Tag Archives: pop culture

Where Have All the TV Theme Songs Gone?

This season, the American television network “The CW” launched a reboot of the favourite 1980’s prime time soap “Dynasty”. In watching the very first episode, I was delighted to see several nods to its original series, including having kept its great orchestral theme song. The only thing was that it was a much shorter version of it.

Similarly, Netflix has recently rebooted “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.” Again, a really unique theme song, but chopped down to just a few bars of its original.

Have you noticed how the opening themes for many American TV shows have gotten shorter and shorter over the years? Now, some shows don’t even have them at all.

If I mentioned the names of program like “All in the Family“, “Golden Girls”, “Three’s Company”, “The Brady Bunch” or “Gilligan’s Island”, even if you weren’t a huge fan, I’m sure many of you would be able to recite a few words if not the whole theme song.

These theme songs became deeply entrenched in our pop culture, and some have become synonymous with the decades when the shows originally aired. In doing so, they also became entrenched in our hearts and minds.

As young kids, we couldn’t play “Batman” without singing few rounds of the famous “Na na na na na na na…” theme.

What would have become of “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” with a theme song about a messy breakup instead of the inspiring words about making it after all? Continue reading

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Filed under 50+, music, pop culture, TV

Boxing Day Memories: Sam the Record Man

When I think back to my Christmas wish lists over the years, music has been a constant. As a long time music lover, my voracious appetite for music goes as far back as age 10.

Through my early teens, I had an allowance from my parents, and in my later teen years, I had pocket money from a part-time job. A lot of that money was spent on records.

At that time, vinyl record albums were relatively pricey for someone earning $2.35 per hour. Christmas became that opportunity to ask Santa for the albums I did not get a chance to pick up myself through the year.

In preparing that wish list, there was some careful consideration and a few (if not several) trips to the record store(s) to ensure that the albums I chose would bring maximum enjoyment. I would meticulously review the song lists and count the number of songs I knew versus the ones I didn’t, and then compared from one album to the next.

We didn’t have listening stations, YouTube, iTunes or Spotify to check out those other unknown songs. Sometimes I might have been able to borrow a certain album from a friend or from the library, but for the most part, those other songs were often a mystery until the record was home and on the turntable.

When I think back, I am surprised at how methodical I was for such a young age, but value for money was pretty important given my limited means and my appetite for music. Continue reading

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Filed under 50+, Christmas, Humour, music, pop culture

What’s With All the Yelling?

While some may argue that destiny plays an important role in life, I find it comforting to think that free will along our journeys puts our future in our own hands… to a certain extent. One realm where I fervently believe our future is indeed in our own hands rather than fate or destiny is the TV remote control.

When I was a little kid growing up, I don’t think I could have envisioned the world of possibilities at our fingertips. The potential of going from channels 2 to 13 to a universe of hundreds of channels was pure science fiction. When the concept was first discussed as a possibility within this lifetime, I have to admit that the closet-TV-addict in me got very excited, wondering how I would ever be able to hold down a steady job when I grow up with that many options.

As our TV watching universe started expanding, the initial excitement was obvious as I needed more than one VCR to capture everything… and a lot of free time to catch up on the shows I taped, thus explaining the mountain of tapes I accumulated over the years (the same mountain I am desperately trying to get rid of now). However as the years went on and new channels were added while others folded, my excitement seemed to lessen as the occasional sleepless night would have me channel surfing through multiple channels showing the same “No-No hair removal system” infomercial. Despite short attention span issues in my childhood, I don’t recall “heavy rotations of hair removal system commercials” as being an integral part of descriptions of the multi channel universe of the future. Continue reading

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Tales From the Express Lane

In May 2001, I posted an entry on my web site (which was actually a blog before blogs became popular) called “The Rules of the Express Lane” which seemed to attract a fair bit of attention from my friends and family. From the positive response I received, I gathered that everyone had experienced similar creative interpretations of what the Express Lane was for. To this day, the Express Lane still seems to be an irritant for many given our busy lifestyles… and given the glares I have witnessed people give each other, so I thought it might be interesting to dust off that story, update it and post it for your reading pleasure:

In my many years of visiting supermarkets and super-duper-markets, I have noticed that there are two kinds of shoppers:

First you have the “one-time” grocery shoppers. They are usually the ones who shop once every two weeks or more. They are the ones with the largest grocery carts possible, overflowing with edibles, leaving a trail of squished grapes, celery leaves and laundry powder behind them. These are the folks who should have a special cart with a loud beep-beep coming out of it should they need to attempt to U-Turn or back out of a busy aisle.. which they usually have to do a few times, for some reason. By the time they have completed the three-hour excursion through the store, the lettuce has wilted and the frozen food is ready for serving. Continue reading

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