Keeping Old Memories Alive, Rich Paschall
Let’s face it, there are a lot of annoying things about social media. Even worse than the fake news and memes being spread, making us dumber by the day, is the proliferation of new games, rituals, groups, pages, chats, instasomethings, broadcast thyself and say nothing.
YouTube channels (I have 2), Instagram (rjppix), Twitter (@rjpaschall), Pinterest (@rjptalk), Google Hangouts, Snapchat, TikTok, Twitch, and What’s App, are among the ever-growing list. You can write it, sing it, chat it, pin it, post it, paste it, repost and reblog it. The glut of personal pages and activities is beyond gluttonous.
Among the millions of pages and posts lies some golden moments if only you can find them. Sometimes it is like finding a needle in a haystack, but sometimes a needle is found. Perhaps you put the golden needle there yourself, hoping others will find it. If you look hard enough, you may find more gold too.
I have used Facebook, WordPress, and YouTube to uncover new (or not so new) and interesting talent. It has replaced some of my television viewings, although I have encountered more crap online than could ever make it through to broadcast television.
If you have been following along on Sundays, you will notice that I have pointed out some of the promising young talents online. There are some young people doing good as I pointed out when I asked if it was A Screwed Up World? We featured Steve Grand in All-American Boy, David Archuleta in Postcards In The Sky and Winter in the Air, and my other YouTube favorites in Singers on Demand. Series from other parts of the world were found on YouTube and discussed in “Not Me.” So you can tell I am not completely down on the social media world.
One practice that has grown up on several social sites did not interest me at first. In fact, I thought it a rather self-indulgent way of posting your old photos for people who really did not care on a medium that is so overburdened with posts few would notice anyway. This once-common activity is called Throwback Thursday. Have you taken part?
The idea behind Throwback Thursday is that you post an old photo, video, or article from the past, and tag it with #tbt. Thus you will have made some sort of contribution to remembering something important or historical. It’s an interesting idea that has, of course, produced a lot of junk. Seriously, I do not need to see your video of you and your precious cat from 2003. It may bring tears to your eyes, but that doesn’t make it a historic document.
After this practice had gone by for a few years, I began to see the worth hidden in the hashtag TBT. Items of merit were coming to light of social, historical, and even personal value. Now I gladly participate from time to time.
My personal photos of my charming self at a young age may be of no value in the social media world, but I have many friends and relatives on Facebook. I don’t see them often, so they may be of interest to those who knew me at nine.
Some old memories are shared through weekly #tbt postings. I’ve been amazed by the relics some folks have uncovered. Perhaps you’ve been lucky enough to see old photos and videos that bring a smile to your face.
A few years ago I started a Facebook group for former students of Mrs. Laurette Kittler. She is a retired high school drama teacher whose instruction and guidance touched the lives of generations of students. I was proud to include myself in those who could celebrate this teacher’s work. I thought maybe, over time, I would find 100 students.
The group now has over 350 members, some of whom have posted pictures and brought smiles to former classmates. While many members of the group haven’t seen each other for decades, they’ve been putting up pictures others may have not seen since the ’60s, ’70s, or ’80s. Maybe they never saw them at all. Now there are thousands of pictures.
When the formation of this group led to a “dinner and drinks” outing, I casually mentioned that among the many pictures I have and have seen, I have no pictures from my Senior Class play, South Pacific. I could have purchased them from the high school at the time, but I let it pass. It was my big regret.
During the week that followed, pictures showed up on Facebook, including one of me in front and just left of center in a picture I do not think I ever saw before the posting.
Throwback Thursday has become a favorite activity. Sometimes I post a picture and then look for items from others that will remind me of my high school days, family, and youth. Nothing brings the past to life like seeing it. This is the value of #tbt.
My departed mother took a camera to many events in her life. In the ’70s and ’80s, there is no telling how many rolls of 110 and 126 film she went through. Some months after she was gone, I sent many hundreds of pictures to my brother. I have thousands remaining.
Nowadays, I have a use for these photographs, on #tbt.
Categories: Anecdote, Rich Paschall, social media
I always love old photos that can really take us back…
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I have a lot of them. I should dig out a few more.
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If only there was a way to send actual BOOKS. I have so many and they are GREAT books, too. And no one wants them or if they want them, they already have too many of their own. One of the reasons that I do post pictures is so at least they are out in the world. It’s also why I don’t worry about copyrights. I’m not going to live forever, so at least my completely uncopyrighted material will find places to live somewhere on the web. It’s better than dying on old hard drives at home and ending up in a dumpster. Which is where I fear much of my beloved stuff will ultimately land.
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I think too many old pictures and books end up in dumpsters when we die. I have been able to sell a lot of old music, but books and DVDs are of little interest to anyone else. I will re-watch certain movies, but books do not get read more than once because there are so many others I have not yet read.