‘Someone asked the other day, ‘What was your favorite fast food when you were growing up?’
‘We didn’t have fast food when I was growing up,’ I informed him.
‘C’mon, seriously. Where did you eat?’
‘It was a place called Home,” I explained! ‘Mom cooked every day and when Dad got home from work, we sat down together at the dining room table, and if I didn’t like what she put on my plate I was allowed to sit there until I did like it.’
By this time, the kid was laughing so hard I was afraid he was going to suffer serious internal damage, so I didn’t tell him the part about how I had to have permission to leave the table.
But here are some other things I would have told him about my childhood if I figured his system could have handled it :
Some parents NEVER owned their own house, never wore Levis, never set foot on a golf course, never traveled out of the country or had a credit card.
In their later years they had something called a revolving charge card. Their card was good only a Sears & Roebuck. Either way, there is no Roebuck anymore. Maybe he died.
My parents never drove me to soccer practice. This was mostly because we never had heard of soccer. I had a bicycle that weighed probably 50 pounds, and only had one speed, (slow).
We didn’t have a television in our house until I was 9. It was, of course, black and white, and the station went off the air at midnight, after playing the national anthem and a poem about God; it came back on the air at about 6 a.m. And there was usually a locally produced news and farm show on, featuring local people.
I never had a telephone in my room. The only phone in the house was in the living room and it was on a party line. Before you could dial, you had to listen and make sure some people you didn’t know weren’t already using the line.
Pizzas were not delivered to our home but milk was.
All newspapers were delivered by boys and all boys delivered newspapers — I delivered a newspaper, 7 days a week. It cost 7 cents a paper, of which I got to keep 2 cents. I had to get up at 6 a.m. every morning. On Saturday, I had to collect the 49 cents from my customers. My favorite customers were the ones who gave him 50 cents and told me to keep the change. My least favorite customers were the ones who seemed to never be home on collection day.
Movie stars kissed with their mouths shut. At least, they did in the movies. There were no movie ratings because all movies were responsibly produced for everyone to enjoy viewing, without profanity or violence or anything really offensive or disgusting.
Growing up isn’t what it used to be, is it…?
How many do you remember?
Head lights dimmer switches on the floor board.
Ignition switches on the dashboard.
Car heaters mounted on the inside of the fire wall.
Pant leg clips for bicycles without chain guards.
Soldering irons you heat on a gas burner.
Using hand signals for cars without turn signals.
Blackjack chewing gum
Wax Coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water
Soda pop machines that dispensed glass bottles
Coffee shops or diners with table side juke boxes
Home milk delivery in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers
Party lines on the telephone
Newsreels before the movie
TV test patterns that came on at night after the last show and were there until TV shows started again in the morning (there were only 3 channels… [if you were fortunate])
45 RPM records
S&H green stamps
Metal ice trays with lever
Roller skate keys
Drive-in Movies (a.k.a. ‘passion pits’)
Wash tub wringers
Extinct Car Brands (40s & 50s): Nash, Kaiser, Packard, De Soto, Willy’s, Edsel, Studebaker, and Tucker to name a few.
If you remembered 18-27 of the 35 items: You’re probably older than dirt…!