The Way We Were…

…and the way it was!

I grew up in a little town about 25 miles north of Chicago called Northbrook, Ilinois at a time when everyone treated each other with respect. We didn’t eat a lot of fast food. We drank Kool-aid, ate lunch meat sandwiches, PB&J sandwiches, grilled cheese sandwiches, hot dogs, but mostly home made meal such as meatloaf, fried chicken, roast beef & pork chops, black eye peas, snap peas…

We grew up during a time when we would gather glass bottles to take to the store and use the deposit money to buy penny candy. (We even got a brown paper bag to put the candy in). You sure could get a lot for 25 cents. We went outside to play games, rode bikes, jumped rope and raced against sibling played hide and seek, Red Rover, Red light green light, mother may I, kick the can and yes the games got more daring as we grew…There was no bottled water, no microwave or cable tv, no cell phones, no hair straighteners…

We ate cereal at the breakfast table before going to school. We did our homework, a chore or two and went out to play ball or other games with friends after school and watched some cartoons on Saturday morning (or Amos & Andy after school). If you were bad in school, you got in trouble there and when you got home you got in trouble again because they magically already knew. We had Sunday dinner together, no matter what.

We would ride our bikes for hours all without a cell phone or electronic games.

You LEARNED from your parents instead of disrespecting them and treating them as if they knew nothing. What they said might as well have been gospel.

If someone had a fight, that’s what it was…a fist fight and you were back to being friends after. Kids that were around guns were taught to respect them and never thought of taking a life.

You had to be close enough to home to hear your Mom yelling to tell you it’s time to come home for dinner. We ate around the dinner table and talked to each other. School was MANDATORY. We said the Pledge of Allegiance listened to our teachers. We watched what we said around our elders because we knew If we DISRESPECTED any grown up we would get our behinds busted, it wasn’t called abuse, it was called discipline! … We held doors, carried groceries and gave up our seat without being asked to do so.

You didn’t hear curse words on the radio or TV, and IF you cursed you did it away from the public or you got your mouth washed out with a bar of soap. “Please” and “Thank you” were part of our daily dialogue!

Wouldn’t it be nice if it were possible to get back to this way of life?

Editor’s NOTE: What you have just read is making the rounds on Facebook. I first saw it as a post from my sister, Suepy – and thinking that she had written it – I grabbed it for posting here. [Hey Sis – it is 25 miles – not 40] Then I found that her former sister-in-law, Shirley B. also posted a variation of it – but so what. It tells a story about the way so many of us were raised… then things began to slowly change after November 22, 1963. But you know what – take it for yourself, make the necessary changes as to where you were raised – and pass it around – go ahead – Re-post if you’re thankful for your childhood and will never forget where you came from! ~ Ed.

I’ll see you at Sundown,

3 thoughts on “The Way We Were…

  1. insufficient funds

    I spent my time playing with red ants when my mom told me to go outside. I would come back to the house screaming when they bit the shit out of me.

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