friends were girls and they thought I was adorable so they let me hang around with them while they braided my hair. (Shut up, I was 11 and pretty girls wanted to play with my hair. Like I was gonna say no). When I turned 11 my Grandma bought me a radio and I would stick it under my pillow and go to sleep listening to the Dr Demento show and trying to figure out which songs my sister's friends would think were cool.

Every month my Grandma would take the "Older Kids" out to something together. At the time that meant my oldest sister, Christy, my brother Mike and me. She would take the three of us out to dinner, maybe a movie, or my favorite, goofy golfing. The place called Castles and Coasters. It was just a miniature golf course with an indoor video arcade but it was COOL. The main building was a giant castle with 4 stories of arcade games. All the cool older kids went there every weekend to just hang out and be seen. We were pretty poor so going anywhere was a big deal to me, but to hang out with my sister and brother without all the rest of the little kids made me feel pretty special. And there, walking around with my sister and brother, the coolest people I knew, away from the chaos of our house, is where I felt the happiest. One of the happiest memory of my entire childhood is standing underneath the lights on the ninth hole at Castles and Coasters on a warm summer night with the coolest people in the world and something by Culture Club or Thompson Twins or The Cars or Bananarama or Laura Branigan playing over the loudspeakers. So thats the kind of music I like. The kind that reminds me even a little bit of what it felt like to belong and be happy and feel young

My musical tastes were set in stone back in 1984. I cant help it. They evolved a tiny bit over the years. But I still like best those songs that remind me the most of what I loved first.


Ginger Snaps said...

See...I told you that you could do it. I'm glad you're back Chops.

I actually downloaded some Sea Wolf a while ago and have never listened to it. I do that a lot. Get a recommendation then never get around to it. But I like this. I'm gonna have to pull it up. And I love, love, love We Own The Sky. The whole Saturdays=Youth album makes me happy for the same reasons you stated. It makes me think of a much more innocent time when we were allowed to be happy and unburdened by the trials of life. That allowance seems to fade drastically with each passing year. Unfair..I say. Let us be young again.

Love ya chops.

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