I'm Turning Back The Time Machine Tonight
I remember it well. At least as well as a six or seven year old remembers anything.
I was in first grade at Sheridan Elementary in Sheboygan. We lived in a duplex across the street at 1410 New Jersey Avenue. The Blumensteins were upstairs. The TV was black and white, tuned to whatever western my dad wanted. Even asleep on the couch, he claimed he was still watching and promised woe to whoever changed the channel. There weren't many to choose from: 2, 4, 6, 10, 11 and 12.
It would be through that ancient RCA screen that we'd see the world change. We'd already gotten a taste five weeks before with the assassination of President Kennedy. As a kid, I knew something really bad had happened but didn't grasp the enormity. My cartoons weren't on. People were sad.
Then came '64.
The first thing I remember was The Beatles on Ed Sullivan, viewed with my parents, my aunt and uncle and their kids. The men made fun of the hair, the suits, the accents and, most of all, the music. Dad was a drummer on a band in the 40's and "I Want To Hold Your Hand" wasn't on his personal Hit Parade. In fact, he vowed never to teach me how to play until "that rock and roll crap" is gone.
Only he didn't say "crap".
It was the start of an incredible year, bits and pieces of which left a mark on me, others that went by because again, I was a first grader. That's why I'll be dipping in tonight on Channel 10 (in color AND HD) to see "1964". Oliver Platt narrarates "The Ameican Experience" documentary about a year that some would say started the 60's. The good. The bad. The fun. The painful.. The show itself is on at 7:00.