Archive for Thursday, January 6, 2011

The good old days

January 6, 2011

“The Air Waves belong to the people.”

That expression was from the United States Congress when it began debating the Radio Act in 1927.

Those of us who listened to the early days of broadcasting really felt like we did own the air waves. We were glued to the radio stations. I looked forward nightly to shows like "I Love a Mystery" with heroes like Jack, Doc and Reggie making every episode more exciting than the one before. They traveled to the ends of the earth solving adventurous mysteries.

Other favorites were "Jack Armstrong, the All American Boy" and Ma Perkins who was loved by the stay-at-home housewives. We loved "Little Orphan Annie" and "Dick Tracy." Somehow I misplaced my Dick Tracy secret compartment ring. Now that ring is worth from $115 to $300 if anyone of you out there still has one. Fibber McGee and Molly were on for 18 years and we loved every minute.

We listened to the Grand Old Opry and "The First Nighter," which had wonderful plays each week. Back then we used our imagination to picture how the people and places looked. The kids now have no idea what that is like and oh my, what they are missing.

What brought this all about was a wonderful book we got for Christmas from our son Mike and his wife, Vickie, named “Riding the Air Waves” by Ken and Janice Tate. It really took us back to the wonderful memories of the radio when we were kids.

Of course, what really caught my eyes were an Illustration and an article on page 42 about shopping for a television set when they first hit the furniture stores. The illustration just happened to be by an artist named Michael Young and some of the people in the picture represent me and several members of my family. My wife insists that I am sitting on the fender of a car with my arm around some “cute young thing” that is not her. I remember well the day Mike came over and climbed up on a ladder with his camera and had our family pretending to be looking in a store window. The rest is open to the imagination.

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