Do you remember sitting in your car while someone
else pumped your gas, cleaned your windshield, checked your oil and
smiled as they did it? That was before "self
Do you remember when children were polite, called
adults Mr., Mrs. and Miss? Sir and Ma'am? Spoke only when
they were spoken to? Did their chores instead of all the
extracurricular activities? That was before there were shootings
Do you remember when eating healthy meant
starting your day with a hardy breakfast of bacon, sausage, eggs, toast,
and grits? Maybe a stack of pancakes smothered with syrup? That
was before you heard of cholesterol and weren't concerned with
Do you remember drinking every flavor of Kool
Aid known to man? Drinking water from a faucet or a green garden
hose instead of a clear bottle? That was before you could buy the
world's most plentiful resource in your pop machine.
you remember outhouses? Getting out of your warm bed in the middle
of the night when the urge hit you? Bundling up and grabbing a
flashlight? That was before indoor plumbing.
remember getting your milk from the barn? Eggs from the hen house?
Vegetables from the garden? Can goods from the cellar?
Meat from "up the holler?" That was before fast food.
Do you remember when Mom stayed at home, raised the kids and
cooked the meals? And everyone ate together and talked about the
day's events, after saying the Blessing? Asking for permission to
leave the table? That was before our children were raised by
Do you remember cars with the gearshift in the
column--what we called "3 in the tree?" V8s that guzzled the gas?
Gasoline wars? Rationing?
Do you remember a
highway void of Japanese cars? Riding in a station wagon?
Cars with push button transmissions?
Do you remember
riding in the back of a pickup? Or in a car without seat belts?
When children didn't have car seats? That was before air
bags and Ralph Nader.
Do you remember when coffee was
neither decaffeinated or flavored? That was before
Do you remember when it wasn't politically
correct to be politically correct?
Do you remember when
kids played sandlot baseball instead of soccer on fields surrounded by
mini-vans and SUVs?
Do you remember slides and the Kodak
Instamatic? That was before VCRs and video
Do you remember when you only got three channels
and had to use "rabbit ears?" Turning off your electrical
appliances when there was a storm? That was before Ted Turner,
satellite dishes and cable TV.
Do you remember Dad outside
the delivery room? Pacing and waiting? Running to buy cigars
that announced the baby's sex? That was before La Maz.
you remember when holidays weren't invented by Hallmark? That was before
there was a "Sweetest Day."
Do you remember 8-track tapes
and record albums? Huddling around a big radio? Listening to
78s on the Victrola? That was before you downloaded music off the
Do you remember sitting next to Grandpa and
whittling with your new pocket knife? Playing a loose version of
"mumbly peg?" That was when you thought he'd live
Do you remember getting a tan outside?
Working in the garden or in the fields bailing hay? From
dawn to dusk? That was before tanning beds.
remember when you could be alone and not be bothered? Eat your
supper without interruption? That was before pagers, cell phones
Do you remember when there was only one
time? When we didn't lose an hour of sleep in the Spring or gain
an hour in the Fall? That was before Daylight Savings
Some say times are better now. Others wonder
how we ever survived.
Those of us born between 1946 and
1960 have been filed under the tab of "Baby Boomers." We are the
reason that television networks like "Nick at Nite" and "TV Land" are
popular. Many of us like to go to antique shops, but not
necessarily to buy. "We used to have one of those," we tell our
children and grandchildren. Some have said that, secondary to the
computer, we are the reason that genealogy has become a popular hobby?
Are we nostalgic for those times because they were
simpler and we had fewer worries? Sure. Do we miss the old
days because they were slower? Certainly. And because we were
younger? Most definitely! But, I am of the opinion, that
what we really miss are those that accompanied us on the ride, those
that somehow defined that special moment in time. Some moved away
and were never heard from again. Others passed. Some became
incapacitated by illness. Cousins, uncles and aunts, brothers and
sisters, grandmas and grandpas, mothers and fathers, teachers, doctors,
barbers, ministers, army buddies, friends. They are what we
Some things can be found in a "Leave it to Beaver"
rerun or at an antique show. Some cravings are quenched by old
black and white movies and vinyl recordings. For all the others,
we have genealogy.