Thursday, April 27, 2023

That sinking feeling is dated

 The topic of quicksand came up in the office the other day.

Apparently somebody read that kids who grew up in the 60s and 70s had more of a fear of quicksand than anyone else. Theories were given.

Mine was Gilligan's Island.

Seems every other episode had one of the castaways sinking in quicksand. Remember them looking for Gilligan, only to find his white hat on top of the murk? It's etched on my brain.

Quicksand was a very popular plot twist in TV shows and movies in the '60s and '70s. This plot line was delivered in what seemed like anywhere for a spring of excitement and suspense in our programming. They were so common in the movies and TV than quicksand actually was in real life. Even series like Gilligan's Island, Batman, Lost In Space and The Incredible Hulk, had moments of quicksand in them. According to one quicksand enthusiast, quicksand appeared in nearly 3% of all movies made in the '60s.

There was also an abundance of sand boxes when we were growing up, that made it feel as though quicksand could happen everywhere. Now sandboxes seem to be a thing of the past and therefore children nowadays don't see it as much of a threat.

Someone else in the office cited some Atari game that had quicksand in it, but I'm sticking with the far more popular and long-running Gilligan.

I also heard a comedian say recently: When I was younger I really thought quicksand was going to be a bigger problem for me as an adult than it turned out to be.

Slate has a fascinating (and long) story about quicksand that will tell you more than you'd ever want to know about the subject: "The Rise and Fall of Quicksand"

1 comment:

  1. I once stepped into Quicksand while crossing a creek hunting. Went in up to my waist with no bottom in sight. I remembered (from where, I don't know, probably a western movies) that I was supposed to swim my way out. I laid down, spread my arm and with a two or three strokes found more solid ground and lifted my way out, wet and covered in fine sand. . I was alone at the time hunting grouse and it was a long, cold walk to the pick up.