Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Ode To An Aging Boomer In Vegas

"God bless this morning, the birthday morning"

- an offering from my favorite "Sunshine Pop" group, sunshine we all need now!

It is very late, and I am sitting here in my home in Henderson, Nevada looking out the back window towards the East and the moon is half full looking like a big upright yellow bowl in the sky. And I'm thinking that in another week it will wane down to a new moon on the 26th 0f October, and then the lunar cycle will start all over again. At least that is the cosmic plan.( Tonight the moon is in the 4th phase of its waning monthly lifespan which averages 29.530589 days according to Wikipedia. )

And I think, WOW, so am I !

What I mean is I am probably in my last phase of a waning life! I am 60 years old and most actuarial charts would give a man aged 60 a life expectancy of 20+ more years, but who knows, with my Congestive Heart Failure you might subtract 5 or 10 years from that figure. Or with a major medical breakthrough, I might luck out and live to be 100.

I read somewhere, and I don't know if this is established scientific fact, that as we age we revisit our earlier psychological states. For example, the so called "midlife crisis" revisits the earlier unresolved adolescent crises. And older people spend much time reviewing their lives and remembering what it was like to be young and vibrant, and some tend to behave like children again either voluntarily or involuntarily ( As in the so called "second childhood" ). So in the last quarter of my waning existence, excuse me if I appear to be regressing to earlier times, especially since the current times we live in seem almost hostile to me. ( For proof of the hostility, put a bumper sticker endorsing your favorite Presidential candidate on your car ... )

But, let me get to the point of this post, so to speak ... When I was growing up in the 50's and 60's I was fascinated with record players. We were not rich, so I think I had to beg my mother to buy me a record player from W T Grants or maybe she turned in books of S&H Green Stamps to buy me my first player. This may seem silly to younger readers who are used to the ubiquitous iPods and CD / Mp3 players, and streaming music on the Internet, and satellite radio. But in the 1950's and 1960's record players were the normal way to play the only media available, vinyl ( plastic ) records. So I started a small record collection with my meager monetary resources. I had a cousin who was in the record business in New York, and every time I visited his brother-in law I picked up a bunch of obscure throw away demo 45 RPM's ( including an early demo of the Smothers Brothers singing "They Call The Wind Mariah" which I wish I still possessed ! ). The earliest 33 1/3 RPM ( 12 inch ) records I remember from my grade school years, were the ones that my parents and older brother possessed: soundtracks from Broadway shows such as South Pacific, some classical records, some children's song recordings. These were followed by "Sing Along With Mitch" ( don't laugh ! ).

When I reached pre-puberty I had some money from allowances and small jobs and I was able to buy some Kingston Trio albums. This was followed by Peter Paul and Mary and The Association. Later in my High School and college years my tastes in music expanded with The Doors, Rolling Stones, Kinks, and all the psychedelic offerings of the late 60's etc.

As aging boomers ( those born roughly between 1943 and 1960 ), we as a group are a unique marketing demographic ( we are large and we have money --- at least until we lost our 401Ks! --- and the AARP knows this judging by all the mail I get from them ! ). As an older and hopefully wiser experiencer of life in general, I was amazed ( but not really that surprised ) at how many Vegas concerts cater to those in my Boomer group. So, starting in late November, I am going to relive my youth by catching a series of concerts in Las Vegas starting with the current incarnation of The Association ( at the Sun Coast on November 23rd ) and The Kingston Trio ( at the South Point on November 29th ). I am not going to be so naïve as to expect these groups to have their original members or that they will perform with the youthful vigour they once had, or even that I will feel the same way about them today as I did back then; but with a couple of drinks and the right company, who knows? Well, of course I will let you know here in this blog how it all turns out ...

Sun Coast Entertainment Page

South Point Entertainment Page


Post a Comment