Last summer has become the good old days

Mike Royko

February 26, 1991|By Mike Royko | Mike Royko,Tribune Media Services

HEY, DO YOU EVER get to feeling nostalgia for the good old days?" Slats Grobnik asked. "You know, when times were more simple and we didn't have to worry so much?"

Are you talking about the 1950s?

"No. I mean July 1990."

You feel nostalgia for last July? That was only seven months ago.

"Is that all? It seems a lot longer than that. Ah, those were the days. Sit around and talk about how Donald Trump is making everybody happy by going broke. Now I don't even remember his girlfriend's name, although I never forget a bod. What ever happened to The Donald?"

I don't know. Last I heard the banks put him on an allowance.

"And there was all that hype about those creepy rappers, what's their name -- 2 live shoes?"

2 Live Crew, I believe.

"Yeah. I couldn't understand what the big fuss was. I heard them once and I couldn't understand what they were saying. How can people get upset about some guys who sound like they talk with their mouths full of food? Are they still around?"

Who knows? Maybe their album will be sold on cable TV as this year's Golden Oldies hit.

"And that Hubble telescope, the one we sent to outer space to see what's doin' out there, but it had a bum lens. They probably had it made by the same guy who did my glasses."

A waste of a couple of billion dollars.

"Didn't matter. If that telescope spotted something living in outer space, they wouldn't be anybody I'd want to move into my neighborhood. And speaking of that, what ever happened to the gays? I can't remember the last time I saw any gays on TV being real upset about anything. They used to be there every night. I think that back in July, the good old days, they were all worked up because gays couldn't be in the Army."

I think they might have put that particular issue back in the closet for a while.

"You know what I really miss? Remember the S&L crisis?"

How could you miss that? At the time, you were outraged.

"That's because I didn't appreciate it."

What was there to appreciate about billions of dollars down the drain?

"Well, you got to admit that the guys who ran those S&Ls never shot off any Scud missiles."

That's true.

"And they never committed any naked aggression on their neighbors. Every one of them I saw was wearing nice clothes."

Of course, we don't know what they did at night. Naked, I mean.

"So what happened to the S&L crisis? Did it go away? Can we forget about it now?"

No, it will be back some day. But there's no need to worry, since our children and grandchildren will have to pick up the tab.

"Yeah, that's the nice thing about having kids. You got somebody to inherit the debts. That way the ingrates can't say you didn't leave them anything. And speaking of kids, what about Bush's son, the one in the S&L business. Back in the good old days he was big news too. Is he still in the S&L game?"

I doubt it. Maybe he has switched to oil.

"And what about Mayor Barry in Washington? Boy, that was something. The guy goofs up once and the FBI shows it on TV, and the hotel and motel industry probably loses millions in

quick-stop day revenue. In the good old days, he was big news. Now, I don't even know what happened to him."

Me either. Maybe he and The Donald have become homeless people together.

"Yeah, the homeless. They're even quieter than the gays. I can't remember the last time I turned on my TV and saw a family of 10 living in a compact car. And what about the war on drugs? Is it over? I don't even remember -- did we win, lose or get a draw?"

I don't know, but Wolf Blitzer hasn't mentioned it, so maybe there's a lull in the fighting.

"You know who I just remembered? George Steinbrenner."

Ah, yes, a name from the dim, distant past.

"Sure, in July, the good old days, more people hated him than Saddam Hussein, and Steinbrenner wasn't a naked aggressor, either. What happened to Steinbrenner? Did we hit him with a Patriot missile?"

Beats me. Maybe he's out there somewhere with Trump and Barry.

"Something else. The budget deficit. Yeah, I used to turn on TV on Sunday mornings, pour myself some coffee and watch all those Washington guys -- you ever notice how they all look like George Will? -- talking about the budget deficit. Then I'd switch to a channel that's got old Cisco Kid movies. So did they ever do anything about the deficit?"

I lost track. Maybe we will pass the hat at the U.N.

"Well, those sure were simple, innocent times. I wonder if we'll ever be like that again."

You never know. Maybe next month you'll be nostalgic for this month.

"I wouldn't bet against it."

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