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by Elizabeth Hemmerdinger | bio

Many of you have probably seen this “Remember When …” that recalls the good ol’ days of moms at home, respect for seniors and front doors that were always unlocked — along with televisions that took five minutes to warm up and ugly gym uniforms. It’s been making the e-mail rounds in one form or another for quite some time now and recently arrived again in my in-box.

For the record, I remember all of it except for “Beanie and Cecil.” But in general this makes the time we grew up in sound like halcyon days (before the days of Halcyon Daze, which might be the consequence of the propaganda perpetuated by this kind of unrealistic nostalgia).

Besides wanting somebody to help me out with the identities of Beanie and Cecil, I’d really like to know why we have this impulse to pearlize the past. It wasn’t all easy. Nothing ever is (unless, perhaps, you were in that drug haze).

So what are your thoughts on “Remember when?” And while we’re at it, what do you remember — and what would you rather forget?

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  • Katie May 25, 2007 at 1:46 pm

    We are lost in an ever-repeating coming of age/loss of innocence storyline — because that’s the narrative that always sells. Our lives are overly complex and overly demanding — and the only way we can justify them is to imagine (make up) a past that was not so.