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Older Than Dirt

"Hey Dad," one of my kids asked the other day, "What was your
favorite fast food when you were growing up ?  " "We didn't have
fast food when I was growing up," I informed him.  "All the food was

"C'mon, seriously.  Where did you eat ?" "It was a place called 'at
home,'" I explained.  "Grandma cooked every day and when Grandpa got
home from work, we sat down together at the dining room table, and
if I didn't like what she put on my plate I was allowed to sit there
until I did like it."

By this time, the kid was laughing so hard I was afraid he was going
to suffer serious internal damage, so I didn't tell him the part
about how I had to have permission to leave the table.  But here are
some other things I would have told him about my childhood if I
figured his system could have handled it:

Some parents NEVER owned their own house, wore Levis , set foot on a
golf course, traveled out of the country or had a credit card.  In
their later years they had something called a revolving charge
card.  The card was good only at Sears Roebuck.  Or maybe it was
Sears AND Roebuck.
Either way, there is no Roebuck anymore.  Maybe he died.

My parents never drove me to soccer practice.  This was mostly
because we never had heard of soccer.  I had a bicycle that weighed
probably 50 pounds, and only had one speed, (slow).  We didn't have
a television in our house until I was 11, but my grandparents had
one before that.  It was, of course, black and white, but they
bought a piece of colored plastic to cover the screen.  The top
third was blue, like the sky, and the bottom third was green, like
grass.  The middle third was red.  It was perfect for programs that
had scenes of fire trucks riding across someone's lawn on a sunny day.
Some people had a lens taped to the front of the TV to make the
picture look larger.

I was 13 before I tasted my first pizza, it was called "pizza pie."
When I bit into it, I burned the roof of my mouth and the cheese
slid off, swung down, plastered itself against my chin and burned
that, too.  It's still the best pizza I ever had.

We didn't have a car until I was 15.  Before that, the only car in
our family was my grandfather's Ford.  He called it a "machine."

I never had a telephone in my room.  The only phone in the house was
in the living room and it was on a party line.  Before you could
dial, you had to listen and make sure some people you didn't know
weren't already using the line.

Pizzas were not delivered to our home.  But milk was.

All newspapers were delivered by boys and all boys delivered
I delivered a newspaper, six days a week.  It cost 7 cents a paper,
of which I got to keep 2 cents.  I had to get up at 4 AM every
morning..  On Saturday, I had to collect the 42 cents from my
customers.  My favorite customers were the ones who gave me 50 cents
and told me to keep the change.  My least favorite customers were
the ones who seemed to never be home on collection day.

Movie stars kissed with their mouths shut.  At least, they did in
the movies.
Touching someone else's tongue with yours was called French kissing
and they didn't do that in movies.  I don't know what they did in
French movies.
French movies were dirty and we weren't allowed to see them.

If you grew up in a generation before there was fast food, you may
want to share some of these memories with your children or
Just don't blame me if they bust a gut laughing.

Growing up isn't what it used to be, is it ?

MEMORIES from a friend:

My Dad is cleaning out my grandmother's house (she died in December)
and he brought me an old Royal Crown Cola bottle.  In the bottle top
was a stopper with a bunch of holes in it.  I knew immediately what
it was, but my daughter had no idea.  She thought they had tried to
make it a salt shaker or something.  I knew it as the bottle that
sat on the end of the ironing board to "sprinkle" clothes with
because we didn't have steam irons.  Man, I am old.

How many do you remember ?

Head lights dimmer switches on the floor.
Ignition switches on the dashboard.
Heaters mounted on the inside of the fire wall.
Real ice boxes.
Pant leg clips for bicycles without chain guards.
Soldering irons you heat on a gas burner.
Using hand signals for cars without turn signals.

Older Than Dirt Quiz:
Count all the ones that you remember, NOT the ones you were told about !

Your ratings at the bottom.

1.    Blackjack chewing gum
2.    Wax Coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water
3.    Candy cigarettes
4.    Soda pop machines that dispensed glass bottles
5.    Coffee shops or diners with tableside juke boxes
6.    Home milk delivery in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers
7.    Party lines
8.    Newsreels before the movie
9.    P.F.  Flyers
10.  Butch wax
11.  Telephone numbers with a word prefix (OLive-6933)
12.  Peashooters
13.  Howdy Doody
14.  45 RPM records
15.  S&H Green Stamps
16   Hi-fi's
17.  Metal ice trays with lever
18.  Mimeograph paper
19   Blue flashbulb
20.  Packards
21.  Roller skate keys
22.  Cork popguns
23.  Drive-ins
24.  Studebakers
25.  Wash tub wringers

If you remembered 0-5 = You're still young If you remembered 6-10 =
You are getting older If you remembered 11-15 = Don't tell your age,
If you remembered 16-25 = You're older than dirt !

I might be older than dirt but those memories are the best part of
my life.


Don't forget to pass this along !!
Especially to all your really OLD friends....

"Senility Prayer"...God grant me...
The senility to forget the people I never liked The good fortune to
run into the ones that I do And the eyesight to tell the difference



Send any comments or concerns to:  LarryDwyer (at)