Friday, August 17, 2007

Simple Pleasures

by Bonnie Calhoun

Black and White
(Under age 40? You won't understand.)

You could hardly see for all the snow,

Spread the rabbit ears as far as they go.

Pull a chair up to the TV set,

"Good Night, David. Good Night, Chet."


My Mom used to cut chicken, chop eggs and spread mayo on the same cutting board with the same knife and no bleach, but we didn't seem to get food poisoning.

My Mom use to defrost hamburger on the counter AND I use to eat it raw sometimes, too. Our school sandwiches were wrapped in wax paper in a brown paper bag, not in icepack coolers, but I can't remember getting e.coli.

Almost all of us would have rather gone swimming in the lake instead of a pristine pool (talk about boring), no beach closures then.

The term cell phone would have conjured up a phone in a jail cell, and a pager was the school PA system.

We all took gym, not PE...and risked permanent injury with a pair of high top Ked's (only worn in gym)instead of having cross-training athletic shoes with air cushion soles and built in light reflectors. I can't recall any injuries but they must have happened because they tell us how much safer we are now.

Flunking gym was not an option... even for stupid kids! I guess PE must be much harder than gym.

We must have had horribly damaged psyches. What an archaic health system we had then. Remember school nurses? Ours wore a cap and everything.

I thought that I was supposed to accomplish something before I was allowed to be proud of myself.

I just can't recall how bored we were without computers, Play Station, Nintendo, X-box or 270 digital TV cable stations.

Oh yeah... and where was the Benadryl and sterilization kit when I got that bee sting? I could have been killed!

We played 'king of the hill' on piles of gravel left on vacant construction sites, and when we got hurt, Mom pulled out the 48-cent bottle of Mercurochrome (kids liked it better because it didn't sting like iodine did) and then we got our butt spanked.

Now it's a trip to the emergency room, followed by a 10-day dose of a $49 bottle of antibiotics, and then Mom calls the attorney to sue the contractor for leaving a horribly vicious pile of gravel where it was such a threat.

We didn't act up at the neighbor's house either because if we did, we got our butt spanked there and then we got butt spanked again when we got home.

I recall Donny Reynolds from next door coming over and doing his tricks on the front stoop, just before he fell off. Little did his Mom know that she could have owned our house. Instead, she picked him up and swatted him for being such a goof. It was a neighborhood run amuck.

To top it off, not a single person I knew had ever been told that they were from a dysfunctional family. How could we possibly have known that?

We needed to get into group therapy and anger management classes? We were obviously so duped by so many societal ills, that we didn't even notice that the entire country wasn't taking Prozac! How did we ever survive?

LOVE TO ALL OF US WHO SHARED THIS ERA, AND TO ALL WHO DIDN'T- SORRY FOR WHAT YOU MISSED. I WOULDN'T TRADE IT FOR ANYTHING

Pass this to someone and remember that life's most simple pleasures are very often the best.

3 Comments:

  1. Paula Neal Mooney said...
    Very good.

    That's why I stay calm in a modern-day world that can freak out over little stuff.

    Let's hope the calmness returns...
    Anonymous said...
    I have to tell ya...we found out the hard way about my allergy to bee stings...so that one little point made me shudder a bit.

    How's this? The neighbor's dog bit me...my mom yelled at me because she said I should have remembered that the dog didn't like bicycles and it was my fault for riding so close to the yard.

    We had to have common sense.
    We had to entertain ourselves.
    Even if we DID have computers and video games, we wouldn't have been allowed to use them too often because we belonged outside and shouldn't be running the electric bill up.

    Please...my kids got the same treatment, believe me.

    Thanks for the laugh.

    pfunk
    Laura @ Laura Williams' Musings said...
    Wow what an eye opening post! I can relate to it all... butt swats and all.


    People are too sue-happy nowadays.

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