A Little Television Narrative of My Mother and Aunty’s Childhood.

Any experience whether it old, new, exciting or scary, will always be different for each individual. The response that occurs whilst remembering each experience may reflect on your emotions and the way this experience has evolved. I decided to interview both my Aunty Jacqueline and mother Janine this week regarding the topic of interest – Television & their personal experience.

Let’s reset back to the late 70’s into the double-story ‘modern day’ home my Mum Janine, and Aunty Jacqueline lived in, alongside their brother Tony and parents Anthony and Yvonne. The Whitton’s, were lucky enough to grow up in a modern home (well… it was modern back then), in the small country town of Engadine.

“Dad earned a lot when he was younger, and mum was working as well, which was quite unusual back in that day. We probably had the best house of all of my friends houses, and then their friends houses on top of that.” Jacqueline explains.

Mum describes her family home as “huge” and “comfortable”. She then goes on to paint a visual image of her lounge room – just how she remembers it.  – “In the open loungeroom, we had a 3-seater lounge, a 2 seater lounge, and a coffee table in the middle. The dining room was open plan, off the side. We had a bookshelf chocker full of books behind the lounge.”

I ask my Aunty Jacqueline how she would explain the lounge room. “I remember the 3 seater lounge – it was green. And we had this floral-like picture on the wall. I also remember the first day we got the CORDLESS remote! We’d have to be the only ones with a cordless remote back then!” She chuckles, “Oh and we were DEFINTIELY one of the first families to get a colour TV!”-Janine joins in, “Yes that was a pretty exciting day!” The Whilst reflecting on this memory, Mum and Aunty Jaq brought a sense of engagement and excitement to our conversation. They were able to relate to their own thoughtful space and with each other.

The first cordless remote control
Images sourced from HERE

I ask them both if there were any specific television shows they remember watching. They both seem very deep in thought. Then Janine bursts out, “HEY HEY IT’S SATURDAY! This was our favourite!” I see her face light up and then Jacqueline catch on, whilst they start rambling on about this TV show. “Every Saturday morning, around 7am we would all crowd into the lounge room to watch it. It was such a good show!” Janine explains.

I ask if it was only them who watched the show. Jacqueline mentions, “Mum and Dad loved it too! It was almost like a family outing but in the lounge room. We didn’t get to see Dad much, so each Saturday it was something to look foreword to.”

It was interesting to interview both my Mum and my Aunty, and discuss what they remembered about the TV. And this idea of TV shows, forming a ‘family event’ once a week really caught my attention. As Paul Sims discusses in THIS article, the ‘TV’ since introduced, has brought a time where family can come together and enjoy each other’s company whilst encompassing the television experience. The way they spoke about “Hey Hey It’s Saturday” in terms of tone, body language and their facial expressions, pretty much said it all. It made me question if this memory, so vivid, was one they wished they could go back to. I didn’t ask out loud, due to personal reasons. But I could definitely sense an emotional and joyful reminiscence of their memory of this time.

The way both Janine and Jacqueline reflected their experience of television, as well as interacting with each other to completely remember, was quite delightful to observe. Not only was this an interesting exercise, it was pretty cool to learn about my family’s history and criticize this from a reflexive point of view. The illuminative descriptions given by Janine and Jacqueline outlined a clear example of what their home and television experience was like back in the 1970’s. I wonder what your parents experience was like? Feel free to leave me some comments if you can see any similarities.


References:

Hey Hey It’s Saturday. (2004). The Sullivans. [Online Video]. 3 February 1979. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bz6GLh-oiIM. [Accessed: 2 August 2017].

Sims, P, 2009. Families so busy the only time they spend together is TV time. The Daily Mail, [Online]. 1,1, 1. Available at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1169456/Families-busy-time-spend-watching-TV.html [Accessed 6 August 2017].

Zeneth, (2011), Space Command [ONLINE]. Available at: http://www.metv.com/stories/a-history-of-the-television-remote-control-as-told-through-its-advertising [Accessed 6 August 2017].

 

 

**All information in this blog post was given permission and consent to write about both from Janine and Jacqueline Whitton. 

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