Thursday, May 03, 2007

You Are Young and Life is Long and There is Time to Kill Today

Now, we'll do 1973. I'm going to try to be less wordy on this one. we'll see how I do.

Age: I started out the year being seven, and turned eight that Summer.

Music: As I know I've mentioned before, I could never sleep when I was little, and so my mom let me have a radio on all night. It kept me from hearing every other little noise in the house and freaking out. That year on the radio, I heard a lot of Roberta Flack's "Killing Me Softly", Vicki Lawrence's "The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia" and loads of John Denver. (sigh) Tubular Bells came out that year, thanks to The Exorcist, and it scared the shit out of me every time I heard it. The biggest album in 1973 was Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon. I would have to wait until I was in high school and buy it at a pawn shop, before I was able to wear out that one.

Movies: Besides the summer movies they showed for free at Mesa Junior High, like Cinderfella and really old Three Stooges movies, I didn't watch many back then. I did see Jesus Christ Superstar, but I had to wait to see most of the good movies from 1973. Most of them, like, West World, Soylent Green, American Graffiti and one of my all time favorite films, High Plains Drifter I saw either on television or Video when I was older.

TV: I'm sure you won't be surprised when I tell you that I watched TONS of television when I was a kid. I like to blame TV for my strange propensity to remember frightening amounts of pop culture trivia. As far as kids shows go, Sigmund and the Seamonsters came out that year. My all-time favorite Sid and Marty Kroft show, The Land of the Lost, wouldn't come out for another year, but I was still happy with Sigmund. School House Rock also premiered in 1973, and if I ever get drunk enough, I will very loudly prove to you that I know all the words to every song. Prime time shows I watched? Oh, all of them. My oldest sister loved Kung Fu. I was into the Brady Bunch and the Partridge Family, and here's where I restrain myself from going on and on about Randolph Mantooth and Emergency again. We also watched, The Waltons, MASH, The Carol Burnett Show, Bob Newhart and Mary Tyler Moore. Whew.

Books: I know I read a lot, but I don't remember what I read specifically at that time. I remember reading Harriet the Spy, The Changeling, and Island of the Blue Dolphins for sure.

What I Wanted to be When I Grew-Up: I think even back then, I was entertaining that fantasy of moving to Colorado and stealing John Denver away from Annie.

Winter: Winter was tough for me because it was my first year in a new school. We had moved from Phoenix to Mesa the year before and I was a little too ghetto for all the Mormon girls in my neighborhood. I got made fun of a lot. For a while, I would hang out with my young hippie teacher named Mrs. Viola who was recently divorced and had hair down to her butt. We went to one of those Free to be You and Me Schools, and the transition to that from an inner-city elementary was tough too.

Spring: During the Spring, I became better friends with the boy named Skip who lived across the street from me. He and my brother and I would build forts and play Matchbox cars together. If my brother wasn't around, Skip would play GI Joe's/Barbies with me. Once my brother showed up, Skip would start throwing my Malibu Barbies and Mod Hair Ken (complete with facial hair stickers) all around, so my brother wouldn't think he was a sissy.

Summer: After one of my worst school years ever, Summer was great. My mom worked all day and my oldest sister was supposed to watch us. She was depressed and laid around in her room listening to Yes and The Moody Blues, so we could do whatever we wanted. The Tongans who lived two houses down from us, did Polynesian shows at hotels for a living and they taught me how to hula and do these other funky dances. The oldest son and his dad would practice their fire dances on the driveway. I loved watching that shit.

Fall: My third grade class was so much better. I loved my teachers and all the mean kids from my last grade, all went to other rooms. One of my teacher's husbands had been an MIA and a POW in Vietnam. He was one of the first prisoners be let go that year. He came to school and talked to us about what it was like as a prisoner and we were all in awe of him.


Remiman said...

Your year in review posts always entrall me. Especially with your terrific memory.
1973 I was in Fort Campbell Ky.

evil-e said...

I am glad to hear you started the year 7 and ended the year would have alarmed me to find out you had been 12 at the end of the year.

Land of the Lost ruled, it was part of the Kroft Power Hour which also featured Electro Woman and Dyna-Girl (they were hot back then)

Babybull40 said...

Great post.. and thanks so much for stopping by my little old blog.. I was trying to remember what I was doing in 1973.. I was your age.. probaly taking ballet and going to Brownies(girl scouts) hanging out on our farm.. running amuck... I loved John Denver.. and I also loved Pink Floyd and still do to this day.. One of my Faves...

Margaret said...

Wow! I wish I'd had fire dancing neibors

Margaret said...

cute picture, love the pig-tais

Sarah said...

You can hula?! Why haven't we discussed this before?? I am taking ukulele lessons now, we could put on a side show.

I can't believe you remember this much. You're a superstar.

dmarks said...

Tubular Bells? There's a Tubular Bells day on Tara's calendar coming up this month.

"Land of the Lost"? Now, I think I'd better call for a Sleestak Day in June. Good idea or no?

booda baby said...

How cool is THAT, to have a lounge act for a neighbor?! I lived across the street from Elvez in W. Hollywood. If he'd been just a normal rocker, it would've been no big deal. But he was a Mexican Elvis and so lounge-acty, you couldn't touch it. Still, not even CLOSE to Tongans.

Dagromm said...

Truthfully, I'm in awe of your 3rd grade teachers' husband too. That's some tought stuff to go through. I hope he wasn't all Pulp Fictiony when he spoke to your class.

I once worked with a guy who grew up as part of a performing family in Branson. They did a song and dance routine together. He's the only other person I've known who knew all the words to "It's a Grand Old Flag".

Churlita said...


Thanks. I've never been to Kentucky before.


There are some years I'd like to skip. I'd rather skip 12 altogether.

Baby Bull,

Your 1973 sounds wonderful.


We also had plenty of other neighbors who weren't the least bit interesting.



Yes, I can, but you'll never see it. I would love to hear you play the ukelele, though.

Churlita said...


Sleestak Day would be awesome. Make it so.

Booda Baby,

I'm so jealous that you lived by Elvez> if I were you, I would have been totally obsessed.


Luckily, there was no mention of a watch.

That is so funny that you worked with that guy, Did he teach you the words to, "It's a Grand Ol' Flag".

Dagromm said...

The words yes. The accompanying dance, no. It was like working in an office with a lounge singer. Pretty cool.

A said...

Unbelivable - your memory and writing and Picture - ya the picture is pretty kick ass!

Dante said...

Cool! I'm still a fan of all the movies you listed! High Plains Drifter has been a big favorite of mine for years. I still need to get West World on DVD, too.

Churlita said...


I bet the dance would have been fun too. I will link you this weekend. I keep not getting around to it.


You're just jealous of the huge collar and the bright pink ribbons.


I love West World. Yul Brynner was so hot in that.

Liz said...

This is wonderful. I can't believe I've found someone else who will admit to liking John Denver- passionately. I never thought he was cute, but my mom did and she and pop went to see him in concert- probably around 1978.

I rarely play my Greatest Hits CD, but when I do, I always repeat Rocky Mountain High. ALWAYS. There. I've said it. I still like John Denver.