Recently I found out something quite startling about a friend: Her favorite TV show, which she watches nightly, is Andy Griffith.
Who the heck is Andy Griffith?
You may not have ever heard of this show, considering that at a recent Toastmasters meeting, I discovered fellow members who didn’t know of Johnny Carson. Really?? Boy, that makes me feel old.
So here’s an intro to Andy Griffith. “The Andy Griffith Show” ran from 1960 to 1968. Griffith played Andy Taylor, sheriff of Mayberry, NC. Taylor, a widower and father of son Opie, played by now-director Ron Howard, dispensed folksy wisdom to his community of fundamentally good people while he outwitted the occasional bad guy (who always came in from outside the county).
Anyhow, my friend relishes reverting to a happier era when life was simpler and more predictable.
Actually, life wasn’t that rosy in the ‘60s. While we were past the Duck and Cover era, in the ‘60s we were learning how to prepare our home atomic fallout shelter. So much more sophisticated than the Griffith show . . . at least it doesn’t have a cartoon segment.
My favorite retro addiction isn’t even a TV series. It’s the Blondie comic strip, which I carefully researched today in an attempt to class up this preference.
Turns out Blondie started in 1930, but Dagwood and Blondie have been updated through time. There’s computers and cell phones in recent years, Blondie and her neighbor starting a catering business in the ‘90s, and cars rather than buses and streetcars many decades ago.
Some things have been exceptionally stable for eternity:
Dagwood sleeps on the job and goofs off, he gets into hot water with boss Mr. Dithers, yet he never gets fired.
He eats ridiculous amounts of unhealthy food at the lunchtime diner and from the frig late at night, but he doesn’t gain weight.
He naps on the couch and naps at work but he sleeps soundly whenever the opportunity presents itself.
Dagwood lives the least conflicted, least stressed out life imaginable, living for the moment without a concern about the past or the future.
No social conscience, no worries, no goals.
No wonder he has lived so long without aging a day.
What a role model.
On top of it all, the cartoon’s text is brief and a snappy read, unlike many cartoons that are more demanding to peruse. (Yes, I’m a lazy reader.)
I’ve saved loads of relevant, sophisticated political humor on TV and much of it falls off into oblivion, unwatched, as saves exceed capacity.
I could spend my time more productively but I’m getting burnt out on politics.
How about you? Do you have any guilty or unguilty retro pleasures in these tense times?
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Filed under: times past