Thursday, June 18, 2009


Were you a kid in the Fifties or earlier? Everybody makes fun of our childhood! Comedians joke. Grandkids snicker. Twenty-somethings shudder and say "Eeeew!" But was our childhood really all that bad?

Judge for yourself:

In 1953:

The US population was less than 150 million ... Yet you knew more people then, and knew them better ...And that was good.

The average annual salary was under $3,000 ... Yet our parents could put some of it away for a rainy day and still live a decent life ...And that was good.

A loaf of bread cost about 15 cents ... But it was safe for a five-year-old to skate to the store and buy one ...And that was good.

Prime-time meant I Love Lucy, Ozzie and Harriett, and Lassie ... So nobody'd ever heard of ratings or filters ... And that was good.

We didn't have air-conditioning ... So the windows stayed up and half a dozen mothers ran outside when you fell off your bike ...And that was good.

Your teacher was either Miss Matthews or Mrs. Logan or Mr. Adkins...But not Ms Becky or Mr. Dan ... And that was good.

The only hazardous material you knew about ... Was a patch of grassburrs around the light pole at the corner ... And that was good.

Most families needed only one job ... Meaning Mom was home when school let out ...And that was good.

You loved to climb into a fresh bed ... Because sheets were dried on the clothesline ...And that was good.

People generally lived in the same hometown with their relatives ...So "child care" meant grandparents or aunts and uncles ...And that was good.

TV was in black-and-white, if you had TV at all ... But all outdoors was in glorious color... And that was certainly good.

Your Dad knew how to adjust everybody's carburetor ... And the Dad next door knew how to adjust all the TV knobs ... And that was very good.

Your grandma grew snap beans in the back yard ... And chickens behind the garage ... And that was definitely good.

And just when you were about to do something really bad ... Chances were you'd run into your Dad's high school coach ... Or the nosy old lady from up the street ... Or your little sister's piano teacher ...Or somebody from church ... ALL of whom knew your parents' phone number...and YOUR first name....and even that was good.


Anonymous said...

This whole thing was fun to read. Im just sad that I'am not old enough to remember what you remember. You must be really, really old...Judith Farkle

Maggie said...

The last thing has been sorely lacking in my kids lives. What I experienced as intrusive as a kid was actually a means of keeping us safe.

P-Dot said...

That is so true. My FIL used to tell a story about being raised in a smaller sized town, where you got caught for stealing apples, the farmer kicked your backside and marched you home by the ear. Then your Mom got ahold of you, then when your Dad got home. The relatives came by and they were told and they had something to say, etc, etc.....
When it was all over you had definitely lost you taste for apples. The saying about taking a whole village to raise a child comes to mind.

P-Dot said...

Miss Farkle,
If you will were ahead of me in school. You came into my first grade class and threatened all of US about your little sister.
Yes, we ALL are REALLY old....