August 11th, 2019

Winter Sunlight

Little windows into the past

Another thing that's fun about reading older books is getting those little windows into the technology and adaptations of the past. You can always look it up, but the way it's handled in books written at the time gives you an idea of how casually (or not) people thought about it, and related to it.

This particular thing, I happened to notice because there was a discussion a little while back in Stranger Things fandom about whether 911 would've made it to rural Indiana by 1984. I don't remember how that ended up working out (I do know that the show Rescue 911, in the late 80s, was what popularized the existence of 911 as a thing; I remember that much from actually living through those years). But I now know from this book that in 1976, New York City not only had 911, but it was widespread and well known enough that most people knew what it was and how it worked, and the author also assumes the reader will know what it is without providing an explanation. And it was already free from pay phones.

(Okay, fine, I guess Block gets his own dedicated tag.)

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