Allow me to take you back in time to when the words of today had a great difference in meaning…
Close your eyes… and go back in time… before the internet, Mac, Dreamcast, Playstation or Nintendo 64… away back, I’m talking hide and seek at dusk… hopscotch, Double Dutch, jacks, kickball, mother may I, Red Rover and Hula-Hoops. Running through the sprinkler, the smell of the sun and licking salty lips.
Wait… watching Saturday cartoons (remember short commercials?) Fat Albert, Road Runner, Popeye and Olive Oyl, The Three Stooges, Bugs Bunny. Then there was staying up for Gun Smoke, and Bonanza. A way back, when around the corner seemed so far away, going downtown seemed like going somewhere, and truth or dare involved nothing but a little embarrassment.
Then there was Cops and Robbers, climbing trees, walking to school no matter what the weather was, running until you were out of breath, laughing so hard your stomach ached, jumping on the bed and pillow fights.
How about spinning around until you got dizzy and falling down was a common cause of giggles, being tired from playing so hard.
The worst embarrassment was being picked last for the team, war was a card game and water balloons were the ultimate choice of weapon.
Then there were baseball cards that slipped into the spokes with clothespins that transformed any average bike into a high-end motorcycle (at least in our minds).
Remember when nobody owned a purebred dog, when a quarter was a decent allowance and another quarter felt like a miracle, when you reached into a muddy gutter for a penny?
When you automatically got your windshield clean and an oil check with every fill up? Then there was the time when laundry detergent came with free glasses and nearly everyone’s mom was home when the kids got there.
It was magic when Dad would “remove his thumb,” it was a great privilege to be taken out to dinner at a real restaurant with your parents and no “Golden Arches.”
When any parent could discipline any kid, have them carry groceries, and nobody, not even the kids, thought a thing of it? When sent to the principal’s office was nothing, compared to the fate that awaited you when you got home. Basically, we were in fear for our lives, but it wasn’t because of drive-by shootings, drugs or gangs, etc. Our parents and grandparents were a much bigger threat and boy do I remember that!
The tough decisions were made by going, “ eeny-meeney-miney-mo,” mistakes were corrected by simply exclaiming, “Do over !” and a “Race issue” meant arguing who ran the fastest.
Money issues were handled by whoever was the banker in Monopoly. The worst thing you could catch from the opposite sex was a cold.
Having a weapon in school meant being caught with a sling shot.
No one was prettier than mom, scrapes and bruises were kissed and made better, taking drugs meant orange-flavoured chewable aspirin, ice cream was considered a basic food group, getting a foot of snow was a dream come true.
And when abilities were discovered because of a “double-dare,” and older siblings were the worst tormentors – but also the fiercest protectors.
If you can remember most of these, then you have LIVED!!!!
Yep…I do remember!