I Can Remember

Discussion in 'Other Reminiscences' started by Ken Anderson, Sep 4, 2015.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I can remember when people didn't make a habit of locking their houses or taking the keys out of their car. Our house locked with a skeleton key, which anyone could buy in a hardware store but, even when we were away for two weeks, the house was left unlocked. While I was gone, my cousins might come in and borrow stuff from my room, and it wasn't considered theft.

    I can remember when it wasn't unusual for a twelve year-old to drive a tractor or a farm vehicle. The state police patrolled the state highway sometimes, but police cars were never seen on our rural roads unless they were coming after someone, and that was seldom.

    I can remember when kids could play on anyone's land without threat of trespassing. As a child, in fact, I often didn't know on whose land we had built our fort.

    I can remember when it wasn't considered dangerous for kids to camp in the woods alone, or take three-day bicycle trips without adult supervision.

    I can remember when children were left to learn their limitations through trial and error. I can also remember a time when they were generally smart enough to do so without killing themselves.

    I can remember when most kids, around me anyhow, owned a firearm by the age of twelve. It was probably just a .22 caliber rifle, but we were also allowed to use our parent's guns. I do, however, remember one friend of mine who shot his hand off while trying to sheath his loaded shotgun. On the positive side, he learned to do some pretty cool things with his hook, and later went on to become a mechanic.

    I can remember when kids could go fishing without a fishing license, and when fishing licenses weren't as complicated as they are now. There were probably laws requiring licenses but no one expected a kid with a fishing pole to have a license.

    I can remember when M-80s and cherry bombs were readily accessible, and some kids knew where their dad stored the dynamite. I can't remember anyone blowing themselves up. I can also remember efforts at creating bombs at the gravel pit, where there was no threat of uncontrollable fires. Such things were not permissible, as far as parents saying, "Sure, go ahead," but the word "terrorist" never came up in discussion.

    I can remember when parents, not police or school officials, were the ones to decide when the limits had been reached.

    I can't remember when or how I learned to swim because I don't remember ever not knowing how to swim. Probably I learned in much the same way as my little brother learned, at a very young age, when my dad threw him in the lake.

    I can remember when kids actually talked to one another, did stuff together, and got to know something about their friends, and the place they lived in.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015
  2. Ike Willis

    Ike Willis Very Well-Known Member
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    Liberals made all the best things from our childhoods illegal now. I laugh whenever I see kids riding bikes wearing helmets, knee and elbow pads. At the same time I'm sad when I see yards with playground equipment sitting idle on beautiful summer days, knowing the kids living there are inside, poking at keyboards.

    I was left alone all day on our farm during summer vacation while my mom and dad worked in town. I was 8 or 9 then. I had chores I was to do. Our house was full of guns and I knew how to start and drive our tractor. Sometimes our neighbor had me drive his Case while he picked up hay bales or other things.

    We had no TV then. Just a radio. On wet rainy days I would listen to radio programs and read. Things seemed so much better then.
     
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  3. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    We would have been teased mercilessly if we wore a helmet on a bicycle. Back then, people didn't even use the seat belts in their cars. I used to wonder what that thing was when I was digging behind the seat for change. In fact, my dad had an old car with a rumble seat, facing backwards, and we'd ride in that without seat belts, or in the back of a pickup truck. You're right. Most kids hardly go outdoors anymore, except for highly organized sports activities.
     
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  4. Sheldon Scott

    Sheldon Scott Very Well-Known Member
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    Sad to say my wife told her daughter that if they come too visit this year don't let the grandkids bring their computers. I guess that discouraged them....they didn't come.

    We have 25 acres of woods and a lake, Hiking, shooting, swimming and fishing. Plenty to do on a weeks vacation but they needed their computers.

    I sure miss the old days.
     
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  5. Jenn Windey

    Jenn Windey Active Member
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    I remember as a child the speed limit on the thruway was like 70 and we did not wear seat belts. In fact we were monsters and would stand up on the back seats while the car was in motion. Boy how I loved those long bench seats in the old cars. They were great to fall asleep on during a long trip. And no one in those days had air conditioning, you drove with the windows open.

    As kids we would play out till the street lights came on, it was like the international sign that it was time to get inside for the evening. It seemed like every kid everywhere knew this. the exception was when it was a holiday or summer and we would be in the yard with a fire going in the barrel. We would be out to all hours, or so it seemed. I never actually saw a fire fly till I was in my teen years and when I did see them at my great grandmothers house in PA I thought it was the most magical experience I ever had.

    Living in the city a big thing was getting to go to the public pool when it was hot. Peanut butter and Jelly tasted so good after a swim. I still love it till this day. All of us knew what that "Ding" sound was and as the music got closer it was almost mandatory that you had to get a soft serve. from what I hear these days parents do not let there kids near those trucks anymore because there are so many bad guys wanting to do sick things.

    On Sunday evenings there was always one thing we looked forward to. We would watch Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom and the Disney. Occasionally we would get Jacque Cousteau instead. Back in the day I liked the Davey Crocket episodes quite a bit. It seems that there was a time that there was quite a few westerns on. We would watch Rawhide and Petti Coat Junction. On Saturday mornings at 6 am the first show to kick off the cartoons was The Lone Ranger followed by Lassie. This stayed constant for a long time, when I was much older they would start wrestling at noon. I was am still am quite a fan. This was way before WWE was what it is today.
     
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  6. Ike Willis

    Ike Willis Very Well-Known Member
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    How many of you remember helping your mom or grandmother clean wallpaper? You took a wad of putty like material and rubbed it over the walls to get the soot off, from coal furnaces. Later, that stuff was sold as silly putty.
    When I was a wee snot, I would get put to work on the lower parts of the walls. We usually did it in the spring.
    th (6).jpe
     
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  7. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    The speed limit on I-95, north of Bangor, Maine, is 75. South of Bangor, it's 70. It was raised from 55 to 65 to 75 over the last few years.
     
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  8. Bobby Cole

    Bobby Cole Very Well-Known Member
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    I remember being in constant, "awe." Good or bad there was some sort of emotional attachment to whatever made the news.
    Things like Mantle hitting another homer, Breedlove breaking another land speed record, or even MR. Jenner bringing home the gold had us in awe. There was the Sputnik going into space, florescent lighting, a computer that was at least a city block long, FM radio and the invention of the transistor which started a new trend, the portable $10.00 battery charged radio.
    Telstar sattelite transmissions, the Nautilus nuclear submarine, and an American first: Alan Shepard goes into space!

    There were so many good, clean and honest things that brought about a sense of awe, which seem so far away from us now.
    I hate to be a defeatist, but even the bad things that are in the news nowadays, just leave me in a state of jaded apathy. There is nothing left that amazes me.
     
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  9. Dave Sun

    Dave Sun Well-Known Member
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    Sounds I remember as a child.....

    When I lived on Gold St. In Norwich, I remember the milk man and the sound his horse and wagon made on the street surface. The milk man never had to touch the reins as the horse knew the route by heart and would stop at each house that had delivery.

    I remember the O and W steam engine sounds that made. Wired, noisy but beautiful sounds to a young mans ears. The steel wheels spinning on the track trying to get traction. The release of air from the breaks. The eerie whistle in the middle of the night. The crashing sound when two cars were coupled together.

    I remember the noise the rain made on our metal roof at the old house on West Hill. Mom always said it put her to sleep, but it keep me awake most nights. Maybe because I slept upstairs and was closer to the roof.

    I remember, during WW 2, the sirens blowing and everyone had to close their curtains and shut off most lights. This was in case of an air raid although I can't imagine any enemy bombing Norwich, NY.

    I remember the sound of Grandpa shoveling coal down cellar to feed the furnace. And the noise when coal was delivered to the house and sent down a metal ramp to the coal bin. The delivery man would keep it moist to keep the dust down.

    I remember the beautiful sounds of nature as I would hike through the woods. Birds singing,
    crows cawing, the farmers machinery running in the distance and if you sat still, you could hear chimp monks and squirrels rushing through the leaves.

    I remember the great motor sound that playing cards made when hooked on bike frame and rubbed on the spokes. The more cards the better the noise.

    I remember the great sounds of the farm. Each individual noise from cows, chickens, goats and ducks. Our dogs barking whenever a strange car drove into the driveway.
     
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  10. Dave Sun

    Dave Sun Well-Known Member
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    I remember the pumping sound our old water pump made while pumping water from the well house.

    I remember the crackling and popping sound certain wood made in the old stone fireplace in the living room.

    I remember the steady clacking on the wheels of the train I would take to Utica to visit my Dad. The noise the steam whistle made as we approached each small station on the way.

    At a difficult time in my life, I remember the strange noises my grandpa would make when he came home drunk. It was very scary at the time but as time went on, he stopped drinking and turned into one sweet guy. I love you grandpa. RIP

    I remember the frogs singing in harmony when we stayed at camp at Plymouth Reservoir. The bass frogs would start and then the tenors chimed in and later the peepers started their two cent worth. The hoot, hoot of the old owl always added to the fiasco. I would lie there and try to identify each sound.

    I remember the sound when you opened a glass bottle of soda on the openers that screwed to the wall. Pop, sizz and a big gulp. I wonder how many people today know what a church key is?

    I remember the sound of kicking the can made under the street lights on Gold St. We boys would play this game many a night until our moms would call us in.

    I remember the moans and groans in the movies us kids made when the cowboy hero kissed his gal. We did not want to see that mushy stuff. After all, he was our champion along with his horse. I remember the giggling us boys made at the Abbott and Costello movies or Ma and Pa Kettle.
     
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  11. Krissttina Isobe

    Krissttina Isobe Very Well-Known Member
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    :oops:My Mother and when my Grandpa was alive they said things like you posted. I couldn't believe that you could leave your home unlocked! Mom would tell me when she was little she could go pick fruits on the side of the farm and no one would scold you or stop you because it would happen so little. No one was in the mood for killing or to kill either for the way my parents and grandparents spoke it was a more relaxed time. My Mom would comment where are people's common sense! I wondered what it would be like to live in a world where you didn't have to lock up for I've had things stolen from me all the time. I've got held up in our family run market more times than I'd like to remember, our home got robbed and our television got stolen and old black and white we liked to watch and when we moved to my Uncles's country home we left our things mostly in the garage for it was just a transitional home for a while until we found a place to live and my trunk got stolen. All throughout my life things got stolen from me and so did my fiance that was going to marry me. Life was so much nicer than then now. :(
     
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  12. Corie Henson

    Corie Henson Very Well-Known Member
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    What I remember was the basketball court in the street near our house. My brothers would be playing and would rush home for a drink of cold water. I would then get a pitcher and fill it with lots of ice for my brothers. I don't know if there can still be a basketball court in the streets. With the heavy traffic in almost the entirety of Metro Manila, there's a slim chance for that.

    With the security of the home, there's not much of a difference because in those days when I was in grade school, stealing and thievery are already common. I remember our gate in the garage had a big pad lock to prevent potential intruders.
     
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  13. Bobby Gnomy

    Bobby Gnomy Member
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    Oh, yes -- those were the days. Playing outside all day long until dusk arrived. Mom would make me come home for lunch, and I ate quickly, not wanting to miss one minute of being with my friends. I lived in a neighborhood when I was young that had a lot of kids my age. Those were the days. No cell phones, no staying inside watching TV, no computers.

    If the weather was bad, or it was raining, we'd gather at one house and play games inside. I also remember playing cards with my grandparents. They taught me a lot of games, and showed me how to bet a penny, hoping I'd win the game. Those days were innocent. So much has changed since then. Is it for the better? I don't think so.
     
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  14. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I can remember being under my blanket with my transistor radio, listening to radio shows late at night. A lot of the early television shows got their start as radio shows, and that is mostly what played late at night.
     
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  15. Ike Willis

    Ike Willis Very Well-Known Member
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    A Maytag story-

    This is a true story of a Maytag wringer type electric powered washing machine. No names have been changed to protect anyone. No animals have been injured, abused or killed, and no humans maimed or arrested. At some point in the late 1940’s it was determined I was big enough to help mom with her wash day chores. I think it was about the same time dad decided I was fit enough to push the old iron wheeled, boy powered lawn mower back and forth over our farmhouse lawn, about 500,000 times each week. Dad also noticed that a hand sickle fit my hand really well.
    Now mom, bless her heart, always did our laundry on Saturdays. During the war she worked in a factory all week and only had Saturday and Sunday off. So, every Saturday bright and early, was wash day. I think, wherever she is now, if she has laundry she will wash it on Saturday.
    There was a large room attached to the back of our kitchen. That’s where the Maytag lived. Right beside the laundry tub sink on the wall. We had no hot water so it all had to be heated on the kitchen stove, then carried out and dumped into the washer, along with the soap powder. Clothes were tossed in, lid closed and motor turned on. Then mom would busy herself with something until she decided the clothes had sloshed around long enough. Besides helping fill the washer, my job was to fish the dripping clothes out of the washer and run them through the wringer attached to the washer and let them fall into a tub of clean rinse water. Then, back through the wringer and into a basket. Add more hot water and start another load of wash and hang the wet items on the outdoor clothesline. Later, I would drain the tubs, wash out the machine and only then, go out and start mowing our, what seemed to me, 500 acre lawn. And that was my Saturday routine.
    Where did the hand sickle come in? Well, one day dad saw me idly hitting at some weeds with a stick. Dad reasoned I could be chopping weeds with a sickle, and a few minutes later, I was. Weeds around the barns and sheds, along the yard fences, and weeds in the orchard. Tell you what, no kid was ever happier to see cold weather than I was.
    As near as I can tell, the old Maytag was made in the late 1930’s. I was married in 1960 and moved into a house in 1962. Dad bought mom a new automatic washer and dryer so I got the old Maytag. We used it until I could buy a new washer and dryer, retiring the old machine. It was taken to an auction barn and never seen again. But, it still ran as well as ever. A fitting testimony to the quality of American made products of a bygone age.

    th.jpe
     
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  16. Bobby Gnomy

    Bobby Gnomy Member
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    I loved to read. I can remember being under my blanket when I was in bed for the night, with a flashlight and a book. It was a bit tricky holding the flashlight with one hand and holding the book with the other, so most times I would just put the flashlight in my mouth, pointing the business end towards the book so I could see the text.

    I was supposed to be sleeping, and my parents never knew I stayed up for hours reading. That's probably why, when I was supposed to get up for school the next day, I was so dog-tired I couldn't lift my head. Fortunately, I never got caught. My parents slept downstairs and my brother and I had bedrooms located on the top floor.
     
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  17. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    The most fun I remember as a child in Pittsburgh were the monkey vines, we lived in a new development and behind our house was all woods. And there were some trees that had vines on them and we would swing like Tarzan...so much fun! We also had a neighborhood treehouse one of the older boys made in the woods, we would go there a lot.

    I remember playing all the games we did back then, kick the can, touch football, hide and seek, climbing the street sign pole, jacks on my porch and on and on and we did it all outside until my mom would turn the porch lights on, which must have been after the street lights came on because we also had a game of who was first to see the street lights.

    I had a good childhood, except for my strict father.:(
     
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  18. Bobby Gnomy

    Bobby Gnomy Member
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    I grew up in Pittsburgh also -- I remember those monkey vines! It's amazing no one got hurt... but we were like little monkeys scampering around. I also remember in my back yard there were two trees fairly close to each other. I wanted a swing, but my parents didn't want me to have one. Why, I don't know. So, I took a long thick rope and tied it between the trees with a very large teddy bear secured at the bottom, so I could sit on the teddy bear and swing to my heart's content. I don't recall exactly the mechanics on how I did that, but I know it lasted a long time.

    I also had a strict father. :mad:
     
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  19. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I wish I knew what trees they were that had all those vines, I've lived other places and didn't see them.


    We also had a rope swing attached to a thick limb by our treehouse...think we actually had a tire on it but I'm not sure.

    I grew up in Brookline in Pittsburgh.
     
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  20. Bobby Gnomy

    Bobby Gnomy Member
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    I never saw those vines in any other places I've lived in -- maybe they're indigenous to the area. I grew up in Wilkinsburg until I was 13, and then we moved to Point Breeze (near Squirrel Hill). Tree houses are so cool. None of my neighbors had one and neither did we. To be honest, the only tree houses I have ever seen are online or on TV. Check this one out:
    treehouse.jpg
     
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  21. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Ours wasn't that nice! :)

    I know where Squirrel Hill is..about 20 mins from Brookline I think.
     
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  22. Bobby Gnomy

    Bobby Gnomy Member
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    I think you're correct about the distance from Brookline, PA to Squirrel Hill. I had relatives that lived in Brookline, and I recall visiting them when I was growing up. Re: Squirrel Hill -- always loved the name of the area. There were squirrels everywhere. I've been in Phoenix, AZ for 17 years now and have never seen a squirrel, although I know someone who lives near the mountains and claims she sees them all the time.

    Have you been back to the area? I vowed to never go back again. After I lived in Pittsburgh, I went to college in Philadelphia, and from there I lived in the Midwest for 28 years, moving from one state to another. Then I moved back to Pittsburgh to help out my Mom after my Dad passed, then after she passed away I stayed on for several years before moving out here.
     
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  23. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I haven't been there since about 1997. My dad died and then my mother moved in with my youngest sister In Sparta NJ...so no more family in Pittsburgh, just a couple of friends from High School.

    After Pittsburgh I moved to Chicago and then to Merrillville, Indiana. Now I live in Fresno since my husband died 11 yrs ago.

    I went to Pitt for a year.
     
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  24. Bobby Gnomy

    Bobby Gnomy Member
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    Wow, that's really close to the time I moved away from Pittsburgh. In 1997, I decided I had to move to a better climate and by late 1998 I had purchased a house in Phoenix, and moved here early 1999. I would have moved in 1998, but I was afraid I'd run into some nasty weather in the winter, and not be able to 'get out of town' by airplane due to snow or bad weather. So, I waited until the weather was nicer and left town forever. The day I left Pittsburgh, on February 2nd, it was warm and sunny. Really nice day. Arrived in Phoenix, many many hours later and it was SNOWING! A very rare event.

    Sorry to hear about your husband. That's sad. I went to Moore College of Art in Philadelphia. At the time it was called Moore Institute of Art. When I moved to the Midwest I lived in Chicagoland, and other parts of Illinois; Madison, WI; Ferguson, MS; and Des Moines, IA. I was married at the time, and jobs took us from one city to another. I hate to move, so after I moved here I said, this is the last place I will move to.
     
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  25. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    We seem to have crossed paths many times, Toby!

    I also lived in many parts of Illinois besides Chicago. My son lives in Glen Carbon, Illinois which isn't too far from Ferguson. I was visiting him right when all the riots were taking place and I was flying back home from Lambert Airport and Ferguson is close to there...was afraid the exits would be blocked to the airport but everything was ok. :)
     
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