Among the myriad of toys we have for The Feliciraptor is a Tina T. Spoon doll, it is one of those things I bought while still a bachelor as a form of memorabilia. Now, like Toy Story told us, the toy that was a toy but then wasn’t a toy and so wasn’t a toy is a toy again.
Every time you squeeze her belly she sings, well not so much sings but plays back one of the greatest television theme songs of all time.
Inevitably this has led to nostalgic feelings about my own childhood, the beginnings of a rose-tinted world view where I will tell The Feliciraptor that “What is this rubbish on TV? I remember watching He-Man or Bagpuss…that were reet proper tele.” Where are the shows to match the epic sweep of Mysterious Cities of Gold or Dogtanian and the Muskehounds; or the surrealism of Button Moon or The Clangers?
While she is playing on the Nintendo Holo-mee I will be telling them her that she has never really played a computer game unless she had to use her thumbs, and that sometimes you had to use WASD to move around.
The little dino will look at me in shock as I tell her that not only did we play games on discs, at one point we used something called cassette tapes. The whirr and screech of a Spectrum loading up a game is something future generations will never have the joy of hearing.
And where is today’s Roald Dahl, stories of nastiness and anarchy that appeals to all kids? Why don’t books let the readers choose their own adventure. If you remember what I am talking about then go to page 7, if you want to continue reading go to page 54. Will any future children have shelves full of books or are they counting to have just an iPad with a thousand and one different stories on? Will they even know the joy of reading a book where the only way to interact is by turning a piece of paper rather than the bells and whistles you get in an ebook?
I’m left thinking about how I will show them my old DVD’s and my old toys from my parent’s attic, Mrs G wants them to have American Girl Dolls and be brought up with Americana. We want our spawn to have a copy of our halcyon-days, but for whom are we really wanting this?
My youth is my own, it is what shaped me as the adult I am today and I was allowed to find my own way in the world. Nostalgia is a seductive liar, the days past were good because that is how I choose to remember them. When I watch an original episode of Transformer or try a Wagon Wheel I can’t help but think that it’s my own desire for it to be like it was masks how terribly crap it originally was.