’60s: The Reality Show

’60s: The Reality Show

: Tim Oren and I enjoyed Larry Smith’s piece about living in the pre-technology-revolution days of the year of our birth, 1954.

This would make a great reality show — even better, actually, than the shows about living on the old prarie on PBS.

Wouldn’t it be so much better to bring it close to home? Make the kids of a guy my age live in my youth (when, I tell them, we had black & white TV and only three channels and no computers and no Internet and no iPods and no microwave popcorn and no video games!). For that matter, make a guy my age live in that time and suffer, too.

The sequel: Make me live in my father’s time (so I can verify that he really didn’t walk to school 10 miles in the snow).

: UPDATE: Or you could be Doc and sneak along a laptop, bluetooth cellphone, and network link to the tent.

  • jeremy in NYC

    The part that really seems to faze real young ‘uns is when I tell them that we didn’t have remote controls – that if you wanted to change the channel on the TV, you had to get up and walk over to the set.
    I think for a lot of today’s couch potatoes, that would qualify as their daily exercise.

  • http://www.hfienberg.com/kesher/ Yehudit

    “we had black & white TV and only three channels and no computers and no Internet and no iPods and no microwave popcorn and no video games!).”
    Not only did we not have iPods, we didn’t even have Walkmans. Not only did we not have Walkmans, we didn’t even have tape cassettes – all tape was reel-to-reel! And no recorded music in a car, only the radio. And not only that, recorded music was on LPs and 45s. And not only did we not have portable phones, we had no voicemail. If you had a business, you might have an answering service.
    Ah, the good old days. But since I grew up in Dallas TX, I have no stories about walking 10 miles to school in the snow.

  • TimM

    You might be interested in the show “1900 House.” It was a BBC show that PBS broadcasted a few years ago. The BBC took a family of four from London, and put them in a turn of the century house with only the 1900 technology. There was a book written back then giving advice to homemakers, which helped. They had an outdoor toliet, gas lights, coal stove, etc. One of the most difficult activities was the laundry. It took all day on Saturday. The husband used a straight razor (difficult to use), and grew a moshtache to limit his shaving. The hardest thing for the women was making their own 1900 based shampoo.
    See: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B00004U2K7/103-5857728-8955816?v=glance

  • http://canonist.typepad.com Steven I. Weiss

    Jeff, they already had a reality show about your childhood.