Oct 24, 2016

5 Retro things I've always wanted

Congas and bongos

As a kid, I loved watching I Love Lucy reruns.  My favorite segments of the show were of Desi Arnaz performing in his nightclub The Tropicana. I was always enthralled with the skill and passion that Desi Arnaz oozed while singing and playing his percussion instruments.

I've never been an aspiring musician, but have always had the inkling to take up a musical instrument.  I've messed around with a few musical instruments in my time, but those from the percussion family have always been my favorites.  I did recently buy a modest pair of bongos, and really dig playing around with them.  Playing them feels so natural, and whenever I lay into them, beats come to mind out of nowhere.  Arranging them into rhythmic time with my hands, feels almost as easy as breathing.  I'm not entirely sure why I didn't get into trying my hand at them years ago, but better late than never.

A Ukelele

I'd love to own a ukulele, and learn how to play it.  To me, the ukuleles has always been an endearing instrument synonymous with Polynesian and tiki culture.  How cool would it be to pluck away at one of these at a tiki party, pool party, BBQ, camp fire, while relaxing on the beach, or lounging around in the backyard?  They're so small and compact, you could literally take them anywhere.  My daughter actually wanted one, so we got one for her as a gift.  She's taught herself how to play it, and can compose little ditty's very quickly.

A smoking jacket

Do I smoke?  No.  Am I an aspiring playboy?  Heck no.

I've just always thought smoking jackets were ultra swank!  As a young boy,  I used to see celebrities like Jackie Gleason, Sinatra, Dean Martin, Desi Arnaz, Sherman Hemsley aka George Jefferson, and Cary Grant donning flashy smoking jackets whilst relaxing and unwinding.

The purpose of the smoking jacket was quite simple.  A quality smoking jacket was/is an extremely comfortable garment, made for the express purpose of protecting underclothing from ashes and the smell of cigarette, cigar, or pipe smoke.  However, they also became widely accepted as a men's garment worn for domestic leisure.  Ah yes, I can imagine sitting back in my easy chair on a cold winter night in a soft silk smoking jacket, matching slippers, heck.. maybe even a fez.  No stogies or cigarette's.. just a good book and maybe a nice glass of cognac.  Now that's the good life!

Schwinn Phantom Bicycle
I've always loved the classic lines and styling of the 1950's Schwinn Phantom.  These bikes are extremely collectible now, and while I can't afford to buy a vintage model, I've found a happy medium that's quickly filling the void.  That would be in the form of my Schwinn Legacy Beach Cruiser. 

My bike features the same frame and similar styling to a classic Phantom, minus several bells and whistles.  I've spent the last couple of summers modifying and customizing the bike to my liking, and it brings me great joy to ride it.

A Pinky Ring
Go ahead and laugh.  Most people including my bride usually chuckle or roll their eyes when I tell them I'm in the market for one.  However.. that just makes me want to get one even worse!  Sinatra, Tony Soprano, heck... even Dr. Evil wore pinky rings.  How can they not be cool?  Actually, ever since I was a kid and saw my old man wearing a pinky ring he bought back in the 60's, I've wanted one.  His ring had a lion head with red ruby's for the eyes.  The fact that my mother didn't care for it, further added to the excitement of getting one.  As a kid I got several cheap steel rings from bubble gum machines that I donned as pinky rings.  I remember one featuring a gorilla face, the other the wolf-man, and of course being a child of the 70's, had a gaggle of mood rings.  It seemed like I was always cleaning a perpetual green stain from my finger that those cheap things would leave behind, but I loved them and wore every one until the broke or wore out.

That's it for now.  Trust me.. I've got a huge retro want list.  These were just the first five things that came to mind, so I may have to continue this topic at a later date.  Are there any retro items that you've always wanted, but just haven't got around to buying yet?

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