Today is to the Beatles as the Beatles are to…
As I’ve pointed out before
It’s very different in the modern era, when pop culture of the past is alive and well. If you want to listen to music from the 1960s, or see movies from the 1920s, you can do it with no problem.
In the past, though, that wasn’t the case. Something that was old seemed, well, distant.
Let me illustrate.
The Beatles really became international superstars in 1964…fifty years ago. Today, a kid can listen to the “fab four” (although they probably don’t call them that), and still be thought of as cool.
Imagine that you were a teenager in 1964…no internet, and really, not much credence given to pop culture of the past. Sure, the Universal horror movies might be on TV, and the “monster kids” were into them…but not so much for the mainstream, popular clique.
What would a leap back fifty years look like for a kid in 1964?
It was World War I…and nothing was burning up the airwaves, because there really wasn’t radio for music.
Who was popular in music?
Irving Berlin’s first stage musical, Watch Your Step, included Play a Simple Melody.
So, today is to the Beatles as the Beatles are to World War I.
How about another?
The Judy Garland Wizard of Oz was released in 1939. It really became popular when it was shown on television in the 1950s, but we can fairly use its original theatrical release year.
1939 was 75 years ago.
Jump back another 75 years from then…and it is 1864: the Civil War was coming to a close.
Today is to the Judy Garland Wizard of Oz as the Judy Garland Wizard of Oz is to the Civil War.
Back too far for you?
The TV series Friends debuted in 1994…twenty years ago.
Twenty years earlier than that is 1974…the year Little House on the Prairie debuted.
Today is to Friends as Friends is to Little House on the Prairie.
How about toys and games?
The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) was released in America in 1985, twenty-nine years ago.
1956 was twenty-nine years before that.
A nifty, “high tech” gadget for kids in 1956 was a portable Mickey Mouse club record player. It ran off batteries! You didn’t even need to plug it in…I guess we could say it was an early wireless gadget.😉
If you tried to show off that record player in 1985, it probably wouldn’t go well for you socially. A kid with an NES in 2014? Retro, but awesome.
Today is to the NES as the NES is to the Mickey Mouse Club record player.
In 2014, the past is nearby…in a way that it wasn’t not so long ago.
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This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the The Measured Circle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them