Sunday, January 29, 2006
Chuck Cooper - If I Had My Life to Live Over Again
Ken Linville got me to thinking about this. After I arrived at sort of an answer I plugged the subject into Google to see what others have said about it. So far I see good ideas like have more fun, eat popcorn in the good living room, and so on. But the real answer to me lies in figuring out exactly what you would change, and I am not getting there. It is too risky to change anything when you don't know what the outcome might be. Even where life could have been better along the way, there is always the possibility it could have been worse, or, even scarier, worse now, when it is darn good.
A big unknown is whether the change of a single choice or event would propagate in ever widening differences, like that butterfly who flapped his wings and caused a hurricane, or die out like the ripples in a pond, with things ending up pretty much the same. Some might figure they could make a better choice of a mate that first time, but a second chance could change some things you might not like.
I think the answer is to have more than one shot at this. I will live it over and change just one thing (otherwise I won't know what did it), compare with the present, and then live it over again, change and compare, and then over again until I either get it perfect or get tired of reading Silas Marner. On the other hand, that sure seems like a lot of work for someone who is retired.
Friday, January 27, 2006
Ken Linville - THE GOOD TIMES GENERATION
We have all heard of the "Baby Boom Generation" and "Generation X", but demographers have named ours the "Good Times Generation", and for good reason. There were so few of us born during the last few years of the Great Depression that there was little competition for jobs, schools, housing, etc. compared to the baby boomers and thereafter. I often wonder how I'd have ever found a job had I been competing with the talented youth of today. On top of that historians say that we came of age during one of America’s great "golden ages", our "golden age" being that period between the end of World War II and the social upheavals that began in the mid '60's. Our generation really lucked out. We were too young for the Korean War and too old for Viet Nam. (Those of us who were involved in Viet Nam were at least a bit older than the average kid they sent over there and we'd been around the block a few times.) There was virtually no crime, child molesters, gangs, drugs, and no deadly sexually transmitted diseases. How sweet it was!
However, I try to avoid the excesses of the "good old days" syndrome. We tend to remember past events as they should have happened, and not always as they actually did. It has been requested that us Highline High School class-of-'56 members relate an anecdote about our school days, and I added one to Vignettes. Anyone who may have any corrections or additions to the story, please feel free to share it with us. It's as I remember it. But would I go back and do it all over again? Oh, yeah, how I wish! Especially now that there are not that many good years left. You often hear the quote, "If I had it to do all over again, I wouldn't change a thing." That certainly doesn't apply in my case. I'd like to change a lot of things. Not that I didn't have a ball. As I mentioned in the guest book, I thought that the fun life, as I knew it, was over when we graduated.
Saturday, January 07, 2006
Mike the Folk Artist
There was, in the time of Bill Haley, the bop, poodle cuts and other coolness too numerous to mention,
When special things would draw our attention.
“Ham bone” with his headlights and Levi’s slung low,
Walking down the hall would put on quite a show.
It was fairly common to hear tires squeal,
But it sounded special with Rue at the wheel.
For me it wasn’t a person, but cars lowered to the ground,
That would get my attention and turn by head around.
Low in front and lower in back,
With just enough clearance for a cigarette pack.
Chopping the top and adding skirts helped with the look,
And a flame on the hood is all that it took.
That was back in 1956,
Vehicles today have added new tricks.
For example, how can pickup trucks jacked up to the sky,
Attract admiring attention as they go by?
When I see one of these things I lose my composure,
And feel compelled to report them for differential exposure.