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Old 01-29-2006, 10:33 PM   #1
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Hey Dad," 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 Levi's, 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 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 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 cents. 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 day.

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)
12. Peashooters
13. Howdy Doody
14. 45 RPM records
15. S&H Green Stamps
16. Hi-fi's
17. Metal ice trays with lever
18. Mimeograph paper
19. Blue flashbulb
20. Packards
21. Roller skate keys
22. Cork popguns
23. Drive-ins
24. Studebakers
25. Washing machines with wringers; and washtubs for rinsing

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 my life.

Don't forget to pass this along!!
Especially to all your really OLD friends....
=====
"Senility Prayer"..God grant me...
The senility to forget the people I never liked
The good fortune to run into the ones that I do
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Old 01-29-2006, 10:54 PM   #2
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I guess I'm older than dirt, but maybe not, my rememberer works pretty good. I remember all those things. But I was 13 before we had television. I don't remember how old I was before I ate pizza, probably closer to 20+. As for the telephone, I remember when there wasn't telephone numbers. You simply told the operator who you wanted to talk to. Your telephone rang with a code that told everybody on the party line who was getting a call. If it was somebody expecting some special news everybody picked up to listen. Most phones were attached to a wall.

Maybe I am older than dirt.
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Old 01-29-2006, 11:19 PM   #3
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Question

My aunt & uncle had a Red Hand Pump to get cold (only) water into the kitchen sink. If you wanted some Hot water, you filled a giant tea kettle and put it on the black cast-iron wood burning stove that had a fire going in it 24-7.

When I had to "go potty", I had to go out the kitchen door next to the pantry, through the attached wood shed to the back yard, where there was a small building with a 2-hole vault type toilet.

I had my first Taco when I was 19 after I joined the Navy. It burned my mouth going in and it burned "other parts" comming out the next day.
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Old 01-30-2006, 07:07 AM   #4
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Telephone party lines...woohoo I remember some pretty interesting conversations as an evesdropping kid. (I'd kill my daughter if she did that ) My grandparents phone number: JU2367 on a four-party line.

I think I still have a skate key in a box somewhere. I know I have scars on the achilles area of one ankle when the front of the skate came off my shoe and the skate went backward and "bit" the achilles. OUCH! Ahh, steel wheels too. Hit a bump, rattle your teeth and come to an abrupt stop using the knees and nose as a brake on the sidewalk.

I remember the tri-color plastic for the TV too. Put it on when Romperroom came on! Miss Pat, nice lady, taught kids good manners too.

and on, and on, and on...okay I'm older than dirt and proud of it! Much better to be older than dirt...rather than under it!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 01-30-2006, 08:37 AM   #5
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I confess... I'm only fifty, but...

I must have grown up in the sticks here in Iowa 'cause I remember my aunt and uncle putting in their first flush toilet in about 1963! I remember all too vividly those late night trips through the snow that fifty feet to the two-hole outhouse! Baths in the copper tub... situated nicely over the big grate in the floor right above the cast-iron, converted-to-heating oil furnace. We did have a coal burner at our house along with the coal bin and the truck that made monthly stops to dump the coal through the coal chute into the coal bin room. I had to make sure that the boards got put up in front of the door to the bin so the coal didn't spill out into the basement...

I remember moving to a house in town in about 1962 that had a hand pump on the sink that pumped from the cistern... rain water runoff from the roof... the landlord later converted the kitchen to hot and cold running water for my folks... that house was a big improvement from the one with the coal burning furnace 'cause it had already been converted to an oil burner...

My folks did buy our first color TV, and RCA console model in 1964 or '65. It was a big honkin' thing that had to be periodically "degaussed" by the TV repair man. Does anybody even know a TV repair man any more? TV shows in those days... (deep announcer voice on) "The EFF BEE EYE, starring Efram Zimbalist Junior... in COLOR!"... and Bonanza proclaiming an entire screen shot "IN COLOR"!

I remember when the new McDonald's hamburger stand in Morningside in Sioux City IA had the number of burgers that McDonald's had sold on the sign... I remember when it hit 100,000!

I've always been a fairly 'early adopter' of technology, at least since computers arrived in the common world in the early '80s. But, I confess... I don't own an ipod. I don't see any use for an ipod. I just don't get it. I must be old!

Roger
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Old 01-30-2006, 06:24 PM   #6
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I guess I am older than dirt and probably rotting. Been there and I wore all those t-shirts. Things were slow to come in the South. I really think that is why all of us love to camp. It is a bit like the "old days" but we get to pick what parts we keep.
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Old 01-30-2006, 06:46 PM   #7
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Quote:
do you remember when
Yes.

Thank you for reminding me.

Your check is in the mail.

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Old 01-30-2006, 08:12 PM   #8
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Quote:
How many do you remember?

Head lights dimmer switches on the floor.
Ignition switches on the dashboard.
I remember quite a few but my faithful tow vehicle still has these two items
79 Ford Econoline Van
It does have the posh Château pkg though
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Old 01-30-2006, 08:57 PM   #9
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Thanks for the great thread, brings back many memories.

I qualify: Older than dirt.

Grandpa used to have a small dairy farm on the banks of the VanDusen River. He had a Model A pickup that he'd haul the day's milk out to the road in. Us kids used to get to ride in back. In the winter the "crick" next to the house used to flood making for lots of reasons to build rafts and get wet.

When my dad was in the War, we lived in a cabin a couple hundred yards from the Grandfolks. At 4 and 5 yrs old, my job was to walk the trail through the woods every day to get a quart of fresh milk. One day I was supposed to bring the (manual) hair cutters back with me. An old chicken coop was on the way and I wondered if the cutters would cut the wire. They didn't. Mom cussed and said she hoped they pulled when she cut my hair. They didn't. ( )

Our outhouse was behind the house and I had a Flash Gordon flashlight to light the way at night.

A couple of times a year our neighbor would butcher some chickens. All the neighborhood kids' job was to run down the headless chickens that refused to fall in their tracks. Great fun but we'd have to take a bath right after. Sometimes he'd give us a chicken and Mom would cook it.

When I was 6 we moved into "town" and indoor plumbing. I wasn't sure you should trust anything that made so much noise that close to your "bizness".

When Dad got home from the War, the family would go for a drive every Sunday and listen to the Green Hornet and Gangbusters. Superman and The Lone Ranger came on weekdays at 5:00 pm.

My first bike was a Schwinn with a horn on the side of the "tank".

On Saturdays, we'd head out early to scrounge redeemable pop and beer bottles in the alleys behind houses. When we had enough, we'd go to the matinee and watch a double feature cowboy show with a cartoon in between. It would cost $0.25 to get in, and the rest would be for candy and popcorn. You could live mighty high on forty cents.

Tim Holt, Lash Larou, Audy Murphy, Gene Autry, and Roy Rogers were typical fare. Roy, as a "modern" cowboy that occasionally used pickups on the ranch forever sealed his place in my heart in one episode when he had to recover a rocket that had been stolen for some nefarious purpose.

It was always cool when we were sick enough to stay home from school. In the weekday afternoons the "Jack Kirkwood" show was on, a wacky radio ancestor of "Laugh In". Every show opened with the sound of maybe 50 lbs of crockery being smashed to smithereens and Jack announcing that "Nobody's going to sleep while this shows on!" and we didn't.

We didn't have TV until I was in the mid teens. Before that, we'd go down to a friends house every Wednesday night and watch "Science Fiction Theater".

I was 20 when I had my first pizza and the first McDonalds I ever saw was a cheezy little hamburger stand with no inside seating and a sign between the arches that said "Over a million sold". You could get four for a dollar, every day of the week.

Yep, I can't say we stood around then saying "Boy, these are the good ol' days, eh?"
But we do now.
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Old 01-30-2006, 09:01 PM   #10
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Thanks for the Older-n-dirt list!


1. Blackjack chewing gum
2. Wax Coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water
3. Candy cigarettes
Wow! I not only bought this stuff as a kid, I sold it as a teenager to other kids, as my parents owned the coolest corner store.

4. Soda pop machines that dispensed glass bottles
Not dispensed, excatly, you open the lid and find your pop in the pool of cold water, wipe it off with the towel provided, pop it open with the opener hanging by a string, then pay for it at the counter. Cream soda!

5. Coffee shops or diners with tableside juke boxes
Oh yes! But no longer a nickel in my time, a whole quarter!

6. Home milk delivery in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers
And bread, delivered fresh daily. compare to apples (MacIntosh only) available in the fall by the box from the Boy Scouts or Kinsmen.


11. Telephone numbers with a word prefix (OLive-6933)
Mine was DAvis6-2078.

14. 45 RPM records
Dusty Springfiled, "Son of a Preacher Man" and the Jackson 5, "ABC" were my first. I had a red and white record player.

16. Hi-fi's
Yes, that's what parents had in the living room, a polished piece of furniture almost like a piano, used to play big waxy 78s.

17. Metal ice trays with lever
Yes, good!

18. Mimeograph paper
My first office job had those excellent machines. I long for a manual hand-cranked mimeo, especially now when my computer will not "recognize" the printer sitting right next to it!

23. Drive-ins
Yes, please. Us kids get into our pajamas before we get in the car, try to stay awake before the first cartoon starts at dusk.

24. Studebakers
No, well -- except the neighbours "old" car with the wings.

25. Washing machines with wringers
My mom got one of these for using at the cottage, an old one, we had limited power at the lake. She was a modern 60s babe (and still is) very good lookin', wearing her big rubber gumboots and a skimpy bikini, doing the wash in the backyard with the ringer-washer.
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Old 01-30-2006, 09:03 PM   #11
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Oh my,
I guess we are older than dirt and we thought 62 and 59 were still considered young

One great memory was discovering that upon request, the milk man would deliver chocolate milk ---just needed the parents to not be home.

Also, besides the ice cream man, I remember the Helms man who not only delivered bread, but had great sweet rolls.

Diane
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Old 01-31-2006, 04:58 AM   #12
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I'm older than dirt, but we called it firmament back then.

I remember the mail carry drove a Model T Ford. He'd let us ride on the runningboard up the hill to the Burkett's. They had a radio and could listen to KRLD in Dallas. It hissed and sputtered, but you could sometimes make out a word or two.

I think his Model T was one of about ten automobiles in the county. We lived about five miles from town and we walked unless someone came by in a wagon, then we could catch a ride.
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Old 01-31-2006, 12:11 PM   #13
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And the younger generation speaks out:

Quote:
A very self-important college freshman at a recent USC football game,
took it upon himself to explain to a senior citizen sitting next to him why it
was impossible for the older generation to understand his own.

"You grew up in a different, actually almost primitive, world," the student
said loud enough for the whole crowd to hear. "We young people today grew
up with television, jet planes, space travel, man walking on the moon, our
spaceships have visited Mars... We even have nuclear energy, electric and
hydrogen cars, computers with light-speed processing ... and uh.."

Taking advantage of the pause for breath in the student's litany, the
"wizened" one said, "You're right, son. We didn't have those things when we
were young... so we invented them, you arrogant little !@#$head! !! Now....
what are you doing for the next generation??"
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Old 01-31-2006, 12:24 PM   #14
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