For some reason, I remember watching lots of TV with my grandparents. I have no idea where my folks were at the time. Maybe they were watching something else upstairs? Maybe they were taking classes for their Masters? Maybe they were sitting on the couch, yet for some reason I can't visualize them.
What I do remember is the smell of Sanka, a nightly handful of Hydrox cookies and my eyes glued to a small fuzzy color TV in my grandparents' basement. I remember back then the news included typing sounds simulating a newsroom. I was always an anxious kid and the sound of the typewriter and fast-paced music made my heart beat faster. I was a weird kid. I found Tom & Jerry stressful.
I remember names like Water Cronkite and Dan Rather. I remember laughing at Howard Cosell's nasally whiny voice. I'd make a funny face and whine in my Long Island accent,"This is Howid Coe-sell speaking of sports..." I don't think my grandpa found it very funny -- he just wanted to hear the lowdown on yesterday's game. Grandpa's famous line back then was, "You know, children should be seen and not heard?!" Grandma would scold him every time he said it. I looked it up, it's an old proverb. My mom would pull that line on me too. Guess she got it from him. In their defense, I was a chatterbox. What can I say?
For some reason, I have these visions in my head like old faded Polaroids. I see myself watching The Jeffersons and All In The Family with my grandma and grandpa. I wish I could ask Grandma if she remembers, but I'm certain she'll just smile and say, "What show? Oh I can't remember that." Her memory has faded pretty badly. It breaks my heart that this past Thanksgiving, she didn't know what turkey was. Now if Grandpa were still alive, I bet he'd perk up in his favorite chair if I asked him about our TV watching. He'd probably say,"Yeah yeah, we always watched those shows. You have a good memory Allyson. A good memory."
Grandpa thought Three's Company was a filthy show, so we rarely watched that. I mean the premise of the show was that Jack was gay and living with two hot broads. Jack himself was hot by the way! Did anyone else think so? We did watch The Carol Burnett Show religiously. Oddly enough, I developed a strange crush on Tim Conway. Dude, I was five, he was like super old! Like really old, what was I thinking? I remember Grandma telling me that every time Carol tugged her ear, it was to relay a nonverbal "I love you" to a family member or something. I think today if I became a TV star, I'd tug my ear so my family would know that I love them.