How Times Have Changed

The other day when I was to walk into the grocery store, I stopped to allow the lady behind me to go ahead of me. Then as I walked in behind her, I took my hat off and put it in the cart.

She said, “That was so very nice and I miss that.”

It was a plus for me as the lady, a senior like myself, gave me a hug.

We stood there and compared a few notes on an ara far removed from today’s hustle and bustle and today’s way of life.

I was born on Friday, January 10, 1933 and found that she was also born in May of 1933. I told her that May of 1933, was the month that a fellow by the name of Mackay had reported the sighting of the Loch Ness Monster.

She in return reminded me that a popular game of today – Monopoly – was invented in 1933. I asked her if the name Babe Ruth meant anything to her, she laughed and said he was the historic home run hitter. I told her that the Babe was also born in 1933 and that he struck out more times than he hit home runs. We laughed, and continued our journey back into the good old days.

Being born in 1933 put us right alongside of some others born in the same year, such as former President of the United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt; actress Joan Collins; Joan Rivers; and of course my favourite country singer Willie Nelson.

Next we went down memory lane on the Big Band songs released in 1933, such as Bing Crosby’s “Shadow Waltz,” and of course “I don’t Stand a Ghost of a Chance With You,” Don Bestor’s “The Last Roundup,” and then the unforgettable “Night and Day,” by Eddy Duchin. Of course “Night and Day” was easy for me as I played trumpet in a band as a teenager and later when in the Air Force I played it in our base Air Force band.

The kind lady said that what she missed most was when a man stopped and allowed a lady to go through the door ahead of the man. Also what I had done by taking my hat off when going into a building where ladies were present, and therefore showed respect for the ladies.

Then she laughed and said, when she sees a fellow walking down the street with his girlfriend walking on the outside, back in the wonderful days of a man’s respect for ladies, it meant the “bo” had the “gal” for sale. At the time if he the boy (language of those days being “ bo”), had his girl (gal) on the outside while walking down the street, it meant having his girl out for sale.

Back in 1933, a quart of milk cost all of 42 cents, a loaf of bread cost 7 cents, a hamburg (that’s what we called hamburgers) cost 11 cents a pound, and a postage stamp was all of 3 cents – and they did not need someone to measure the envelope and decide on any additional costs before it was sent away.

When you did something wrong, we said it was bad. Now they say it is gross.

Gross, when I went to school meant 144. When a group of us had a little party, we said we had a gay old time. Personally I don’t use that phraseology any more.

To that wonderful senior lady (I don’t even know her last name), I want to say “Thanks for the memories!”

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