Half a century makes antiques out of anything

Remember Perry Como singing “Letters, we get letters, we get stacks and stacks of letters.”

It might have been “I get letters,” but that’s beside the point.

Como had a musical variety show back in the day, and a great show it was, likely because Como himself made such a mellow host and had such a great singing voice. I didn’t know it then because it never occurred to me to care, but history has proven him one of the good guys in entertainment.

Again, that’s beside the point.

The point is, his show aired from 1948 to 1966, from a year after I was born until a year after I graduated high school. We watched the show without fail, which might have added to my love of music.

Again, beside the point.

Another point is “The Perry Como Show” ended almost 50 years ago. Half a century.

When I first started browsing antique stores because I loved the stuff, I was told to be antique something had to be at least 50 years old. Which may or may not be accurate by today’s accord. Fifty years. Half a century.

A while back I got a letter from Clara Krog at Vincent and in this letter was a clipping about a bus accident from The Eagle Grove Eagle’s 50 years ago column. Fifty years is half a century, but that bus accident will be clear in my mind forever.

Roads were sloppy and slick. We were headed south to Lyle Larson’s home. The wheels of the bus may have gone round and round, but they couldn’t pull out of mud suction to negotiate the curve. I looked out a window as we started to slip off the side of the road, turning upside down in a creek bed.

That this didn’t seem right rushed through my head about the time everything went black and bumpy. Lost in darkness, I wiggled my foot to see if I were still alive. Then somebody stepped on my face, and people started screaming.

I’ve never been good with upside down. My mind doesn’t want to comprehend the change of environment. But upside down we were, and it took some doing to unravel the bodies and find the exits. Just six kids were hospitalized.

Man, I thought, as I read the clipping, that feels like just a few years ago. And then it hit me. It might feel like just a few years, but the accident was 50 years ago. Half a century. Antique by some standards.

Then it hit me again. I was in high school. Fifty years ago I was in high school. That’s half a century.

You can see where this is going.

By those standards calling 50 years antique, I’m past antique. Yikes. It’s no wonder then that my joints crackle when I get up from sitting too long. It’s no wonder my skill set no longer includes racing across a yard to see who can be first to the other side and back. I was fast. I miss that.

I’m just glad people like antiques.

So long friends, until the next time when we’re together.

Sandy Mickelson, retired lifestyle editor of The Messenger, may be reached at mcsalt@frontiernet.net.