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Notes and Quotes- December 19, 2021

Notes+and+Quotes-+December+19%2C+2021

How’s this for Nostalgia

By Tom Morrow

As this year is near its end, it might entertain, possibly depress as I take a look back at the many items, occasions, and subjects encountered over the past eight decades.
When you reach that momentous eighth set of 10 year periods you must remember that it’s okay to doze off in front of the TV. Speaking of which, do you remember when it took at least two to three minutes for the TV to warm up. How many of you sat watching the test pattern before the day’s programming began? Or watched the Air Force fly-bys as the “Star Spangled Banner” was played to end the day’s programming.
In Middle-West America Dad always left the keys to the family car in the ignition. Car doors were never locked, and even some family homes were unlocked. As hard as that might be to believe, people trusted each other. This lasted until the mid-sixties … everything in America seemed to change after President John F. Kennedy was assassinated and we went to war in Vietnam. Nothing has ever been that trusting among citizens since. Often common attitudes when minor theft did take place: “Well, they probably needed it worse than me.
Nobody owned a purebred dog.
As a child, a quarter was a decent allowance … and, up until 1964, that coin was made with real Silver! You’d reach into a muddy gutter for a one-cent coin checking to see if it was a collectable “1943” penny!
Your Mom wore nylons that came in two pieces. You got your windshield cleaned, oil checked, and gas pumped, without asking … all for free every time you filled up. If you bought premium (also known as “Ethel”) you got your floor boards swept out with a small whisk broom. If your tires needed a check, you didn’t pay for any pumped air. And sometime you got trading stamps.
Laundry detergent had free glasses, dishes or sometimes towels were included inside the box. For us kids Cracker Jacks always had a prize.
It was considered a great privilege to be taken out to dinner at a real restaurant with your parents. But it was hard on Dad’s wallet. Hamburgers were .15 cents, tenderloin sandwiches were a quarter, and a blue-plate special was between .50 cents to 75 cents depending upon the menu. To drink? Coffee was a nickel and a bottle of Coke (in Iowa) was six-cents.
At school, being sent to the principal’s office was nothing compared to the fate that awaited you the evening at home. Teachers threatened to keep kids back a grade if they were failing …and they did it!
When a ‘57 Chevy was everyone’s dream car .. to cruise, peel out, lay rubber, go to the drive-in movies with your steady date … girls usually rode through the gate in the trunk, that way you could afford two (2) bags of popcorn.
You always knew the changes of seasons: Spring had fresh air and the croaking of frogs; Summer was hot and sticky; Fall brought the turning of leaves and the smell they made as Dad raked them up and burned them; Winter came along with the first frost. You knew the ground would be frozen soon after. During those carefree summer months, lying on your back in the grass with your friends and saying things like, ‘That cloud looks like a …”
Playing softball with no adults to help kids with the rules of the game.
Most of us kids were in fear for our lives, but it wasn’t because of drive-by shootings, drugs, gangs, it was for fear of getting polio or the Russians dropping “the bomb.” Our parents and grandparents were a much bigger threat, but we survived because their love was greater than the threat of being crippled or consumed by atomic bombs. The over the Russians were really no problem because we knew how to dive under our desk and cover our heads.
Do You Remember a time when decisions among friends were made by going ‘eeny-meeny-miney-moe’? Consumables from the drug store came without safety caps and hermetic seals because no one had yet tried to poison a perfect stranger.
Home milk delivery was in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers, newsreels were shown before the movie, telephone numbers had a word prefix…(Blackburn 5-2857). Or, some of us remember when there were just 4 numbers with no word prefix and nearly everyone had a party line. Like postage Zip Codes, area codes were futuristic.
A question of “race issue” meant arguing about who ran the fastest?
And with all our progress, don’t you just wish, just once, you could slip back in time and savor the slower pace and share it with the children of today? Didn’t that feel good just to go back and say, “Yeah, I remember those days!”
Next week: A few more memories for your enjoyment and your kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids edification. Pass these on to the younger people you known.

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Notes and Quotes- December 19, 2021