Why We Love Retro!
So with that, I’m going to attempt to put that feeling into succinct words and thoughts for you here.
As I write this, it’s September 4th 2014, and I am going to be 45 years old this coming December. Why that’s important, is that I want to date those things that I look back on as magical, and hope that you will do the same for things in your era. This way, we can share many of the same “connection points”, and really “dial in” why we feel the way we do.
Okay, here it goes. Here’s what I heard today that really struck me. The one word that completely describes why we love retro life: Nostalgia!
Nostalgia is the one word that elicits an emotional response from our bodies, in an effort to describe most effectively…how and why we miss those memories of our youth. Why does that one lyric in that song, you know, the one that you heard over 30 years ago, actually take you to a place that you can physically connect with. Your right brain starts firing at light speed, and dopamine is gushing into your system, and you are feeling good. ACTUALLY Feeling Good! Why is this?
It’s because of what’s different with nostalgia as an emotion, versus nearly all other emotions: Object Connectedness!
This object connectedness is majorly important as a keystone variable, because when you look at how we’ve become as a society in 2014……you can easily see that our connectedness is at an all time high, yet our emotions to and from that connectedness are at all time lows. We simply don’t hold the same value perspective for MP3 downloads, text messages, emails, online social interactions, etc., that we once held with physical interactions of days gone by. Period. In fact, I’d don’t even think I could trust someone who values the “thinly veneered” and “easily forgotten” interactions of today…..over those intimate and meaningful transactions of the past.
Can you even remember the first MP3 download you made? Most likely not. But on the flip side, can you remember the first vinyl record you cherished? You can probably remember your first record, because of the “importance” of that connectedness, or tangibility, versus the forgettable disposability of digital downloads. Or how about this test; can you name the any of the top five 8-bit video arcade games of the 80’s? Sure you do. But how about the top five video games out today? Yeah, me neither. I just don’t care about what’s out today……but I still care greatly that I know Pac-Man, Defender, Donkey Kong, Galaga, & Ms. Pac-Man are the most remembered arcade games of all time! And I would suspect you remember these too, fondly.
Again, why is this? Why do we feel so, “called back” by those simple and exciting times, when there are a gazillion times more things we have access to today? Remember that special word? Yep……NOSTALGIA!
Ask anyone to tell you about their first big-wheel, green machine, Strawberry Shortcake doll, record player, car, motorcycle, Atari 2600 console, Rock-Em-Sock-Em Robots, etc…..and then watch their eyes light up, their pulse quicken, and their passionate story unfold! It’s awesome and fun to participate in, and you always want more of that good old magic.
So what did we learn friends? We learned that NOSTALGIA is alive and well, because it always has been. We know, that as the world careens towards an ever greater and greater throw-away, easily forgettable digitization of everything, we will always have that certain “magic & tangible word” to hold onto. And every time we return to its mention, its powers will engulf us in an emotional tidelwave that asks of nothing more of us, than to simply hold on and enjoy!
It’s a timeless reality! It’s NOT going away! And it’s going to keep pulling on your heart until you come out and play once again!
Enjoy RETRO 100!