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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The return of 3-D movies

A 1952 audience watching a 3-D film
If there is one thing you learn from getting older it is that there really isn’t anything new under the sun. Men’s suit lapels and neckties have gotten wider and narrower many times over the years. Skirt lengths always go up or down. Bell bottom pants have come and gone a few times as have a rotation between slicked back oily hair and the dry look.

Short hair has even been in style off and on. From 1957 to 1963, I had a flat top haircut. There was a guy in Amarillo, Texas who gave me the best flat top I ever had and he used plain old manual scissors to do the job. Today, it’s all electric clippers and some guys with great heads of hair have actually shaved their heads! The bald guys of the world can only roll their eyes at something so insane as destroying good hair.

There was a time when a stick shift car was about all you could get unless you wanted to pay extra for an automatic transmission. What a luxury! No more clutch to push in, just put the car in drive and push on the gas. In recent years the stick, or "conventional shift" as it was once known, has made a big comeback. See what I mean? If you have been around long enough, you know the cycles.

All right, now you have the buildup, so I am going to mention an item that was a failure when it came out in the early ‘50s and I predict it will be a passing oddity again. It’s 3-D movies. Avatar was a huge 3-D hit and it looks like Alice in Wonderland will be also. For us in the 50s it was the awful Bwana Devil with Robert Stack and House of Wax with Vincent Price. Once you saw a spear come at you in the audience or saw Price throw some hot oil into the crowd, that was about it. Within a year or so, we put away our special glasses and started looking forward to the next fad which I think was the hula hoop or the Whammo slingshot.

The word is already out that people are suffering headaches and nausea from the 3-D process. One eye doctor says that unless you have equally good vision in both eyes, you may experience those maladies. Who can say they have such miraculous eyesight?

Yes, while there is nothing new under the sun, the cycle keeps turning. I feel sorry for the tattoo lovers though. When that fad disappears, unfortunately the tattoo won’t. Keep that in mind when you think it would be a good idea to tattoo your current girlfriend’s or boyfriend’s name on your body.

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