The other week I came home from the auction house with a table which was straight out of the 1970’s. The beautiful retro styling made it easy to picture it supporting a vintage Sony Hi-Fi – the belt driven turntable lazily spinning at 331/3rpm while Lindsey Buckingham instructed the listener to ‘Go your own way’.
A little bit of tlc and a squirt of Pledge saw the old table back to its former glory – time to take some pics, write an ad and put it up for sale. Should make a few quid on this one.
As often happens when I have to think, my mind wandered and, as I looked at the curves and straights of the table, nostalgia took over. I was reminded of a time when bright orange went fantastically with chocolate brown, when macramé plant hangers had resurged from the Victorian era and were the latest fad. A time before the M3 and M27 when a trip to visit the grandparents 50 miles away, took forever in the family Mini Clubman Woody. A time when I understood exactly what The Clangers were saying as I watched them on the Radio Rentals, 3-channel, CRT TV and a Polar bear wearing sunglasses told us that Cresta lemonade was frothy man.
Wonderful memories of family holidays and a blessed childhood, of dustmen leaving boiled sweets for my brother and I, the magic of angling and the joy of prog rock.
Even now I look at some of the icons to come out of that time, not only here but elsewhere in the world, and get all misty-eyed.
Concorde, the 1970 Pontiac GTO, Pink Floyd, the utterly gorgeous Riva Aquarama Lungo, the classic Kawasaki Z1, Star Wars, Alien, Raquel Welch, Technical Lego, Genesis, Arctic roll, Jane Fonda, Angel delight, Robert Redford, Wacky Races…the list goes on and on.
I’m sure that everyone of certain vintage can add a hundred more examples of treasured memories, remembered programmes and other recalled paraphernalia from the 70’s. I just wonder if it was truly a great decade with amazing achievements, the best music and unparalleled style, or is it just a wistful desire and a sentimental yearning for the happiness of a fondly remembered place and time? I like to think the former but am happy to concede the latter.
Whatever it is, I decided to keep the table which now sits at home flanked by a Raleigh Chopper to the left and a Mathmos Lunar Lava Lamp to right….
….even if, as I found out after a quick Google search, it isn’t an original 1970’s piece and you can still buy them today, brand new, for a reasonable price. But I don’t care, I still love it and all the retrospection it evokes.
So, my fellow Gen Xers, what is your favourite childhood memory?