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The times, they have a’changed

June 25, 2009 - Kevin Sweeney
Holy cow! This weekend is my 40th high school reunion. I feel like I’m not much older today than when I graduated, but when I look back at things, the times have sure changed.

When I was in high school, engineers used slide rules to make calculations, watches all had dials and you made calls in a phone booth, which were handily located on just about any corner. Local calls cost a dime, and the phones had rotary dials. It would be years before computers existed outside of universities and big scientific laboratories.

Kids didn’t play video games back in 1969. There weren’t any. “Pong” was still three years away. NBA players wore Converse “Chuck Taylor” All Stars on their feet.

The National Football League and the American Football League were two different entities. The Vikings won the NFL championship in 1969, but lost to the AFL champion Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl IV, but we all knew they’d win it next year!

Richard M. Nixon was sworn to his first term as president as I started my last semester in high school. Bill Clinton was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford, where he perfected the trick of smoking marijuana but not inhaling.

Out at Max Yazger’s farm, the Woodstock Music Festival took place. We debated whether the Beatles or the Rolling Stones were the best rock band ever. James Brown and Aretha Franklin were at the height of their fame, Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix were still alive. Simon and Garfunkel were still singing together. We were all convinced that through peace, love and understanding we would change the world.

Well, the world has changed a lot since then, and I’d have to say the world has changed us a lot more than we changed it. It will be nice to see just how old all those other guys look when I get to the reunion.


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