Monday, July 30, 2012

It Was a Very Good Year

Disneyland, Bruce Willis, Iman and I, along with millions of others, all born in 1955, turned 57 this year.

Elvis made his first television appearance in 1955.  The US military involvement in Viet Nam began with the sending of military advisors.  McDonalds was born and Einstein died.  “In God We Trust” was placed on all US coins.  Lawrence Welk premeired on ABC and the first seat-belt legislation was enacted.  The NYSE had its worst decline since 1929 and James Dean died in a car crash.  And Rosa Parks was put in jail for refusing to give up her seat on the bus to a white man.  It was the beginning of the Montgomery Bus Boycott.      Things That Happened in 1955  

By this stage of life, I am somebody’s grandmother, whether I think I look like a gran or not.  I should be wise.  Five decades on planet earth don’t measure much in planetary history, but they should do nicely for the development of an individual conscience.  I should know more than I do.  I should be wiser than I am. 

Wise or not, I am a product of my time.  I like, in equal measure, a good dance and a good protest march.  I faithfully wear my seatbelt, but view speed limits as mere suggestions.  I trust in God, but don’t much care for Caesar telling me I should.  I hate war but love a good argument.  And I believe churches and individuals, angry young people and old activists who go the distance, and one woman of color calmly saying ‘no more’, can change the world, because I have seen them do it with my own eyes.

So hats off to 1955.  All in all, it was a very good year.

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