Nostalgia

I’m not sure if it’s a pandemic thing but during the last year, I’ve had a greater yearning for tv shows and movies that I haven’t seen for years/decades. 

It started with two movies starring Gene Wilder as Cash Carter: Murder in a Small Town and The Lady in Question.  Gene plays a theatre director who helps the local police solve crimes.  Even though I’ve read that he was kind of a stinker in real life, I adore him on the screen.

Then there were both of the older Death on the Niles, one from the 70s with Peter Ustinov and the David Suchet version.  This is my absolute favorite Agatha Christie and both these versions are pretty true to the book.

Next up came The Girl From Uncle with Stephanie Powers.  It’s very dated but I did love it at the time and am always glad when there is a woman in a leading role, especially where spy/detective stories are concerned.

I’ve looked for years for The Scarecrow.  I hardly remember it except for the song and the shots of Patrick McGoohan with his Scarecrow mask.  It was a short Disney series but for some reason it has stuck in my memory.

And as soon as I started thinking about Patrick McGoohan, I started thinking about The Three Lives of Thomasina.  I talked my parents into taking me to see this three times while it was at the local move theatre.  In addition to the cat and Patrick McGoohan (I had a thing for him early on), I loved the “witch” who lived outside the town who cured the cat.

The latest of my obsessions is Flambards.  It played on PBS in 1980 – I was a young married and I still remember the haunting musical score.  I only saw it that once, but I loved the story of a young girl coming of age in turn of the century (20th) England.  I didn’t realize for many years that it was based on a trilogy of books by K.M. Peyton; I have just recently read the first one.

I searched for all of these movies/shows and didn’t have much luck (David Suchet’s Nile and the first episode of Flambards were available on the internet for a bit).  And I didn’t have much luck with interlibrary loan either – a lot of libraries don’t really want to lend out their DVDs; they show as available but then I get a “sorry” email.  I’m still waiting to hear about Flambards, but for all the others, I eventually went online and purchased them one by one.  This may not seem too remarkable but purchasing DVDs hasn’t been something I do very often and it’s hard not to feel like I’ve been behaving fiscally irresponsible purchasing so many over the course of a year.  But I have truly enjoyed them (over and over again I admit).  I have a friend who weighs purchases by how often they are used – she calls this calculation PPU (price per use) – the more often something is used, the cheaper it gets in her eyes.  By this calculation, I’m practically saving money!

Anything you’ve been nostalgic about lately?

50 thoughts on “Nostalgia”

  1. I don’t get nostalgic very much. I’m not really into the “good old days” trope because I think that’s a fallacy of selectivity (?) that we use to remember only the good things and block out or forget the bad. The pinnacle of that fallacy is manifested in 45’s MAGA slogan. “Great Again?” I’m not sure America was ever “great.” We like to think we are(were) but where exactly was(is) the greatness? And of course, great for whom? Probably only great for the rich white ruling class which had subserviated everyone who posed even the mildest threat to their world order. Now that everyone in the country is demanding and/or taking their fair share and equal chances for success/failure, 45 and his ilk have realized their kingdom was built on sandstone and it’s rapidly eroding as more and more people chip away at its foundations.

    Not ranting at you, VS, but your question just made me think. I guess I prefer to look forward, try to make the world around me a better place every day (or at minimum, don’t make it worse–sometimes that’s a victory in itself).

    I suppose if I got nostalgic about anything, it would be how simple life was (and mostly tolerable if not enjoyable) when I was in college and first married. I had very little, didn’t fret about all the world’s problems, and my wife and I just did the best we could, striving to carve out a life with jobs that allowed us to live modestly and dream of better things to come.

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 7 people

    1. The rich white ruling class seems to be doing just fine, as always and maybe better than ever. That doesn’t explain why the bulk of 45’s support comes from non-college educated, non-urban constituencies.
      I have my own theories on that but this is probably not the place nor the time.

      Liked by 4 people

  2. Love the Peyton trilogy, loved the Flambards on TV.

    We rediscovered a recipe for poached turkey breast marinated in lemon and capers that we hadn’t made in years. I suppose our making it this weekend is a tribute to nostalgia.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Poach the thawed breast in a large pot with one chopped onion, 3 chopped carrots, 2 bay leaves, 2 T of salt, 1 t. Black pepper, and 6 T. of white vinegar. Poach in enough water to cover by an inch for 1 hour and 15 minutes. (For a 5-6 lb breast) Drain and cool.

        Soak 2/3 c golden raisins in hot water for 5 minutes. Drain well. Mix together 6 T lemon juice, 1T balsamic vinegar, 1/2 t salt, 1/4 t. Pepper. Add 1 c. Olive oil. Stir in zest from 2 large lemons, raisins, and 1/4 c. of capers. Pour over turkey and marinate in fridge for 4 hours. Add 2 T of finely chopped parsley, and 6 T of roasted pine nuts (optional)

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I’ll poach it tonight, ready for marinating tomorrow. I need to go buy some lemons. Have you tried this before, Renee? It sounds great to me. Hans isn’t crazy about the lemon part.

          Liked by 2 people

        1. I’m nothing if not a slow poacher. I’ll give you my report on how it turns out. May not be till Wednesday, it’s not fully thawed as I write this.

          Liked by 3 people

  3. For Baboons nostalgic for warmer weather, take heart! We are predicted to have highs here in 40’s starting tomorrow. You should get it later in the week!

    Liked by 5 people

  4. I do entertain nostalgia for my childhood growing up on Cannon Lake. It seems like those were simpler times. I played outside with other kids, learned to swim, took care of my horses and the family dog. I remember when school let out in the spring, running down through the uncut grass to the lake. I collected frogs and rocks and couldn’t wait to get in the water.

    I’m also nostalgic for the days gone by, I’d say about a week ago, when my dog didn’t have colitis. Being rushed outside every hour and a half for two nights in a row while Pippin gets it all out of his system has been tiring. Fortunately, he’s improving with antibiotics and probiotics from his vet. 🙄

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Rise and Shine, Baboons,

    Last night I watched the premier episode of the series, All things Bright and Beautiful” and I felt nostalgia for a time in life when I did not yet live. The foreshadowing of WWII is all over the episode which we all know brought great suffering to so many people and nations. But the episode carves out the beauty of the Yorkshire Dales, and the quirkiness of the people. It all looks so bucolic, despite the ethical dilemma presented of deciding whether to put down an animal featured in the plot.

    I felt such nostalgia despite knowing that this bucolic time was short for James and Great Britain.

    I recently have felt nostalgia for TLGMS. When I arrive home in MN I will dig out a recording (I can’t remember if is an MP3 or a CD) of Dale and Jim Ed’s sketches. I don’t get nostalgic for many old, old series or movies. As a kid our TV was pretty restricted by what was available and my mother’s expectations. I don’t even remember much Public TV so it may not have been available. As a young adult I had an 11” Black and White TV that was also very limited in what it brought in. Most of the old TV shows I saw do not hold up very well, i.e. “Bonanza” and its racism and sexism. Then I am glad to have moved on.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Yesterday on MPR I heard part of a story on Radiolab about bears and human voices and I spend several minutes thinking about Bart the Bear and other TLGMS characters…

      Liked by 6 people

      1. all of that falls into the “that is gone forever, and it’s too painful to think about that” for me

        So much more than a radio show wrapped up in that- a workplace, relationships, stage in life stuff…”

        Liked by 5 people

  6. My mind keeps drifting back to my childhood. Not in anyway nostalgic. It seemed better then that it does now. Ben’s posts keep triggering memories of how we farmed, and now I realize how poor we were in monetary terms. I am, of course, nostalgic for more recent times.

    Liked by 5 people

  7. I did just find the first episode of Flambardson YouTube- not sure how much of it is there, but I loved it too. And yes, the soundtrack is particularly memorable.

    Long ago, the s&h was given the gift of Richard Briers and Felicity Kendall (Good Neighbors) reading quite a lot of Winnie the Pooh on cassette. It was his “fall asleep” music and those cassettes have largely gone the way of cassette tapes.

    They really were very well done, and I have looked and looked to replace them with cds or SOMETHING, but alas, no.

    Not on Audible either, although I had great hopes there.

    So I hang onto those cassettes against the day I can figure out the way to retrieve them.

    I used to entertain a certain nostalgia for the big extended family Christmases of my childhood, and there are things I took from them and we made them our own (insofar as a very small family can).

    But some of the cousins have posted the old pictures of all the grandkids together taken in those days, and I am reminded of how stressful it all was on a number of levels.

    Is it a Yogi Berrism that “nostalgia ain’t what it used to be?”

    Liked by 4 people

      1. I don’t doubt it.

        My main task for work today is going to be getting my laptop to talk to a device (with my knitting machine as interpreter) that will record desaign charts onto 3.5″ floppy disks so I can send them to Wisconsin via USPS.

        Because, reasons.

        I don;t remember ever using 3.5″ floppy disks, but I do remember that the office at the opera company I once worked for did, and taking a disk down the hal;way to a co-worker was referred to as “the sneaker- net”.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. PJ- the “reasons” refers to why I have to do this archaic “sneaker-net” thing instead of attaching a file to an email like we do in the 21st century, not nostalgic associations, just for the record.

          But I hear you.

          I loved the movie, Out of Africa. I never been able to bring myself to watch it again due to associations I am not about to go poking with that particular stick.

          Liked by 2 people

    1. I discovered that if you watch episode one it will automatically bring you into episode two then three then four. The problem is is that you can only get to 2,3,4,5 and six watching the ones before. I did eventually find seven and eight, which led to the rest. I’ll give you all one guess what I’ve spent the last 24 hours doing

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m ambivalent about nostalgia. As I see it, it is a bittersweet emotion of longing for an often romanticized past. I approach it with a great deal of caution. Sure, it’s sweet to revisit certain trouble free or ideal moments of our past, but we do well to remind ourselves that it wasn’t all like that. When I find myself in that spot, I shift my focus to how fortunate I am to have those memories in the first place. There’s a great deal of power in realizing that I can choose what I dwell on, both positive and negative.

    Ironically, I find that when people are nostalgic about the past, it’s often people who are unhappy about the way things are now. I don’t think nostalgia is a good coping strategy for dealing with current difficulties.

    That said, I don’t see anything wrong with enjoying a bunch of old movies, tunes, or whatever, if that takes the edge off momentary challenges.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. I think I can be Nostalgic, without dwelling in the past; nothing wrong with just remembering happy times or good times or even sad times; gives me perspective on things.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. The other day I looked up Craig Ferguson and his ‘alien robot sidekick Geoff’ on YouTube and it’s been fun to re-watch them. I enjoyed Craig’s late late show. There are some segments with Betty White; the two of them were good friends. (Betty and Craig, not Betty and Geoff).

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I should probably not admit to it, but I don’t think I’ve seen any of the shows vs mentioned in the blog today. Have I missed out on something worth looking for?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Most of these things that I’ve tracked down are a little obscure. Three episodes of a Wonderful World of Disney series from 55 years ago, towi made for TV movies that I don’t think ever saw the big screen, a PBS series that showed in the 80s. I don’t think it’s on you that you haven’t seen these.

      My mystery, when I look at this list is that it’s such an odd assortment especially when you add The Girl from UNCLE. And except for the fact that on Christmas Eve I just happened to turn on the television at exactly the beginning of The Mysterious World of Henry Orient, that would’ve been on the list too. But now I have a recording.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Nostalgia giving way to resignation? I know the feeling, sorta. I’m on day 9 of a 30 day yoga challenge. It’s a daily reminder that my strength, flexibility, and balance are not what they once were, but damnit, I’m doing something.

      Liked by 3 people

  11. Nostalgia is comforting because it goes back to a time where we know how things turn out. The future is terrifying because we don’t know what is going to happen.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. I taped a segment of TLGMS one December when Dale hosted a Madrigal choir from Bemidji. I listen to it every year – Dale’s banter with the director and the “kids” – and I get so nostalgic for not only the show, but for that time of my life, which was probably not more simple, really – just different complexities. Partly because they’re now in the rear view mirror, those complexities seem easier to deal with then the ones we live with today.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Back in my stagehand days,
      Dale was in at the civic center in Rochester, maybe for something with the local public radio station, I really don’t remember, but I was pretty star struck by him. Whatever my job that night I had time before hand to stand backstage and talk his ear off.
      He politely dismissed me when the time came. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

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