Who of you can remember growing up in the 1950 years? Our winters were snowy and cold. As kids we did not feel the cold. We would have our P F Flyers sleds and be out sliding down the sidewalk hill. We would take turns because the sidewalk was only wide enough for one sled at a time. My dad sometimes would come with me and that would be the best time ever. We would fly down that sidewalk across the alley onto the next sidewalk, You have to try to picture it in your mind, here we are flying down the hill and in no time we are flying across the alley way landing on the next sidewalk! It was totally Awesome - all the other kids wanted my dad to go down with them so they could experience the thrill and he took them.He was cool way before cool.
When we liked something we would say - man is that tough - today's meaning would be - wow is he cool or that is so cool, We used words like -man, tough, neat, sharp, etc. Our town had a Catholic school and a public school. No pre-school or kindergarten. You went straight into 1st grade. I was in public school for first grade and in second grade went to Catholic school because we had moved closer to that grade school. There were no uniforms but you were not permitted to wear jeans or slacks. You had to wear a dress, jumper or skirt and blouse. Bobby socks of course but not tennis shoes. We wore dress shoes or penny loafers. 7th grade is when I started going to the dances. I had my first slow dance with a boy named Kenny Rybka, I'll never forget him and how he smelled so fresh and how tongue tied we both were - so young - so fun. Porky Chadwicfk was "THE MAN" with his DooWop music that sent us all in a fever. Those were the days my friend.
We were small town, snow did not trap us in our homes, we walked to the butcher's, to the produce store. The dentist, eye doctor, physician were all within walking distance to where I lived. In grade school we walked to St. Cecilia's for Mass in the morning, then home for lunch then back to school then home again, Same thing for high school - we were not bussed, We walked, morning, noon and after school. It was a mile one way, at least it seemed like it, it could of been a half a mile. There were no cafeteria's. You either ate in the gym if you lived out of Glassport or you walked home to eat and then back again, Obesity in kids was almost non existent because of all the walking we did. The adults also walked a lot. We had the Paper Store and the pharmacy. They were the hang outs, the in places where everyone (kids,teens) gathered. We had phosphates, vanilla , cherry cokes, hot chocolate. Friday night dances were held at the American legion, Bo Diddley appeared many times, that is where I had my first cigarette, a Kent. It tasted horrible but it was the thing to do, I fell in love so many times at the dances but one of the guys named Butch had my heart. we danced continually - he was by far the best dancer. After the football games we went to the A.L. dance.
Everything revolved in Glassport. Saturday nights found us at the local Broadway Roller Rink. Sunday nights we were at the White Elephant where the ultra violet lights made everyone who wore white stand out, We would wear our mom's white waitress dresses and the guys wore white shirts. We thought we were so "TOUGH"
The best thing of all is that I met the love of my life at the American Legion dance and we have been married going on 47 years!
What do today's young kids have? First off you would not let your young daughter walk anywhere by herself.
Today you have to make play dates so your children can play together. Drugs and sex are far to common and a worry for today's parents. The days of Mayberry are long gone, such a sophisticated world we live in today, our kids grow up to fast - I wish that they could have all the new technology along with the old good times of Mayberry or Happy Days. Cell phones are a good thing, so is the Internet if used properly, i-phones, i-pods are all at our fingertips. We have all this at our fingertips but it would be great to still have the innocence and fun of the fifities. I know there are a lot of families that strive to bring that atmosphere into their homes for their children and hopefully it will continue.
In those years the TV was introduced and everyone was in awe. Our family did not have a TV right away, so I was allowed to go to the neighbors who lived right next door to watch "The Lone Ranger." That was the highlight of the week for this little girl.
When we did become the proud owners of a TV, the popular program on every day for kids was Captain Video. I did not like the program but was memorized by watching the people on TV. As kids we could not understand how those people got inside.! A number of interesting children's programs were introduced through the years. We were introduced to Howdy Doody, Jackie Gleason, I love Lucy, so many good programs. Cowboy movies and War movies were abundant
Unlike now the television went off the air at 11 o'clock. It showed a test tube and that was it, alas the radio also went off the air. For a young girl babysitting, it was unnerving not to have any sound or noise on, without that you could hear every creak of our house or the wind rattling the windows. I admit that I was spooked and would not be able to fall asleep. My brother was sound asleep upstairs and I was on the couch until my parents got home. Sometimes that would be 3 or 4 in the morning! I was babysitting whenever I still needed a babysitter!