Thursday, August 29, 2013

Andy Kaufman in the Wrestling Match

I’ve decided one of the things I hate about maturing (to include avoiding the phrase ‘getting old’) is how if you live long enough your past disappears. 

I can remember the Cuban Missile crisis, Vietnam, the moon landing, the First Gulf War (what are we up to now, X? They're like Super Bowls, aren't they?) among the other paragraphs and pictures in that imitation of a history book your local junior high school has gathering dust in a janitor’s locker room.

I didn’t read about those events-I was on the planet for them. Okay, I was a wee slip of a lad for the Cuban Missile Crisis but I recall the air-raid drills at school where we ducked our heads under our desks and looked “away from the (atomic) flash at the windows.” 

It never occurred to me that none of that wouldn’t help me at all. I was a kid and I didn’t know any better. What was John Foster Dulles’ excuse?

And slowly all those moments fall away as each day more of us who had first-hand recollections of these and other events faithfully and/or otherwise depart. I, for one, keep tripping over all these mortal coils that have been shuffled off. It requires big steps and watching where you walk.

In a way, it’s sort of like walking on the moon and that’s too bad because Neil Armstrong, the first man to really walk on the moon, died Tuesday leaving a lot of us who sat up and watched that happen on TV feeling even older these mornings as we sip our Tang, scan our Kindles and wonder what the hell happened to all the years in between.

Another piece of the ‘we can do anything’ mosaic has gone behind the couch of history where it’s too hard to retrieve. I and a generational cohort were Cold War Kids who went toe to toe with the Rooskies (kinda) and Gorby blinked first. 

When the Berlin Wall came down (I have a piece of it in my basement) I felt like I’d won the World Series. Now I feel like I'm watching the World Series (of Poker) on ESPN along with spelling bees like those are actual sports. And if you’re younger than thirty you don’t know the difference.

Have another slice of Ritz Mock Apple Pie-it’s a perfect way to celebrate Sir Isaac Newton whose discoveries, to include gravity, fueled and fired humanity’s imagination for centuries and helped get us to the moon. Just Don’t Interrupt the Sorrow.

-bill kenny

No comments: