The original (OK, the enhanced, because George Lucas is a little stupid) "Star Wars" was on yesterday and Archie and I were singing that Bill Murray lounge singer bit. And we were trying to explain to the girls what a huge deal the movie was when we were kids.
The summer of 1977 I was going to be in the 7th grade. My brother Eric and I spent a week with my aunt and uncle in Sandusky. We would ride their beat up old Schwinns over to the park and hit tennis balls, we'd walk down to the beach and swim in Lake Erie, and we'd play cards with Aunt Norma and Uncle Don after dinner every night. Except for one night when Uncle Don asked after dinner, "Would you kids like to see that 'Star Wars' movie?" I think we tried to be cool and just mumbled, "Uh, yeah, that could be fun." But I know I was feeling as if I just won the lottery. And it was amazing and funny and suspenseful and the special effects were like nothing we'd ever seen. I could not believe my good fortune. I got to see "Star Wars" and I didn't have to beg or plead to see it!
I was chatting with my mom on the phone last night, and I mentioned this to her. She started to laugh and said, "You know, your brother Gordy didn't get to see it when it came out because he was at church camp that week." Apparently, Gordy now watches it any time it ever comes on TV. And when Mom asks why he's watching something he's seen countless times before, he always replies, "Because I didn't get to see it when it came out!" He's just a wee bit bitter -- even after all these years. I know I shouldn't find that funny, but I do. It also explains why he was so insistent that he get ot see the sequels on the day they opened. Like, pestering and cajoling my parents for weeks, which was totally out of character for him. It's also kindof interesting that both of us look at "Star Wars" as a kind of pivotal moment in our childhoods -- but I think of it as a high point and Gordy views it as the opposite. Well, interesting, but in a totally hilarious way.