A Funny Look at Culty Vintage Toys, Foods and Television Shows.
The Good Old Days
The good old days. The days when the Marlborough man road a horse and smoked at the same time , a woman made tuna casserole as an acceptable meal, rock music was the Partridge Family, a good breakfast included TANG, when SPAM with mustard was a "healthy" lunch. When boys played cowboys and Indians and girls played teacher and house. When a man came home from work scotch on the rocks was handed to him along with his slippers. A woman wore the perfect shade of red lipstick and no one ever discussed the the feminine uncle who never married. The days when the men brought home the bacon (or SPAM) and the ladies fried it up in a pan. The days when almost every family was nuclear and no one ever got divorced. The days unwed mommies "went away" to visit Aunt Pearl.
The days when you could send your children out to play, all day, and feel safe. The days when families ate dinner together every night. The days when citizenship was taught in school and the celebration of holidays did not offend anyone. When a handshake meant something. When a man's word was his bond. When helping your neighbor was not a hardship. When the honor system really worked. When you drove down the road and almost everyone would let you go without without cursing and banging the on wheel.
Clearly, I could go on and on with both sides of this coin. But, instead I thought I would have some fun with some of the campy items from yesteryear.
Remember Astronauts Drink this.
Let's Talk Food
Alrighty people there is no way I could start this and not start with the one the only, SPAM. Firstly, SPAM is still going strong and is ever so popular in certain geographic areas. I believe there may even be a national SPAM Day and SPAM cooking contests. I have seen sushi SPAM.
Really people what the hell is SPAM. I ate it like the rest of you. My dad loved to fry up SPAM in tons of butter to the perfect shade of brown. Add just the right amount of spicy brown mustard and he was in lunch Heaven. I am pretty certain that SPAM could make it through a nuclear war. I can see it now, nothing survives but every can of SPAM in the world. The makings of a campy horror flick.
Another classic, vintage, meal was Deviled Ham in that little white can. There was the sneaky little red devil on the front. I confess I was victim to many a Deviled Ham and mustard (sometimes even eggs) sandwich for lunch in elementary school. If I was lucky I got Wonder Bread. The bread "like no other" with vitamins through and though. Ha, they neglected to mention the chemicals that may have been present in that loaf. Clearly, I was not the most popular when it came to trading lunches. In fact, I might argue, had I had a weaker disposition I might be scarred to this day over some of my lunches.
How about Tang? We were somehow convinced that Tang was what got us into space, the official drink of NASA. You can grow up to be an Astronaut. Orange powder mixed with water bam the moon here we come. Probably the cause of many a diabetic episode. One step above Jello (don't get me started on that 3,2,1 layered Jello). I am thinking Tang will be next to SPAM after a nuclear disaster.
Come on over for dinner everyone. Appetizers are deviled eggs and Jello fruit mold. Pregnant women can smoke and drink and we will have yummy tuna casserole for our entre. If it is a good night we can add those petrified dried onions and call it a party. If your kiddies behave you can stir some dried up brown pieces of something in your milk and call it good for you because it is Ovaltine!
Tan Lines and All.
Remember They Don't Fall Down
Forget chokeable parts and toxic poisons. A toys is a toy, let's play with it. Pennies in the light sockets? Let's start with Jacks. Small sharp metal shapes with a ball that looks like a candy jawbreaker. Hmmmmm. Metal Slinky (still sold today) that couldn't possibly act like a noose around a toddlers neck? The matchbox car a classic toy for the young boy. It is OK that the paint was full of poisonous metals enough to cause brain damage. They are fun! No worries they can act like teethers for toddlers. Yummy. Lincoln Logs. Hugely popular but once you have built that fort, then what? Lego's, no those can't go down a kids throat. Finally, the company got hip and made them bigger, then bigger, then bigger. No kids won't choke but horses beware.
GI Joe. Love Joe. However, how did a scarred up old man with one outfit become such a popular toy? Barbie-don't dis my Barbie-well I might a little. Celebrities did not invent the need for the boob job, Barbie did. Gotta love Suntan Barbie. Hello, skin cancer Barbie! My favorite Barbie was suntan Barbie. However, I also, had an issue with tanning far too much and probably caused major irreversible damage! There's an idea for a law suite. It's all Barbie's fault.
Weebles wobble but they don't fall down. That is because they are fat! The whole damn Weeble family was over weight. Spam and Tuna Casserole to blame for that. Today, the Media would have them all on Weight Watchers showing how unhealthy it is. Come on, the media wants Santa on a frigin diet! Can you imagine visions of bony Santa sliding down the chimney and cracking in half? "Look mommy Santa left me.......bones!"
"I think I Love You"
Television was such a novelty at one time. Weekly television shows where the craze. No cable, no satellite, no DVR and no blue ray. Just weekly shows that the young and old alike waited for at the appointed time on the appointed night.
A forever classic the Twilight Zone. Far be it for me to find much fault in such a progressive and cool show (a bit before my time). So I won't. A true classic for me was The Partridge Family. Admittedly David Cassidy was my first bonafide crush. However, I do believe there is an eighth wonder of the world. Why is Keith Partridge so hot and David Cassidy is not?
The Flinstones and The Jetsons both total classic cartoons. Wilma kicked ass and took no crap from Fred. " In Bedrock twist twist."Jane and Judy Jetson pretty cool too. They knew how to get what they wanted without George having a clue.
The Little Rascals. Honestly, what's up with the lack child labor laws. Those poor kids. Spanky another victim of the Tuna Casserole and SPAM. Come on one of those kids was named Chubbzy Ubbzy!Buckwheat and Farina they were freakin cereals for crying out loud. Forget being politically correct that was a big failure. However, rent some and I promise a true laugh those kids were funny! Alfalfa, again with the food.
My ALL time forever favorite is I LOVE LUCY. I will never diss Lucy. She and Ethel reminded me of my friend and I. Whenever, I was sad or lonely I would turn on Lucy and I would smile. In fact, in one episode she went to Beverly Hills, CA and rang the doorbell of a celebrity. So, when I was 15, I was in Beverly Hills. I walked up to her door and rang the doorbell with the excuse she had done it on her show, so now I was doing it. Surprise, she never answered the door. I did look in her garbage can and took a small piece of trash, cause I Love Lucy.
There are a lot of pros and cons to the good old days. This goes with any era in history in any region. The best thing is our memories. With every toy, food and television show we can probably muster up a big Kool Aide smile and some note worthy memories. We "Have come a long way baby" as the Virginia Slim cigarette advertisement stated. We really never know just how far until we have gone past it.
"I'm so glad we had this time together" Carol Burnett