This is my first day in this world. Reminds me of Mrs. M's second grade English course where we were required to keep a journal. My deepest, innermost thoughts were encased in a Mead spiral ring notebook with a bright yellow cover featuring an image of "Boom Boom" Washington from TV's "Welcome Back, Kotter" saying, "Hey There!"
Yes, I am old-er.
I am a 38-year old male. I come from an interesting family of 8 children. Same parents, so all of them are full blood siblings. Yes, we were Catholic. We descended from Italian/Sicilian immigrants on my father's side and Irish/Spanish immigrants on my mother's side. Big families are a rarity now, but when I grew up there were at least four other families within a mile of us that had 5-8 kids each in our neighborhood that all formed an entire troop of lifetime friends. We literally controlled the streets of Encino, CA. We were known to everyone in the neighborhood.
This was a time when you rode your bike and walked to school and it wasn't the 40's, it was the 70's and 80's. It wasn't all that long ago that we didn't have cell phones, rampant kidnappings and neighbors you didn't know & trust or at least know not to trust.
We had video games like pong and the arcades were packed with pinball machines in the latter part of the 70's. With the 80's came Atari and Pac-Man and Donkey Kong to name a few and the Sherman Oaks Galleria gave birth to the "Valley Girl" and Frank Zappa (a resident of Sherman Oaks) and Nicholas Cage went on to immortalize that name and species of female for generations to come.
Time Out was the name of the arcade in the Galleria and it was dead center in the food court which was filled with delicious classics like Swensen's Ice Cream, Mexican Dan's and Perry's Pizza - home of the square deep dish pan pizza. This was an era where you weren't embarrassed because your parents had to pick you up and drop you off at the mall, because your parents were at home or at work doing there thing. After school and after your chores, you walked or rode your bike with your friends to spend your allowance and try to win food and toys at skeet ball. Your parents told you to be home before dark, carry some quarters for the phone, cross at the crosswalks and don't talk to strangers. You were given more responsibility and expected to use your brain and the good judgement instilled in you by your parents. When you didn't, it was part of the many life lessons you learned, a right of passage into adulthood and hopefully you survived. If you didn't survive, that was a big reason why you had so many siblings.
A lot has changed in the 38 years since I was born, but a lot has remained the same when it comes to the universal truths in life. Things like family, friendship, love and all the stuff that technology might only enhance, but never destroy. Things everyone in every generation can relate to and I hope they do as my blogs continue.......
© 2008 David La Cava. All Rights Reserved.