Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,
Thank you so much for the many sweet birthday wishes you sent to The Hurricane. I told her about the post, so she saw your messages. My babies are so grown up.
Today's subject, however, is simpler times. I wish I had a dollar -- or better yet, a fiver -- for every time I've heard people say that life used to be better in simpler times.
Of course, most of the people who say that weren't alive during those simpler times.
I'm sure that living in the past had its advantages, but I appreciate everything I have today. One advantage was probably the lack of television. I'm sure people spent more time reading and talking to each other. Do you think families were closer then?
But I like my television, computer, internet, washer and dryer, and all my kitchen appliances. When I was a child, it never occurred to me that someday there would be such a thing as a microwave oven or a VCR, and now we've already moved on to DVDs and the DVR.
I'm glad I don't have to do my marketing everyday because I don't have a refrigerator in which to preserve my food. Even when the ice box was in most homes, my mother said that if you didn't remember to empty the pan under the ice box --where the water from the ice dripped -- it overflowed and you had a mess to clean up.
Mother said she gained only eight pounds during that pregnancy. I guess being miserable without air conditioning and doing heavy work would keep one rather thin.
She also never experienced the best part of childbirth: the actual birth of the baby. She said that she endured labor, and then when it was time for us to be born, the doctor would "knock her out" -- I imagine him using a mallet on her head, but I suspect it was some sort of anesthesia -- and when she woke up she had a baby. I can't imagine missing out on the joy of the first sight of my children. And of course, Daddy wasn't in the delivery room to welcome us.
How about illness in simpler times?
Cancer was an almost immediate death sentence. My grandfather died a mere two weeks after being diagnosed with leukemia. Today, so many types of cancer are treatable, and although we sometimes think the cure is worse than the illness, I think I'll take my chances with the cure. A lot of people go through chemotherapy and then live cancer free for many years.
The flu pandemic of 1918 killed millions of people. In U.S. cities, bodies were piled in the streets to be picked up by a wagon. The coffin makers couldn't keep up. There was no way to keep that evil flu from spreading.
I'm not sure we appreciate the efforts of our government to stop the spread of H1N1 a few years ago. Sure, some people came down with that flu, and some people died from it. But it didn't cause a worldwide catastrophe. I was grateful to get my H1N1 shot.
I'm sad about some parts of simpler times that we miss out on. For example, families usually took care of their elders at home instead of shipping them off to a nursing home to be visited on Christmas -- if even then. On the other hand, some folks were sent to the "poor farm."
Today and yesterday: good and bad points about each.
But I'll take today.
Infinities of love,
P.S. I received four comments on Monday's and Tuesday's posts that weren't published, but it wasn't for lack of trying. When I clicked on publish, the comments disappeared. So if you wrote a comment, and didn't see it, it's because it's floating around somewhere, refusing to cooperate with my blog.
Medical advances aside, I would go back to the 40's and 50's in a New York Minute. I would even like to go back to the mid 1800's. I can't wait for time travel.ReplyDelete
Considering how old you are, I'd say you're already time traveling.Delete
I remember when I was a kid the only person on our street who had a telephone was Mrs Ogden. If my dad needed to make a phone call we would all troop over to her house and watch my dad talking on the phone like it was a magic trick.ReplyDelete
I remember party lines.Delete
Blogger has been glitchy. I've had strange things happen, too.ReplyDelete
I think every time period has it's pros and cons. But living where I do, I am thrilled to have appliances, the new gadgets, and the electronic marvels that would have sounded like I was on the Twilight Zone when I was a kid. Not everyone has them in this time period. We are lucky! :)
You're right, Rita. Not everyone has the advantages we have.Delete
I miss vinyl records!ReplyDelete
I still have mine, including Meet the Beatles.Delete
Great post, Janieola! I love all the technology we have now, but it would be nice to just unplug every now and then and slow down...I have to make myself do that! Oooh, just got a text! Gotta go!ReplyDelete
You're so funny, Stephanola. I think of those down times as whenever the electricity goes out.Delete
GREAT COMMENT to Coffeypot!!! I'm old enough to remember the wringer washer and my mom's tale of a 'long breasted' woman who got hers caught in the wringer. Never did find out if it was true or not....ReplyDelete
Remember when The Washington Post was investigating Watergate and someone said if Katharine Graham didn't watch out she was going to get her tit caught in a wringer?Delete
Ah for the good old days when he Reubenesque woman was the ideal...ReplyDelete
Boomer, You are so wise.Delete
I couldn't believe it when my mom said the doctor knocked her out just before she gave birth to me. Why would he do that? The hard part was already done! Apparently they had simple minds in those simple times.ReplyDelete
I'd like to find someone who could explain that practice to me.Delete
Sorry I missed your birthday - belated birthday wishes, I hope you had a great day :)ReplyDelete
Thank you, but it was The Hurricane's birthday. My baby is 26,Delete
I was born in 1934 & grew up during those times. My mom once misplaced a bag of potato peelings meant for the garbage can (no disposers yet) & found them in the wringer washer next time she went to do the laundry!ReplyDelete
Did the doctor knock you out right before your babies were born?Delete