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one of my kids 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.
"All the food was slow."
"C'mon, seriously. Where did you eat?"
"It was a place called 'at home,'" I explained. "Grandma cooked
every day and when Grandpa 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, wore Levis, set foot on
a golf course, traveled out of the country or had a credit card.
In their later years they had something called a revolving charge
card. The card was good only at Sears Roebuck. Or maybe it was
Sears AND Roebuck. Either way, there is no Roebuck anymore. Maybe
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 11, but my grandparents had
one before that. It was, of course, black and white, but they
bought a piece of colored plastic to cover the screen. The top
third was blue, like the sky, and the bottom third was green, like
grass. The middle third was red. It was perfect for programs that
had scenes of fire trucks riding across someone's lawn on a sunny
day. Some people had a lens taped to the front of the TV to make
the picture look larger.
I was 13 before I tasted my first pizza, it was called "pizza
pie." When I bit into it, I burned the roof of my mouth and the
cheese slid off, swung down, plastered itself against my chin and
burned that, too. It's still the best pizza I ever had.
We didn't have a car until I was 15. Before that, the only car in
our family was my grandfather's Ford. He called it a "machine."
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, six days a week. It cost 7
cents a paper, of which I got to keep 2 ce nts. I had to get up at
4 AM every morning. On Saturday, I had to collect the 42 cents
from my customers. My favorite customers were the ones who gave me
50 cents and told me to keep the change. My least favorite
customers were the ones who seemed to never be home on collection
Movie stars kissed with their mouths shut. At least, they did in
the movies. Touching someone else's tongue with yours was called
French kissing and they didn't do that in movies. I don't know
what they did in French movies. French movies were dirty and we
weren't allowed to see them.
If you grew up in a generation before there was fast food, you may
want to share some of these memories with your children or
grandchildren. Just don't blame me if they bust a gut laughing.
Growing up isn't what it used to be, is it?
MEMORIES from a friend:
My Dad is cleaning out my grandmother's house (she died in
December) and he brought me an old Royal Crown Cola bottle. In the
bottle top was a stopper with a bunch of holes in it. I knew
immediately what it was, but my daughter had no idea. She thought
they had tried to make it a salt shaker or something. I knew it as
the bottle that sat on the end of the ironing board to "sprinkle"
clothes with because we didn't have steam irons. Man, I am old.
How many do you remember?
Head lights dimmer switches on the floor.
Ignition switches on the dashboard.
Heaters mounted on the inside of the fire wall.
Real ice boxes.
Pant leg clips for bicycles without chain guards.
Soldering irons you heat on a gas burner.
Using hand signals for cars without turn signals.
Older Than Dirt Quiz: Count all the ones that you remember not the
ones you were told about Ratings at the bottom.
1. Blackjack chewing gum
2. Wax Coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water
3 Candy cigarettes
4. Soda pop machines that dispensed glass bottles
5 Coffee shops or diners with tableside juke boxes
6. Home milk delivery in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers
7. Party lines
8. Newsreels before the movie
9. P.F. Flyers
10. Butch wax
11. Telephone numbers with a word prefix (OLive-6933)
13. Howdy Doody
14. 45 RPM records
15. S&H Green Stamps
17 Metal ice trays with lever
18 Mimeograph paper
19 Blue flashbulb
21. Roller skate keys
22. Cork popguns
25 Wash tub wringers
Drinks that costs 10 cents each and in 12 oz glass bottles.
Wheel Moon Pies, Baby Ruth, Almond Joy, Butterfingers, etc. that
costs 5 cents each
Gasoline; It was either Regular or Ethel and @ 23 cents a gallon.
And they pumped the gas for you while they checked the oil & tire
pressure, and washed your windshields, front & back.
Drive Thru's @ Restaurants & Banks
children were inside your home BEFORE darkness came to Town, every
night, no exceptions
If you remembered 0-5 = You're still young
If you remembered 6-10 = You are getting older
If you remembered 11-15 = Don't tell your age,
If you remembered 16-25 = You're older than dirt!
I might be older than dirt but those memories are the best part of
And the sad part of this stuff is;
I'm only 50 years young and I can
still clearly remember all of these things in my childhood.
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