Gary Burton

What The Retroist Means To Me By Gary Burton

(The Esteemed Gary Burton is our next writer to share his thoughts on what he loves about The Retroist site! – Vic)

I first stumbled upon the Retroist podcast in the fall of 2012. I had just started a new job that required driving 160 miles each day – five days a week. With limited radio reception available, I turned to my iPhone for entertainment and the Retroist Podcast was exactly what I was looking for.

My first episode was about the film “Crocodile Dundee,” and I quickly filled my phone’s free memory with all 120 shows that were available at the time.


Listening to the podcast made me feel like I was in someone’s living room and we were reminiscing about our lives in the 1970s and 80s. The episodes were complete with history, trivia, fun facts and personal experiences from the Retroist.

I soon began to get my family involved, starting with my son, William, who was 6 years old at the time. I would take him on many road trips and we listened to all the shows together. They always took longer than the posted listening time to complete because William kept wanting me to pause it. He would either ask a question about the podcast topic, or share in his own delight that he made a connection to his modern world by something mentioned in the show. He enjoyed hearing about how many of the topics related to my own memories as a child.

Ok, that last paragraph isn’t entirely true. We only made it through the first 10 minutes of the Gremlins episode. To this day, William has never seen the movie, but knows enough from a snippet of the Retroist podcast that this is a film he wants NOTHING to do with!

I tried to think of my favorite episode, but I couldn’t pick between two.

First, I loved the Jetsons episode from 2011. The interview with Janet Waldo was a special treat and the unscripted feel was a delightful change from the show’s regular format. The episode is even more wonderful because Ms. Waldo didn’t do many interviews during her last days – and passed away just a few months ago.

My second-favorite episode comes from #188 on June 13, 2015. Why? Thanks to social media, I felt like I was a part of the show in an unusual way.

Just a week earlier, I had posted to Facebook that I was watching The Black Hole with my kids. It was their first time, and they commented that the special effects were “interesting.”
I befriended the Retroist in 2012 on Facebook and it was neat to see his postings in between the show releases. I even had the chance the chat back and forth with him during a late-night delivery while I was on the New Jersey Turnpike. We had some great laughs while I rode through his childhood stomping grounds. The Retroist was the first of my Facebook friends to “like” my post, and that alone made me smile thinking that he noticed it.

My smile grew even wider when the Black Hole episode appeared shortly afterward.

I asked him if it was a cosmic coincidence between the couch time with my kiddos and the podcast, and he politely referred me to his rights under the Fifth Amendment.
The Retroist has also led me to scores of new friends – both online and in person.


I knew of the Arkadia Retrocade opening in Northwest Arkansas a few years ago, but I was just an enthusiastic customer at the time. Then, I found Vic Sage’s ongoing series on the Retroist blog about the arcade and initially thought it was a franchise chain coming to my area. I had no idea that Sage lived only 18 miles away.
Gary Burton - Vic Sage

Thanks to the Retroist blog, I’ve also become friends with Earl Green, Rob O’Hara, Robe Flax, and many, many others who enjoy reminiscing about our childhood.
We would not be the tight group of friends we are today without the Retroist – someone I’m proud to say answers my crazy emails when I shoot them his way.
I raise my glass to you and hope you have a great 2017…!

[Via] Bionic Disco

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