Going to the Talkies?

Black and white photo of movie piano“Going to the movies over the winter break?” is a common enough question this time of year, but the curious thing is that if we asked:

“Going to the talkies over the winter break?”

we’d sound like we were pretending to be from the 1920s, yet the term “movie” is even older, i.e., even more antiquated — yet it isn’t, of course.

The background history of the term talkiesSilly example, perhaps, but it’s worth mulling over how a sense of the antique is created today, through our own habits, for inasmuch as we still say “movies” there’s nothing outdated about this no less historical term, one referencing the onetime novel invention of moving pictures, back when a piano player in the theater provided musical accompaniment — sometime before the invention of the talkies that we so take for granted now that we’d never even imagine calling them that.

A gif of a silent movie

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