I saw this from Mommy Kat of Mom’s Place through Google Reader and thought of sharing my own “birthday trivia”.
In 1970, the world was a different place.
There was no Google yet. Or Yahoo.
In 1970, the year of your birth, the top selling movie was Love Story. People buying the popcorn in the cinema lobby had glazing eyes when looking at the poster.
Remember, that was before there were DVDs. Heck, even before there was VHS. People were indeed watching movies in the cinema, and not downloading them online. Imagine the packed seats, the laughter, the excitement, the novelty. And mostly all of that without 3D computer effects.
Do you know who won the Oscars that year? The academy award for the best movie went to Patton. The Oscar for best foreign movie that year went to Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion. The top actor was George C. Scott for his role as Gen. George S. Patton Jr. in Patton. The top actress was Glenda Jackson for her role as Gudrun Brangwen in Women in Love. The best director? Franklin J. Schaffner for Patton.
In the year 1970, the time when you arrived on this planet, books were still popularly read on paper, not on digital devices. Trees were felled to get the word out. The number one US bestseller of the time was Love Story by Erich Segal. Oh, that’s many years ago. Have you read that book? Have you heard of it? Look at the cover!
In 1970… The first episode of All My Children is broadcast on the ABC television network. Biafra capitulates, ending the Nigerian civil war. The Boeing 747, the world’s first “jumbo jet”, enters commercial service for launch customer Pan American Airways with its maiden voyage from John F Kennedy International Airport to London Heathrow Airport. Mick Jagger is fined £200 for possession of cannabis. The complete New English Bible is published. The Expo ’70 World’s Fair opens in Suita, Osaka, Japan. Citroën introduces the SM at the Geneva Auto Salon. Teenagers in the United Kingdom vote for the first time, in a by-election in Bridgwater. Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh opens. The 1970 FIFA World Cup is inaugurated in Mexico. An assassination attempt against King Hussein of Jordan precipitates the Black September crisis. The U.S. Foreign Office announces that renewal of arms sales to Pakistan. Democrats sweep the U.S. Congressional midterm elections; Ronald Reagan is reelected governor of California; Jimmy Carter is elected governor of Georgia. Paul McCartney sues in Great Britain to dissolve the Beatles’ legal partnership.
That was the world you were born into. Since then, you and others have changed it.
The Nobel prize for Literature that year went to Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. The Nobel Peace prize went to Norman E. Borlaug. The Nobel prize for physics went to Hannes Olof Gösta Alfvén from Sweden for fundamental work and discoveries in magneto-hydrodynamics with fruitful applications in different parts of plasma physics. The sensation this created was big. But it didn’t stop the planets from spinning, on and on, year by year. Years in which you would grow bigger, older, smarter, and, if you were lucky, sometimes wiser. Years in which you also lost some things. Possessions got misplaced. Memories faded. Friends parted ways. The best friends, you tried to hold on. This is what counts in life, isn’t it?
The 1970s were indeed a special decade. Women’s liberation continued. The hippie culture faded. There was an opposition to the Vietnam war, and nuclear weapons. The environmentalist movement began. Tom Wolfe coined the decade the “Me decade” due to a new self-awareness. Mao Zedong died and the market began to liberate in China. There was an oil crisis. After the first oil shock, gasoline was rationed in many countries. In Eastern Europe, Soviet-style command economies begin showing signs of stagnation. The Summer Olympics in Munich, Germany, witness the kidnapping and murder of Israeli athletes by Palestinian Arab terrorists. The Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan. The Who, Pink Floyd, The Eagles, Bee Gees, Abba and others play their music. Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison all die at the age of 27. The space mission Apollo 13 nearly ends in disaster. Egypt signed the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty. There was a revolution in Iran. The world sees its first general microprocessor. The C programming language makes its debut. Consumer video games show up on the scene. Microwave ovens become commercially available. Margaret Thatcher was victorious in the UK elections.
Do you know what was on the cover of Life that year?
Do you remember the movie that was all the rage when you were 15? Rocky IV. Do you still remember the songs playing on the radio when you were 15? Maybe it was Everybody Wants to Rule the World by Tears for Fears. Were you in love? Who were you in love with, do you remember?
In 1970, 15 years earlier, a long time ago, the year when you were born, the song I’ll Be There by The Jackson 5 topped the US charts. Do you know the lyrics? Do you know the tune? Sing along.
You and I must make a pact, we must bring salvation back
Where there is love, I’ll be there
I’ll reach out my hand to you, I’ll have faith in all you do
Just call my name and I’ll be there
There’s a kid outside, shouting, playing. It doesn’t care about time. It doesn’t know about time. It shouts and it plays and thinks time is forever. You were once that kid.
When you were 9, the movie The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh was playing. When you were 8, there was The Cat from Outer Space. When you were 7, there was a Disney movie out called The Rescuers. Does this ring a bell?
6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1… it’s 1970. There’s TV noise coming from the second floor. Someone turned up the volume way too high. The sun is burning from above. These were different times. The show playing on TV is Josie and the Pussycats. The sun goes down. Someone switches channels. There’s The Partridge Family on now. That’s the world you were born in.
Progress, year after year. Do you wonder where the world is heading towards? The technology available today would have blown your mind in 1970. Do you know what was invented in the year you were born? The Pocket Calculator. The Relational Database Management System. Cup Noodles.
It’s 2003 and where do you wanna be? In ’42 or 1970?
And maybe we should take a good lock around
I don’t get why the planet is so upset
And don’t do something you might regret
I’m telling you it’s starting to get in the way
That’s from the song Fun by Smash Mouth.
In 1970, a new character entered the world of comic books: Aquarius. Bang! Boom! But that’s just fiction, right? In the real world, in 1970, Beck was born. And Matt Damon. Uma Thurman, too. And you, of course. Everyone an individual. Everyone special. Everyone taking a different path through life.
The world is a different place.
What path have you taken?
Check out yours: http://whathappenedinmybirthyear.com/
I hope you had fun reading this awesome game(?). I feel like I was taken back to the year I was born through this trivia. I’ve learned so many interesting details, all part of history now.