I’m old, but not that old. However, I have memories of growing up that are probably very different from yours if you were born in the 70s, 80s, or beyond.
Recently, on Facebook a friend posted about how our lives were so different during the fifties and sixties. It got me to thinking about my own childhood and adolescence.
How about the following memories: Can you relate?
Our bedtime was 8:00 pm, strictly enforced. In high school, it was 9:00.
We almost never ate out. It was oatmeal for breakfast, a sandwich and an apple or banana for lunch, and a hamburger patty and a green salad for dinner. We rarely had dessert, either.
We watched TV, three channels, black and white, and the programs were almost always westerns and a few variety shows.
We had one phone, a rotary type.
One typewriter. My dad’s. (I thought I’d died and gone to heaven when IBM made the Selectrix in the 70s.
My mother was progressive: we ate whole wheat bread.
My mother made us hand-write thank you notes, cursive, of course.
We never, and I mean never, sassed our parents. That was unthinkable.
My dad was progressive: he taught me how to make Mulligan Stew, and he made Saturday morning breakfasts.
My family was fairly secular, but we occasionally went to church.
I had to practice my piano for one hour each day, and every piece had to be memorized.
Our teachers were deeply respected, even feared.
We had PE every day. Yes, every day.
We had penmanship classes. And typing classes in high school.
We always said the pledge of allegiance first class of the day.
In the sixties, we frequently practiced ‘duck and cover.’
No one thought dodge ball was child abuse.
Girls were encouraged to become nurses or secretaries. Boys could be anything they wanted, but if they didn’t do too well in their IQ tests, they were steered toward a technical college after graduation. Also, when the ice cream joint, Baskin and Robbins first opened, girls weren’t hired because scooping ice cream was considered too strenuous.
College men were paid more for doing the exact same job I performed. I answered phones and got paid 1.60 per hour. Men got 1.80 for the same job. When I worked in the cafeteria, the supervisor frequently slapped me on the fanny with a plate as he passed my work station.
Bullying did happen, but not nearly like today.
Up until my junior year in high school, girls had to wear dresses. After that, school districts allowed girls to wear slacks, but not jeans.
I could go on an on but I’ll bet you could, too. What do you remember from those days?