Having read reviews from blogville and the papers, it dawned on me that much of the buzz generated by Transformers: The Movie particularly harbored on nostalgia. It seemed that most of those who trooped to the movie houses were there to relive their childhood. Everyone seemed to have been, at one time, mesmerized by the action-packed TV series or have played with at least one of the versatile toy versions.
I guess I felt a bit sorry that I can’t relate to their travel down memory lane.
For while I am indeed a child of the 80’s (?), my childhood memories are worlds apart from those of the people I commune with now.
Transformers and all other kidhood TV icons are admittedly greek to me. I was raised in a place where even a battery-powered television set is non-existent. I remember someone tried installing one by his veranda (hoping that the open space would be more conducive to receiving the signal) and its first run became a community activity, much like the inauguration of one grand project. Only that what came out on screen were nothing but dots and we all went home with stiff necks.
Thus, I really never had the chance to get acquainted with Flordeluna or Annaliza. We were introduced to the Sesame Street characters only through notebook covers. We thought Thundercats were pets.
Just imagine how boring I could get if discussions saunter into this territory.
But dare ask me about Magnon, Sisang Tabak, Tagani or Anton Diamante and I’d engage you in endless chatter. Who the hell are these people, you’d ask. They’re radio drama bidas who cultivated in us the same level of fanaticism as Chiz Escudero had for Voltes Five. They were the heroes of our rustic childhood, the idols that would make us dash for home from class.
Toys? I can’t remember of any that evoked a love affair similar to what city boys have had with Japanese robots. Our sources of joy were way simpler: a milk can cover attached to a bamboo stick already becomes a toy roller, a carved tsinelas with coconut leaf becomes an instant sailboat, and tingting with bond paper flies like any kite.
Not being able to declare my own robot story sometimes makes feel like belonging to an age eons apart from my peers. But in times of contemplation, I get convinced that there really is no reason to feel deprived because we did enjoy our rural upbringing. And given a choice, I would still recommend that today’s kids be exposed to the simple life, a life different from what the modern complicated world offers. I swear it will nurture a more austere and down-to-earth outlook, a deeper appreciation of the less expensive, more natural, less fussy side of life.