One boomer’s memories of her 1960s TV Dream House

We are officially the Baby Boomer Generation but the fact is, we’re also the Television Generation. The first. Which is what we like about this little collection of memories from our friend Erin O’Brien of Redondo Beach, California, who still remembers her 1960s TV Dream House.

Oh that magical box. My parents bought our first color TV for the Moon Landing. Neil Armstrong. “One small step for man…”

“If only I could step inside the screen,” I used to think … but my dad always made us sit six feet away. Do you ever wonder nowadays, how dangerous was it?

The Brady Bunch

The Brady Bunch

Anyway, as a kid, I imagined how it would be, getting to actually step inside the screen as I watched my favorite shows on TV.

I pictured myself on I Dream of Jeannie’s purple velvet circular couch, with all of those pillows inside her genie bottle.

Erin O'Brien

Erin O’Brien

At school, my second grade teacher, who was a nun, would be able to soar in her habit, just like The Flying Nun.

After school I’d greet Alice the maid, as I strolled into The Brady Bunch’s kitchen with that cool orange Formica counter. Formica. What a miracle!

My parents would own the Bradys’ olive green station wagon with the wood paneling, but would have safely parked it in Batman and Robin’s Batcave… right next to My Mother the Car, which spoke, just like Mr. Ed the talking horse, in my imaginary barn.

Capt. Kirk of Star Trek

Capt. Kirk of Star Trek

At night, I could reach for Gidget’s princess phone on my nightstand, but I’d also have a rotary dial shoe phone like Maxwell’s on Get Smart, and one like Captain Kirk’s flip phone for when I was on the go, say, to Gilligan’s Island, for one of Ginger and Mary Ann’s famous milkshakes in a coconut shell. (I thought, wouldn’t that be a great idea: a flip phone?)

Even better, I’d have George Jetson’s TV phone. (Now that would be an even better invention, I decided.)

My neighbors, The Partridge Family, would be fun to visit because Keith was cute and Laurie was groovy, but I probably wouldn’t be allowed to play with Danny.

Adam 12

Adam 12

The town might not be Mayberry but I’d feel safe with Adam 12 Officer Pete Malloy and his partner Jim Reed on the beat.

Oh, if only my father would have let me step inside that screen!


  1. The day we got our first color tv.. changed my life! It was the greatest day of my life..(and yes, I told my wife.. our wedding day was second) That changed everything!
    It was a weekend, was raining.. and I watched my dad unpack our new Zenith Color TV in the garage. It was so magical when we first turned on the tv and watched “Bonanza”. Right there! Yes! .. that’s when I decided on a career in Television!
    Luckily, my wife understood.. and she works in TV too.

  2. Great topic! I often think about how we, as pioneers to TV, thought that’s how life was supposed to be… and then think about the generations that followed…

    Brings up a great question… Did TV predict the way our society would become or did it indeed “mold” it?

  3. Those lazy days sitting in front of the television and watching those shows bring back such joyful memories. Heck, even a lot of the commercials were worth watching. And the shows you mentioned and also Honey West, My Little Margie, Wild Bill Hickok, 77 Sunset Street, and the Wild Wild West. And to think I watched everyone of them in Black and White! Such memories! Thank you Erin.

  4. I was planning on marrying Mike Brady, because he was an architect, and I thought his house was really cool with that staircase and the stone and all. So I went and married an architect! Coincidence? I think not. Next I’m going to buy a Roomba vacuum cleaner and name her Alice…

    1. You have to wonder what Mike was thinking, as an architect, designing Jack and Jill bedrooms with one bathroom for six kids!

  5. Erin, it’s interesting to me how much TV we did manage to watch, considering that we were allegedly the generation that stayed out till it was dark and our mothers told us not to come home unless we were bleeding. Vacant lot baseball? Forts in the woods? Cowboys and Indians? It baffles me how I could have done all that and watched TV too, but apparently I did.
    AND, I have the same issue with the Brady house, he was an architect, he could have at least have given those kids their own bedrooms. But Nobody Asked Me.

  6. I used to twitch my nose trying to be Samantha. Although not a TV show, I also got hurt trying to fly pretending to be Mary Poppins.

    Do you remember choosing to watch your favorite show instead of playing and t hoping your friends would wait for you? I think the VCR was the greatest invention of the century.

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