This year has been something of a transition year – my redundancy, the passing of J’s Mum, 2 weddings, several 40th birthdays – including my own – and 2 births (well one is still actually pending but I figure a due date of January 17 means that the majority of ‘womb-time’ falls into this year). But one thing in particular has made this feel like even more of a watershed year…when I read this week that Don Lane had died.
At this point, you might be saying to yourself ‘who is this guy?’ (for those who don’t know, he hosted one of Australia’s late-night ‘chat’ shows, whilst I was a young’un) or ‘what about MJ and Farrah Fawcett?’. But here’s the thing. Don Lane was like this quintessential piece of my growing up years – not that I thought he was great or anything or even that the show was on all that much in the house I grew up in. But Don, his show and Bert ‘Moonface’ Newton as his sidekick, was just there in that patchwork of Australian late 70s-early 80s culture. Not really as an idol but more an icon of my youth – something I didn’t choose but perhaps chose me.
A bit like musk sticks from the tuckshop at lunchtime or the smell of Coppertone Sunscreen, the daffodil wallpaper in my childhood bedroom or the seed pods, shaped like tiny fried eggs, that descended from the tree in the back yard. Or even the annual ‘all-day-on-the-telly’ ‘Hardie Ferodo’ live from Mt Panorama.
So now I’m off to pick up some Halloween goodies for our imminent bevy of neighbourhood ‘trick or treaters’ and the disappearance of one of these icons, long forgotten until this week, has brought up such a wave of nostalgia around my childhood I’m now wondering how I can recapture some of ‘it’…
Do you think Sainsbury’s have got musk sticks?