I really enjoy browsing through video sharing websites, in particular Youtube and Vimeo, but for different reasons. Vimeo is the place to find something new, being a hangout for short film makers and other culturally switched on artists. There are some beautifully crafted videos there - this one was originally tweeted out to me by Christian Long.
But YouTube is the place for searching for content on a whim, sating that desire to dredge up an instant blast from the past. Kids today may be used to content on demand but they don't have forty plus years of old television and music memories to trade on. If I recall a childhood cartoon show in conversation with my sons, it is only a click and a search before I can show them who Top Cat was or to see if the Banana Splits really were that funny.
Earlier this year, I recalled a tune from my teenage years with a catchy chorus - The Members "Radio". I hadn't heard the song in years but a quick search located the video clip and I was back in the eighties at boarding school again.
Commercials, documentaries, movie trailers and other forms of broadcast flotsam can be accessed with just a few key words and a memory long enough to create a starting point. Find it, watch it and then check out the sidebar links for other memory jogs that send one back to another point in time. A time when you had to fast forward the cassette tape to get to your favourite song, a time when you had to wait four months before the Australian television station showed that new series from America and a time when Hanna Barbera was still a viable entertainment company.