Unforgettable

Politics has dominated the mainstream media and the social media in 2012 and we bloggers have responded with some great media of our own.  I’m enjoying the quality discourse this has provided.

But for today, to entertain those who might want to briefly drift their focus away from the mental whirlpool of politics, like Wixxy’s latest topic, I present something with a difference.  My regular Sunday Abbott bashing frenzy can wait another week.  He’ll still be there in a week’s time providing us with something to mock.  One of his uncontrolled thought bubbles will float to the surface over the next few days and his motor mouth will do the rest and bingo, another blog topic will be born.

Until then, feel free to partake in Unforgettable.

Unforgettable is about those events throughout your life that you will never, unsurprisingly, forget. Those events whose details have stuck in your mind. You remember what you were doing when news of them came through.  They may have shocked you. Or saddened you. Or thrilled you. They might have changed your life. They, not necessarily, may have directly involved you or they may have been totally unrelated to you.

It might have been the moment you met your future husband or wife, your first day at school, or maybe world breaking events such as the terrorist attacks on 9/11 or the death of Princess Diana. You tell us.

Four events stick in my mind and I can still recall the emotions I felt and what I was doing at the time.  Here they are:

  1. The assassination of President Kennedy.  I was in a class at school when a teacher came in sobbing with the news.  Even at my young age I knew of the appeal of JFK and that he was a good man.  Apparently being President of the USA was a big thing.
  2. The Beatles in Adelaide.  Sadly, I missed it as I was living on Kangaroo Island.  The islanders were excited that the Fab Four would be coming to the island to do some fishing, which turned out to be another media beat-up.  It was the first beat-up I ever experienced and wondered if the media really behaved like that.
  3. The sacking of the Whitlam Government.  I was angry and bought a bottle of Jim Beam to drown my sorrows.  It changed nothing, but I acquired a taste for Jim Beam.
  4. The assassination of John Lennon. I was on an army exercise at the time.  I felt so sick, I couldn’t eat.  It was shattering for someone who idolised him, and there were millions like me.  His death killed everyone’s dream that the Beatles might perform together again.
The John F. Kennedy Assassination

The John F. Kennedy Assassination (Photo credit: Jesse757)

70 comments on “Unforgettable

  1. The thing which I remember about the assassination of John Lennon is that it felt as if peace had no chance.

  2. Does anyone not noticed that it is mainly the good that are assassinated or come to early, often violent deaths.

    What is it about people doing good that seems to get up people’s noses.

  3. I also remember President’s Kennedy brother’s assassination just as clearly.

  4. Me too, Cu. On the school bus someone asked if I’d heard that Kennedy had been assassinated. I said yes, but that was years ago, He said no, it’s another one.

  5. One I forgot was the first moon landing. We were given the day off school to go watch on the telly. So there I sat, watching a screen where nothing happened for two hours . . . then the door open on the module . . . and out emerged a little foot that was to leave a big footprint.

  6. Miglo, I was not thinking that way, but you could be onto something there.

    What sadden me this week, was that school excursion bus accident where the mother threw her bay to safety, when she was run over, by the bus, with her eleven year old inside.

    The description of some, of that eleven year old nursing her screaming baby sibling, while looking at her motionless body under that bus.

    We think we have it hard.

    That is one family that will not be worrying too much about whether the PM should go or not.

  7. Cu, you’re right..rarely are the tyrants assassinated. Perhaps knowing the evil which they do, they do much to protect themselves, whereas those whose hearts are good have faith and belief in their principles and so do little to protect themselves.

  8. We have that little boy walking behind that gun carriage and saluting his father. We have nearly all that family now dead, including that little boy, who also came to a early violent death.

  9. On the moon landing, I was teaching at Burnley Primary School where there were 2 very small black and white television sets. The senior school crowded into the library while the junior school crowded into the Grade 3/4 classroom.

    The thing that I sat in awe of was the slow motion of it all, that step and the small cloud of lunar dust.

    Hey Migs, you weren’t one of my pupils were you. ;)

  10. Yes Miglo I too remember the death of John Kennedy, who represented a new era and a new generation. At the time I heard the news I was on a first date with the most beautiful girl in the world, so the small talk was considerably dampened (but fortunately she later agreed to marry me). Some 5 years earlier the death of Buddy Holly was also a significant point to remember as he epitomised that era of gay and uplifting music. But two great events were the moonlanding which made the universe so very much smaller, and humans even more smaller and insignificant in the grand scheme of things, and then the fall of the Soviet Republic and the freeing of millions of people in Eastern Europe and an end to the terror of nuclear war.
    Yeah, nostalgia is still what it used to be………….. roll on the future.

  11. Oh for me, definitely the moon landing. I recall it very clearly, we were all marched from class to the assembly hall where it was shown on an old black and white tv. I couldn’t see it, being far back with my class, but remember the excitement. Of course it was on the news and so on for days afterwards.

    My family and I were glued to the telly for royal wedding and later I sat for hours watching the events surrounding Princess Diana’s death and later the funeral … I couldn’t even tell you why really except it seemed so ‘big’. Looking back it seems relatively unimportant but hat’s popular hysteria for ya, I guess!

    John Lennon’s murder didn’t make much of a ripple in myworld, I missed Beatlemania by some years and it seemed like a foreign world to me.

    Yes to 9/11, no chance of anyone mising that. But in fact it became quite personal. My partner was woken by sounds in the street. She lived then ina predominantly muslim area of Guildford (Sydney) and there were people congregating in the street, shocked and crying. I wonder if they were fearful or just sad? I don’t know. We watched it all night and the next day on tv. I doubt we realised how much it would change the world we knew.

    Lots of other stuff, but must dash now :-) Lovely topic!

  12. Hey Migs, you weren’t one of my pupils were you.

    Nah, I was far too young. :mrgreen:

    That deserves another one before I duck . . . :mrgreen:

  13. A few closer to home events were Cyclone Tracey and that horrible train crash in Sydney a couple of years later.

    I also recall what I was doing when Holt disappeared and when the Beaumont children were abducted.

  14. Jarl, I would agree..also when the Berlin Wall came down. I seem to remember that no one was prepared for this, that it all happened very suddenly.

    Another one I remember is the Queen’s visit in ’54. I remember thinking that she looked like my mother, but then in those days everyone’s mother looked like the Queen, same hairdo, same hat, same gloves.

  15. Migs and

    That deserves another one before I duck . . . :mrgreen:

    What was that you were saying Mr. M. ???

  16. I remember when Holt disappeared, we were on hols in Geelong and went and watched the search from the look-out, overlooking the beach, after the news broke……
    the moon landing; went to the Rainbow fish’nchip shop and got a pizza-burger and chips and sat and watched in awe.
    11/9 (9/11) was watching news when newsflash of 1st plane hit and was watching live when 2nd plane hit, stayed up til 4am waiting to here about 4th plane, couldnt believe what I was witnessing….
    Migs wins blog comp; not sure what I’ll be doing that day :)

    What were you doing when the super moon happened
    http://www.news-press.com/article/20120505/NEWS01/305050014/1075/Marlins-ballpark-80-percent-complete/Supermoon-2012-Close-approach-Earth-makes-moon-look-larger-than-ever?odyssey=nav%7Chead

  17. What was I doing when this music was playing..getting very drunk on portagaffs at a little pub in Malvern..or maybe at the A-Bom at Mt Buller..but probably both.

  18. How etched in my memory is Port Adelaide’s first game against the Adelaide Crows. How quickly the last match has become blurred.

  19. Reminds me of a one night stand in the 70′s, he was a football player a full forward for North Adelaide. He was impressive.

  20. I think most women I had a one night stand with would have wiped it out of their might very quickly. Counseling might have helped.

  21. Of course it was in glorious black and white.

    I think Australia’s contribution was the Parkes radio telescope aka ‘the dish’.

  22. Do you remember when colour TV came in?

    There was a good unit in the local electrical store that sold for a massive $200. I saved my $200 (which took an eternity) and went along to the store, heart pounding with excitement.

    It had gone up to $210.

    A couple of weeks later I had the $210 and upon going to the store I was disappointed to see it was now $215. In those days the extra five bucks wasn’t easy to find.

    But I found it and finally purchased the TV a week later.

    Setting up a TV back then wasn’t easy. They took an eternity to tune but I finally did it!

    So what was on TV that night? A fkn black and white movie. :(

  23. Interesting topic Migs….

    One of the curious things about the human brain is that it allows us to “re-live” pleasurable memories with a sense of comfortable and enjoyable reflection such as the first kiss, a first love or an amazing dessert, yet the same brain allows us to recall memories of incredibly painful experiences without having to relive the incredible pain that we endured at the time of the event. For example, reflecting upon the loss of a loved one, a relationship breakdown or other trauma.

  24. Take grief for example, it’s pretty much impossible to recreate the emotional feelings of grief, yet it is a bit easier to reflect on memories that are happier. In fact reflecting upon memories of grief almost brings up a sense of pleasurable reflection and contemplation rather than re-experiencing the very difficult emotions associated with the traumatic event…

  25. The brain is an interesting thing. It can be selective, choosing to enhance the positive while choosing to deny the negative. But it is still all about choices. For example when my father died I have almost all positive memories during his time at the hospice.

    I think that was in spite of the incredible pain that Dad was enduring, that he himself chose to give us these positive things. My Dad chose to wink at my Mum’s legs and said, Great pins. My Dad chose to sit back with that cheeky look on his face when Erin sang for him. My Dad chose to try to make us all feel as loved and wanted as he possibly could.

  26. Could that be because grief is a self-indulgent catharsis and not an inflicted pain by another.?.

  27. We all have our own way of dealing with grief. Take funerals, for example. I tend to rejoice in a celebration of the departed’s life, rather than mourn like all the others. I mean I don’t sit there with a big smile on my face or split my sides laughing, but I like to reflect on the moments I shared with the departed person and be honoured that they came into my life.

    Then I drink myself into a stupor, thus warding off any impending grief.

  28. “The brain is an interesting thing. It can be selective, choosing to enhance the positive while choosing to deny the negative. But it is still all about choices.”

    I disagree. It’s not about choices at all. The brain acts the way it does regardless of how we feel. It’s completely beyond our control.

  29. “The brain is an interesting thing. It can be selective, choosing to enhance the positive while choosing to deny the negative. But it is still all about choices.”

    I disagree. It’s not about choices at all. The brain acts the way it does regardless of how we feel. It’s completely beyond our control.

    I’m in the middle. New research into brain functions with stroke victims is starting the show that the brain can actually be trained. Interesting concept, given that the thinking about it comes from the brain in the first place.

    It’s difficult to comprehend.

    Certainly beyond my brain capacity.

  30. Reb, and I’ll have to disagree with you. It’s a matter of choice. One can choose to dwell on the negative and to belittle the positive. Agreed, sometimes it can be a battle, and at times overwhelming.

    It depends upon how one chooses to interpret the data, the input into the brain. For example, one can rejoice in music or one can shove it aside as being inconsequential. That’s where the freedom to choose enters the equation, exactly as Migs says.

  31. Reb, you could be both right and wrong.

    The negative thoughts that arise, I believe are not by choice. The choice we have is how we deal with the negatives.

    Sometimes, if the negatives take over out life, we might need assistance to work through them.

    Yes, the mind is a wonderful and complicated thing.

    The reality is that nothing is set in concrete. Nothing is not open to change.

    We are lucky that this maybe true, If not, we would never be able to change our mind or forgive.

    We would be controlled by what happens to us and our emotions.

  32. Unforgettable moments:

    - Seeing my Mum in hospital, about age eight…bruised, black eye…a stepfather’s way of controlling her.

    - assassination of both Kennedys

    - first men on the moon…wow!

    - S and I at Peel Island…dolphins came close.

    - our wedding at Bromelton House in 1993…gardens were beaut, gorgeous day, great company… S looked magnificent…I felt very very lucky.

    - taking LSD in Vienna…age 20…hallucinating shifts thru time to various places…slowing and speeding up sound & motion…finding the end of the universe.

    - finding a dead cat with only one eye under our hostel in Adelaide age six…had nightmares for ages

    - Mogwai in concert…Sonic Youth live…Boston live…Swervedriver live…
    all soared

    - Haunted Mansion at Disney World…freaked me out at age ten:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haunted_Mansion

    - Spending time with a mate at Lake Louise in Canada on cross country trip in 1979

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lake_Louise_(Alberta)

    - first colour tv at my uncles in early 70s…too green so cricketers looked like aliens

    - sitting on beach in Bombay feeling the Monsoon winds and change come as sun went down…off my skull on Tequila.

    - first time I saw S…perched on a log…Nov 30th 1990

    - hearing about the death of Keith Moon whilst standing in Sam the Record Man, Toronto, buying The Who and Led Zep albums. Was devestated being a big Who fan.

    - standing on Brighton beach, UK having drank 6 pints of lager, loving the brisk wind…listening to Quadrophenia by The Who on Walkman…

    - Nixon resignation

  33. Cross country skiing at Mt Buller, driving up there in my Ford Anglia and sleeping in it with a loaf of bread, a slab of cheese and a bottle of red because of having only enough money to afford the ski lift tickets. The wonderful eerie silence of the high country.

  34. The discovery of a planet outside our own solar system was thrilling. Over a thousand have now been added. The search for life continues.

  35. Well ‘officially’ the search for life continues but it’s only a token effort. Everybody knows it exists.

  36. Although i do remember the other events…9/11 is what will stay with me forever. Being from the Boston area, there were a few people I knew in the tragedy. As a teacher of the private school I own, I decided to stay open when every other place closed. I needed to create a place for the teens of my school to go because I knew they were the ones who would require the most reassurance…and were the ones to least ask for it…It was a good decision.

  37. I was nine and half and starting to be able to make sense of newspapers when I read about the entry into Belsen concentration camp in April, 1945. They called it liberation. To my child’s mind it was not that. I have a clear recollection of sitting at our worn kitchen table crying as I looked at the obscene pictures on the front and inside pages of The Daily Mirror. I can still see those emaciated figures in their black and white striped garb, some staring up at the photographer, barely alive amongst piles of dead.

    The war in Europe ended within a week or so on May 7th. I was caught up in all the VE Day celebrations of street parties and victory parades in June. The Pacific war ended in August just two months later. VJ Day parties followed. Somehow less exuberant, as I now dimly remember.

    Was it because that war ended only after the dropping of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan? The photographs from there though bleak and stark seemed almost clinically clean after the horrors of Belsen and the scores of other concentration camps which were opened up and exposed at that time. I learned that millions were killed in a flash in Japan, while millions had suffered inhuman degradation and starvation in those camps in Europe. Even in my child’s mind there was no difference between the ‘us’ and ‘them’ doing the killing.

    But the grown ups around me talked about the holocaust in Europe as somehow much worse and different from the dropping of those A bombs in Japan which wiped out millions too. I learned to somehow accept that the dropping of the atomic bombs had been justified as a quick and merciful way to end many more years of even more horrors like those we’d seen in Europe.

    Then November 11th Poppy Day, my birthday, already Remembrance Day for for the dead of World War I, was declared Armistice Day to mark the sacrifice of those who died in World War II. I watched the ceremonies on newsreels at the pictures. There was much talk of this being the war to end all wars.

    So then I was ten. Many mighty events have occurred in the world since then, but none have influenced me with anything like the impact of the things I read about and saw pictures of during those few months of 1945.

  38. Hello Debra. Thank you for visiting the Cafe.

    I guess we folk on the other side of the world will never truly know the emotional impact 9/11 had on the American people. Mind you, we were all shocked and horrified, and shared what grief we could.

    The American people’s spirit of coming together was inspiring.

  39. I was living in Canberra when Howard was booted out after the 2007 election. I’ll never forget the jubilation that engulfed the city. People were relieved to see him gone. After 12 years he was a hated man.

  40. Min, CU,

    I think you are confusing the mind with the brain. They are two separate yet related things.

    If you break your legs in a car accident (heaven fobrid), then your brain is going to tell you that you’re in pain regardless of what your conscious mind thinks. This is a function of the brain that we don’t have any control over.

    If however you later think lying in hospital that you’ll never walk again, or on the other think that you will make every best effort to walk again, then this is a conscious choice of the mind, which we do have control over…

    See the difference?

  41. ‘After 12 years he was a hated man.’

    What do you expect, it was a good innings, Rudd got booted much quicker and the parliamentary public servants were cheering from the rooftops.

  42. Reb, you make a valid point. The hardware and the software are two distinct entities, for want of a better word or a better analogy.

  43. Reb, you could be onto something, but do not forget the unconscious mind. That is the one that can cause us trouble when it comes to feelings and emotions. It is sneaky thing or whatever one calls it.

    Some people claim that you can use the mind to control pain. I wonder at that. Would one say we have been talking more about emotions and feelings. They would definitely be in the mind, I believe.

    When talking about pain, that is more a physical feeling. That would be the brain taking control.

    Fear and terror does also a very physical occurrence, but we do know that acts of bravery, indicate that we can control the emotions,.

    Reb, I am just rambling on. One thing that is amazing, is the Siamese twin born with one body and two heads. They are separate people but how does it work.

    They do not shared heads, but they also do not share minds. They have separate emotions.

    In Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalytic theory of personality, the conscious mind consists of everything inside of our awareness. This is the aspect of our mental processing that we can think and talk about in a rational way.

    The conscious mind includes such things as the sensations, perceptions, memories, feeling and fantasies inside of our current awareness. Closely allied with the conscious mind is the preconscious, which includes the things that we are not thinking of at the moment but which we can easily draw into conscious awareness.

    Things that the conscious mind wants to keep hidden from awareness are repressed into the unconscious mind. While we are unaware of these feelings, thoughts, urges and emotions, Freud believed that the unconscious mind could still have an influence on our behavior.

    http://psychology.about.com/od/cindex/g/def_conscious.htm

  44. Reb and..

    Min, CU,

    I think you are confusing the mind with the brain. They are two separate yet related things.

    Reb, it’s far more complicated than that. Throw in the unknown factor, the third eye. One day I’ll tell you.

  45. Min, agree. was trying to say that, but it was a clumsy effort. We are clear about what the brain is. The mind is not so easy.

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