Service of It Never Gets Old

August 17th, 2023

Categories: Actors, Antiques, Comic Characters, Documentaries

A young receptionist at the eye doctor’s office this week and I had a good laugh. I commented that the doctor had downgraded the pens with the medical group logo that patients are urged to take. She said he didn’t like the other ones because they “looked old-fashioned.” [Photo below.] I wondered, in a whisper, if he’d observed the average ages of his patients! I thought the faux blue glass of the original ones looked elegant and unusual for a giveaway. The all-plastic, while sleek, looked and felt ordinary.

I’m probably the wrong person to write this post because even in my 20s I loved antiques. The thought that someone over 300 years ago had placed his elbow on my 17th century tavern gateleg table was thrilling. Still is.

I am surprised at how popular vinyl records have become [while I count on YouTube and WMNR through my laptop for music]. Ben Sisario reported October 2021 in a New York Times article updated in June of this year that in the first half of the year there were $467 million sales in the U.S. –17 million records. In this period, according to the Recording Industry Association, wrote Sisario, revenue from CDs was $205 million. Nevertheless, streaming accounts for 84 percent of revenue.

Snoopy has been around since 1950 when Charles Schulz introduced us to him. He’s always been a favorite of mine and millions of others. Mr. Schulz has been gone for 23 years yet his Instagram handle, @snoopynoofficial, has 35,200 followers and generates 2,600 likes per post. In my apartment the Peanuts gang is on a monthly wall calendar as well as on a daily calendar. The characters never get old.

Three years ago, Audrey Hepburn was the subject of a documentary. Joanne Woodward is still with us but no longer acting. Nevertheless, Ethan Hawke directed a documentary about the professional lives of Woodward and her husband Paul Newman last year. And the Lady Gaga/Tony Bennett collaboration was a joy to watch.

The subhead of Margaret Roach’s New York Times article “Why Are People Still Pressing Flowers? It’s a Form of Storytelling” is “For 500 years, we’ve documented the science and beauty of the natural world by pressing plants. It’s a tradition that anyone can join.” The article ran yesterday.

In a society that worships all that’s new, have you noticed new lives for things and people long gone?

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7 Responses to “Service of It Never Gets Old”

  1. Deb Wright Said:

    I agree with you and your doctor’s receptionist! I also love antiques and when I watch PBS’s The Antique Roadshow, I am intrigued by furniture and artifacts from the 1700 and 1800 hundreds. To me, it is history. I like to learn stories of past products, chocolate factories that no longer exist in Chicago, but you can still smell chocolate in the air. I still write checks which makes me a dinosaur!

  2. Jeanne Byington Said:

    Deb,

    I too write checks.

    I love the handsome architectural details on old buildings. It’s remarkable how sturdy older furniture can be. My chairs and tables tend to be simple—Victorian style is over the top for me. I like the juxtaposition of contemporary style lamps or pictures with antiques.

  3. Lucrezia Said:

    The good Mr. Dentist may be so involved in his profession that he may have failed to notice how much an Albrecht Durer work, let alone any of his gifted contemporaries may set him back. He would probably have to schedule a solid trimester of root canals to crawl out of debt. Old fashioned, indeed!

  4. Eileen Dover Said:

    I like the ‘new’ sleeker style pens! They are light weight, easy to use and throw in my bag. Really love when there’s a brand name on a pen like your ophthalmologist’s merchandising…then, it becomes a souvenir too! I enjoyed the craze when the “all in one pen” were popular. They had a stylus, a flashlight, a nice writing pen, and sometimes even a screwdriver…iconic gizmo!

  5. Anonymous Said:

    Eileen,

    The old-fashioned style pen also has the Ocli logo on it. I am about to write a second note using it. I used the sleeker one for the first. It was OK. But the vintage style one, like the ones Chase hands out, has a rubber top that makes it easier to grip and therefore to use.

    I also like the translucent blue of the old style. The navy and white, while neat and clean looking, is slightly blah.

  6. Dawn Gour Said:

    Jeanne,
    While growing up with my grandparents, I loved oil lamps, lace table linen, old record players, transistors, and handpainted oil paintings. Most of those beautiful things were given away to anyone who wanted them because nobody knew the value of them, or knew how to repair them or they were attracted to all things modern.
    For years, I loved browsing through flea markets or antique stores so that I could find things that were reminiscent of my childhood. I couldn’t help but notice the price tags that some of the oil lamps were being sold for, none of them were as ornate as my grandmother’s.
    Oh, how I wish I could go back in time and save all of my grandmother’s black & white photos, hand-embroidered cushion covers, or table napkins. They brought me so much delight.

  7. Jeanne Byington Said:

    Dawn,

    There may be any number of reasons you can no longer touch the beautiful things your enjoyed at your grandmother’s home, but you will always have them in your memory and heart. Nobody can take them from you.

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