Alright, I confess. I love the Seventies. The post-Vietnam 1970’s formed me as a person and provided an aesthetic sense and a moral core.
When I am down and out or emotionally drained, I simply Timebend back to the Seventies and all is well in the world again. A smiley face can heal many ills. Perhaps that’s why I am so enchanted by Technicolor curves and why I am so wholly engaged by WordPress emoticons.
Music doesn’t transport me to 1975. Art does not transport me back. Movies bring me home. There is something about a 1970’s Los Angeles movie — shot in and around the streets and neighborhoods of Los Angeles — that creates tremendous melancholia and a sense of belonging I do not have in my present life in the current world.
As a Nebraska boy born and bred in one town for the first 23 years of living — the movies were an escape from the prison of the ordinary — a release from the deadly pressure of a dulling, grey, Midwestern expectation — that suffocated and suffered. You earned your life through your deeds. Wishes were never rewards.
Attending the movies on a hot summer day — where you shivered in the dark and wondered in the freezing chill of air conditioning at the shimmering lives on the screen above you — made your corner of the world right again and provided insight and experiences beyond the self that could heal and propel the spirit beyond city limits and state borders.
The urban core was brought to the boy. If I watch the right 1970’s movie I can instantly taste, smell and feel the sun on my face from 30 years ago. It is an eerie transportation and transformation. Movies are my uncommon touchstone and it is startling to be so quickly removed from the present and be placed in the past where life — and its yearnings — were questioned but never answered.