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How old is old?

Lighter 06 Jul 13 - 06:23 PM
Joe Offer 06 Jul 13 - 06:44 PM
Elmore 06 Jul 13 - 07:37 PM
PHJim 06 Jul 13 - 09:47 PM
Elmore 06 Jul 13 - 10:00 PM
Ebbie 06 Jul 13 - 10:18 PM
Gibb Sahib 06 Jul 13 - 10:37 PM
leeneia 06 Jul 13 - 10:54 PM
MGM·Lion 07 Jul 13 - 01:28 AM
GUEST,Gerry 07 Jul 13 - 01:29 AM
Ebbie 07 Jul 13 - 01:53 AM
MGM·Lion 07 Jul 13 - 02:12 AM
Elmore 07 Jul 13 - 02:17 AM
Gibb Sahib 07 Jul 13 - 02:29 AM
Reinhard 07 Jul 13 - 03:03 AM
Jim Carroll 07 Jul 13 - 03:43 AM
Gibb Sahib 07 Jul 13 - 04:51 AM
GUEST,Grishka 07 Jul 13 - 04:56 AM
Leadfingers 07 Jul 13 - 04:57 AM
GUEST,PeterC 07 Jul 13 - 05:22 AM
Newport Boy 07 Jul 13 - 05:43 AM
banjoman 07 Jul 13 - 06:14 AM
Mr Happy 07 Jul 13 - 06:37 AM
MGM·Lion 07 Jul 13 - 07:28 AM
Mo the caller 07 Jul 13 - 08:15 AM
Jim Carroll 07 Jul 13 - 08:30 AM
MGM·Lion 07 Jul 13 - 08:35 AM
MGM·Lion 07 Jul 13 - 08:41 AM
Bat Goddess 07 Jul 13 - 08:47 AM
Lighter 07 Jul 13 - 08:58 AM
Bill D 07 Jul 13 - 10:29 AM
Lighter 07 Jul 13 - 11:45 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 07 Jul 13 - 11:56 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 07 Jul 13 - 12:41 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 07 Jul 13 - 12:43 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 07 Jul 13 - 12:48 PM
MGM·Lion 07 Jul 13 - 12:57 PM
Marc Bernier 07 Jul 13 - 01:12 PM
MGM·Lion 07 Jul 13 - 01:21 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 07 Jul 13 - 01:36 PM
GUEST,meself 07 Jul 13 - 01:53 PM
Fred Maslan 07 Jul 13 - 02:39 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 07 Jul 13 - 02:49 PM
Ebbie 07 Jul 13 - 02:49 PM
Joe_F 07 Jul 13 - 02:53 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 07 Jul 13 - 03:30 PM
Doug Chadwick 07 Jul 13 - 03:57 PM
YorkshireYankee 07 Jul 13 - 06:42 PM
Fred Maslan 07 Jul 13 - 07:43 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 07 Jul 13 - 07:46 PM
Fred Maslan 07 Jul 13 - 09:15 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 07 Jul 13 - 09:39 PM
Ebbie 07 Jul 13 - 11:34 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 07 Jul 13 - 11:38 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 08 Jul 13 - 12:02 AM
Ebbie 08 Jul 13 - 01:20 AM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 08 Jul 13 - 02:05 AM
GUEST 08 Jul 13 - 05:15 AM
Bill D 08 Jul 13 - 11:47 AM
MGM·Lion 08 Jul 13 - 12:07 PM
Old Grey Wolf 08 Jul 13 - 12:13 PM
GUEST,Guest from Sanity 08 Jul 13 - 12:25 PM
Old Grey Wolf 08 Jul 13 - 12:31 PM
PHJim 08 Jul 13 - 04:03 PM
Gibb Sahib 08 Jul 13 - 05:33 PM
Joe_F 08 Jul 13 - 09:02 PM
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Subject: Folklore: How old is old?
From: Lighter
Date: 06 Jul 13 - 06:23 PM

Seriously! "All Things Considered" on APR just ran a segment on Yiddish folk music. The reporter explained, with an appropriate hint of teenaged awe, that one song was "so old that it goes back one hundred years!"

That kind of reckoning would make "Alexander's Ragtime Band" a folk classic!

Not that there's anything wrong with that!

(On second thought, I can recall when Civil War songs were a hundred years old. At the time, that seemed really, really old ....)


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 06 Jul 13 - 06:44 PM

Click here to hear the program, which is quite interesting.

Surprisingly, 100 years IS old for Yiddish music. The heyday of Yiddish music was the early 20th century, and most of the popular music comes from known composers. There isn't a whole lot of Yiddish music that comes from the 19th century or earlier, and very few Yiddish songs can truly be considered "traditional."

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Elmore
Date: 06 Jul 13 - 07:37 PM

72


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: PHJim
Date: 06 Jul 13 - 09:47 PM

I recall reading a story in the local paper about an "elderly woman" who was robbed. The story went on to explain that "Jane Doe, 57 was..."
I wondered how old the reporter was.

I recently saw a guitar just like one that I bought new years ago being advertised as "vintage".
I'd rather be described as "vintage" than "old"...aged like wine.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Elmore
Date: 06 Jul 13 - 10:00 PM

57 and elderly? OMG! I'm 15 years older than that. I have shirts from 1998. Still don't feel elderly most days.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Ebbie
Date: 06 Jul 13 - 10:18 PM

PHJim, I move that we ditch 'senior' for Vintage! Great idea.

But what is old? Depends. I have two sisters, 89 and 87; the 89-year-old isn't ready to call herself old yet. The 87-year-old has been embracing the concept since she was 70. One of my surviving brothers is 88 (yeah, big family and close together) and says age doesn't matter to him. He's still grinding rock ore to isolate gold particles which, he fondly hopes, will pay off 'down the road'.

Me? I'm almost 78. It continually amazes me. Until I realize that losing so many of my peers is inevitable at my age...


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 06 Jul 13 - 10:37 PM

In Jamaican popular culture, last month is old!


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: leeneia
Date: 06 Jul 13 - 10:54 PM

We like to play early music. 17th C is normal, 16th C is getting back there, 15th C is interestingly old, 14th C is unusually old.

Then there are the Cantigas de Santa Maria, from the 1200's. Rarely do we get anything older than that.

A hundred years old is yesterday to us.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 01:28 AM

I knew I had reached a watershed in my life one day in the late 1980s, when a young man stood up to offer me his seat on the London Underground. I was 'elderly' as above: ie about 57. I took the seat with thanks as I thought it would have been ungracious to refuse. But, oh dear... Still wonder what can have prompted him. My hair was still black, and my face relatively unlined, and I still walked briskly everywhere. None of which criteria is now applicable... So I suppose maybe now I am just a little bit old[ish]? I remember the death of King George V and the Abdication Crisis of Edward VIII & the coronation of George VI, which occurred om my 5th birthday. And WWii is all a very vivid recollection...

~M~


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 01:29 AM

Joe, I'm not sure I buy your chronology of Yiddish music. Of course, we have no recording over 100 years old; we don't have any sheet music that old either, but the klezmers learned from their elders, not from sheet music. It is true that a lot of music comes from the Yiddish theater, which I think goes back only to 1880 or so, but surely there are traditional songs that go back farther. Absence of documentation is not documentation of absence....

And as for the question, how old is old, I have always felt, and expect to continue to feel, that anyone older than I am is old, and anyone younger than I am is young.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Ebbie
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 01:53 AM

When I was 49 my daughter married. It was July and hot and in southern California and my hair bleached platinum; that whole last week while my daughter was putting in her last days at work I went everywhere by bus.

I had never seen so many youngsters pop up and offer me their seats. Like you, Michael, I was somewhat nonplussed but it was easier and faster just to accept the proffered seat. I was somewhat amazed too; it had never occurred to me that California surfers and boarders and kayakers would be so polite to their elders. Nowadays I'm often grateful for a seat. :)


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 02:12 AM

Take your point, Ebbie. But here, it is not unusual for a standing woman of pretty well any age to be offered a seat by any well-mannered gentleman ~~ even now, in my 80s, I have to resist the natural impulse to stand for a woman in her 20s-30s, reflecting that she is nowadays probably better able to stand than I am. Whereas, for any man to be offered one by a younger person, he would generally need to look pretty decrepit ~~ hence my horror!...

~M~


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Elmore
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 02:17 AM

Ebbie: That would seldom happen in Boston.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 02:29 AM

Us bus-riders have a 'code' :) I offer the seat to any female, and to any male that is of a "distinguished" age and manner. He doesn't have to be "old", just "old enough"! -- because it is out of respect (in both cases), not out of fear that the person appears incapable of standing.

Transplanted New Englander in Southern California.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Reinhard
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 03:03 AM

The sleeve notes of my CD "Yikhes: Frühe Klezmer-Aufnahmen von 1907-1939" state:

Klezmer music in the form known today is less than 200 years old, but its roots date back to the Middle Ages. This traditional instrumental music of Yiddish-speaking Jews of Eastern Europe was played at weddings and other celebrations and came to the New World with the waves of emigration of 1881-1924.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 03:43 AM

"That kind of reckoning would make "Alexander's Ragtime Band" a folk classic!"
It would if "old" had anything to do with a song being 'folk' - it hasn't so it isn't.
Several of the newly made songs we were recording from Irish Travellers were less than ten years old yet fell well within the description of being 'folk songs'. The same with the 'local' songs that were to be found all over rural Ireland, many of which must have been made during the lifetimes of the singers.   
'Folk' is a process the song, tune or story passes through' irrespective of how long it takes - days, weeks, years or centuries.
Jim Carroll.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 04:51 AM

That reminds me of an old Folk Saying: "Smooth move, Ex-Lax."


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 04:56 AM

For any piece of music, there comes an age when it is either forgotten or becomes a "monument", similar to buildings ("Let's demolish it quickly before it gets protected as cultural heritage"). Having reached that age and achieved some impact, it becomes an object of "history of music" where criticising its quality (other than by folk process) is a no-no.

My feeling is that 30 years is a suitable age for all genres, reduced to 20 for pop music. However, some songs become "classics" almost immediately when first published, without process.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Leadfingers
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 04:57 AM

It is still true that in America 100 years is a long time and in UK 100 miles is a long way !


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,PeterC
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 05:22 AM

In the UK, Age UK (Used to be called Age Concern) count anyone over 55 as 'old'!


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 05:43 AM

Trekking in Nepal in 2000, a small Nepalese boy wanted to try his English.

Anne (ex-schoolteacher), slowly and distinctly: How old are you?
Boy, clearly: Nine years old. How old are you?
Anne: Sixty-two years old.
(pause)
Boy, looking up wide-eyed: Sooo old!

Phil


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: banjoman
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 06:14 AM

Almost 70 and feeling a lot of joint pain. However, I still feel as if ,in my mind I am about 25. Problem is that the body nearly always disagrees.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Mr Happy
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 06:37 AM

When I was at college, an 'older' female student was most indignant at being referred to as a 'mature student'

She said it sounds like cheese!


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 07:28 AM

Ah, well, my first, late, wife came up to Cambridge at the great age of 28, with what was known as a Mature State Scholarship ~~ which was awarded by the Government, gained by extended essay and interview rather than examination, the qualification age being 25, the maximum number given nationwide in any year, 30. She spent three most happy years at Newnham College as a "Mature Student", ending with a First; and one of her normal-aged undergraduate fellow-students once introduced her at a party, "Valerie is our Interesting Person" ~~ which to them, as an experienced local paper Chief Reporter & Fleet Street subeditor turned undergraduate, while their careers, whatever they should turn out to be, lay still in the future, I suppose she was! "Maturity" is, of course, a comparative concept.

~M~


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Mo the caller
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 08:15 AM

I was thinking about this recently - how far/near is a hundred years.
When I was young realising that my grandparents were born in the 'last century' seemed so far away. Now, only a little hop more than to the 40s & 50s when I grew up.
We used to go to a dance club with a caller - Reg Holmes (who recently died in his 90s). When he was starting to call he got some dances from a local caller who used to call for dances in the Servants hall of big houses at the turn of the century. I jotted one down and call it, regret that I didn't get the name of the caller, but by the time I asked he couldn't find it. So one of the dances I call goes back over 100 years with a chain of 3 links.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 08:30 AM

It was once a common sight in the area around Childwall Abbey in Liverpool, to see aged monks with long grey robes and white beards walking the streets.
One day a couple of local schoolboys accosted one of them and asked;
"Ay father, was you in the Ark?"
The monk replied indignantly, "Of course I wasn't, you rude boy".
"Why weren't you drowned?" was the response.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 08:35 AM

I know a man slightly older than me ~~ in his mid-80s, tho I think still working in an American University. I knew him when he was a professor at Cambridge. He is of German origin. He told me once that, when he was small, his grandfather had told him of having been told by his grandfather of having been held up to watch Napoleon ride by.

~M~


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 08:41 AM

Have you ever worked this out?:-

A man died today at the age of 80. On the day he was born, another man of 80 died. And on the day he...

Only 12 men will get you back before the Norman Conquest.

~M~


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 08:47 AM

Mid-1980s some time at work, a few of us were discussing where we were when we found out President Kennedy had been shot. I'd been a sophomore in high school and in Geometry class. Anyway, we all had our stories, and then our youngest co-worker said, "My mommy was changing my diaper."

For the first time I felt...well, I guess not "old" but at least "vintage".

Still feel that way when a much younger person doesn't catch a Monty Python reference or something.

Linn


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Lighter
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 08:58 AM

My charitable guess is that the reporter is unused to the idea that very few songs that are still heard except as curiosities or "blasts from the past" go back more than a dozen years, if that.

Exceptions would be Christmas carols like the ancient "White Christmas" and "Rudolph."


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 10:29 AM

Father, looking at son's report card: "You only got a C in History? Why, I always got A's in history when I was your age!"

Son:"Well, there wasn't nearly as much OF it back then!"

---------------------------------------------------------

At a shop where I was working, the radio was playing "Scarbourough Fair".. I wondered aloud what station was playing it.

"Oh," said one the 20 somethings, "that's an 'oldies' station, that song is by Simon & Garfunkel"

I told them it was 'slightly' older than that...like by several hundred years. They didn't believe me till I brought in a book with several versions.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Lighter
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 11:45 AM

Bill, why should he have thought different? Surely you don't think he had a ballads course in school....


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 11:56 AM

Just look in the mirror....the shorter you lie to yourself, the older you are!

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 12:41 PM

Too oldt too soon!~

I remember when Bayer aspirin and the popular laxatives (pre-ExLax?) had insert directions in Yiddish and several of the other European languages. In the 1930s, many immigrants still spoke only the language of their homeland.

I listen mostly to baroque music, as well as "Folk" and older popular and western. I can't listen to much of what passes for music among the young people of today. Earplugs, please!


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 12:43 PM

I should add that I think "Aura Lee" is a good popular song.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 12:48 PM

Q: "I remember when Bayer aspirin and the popular laxatives (pre-ExLax?) had insert directions...."

Remember the early tampon directions that started off, in the 'how to remove' part....'Pick the two fingers you like the least...."

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 12:57 PM

"Exceptions would be Christmas carols like the ancient "White Christmas" and "Rudolph."·····

.,,.,.

Ancient? Hope this meant as a joke, Lighter.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is a fictional reindeer created by Robert L. May in a 1939 story of the same name.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer may also refer to:    "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" (song), a Johnny Marks song sung most famously by Gene Autry in 1949 -- wikipedia


More than your 'dozen years', to be sure. But "Ancient"?!

~M~


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Marc Bernier
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 01:12 PM

Here in the States some folks just finished a celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg. As a younger man I played with a drummer who's drum teacher was a drummer at the Battle of Gettysburg. I guess I'm getting old.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 01:21 PM

"discussing where we were when we found out President Kennedy had been shot"
.,,.
Another, much earlier, of my watershed moments was at the time of the Profumo scandal ~~ 1963. I happened to remark in the staffroom of the S London school where I taught at the time that I couldn't remember such universal interest in any peacetime affair since the Abdication Crisis. I was astonished when a colleague replied, "I wasn't born". First time it really came home to me that I wasn't really a young man any more.

~M~


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 01:36 PM

..or the instructions for inserting a suppository that began, "Pick the finger that you absolutely detest!"

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,meself
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 01:53 PM

The joke above about History marks reminds me of an exchange I had with one of my sons when he was in high school:

Me: You're taking Chemistry are you? When I took Chemistry, we had to memorize the Periodic Table!

Him: Yeah - but back then there were only four elements, weren't there? ....

------------

Once when I was teaching, I made some reference to the Gulf War - "Not the last one; the FIRST Gulf War." The kids stared at me blankly - then it occurred to me that they would have been babes-in-arms at the time of the first Gulf War, which to me was a fresh memory.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Fred Maslan
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 02:39 PM

100 years? My dad would have been 112 this past January. And the house I grew up in and thought of as old, was only about 35 years old when we moved in.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 02:49 PM

Fred Maslan: "100 years? My dad would have been 112.."

Same age as Nelson Eddy...Do you think he liked him?

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Ebbie
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 02:49 PM

'Pick the two fingers you like the least...."

GfS

Misogynist, much?


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Joe_F
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 02:53 PM

Age improves with wine.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 03:30 PM

No, Ebbie....not a misogynist...try a novel idea....satire!

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Doug Chadwick
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 03:57 PM

Me (aged 4): "How old are you Mum?"

Mum :            "I'm 40."

Me :                "That's very old, isn't it?"


DC


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: YorkshireYankee
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 06:42 PM

I didn't start highland dancing until after I'd been out of university for a few years; most start when they're tiny and have stopped by the time they graduate -- if not before. (The reason I didn't start until so late was that I'd never seen/heard of it until I was 22-23 or so; the first time I saw it, I was hooked -- absolutely determined to learn that kind of dancing!)

Fast forward about 10 years -- I had moved to a different state (new job) and hadn't danced for about 6 months, while I found a place to live, settled in, etc.

So, by the time I found myself a highland dance teacher and started taking lessons again, I was very out of shape. I will never forget: as I was wheezing/catching my breath after the class performed a fling, a wide-eyed 12-13 year-old watched me with real concern, and asked if I was all right.

"I'm OK," I said. "It's just that I'm old, and out of shape."

Very sweetly and sincerely, she replied, "Oh, I can't imagine dancing past 16!"

I'm sure she was trying to be comforting, but I was sorely tempted to smack her...


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Fred Maslan
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 07:43 PM

Don't know if my dad liked Nelson Eddie, but family legend had him playing in a Uke band in the late 1920s.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 07:46 PM

Fred Maslan, If you can, elaborate...my Mom, would LOVE to hear about it!!!!

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Fred Maslan
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 09:15 PM

Unfortunately I have no real evidence. I never saw my dad play any instrument although there was a variety around the house. My mom played the piano and mandolin.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 09:39 PM

~~sigh~~

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Ebbie
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 11:34 PM

"...not a misogynist...try a novel idea....satire!" GfS

Sorry, fella. That was not satire. Sarcasm, maybe (although I don't think so).


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 07 Jul 13 - 11:38 PM

I knew it!!!....You didn't take exception to the suppository post...was it because you don't mind detesting that finger...or is it because you're anal retentive...and suppositories are your pleasure???

Gotcha!

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 12:02 AM

Remember this??...and this one is snazzier!


...or this one.....'got you all worked UP'......

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Ebbie
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 01:20 AM

GfS, you're not nearly as witty as you think you are. In my oh so 'umble estimation, of course.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 02:05 AM

Of course....

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 05:15 AM

Old is 15 years older than you are, when applied to people.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Bill D
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 11:47 AM

Yesterday Lighter said: "Bill, why should he have thought different? Surely you don't think he had a ballads course in school.."

Two things.... first, I question the idea of describing songs from 10-20 years ago as 'oldies'. I had replied to the kid, "In my group, 'oldies' means from 100-300 or more years ago."

Second... in general, I remember when I was in school they tried to at least give us a sense of history and relative ages of different events. I am aware that you can't spend all your time exploring the minutiae of the past, but many of the kids I meet now have no idea of 'when things happened'. For all some of them know,(unless they had a European History course) Hitler and Queen Victoria were contemporaries.

No, I doubt the kid had a ballads course in school....but he didn't WANT to believe me that 'ancient' songs were still being sung... he seemed to think that if it was vaguely popular in HIS group, it must have been written in the last 20 years or so.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 12:07 PM

It takes a while to get a sense of historical perspective. Always did; not a new thing among today's children. My sister [who is 88 now] once asked my mother, "Did you wear animal skins when you were a little girl?"

~M~


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Old Grey Wolf
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 12:13 PM

I had a cat who was 15 when she died a couple of years ago - that's old.
One of the best things I ever did was to retire 2 and a half years early. I have now been able to catch up on all the musical stuff I had to park up - learning the guitar, keyboard and cornet; even learning a new language (actually it's not new, it's Japanese, it's been around for hundreds of years). I'm now just past state pension age and officially an Old Fart. My wife says I should act my age, not my shoe size but I say that while age is compulsory, maturity isn't.
There's life in the Old Grey Wolf yet!


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: GUEST,Guest from Sanity
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 12:25 PM

Old Grey Wolf: "My wife says I should act my age,..."

Tell her that you ARE...you're just giving it a second time around..after all, practice makes perfect!

Regards!

GfS


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Old Grey Wolf
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 12:31 PM

Your'e right GfS - gonna tell her that!


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: PHJim
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 04:03 PM

My guitar hero as a kid growing up in Hamilton Ontario was Jackie Washington. My mom recalls me coming home after seeing him for the first time at the Black Swan Coffee House in Hamilton. I was all excited about seeing this "old guy" who could really play the guitar. She pointed out to me that Jackie would have been in his 40s at the time.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 05:33 PM

'Oldies' is an interesting category in (mostly American) popular music.

One narrative—which I'll give from a subjective perspective, as a fan—goes like this:

It starts with Art Laboe, a radio DJ and concert host who is kind of like the West Coast's answer to Alan Freed in terms of popularizing 'Black' music with non-Black audiences...except Laboe is still alive and still on the radio!

Laboe started the idea of 'Oldies but Goodie' in the early 1960s, in reference to the doo woo soul, rock n roll, etc of the 1950s! For his audience, which had memories of the musical artists they enjoyed in local concerts and while cruising, etc less than a decade earlier, these songs were already 'oldies'.

Since then, a sort of canon of oldies has grown. Each decade, songs that were special to that 'generation' have been added to the canon.

The twist (?) is that this phenomenon largely resonated with Mexican-American/Chicano audiences. There is a sort of family structure there...lots of intergenerational events...where you'd hear your parents' and grandparents' 'oldies' as well as your own. The canon of Oldies now includes stuff from the 50s until, say, a decade ago. If the song has stood the test of time — kind of like what some people think is 'folk' music — then it is an "oldie."

The "oldie" category is not determined by corporations pushing a certain thing. And the oldies in this scene -- this tradition? -- are not your typical 'top 10 from the 50s' that are played on a lot of so-called 'Oldies' radio stations. It is, again, a canon of songs embraced by this community of generations that have sort of 'elected' the songs they think are meaningful or notable. One way this election happens is through radio requests. Art Laboe, the DJ, still takes all requests that are called in; he has a good sense of the pulse of the 'community'.

If you talk to people in this culture about 'oldies,' the expectation is of a particular body of songs — each of which is encoded with a meaning. It is insufficient to try to define oldies by the age of a song of by musical traits.

I think there is a lot to compare here to the concept of 'folk' songs. Though many people interested in folk songs have been historically disinterested in 'commercial' or mediated music...the sort of 'processes' that songs undergo, the 'community' building and the sense of heritage and meaning have been going on with popular music, just as 'folk' songs of the past though recording technology wasn't there.


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Subject: RE: How old is old?
From: Joe_F
Date: 08 Jul 13 - 09:02 PM

[Daughter:] Just imagine it, you're forty years old. I hope to be dead and buried before I reach that age. You've been living for forty years.
[Mother:] Yes, it must be a biological phenomena.
-- Shelagh Delaney, _A Taste of Honey_


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