Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Childhood Property

When I was a kid, there were certain items that had special value to me:

First on the list was my blue New York Mets jacket - this was the jacket that I looked forward to wearing every spring and fall (in New York, I had my "spring jackets" and the much heavier "winter jackets," sort of the personal equivelant of installing screen doors in the spring, another traditon for cooler climates.

When I was very young, one of my greatest desires was to get what I called a "Lost in Space" shirt - really, a shirt with a v-neck like the characters in the tv series wore. I thought it was unbelieveably futuristic.

That also brings to mind an incident at an event - maybe a circus - where my father and I passed by a vendor selling a wide variety of novelty hats. I mentioned to my father my desire to have what I called an "F-Troop" hat (F-Troop being television series taking place in civil war/frontier days). To my horror, by father actually returned to the vendor and asked if he had any "F-Troop hats - to which I died of humiliation.

I've mentioned in earlier blogs some of the toys that have had special value: my air bazooka, my suction-cup dart pistol (this resembled, to me, a dart gun used in the James Bond movie, "Diamonds are Forever," and, of course, my greatest pride and joy, my Stingray bike.

I tend to think, despite technology, most kids today will later relate to much the same type of items - clothing they were practically known by, and toys that could take hours, days and months of wear and tear. Video game systems, cell phones, ipods and other technology are cool - but tranistory, and ultimately will likely inspire no more fondness then I might have for an old televsion set or radio.

Sunday, March 11, 2007


As I wrote a couple of entries back, I ordered the soundtrack to the film, "Kes," a beautiful film with a beautiful score created by John Cameron, and performed by his quartet. The score is simple and uncluttered - and of an uncluttered, classic style rarely heard in today's films. In a film about childhood, the theme is centered on the flute, an instrument that seems to embody the innocence of childhood, and has been used for similar purpose in other scores - but never as appropriately as in this film. Perhaps, if that had been a well-budgeted studio film, the score would have been orchestral - and to less effect. That's what I find exciting about independent films - creating beautiful work despite - and as a benefit of - having few resources.

You can find more information - and some other notes on the score, at:

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Long Lost

My nephew and I had a bit of fun the other day searching out my old friends and such on the internet. As he was growing up, he heard a number of stories of my adventures with my childhood friends, and saw a number of old home movies. Somehow, we started off on a quest to see how many of those old friends had a Myspace page.

So far, I've been to reconnect with an old college-era friend that just recently established a page (in fact, there was practically nothing there yet). We also found what may be a Myspace page belonging to someone who I was friends with for all of 2 weeks in December, 1971. We were on a family vacation to Miami Beach, and I started hanging out with another kid my age. He (and another, younger kid) spent a great deal of time during those two weeks - I even have home movies showing him writing his name in the sand. He was with me when the hotel management kicked me out of the nightly bingo game after I won probably a dozen consecutive games. Once the vacation was over, we parted company, exchanged a total of one letter (from him to me), and never had contact again.

Out of pure curiousity we searched out his name on Myspace - and came out with several hits - including one from the same general place and age. Time will tell if this is the same guy.

Hit or miss, it looks as if we are rapidly entering an age where we never quite can leave our past behind.