20 January 2002

What I'm listening to: A Woman's Worth by Alicia Keys

This morning I was browsing through the listings on eBay trying to add to my small vintage knitting pattern collection. I ran across a listing for a book entitled "Cherry Ames, Dude Ranch Nurse" and it brought back a flood of memories. My fascination with pre-1970 pop culture started when I was about ten years old and Happy Days was still on the air. I would listen to the oldies countdown on the local AM station every Sunday and immerse myself in everything I could find from the 1950s, including cheap dime novels like Cherry Ames. My classmates thought I was so odd when I wore a grey poodle skirt, bobby socks, and penny loafers in the sixth grade!

Of course, that was nothing compared to the comments I got in high school when I went through my 1960s phase. This started when I saw To Sir, With Love for the first time. I worked my way through the whole decade in about four years, from bouffants and Jackie O style to dashikis and revolution. There was an ensemble comprised of a black corduroy micro-mini worn with a red sweater and fishnet hose that caused quite a stir in my psychology class. Janis Joplin alternated with Broadway show tunes in my cassette player, and I began inching toward the 1970s with Richard Brautigan and Nikki Giovanni on my reading list.

These days, at the beginning of a new millenium, I am looking back toward the start of the last millenium. Artwork and vintage fashion photography from the 1920s and 1930s are what I search for most often on Google lately. Unfortunately, I am not slim enough to wear any of the styles but I like looking at them nonetheless. Since I am now a wife and mother, I am also fascinated with accounts of household life from those eras. It seems I've traded revolutionary spirit for domesticity as most people do when they mature.
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