The Pangs of Old Age
Do you have something from your childhood that gives you a physical jolt, a tangible feeling in your skin of being startled back to a younger age?Â It’s as if your brain gets that information and short-circuits, not able to grasp how you can be tall and in grown-up clothes when, judging by the input it’s getting, you simply must be six years old.
That’s what does that for me.
I shared a lot of toys with my brother, and we had a very post-modern mother, so that meant unisex snowsuits and sneakers and toys – hand-me-down-able, and not creating gender stereotypes into the bargain. I got a lot of hand-me-downs from my many cousins, and I didn’t really have a lot of “collect them all” toys.
Rainbow Brite, however, was the Holy Grail of my childhood. She was super girly, and brand new, and she was one of the cartoon characters who held up well in the transition to toys. (Unlike Jem, who was, I’m sorry, a mutant.) I desperately loved her. So that must be why it takes me back so strongly.
Now then, two questions for you.
- Am I the last person on earth to realize that Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus is the embodiment of Jem and Jerrica?
- What are your childhood touchstones? What’s your Rainbow Brite?