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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Century 21 Calling

Oh me, oh my, fellas.  Sometimes your Head Trucker gets totally tired of all the bad news coming over the intertubes, and all the wretched, nasty, bitchy people - famous or not - mouthing off about everything.  There's an ugly, vicious spirit in the world today that grates on my nerves big time.  Of course, I have my rant-and-rave moments too, but I'm not sure they contribute much to the world.  Some days, it's really hard to find something nice to blog about.

But here's a jolly short film from the 1962 Seattle World's Fair (the clip is mistitled) made for the Bell System, showing such wonders as pocket pagers, call forwarding, and call waiting - all of which didn't show up at your Head Trucker's house for another thirty years.  Still, it's a quaint little trip back to a moment when there was still a lot of optimism about the future.

Not to mention, a nice visit back to a day and time when people dressed a lot nicer, and talked and behaved nicer, too.  It wasn't sweetness and light back then all day, everywhere - your Head Trucker was there, and he remembers - but there was a different tone, a different vibration in the atmosphere that is lost now.  Anyway, here's a pleasant few minutes of 1962, see what you think:

PS - I remember reading about the Seattle fair and wanting to go see that awesome Space Needle and the futuristic monorail. But we never took long trips like that in my family - hell, we only ever went on one "family vacation" in the ordinary sense of the term, the summer I was 8: which was not much to speak of, a few days at a beach motel on the Gulf, and then a visit to the relatives in East Texas. But I remember reading about the Seattle fair, and then the New York fair in 1964-65, and about Disneyland and lots of other exciting places that I never got to see. Maybe of some of you readers were more fortunate than I was.


Anonymous said...

My memories of the Seattle's World Fair was a glance from the plane coming back from Vancouver when we made a stop in Seattle. From the air it looked impressive...futuristic.
I didn't get back to Seattle until my youngest daughter started college there and got to visit that landmark.
In those days people actually dressed up when they went on trips, ladies wore hats even. I remember the drama my mother put up with the purchase of the hat for the Vancouver trip.
As to the conveniences...many of them have to make their appearance in my household as well...and probably never will.

FDeF said...

That was so very Disney. What ever happened to world fairs? Havn't heard of one in years.

I remember going to the NY World's Fair where Ma Bell had a similar exhibit and the Pieta was on display. When I went to college in Vermont a bunch of us went to Expo '67 in Montreal where I discovered the enjoyment of sipping Cappuccino at the Italy exhibit and rum and fruit juice at the Venezuela exhibit.

Film at 11.

Stan said...

Very cool video! My whole family went to the NY Worlds fair in '64 and '65. I remember Ford introducing it's new model called the Mustang there. I remember seeing the Pieta at the Vatican pavilion too,.

Tim said...

Gosh, I remember the Seattle World's Fair. I guess I was about 11 years old. We drove up from the SF Bay Area. We even took our dog! Believe it or not I spent hours with the IBM electric typewriter which was introduced at the fair. I was more enthralled with that than just about anything else! We did ride the monorail and go up into the Space Needle. Great fun and great family vacation. Duffy (the airdale) loved it also!

MommieDammit said...

I was born the year this clip is talking about, but - frighteningly enough - I remember it from a 4th or 5th grade "social studies" class. I've never been to a World's Fair or Expo. Considering the closest in the last 20 years was in 2000 in Greenwich and the next "close" one will be in 2015 in Milan, I don't think I ever will.
As a kid, the closest I ever got was a family trip with my Gram, Aunt Marlys, and 4 of my cousins to Worlds of Fun in Kansas City. It took until I was 30 before I got to go to Disneyland in California - a wonderful trip spoilt by the presence of my ex. I did have one opportunity that made up for all of it, however, the summer after I graduated high school. I auditioned for tenor in the American Youth in Concert 1980 tour, and remember my Gram's tears of pride when I actually won. I spent 2 months singing and prowling around Europe - starting with a concert in Carnegie Hall, we flew first to Rome, then Florence, Venice, Innsbruck, Strasbourg, Paris, and finally London. I will never forget the revelry of sunset on the Piazza de la Roma as a bunch of American teenagers ate too much pasta and drank too much Italian wine. Nor will I forget singing "Ubi Caritas" in the Wedding Chapel of Innsbruck, or touring the palace of Versailles - but the best memory of the whole summer was my stay in London, riding the Underground, and riding a young, gorgeous Bobby named Michael.
Once in a lifetime, I'm sure, but I'd give my eye teeth to go back to London and maybe go to Wales to finally meet some of my mother's family.

Russ Manley said...

Thanks for sharing your memories, guys.

MD, damn I'm so jealous now. I was in London one time and loved the Tube, but would rather have ridden a hot bobby. Which I did see a few of.

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