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Remember When...? A Short Trip Down Memory Lane

Updated on January 8, 2012

This is a little trip down memory lane. I'm old enough now to look back, and remember the "good old days" with a sort of fond nostalgia.

What's weird is that I used to hate it when my parents did it...remember when...this and that and the other thing was cheaper, better, more honest, more polite? All the time the comparisons were negative, it seemed to me, between now (which must have sucked in my parents' opinions) and back then, which they made sound like the Golden Age or something.

When I was a teen, I just wanted to scream at them: "THIS IS NOW! DEAL WITH IT!"

It's really funny how having a few years on me changes my perspective considerably. Now, I want to share with you a few things I remember that I'll bet your teenage kids DON'T!

Remember when...

  • Pay phones used to actually WORK?
  • Coffee came free with your meal in a restaurant?
  • TV was actually free
  • Black and White TV became COLOR TV?
  • Secretaries TYPED business letters on a TYPEWRITER?
  • Pencil and paper were calculator tools?
  • People hung their wash out on the clothesline, usually on a Monday?
  • Cigarettes were 50 cents a pack?
  • Gasoline was 35 cents per gallon?
  • Lucy was "expecting" and not "pregnant" on the "I Love Lucy" show, because the censors wouldn't allow the word "pregnant" on the air?
  • Wives believed their husbands, because they COULD?
  • You could get an ice cream cone for a nickel? Yes, that's right, five little cents got you into ice cream on a hot summer day.
  • You could smoke in bars?
  • You could neck with your date at the drive-in movies?
  • The good guys always won?
  • Ron Howard was "Opie" on the "Andy of Mayberry" TV show? This is before "Happy Days", even. And yes, I really am that old. Dirt was new when I was a kid.
  • National parks were free to enter?
  • We all laughed to "Laugh-In"?
  • Mr. Ed was a talking horse and not a talking head?
  • "Text" meant a paragraph in a book or letter?
  • There was no speed limit in Texas?
  • You could actually recognize someone's handwriting?
  • There were NO ATMS? (Yikes! I wonder what we did without them?)
  • People got dressed up to go to church?

I was quite ill for (what seemed to me) to be a long time. It really reminded me that I'm mortal, as are we all. And it got me to thinking about time, about my own life and all the life surrounding me, human and otherwise, and how limited our spans of life are.

It also got me thinking about the past.

Time passes, and things change. A LOT changes over time! It seems when I remember the past, I do tend to remember the GOOD things. Nostalgia casts a rosy glow over all the "remember whens...?"

It also seems that we forget so much. Maybe that's good. It probably ISN'T good to dwell in the past and forget to live in the Now.

Ah, still, there is something about those years when I was young that I can't help recalling with a certain fondness. Some things are so good in retrospect; we didn't treasure them enough while they were current and in the Now. Reminiscing gives us a chance to cherish our memories and happily re-live precious moments.

I feel that when my clock has run down and my time is done, all those years and all that living with will be done with; gone and forgotten. It's a bittersweet feeling, because after all, the world moves on, and by leaving this world, I will be making room for someone new, and new era beginning.


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    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      Thanks for the comment, Brewski. We're not getting old, we're getting better all the time.

    • brewskitimeguy profile image


      6 years ago from Maine

      So well spoken...only things though it reminds me how old we are getting..hahaha

      Thanks for sharing

    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      Thank you for the comment, Savanahl.

    • savanahl profile image


      6 years ago

      What a great stroll down memory lane. I really enjoyed reading this.

    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      Thanks for the comment, Sofs. I had to revisit the hub to remember the pic.

    • sofs profile image


      6 years ago

      This is a lovely Hub Paradise... my children are fascinated when I tell them about old times... they cannot believe that I did not have a Cell phone or a computer... it was fun going through your list. This one made me laugh out aloud.."Wives believed their husbands, because they COULD?"

      Loved the picture too... kind of dreamy :) Have a lovely day! God Bless!

    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      I also read a lot. I don't watch that much TV. Too many commercials!

    • SweetiePie profile image


      6 years ago from Southern California, USA

      I still get free TV with the digital antennae, but channels do not pick up as well in some places as others. At my old apartment it was great because we had a clear view, but at this new one, too many obstructions. I refuse to pay for cable anymore, and I actually have read a lot more sense I got rid of it. I have a cell phone, but still refuse to move over to a smart phone because I do not want to pay for a data plan.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      6 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      When I was a teen, I just wanted to scream at them: "THIS IS NOW! DEAL WITH IT!"

      How true this is. I remember saying the very same thing. I loved your list; this was more than delightful and funny, there is poignancy inherent with all “remember whens.” Our children will be saying the same thing some day. There are things gone by that I do miss, as did our parents and our grandparents.

    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      Thanks for the comment, Gypsy. You and I are always on the same page!

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      6 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Thanks for the trip down memory lane. I loved Laugh-In and Mr. Ed was my favorite horse. I still hang clothes on a clothes line in my yard.

    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      Thank you for the comment, doctor, and you are always so young in your heart and soul; I just don't believe you're actually older than SOIL! Dirt, maybe, soil, no way!

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      6 years ago from south Florida

      Since I'm older than soil (it came before dirt), I can relate to all this, Paradise. It's fun to look back but I would not want to go back - no computer, no cell phone, no iPad, etc.

      Thanks for the stroll though.

    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      Thanks for the comment, Flora. I'm much better now, thank you, but still not quite 100%.

      I love that you (pretty young thing that you are) and I have some memories in common. And yes, now that you mention it, I think it was the Dick Van Dyke show that had Rob and Laura, a married couple, in the twin beds!

      Is it really true that people are forgetting how to read a non-digital clock??? Wow. Still, it does make more sense to have the clock be a digital one.

    • FloraBreenRobison profile image


      6 years ago

      I have to find a balance between thinking about the past and thinking about now. I do indeed remember some of these things despite my young age. With my love of old Hollywood I've seen I am well aware of how much better television was in the early days.

      I have another one for you about tv:

      Remember when married couples in TV and movies slept in separate beds?

      and speaking of clocks, here is another one: Remember when everyone could tell the time by reading the hands on a clock? Some people cannot tell the time if it isn't digital.

      I hope you are well again.

    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      You surprise me, you really do, RealHousewife, because you look and seem WAY TOO YOUNG to remember the same things I remember!

      PS, May I say I told you so about your latest hub? Everybody loves it. We all think you are terrific.

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 

      6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Hi Paradise7 - I remember all of that! And I know what you mean - I look back and things just seemed better. Everything tasted better, tv was better? It seems so...and I used to hate when my parents would say all that stuff too:) lol I think of all the changes since we got the internet!

      I took typing and had a manual typewriter:-0 lol

    • Paradise7 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      Thanks for the comment, Frank, and LOL, def. It won't be long before kids won't know what "Paper" is, or what a "Pencil" is.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      6 years ago from Shelton

      I love your trip down memory lane.. what are pay-phones? LOL


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