Two Cents Worth

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For the most part my mind doesn’t realize how many years I have survived life, but every once in a while someone just has to remind me.

Gotta love the friend who sends this kind of email. It makes you smile and feel really old. But like it says at the bottom, wouldn’t change a thing.

If you are under the age of 40 you won't understand.

My mom used to cut chicken, chop eggs and spread butter on bread on the same cutting board with the same knife and no bleach, but we didn't seem to get food poisoning.

Our school sandwiches were wrapped in wax paper in a brown paper bag, not in ice pack coolers, but I can't remember anyone getting E.Coli.

We went swimming in the lake, in a swimming hole in the creek or at the beach, not some chlorinated pool. No beach closures then.

We all took PE and risked permanent injury with a pair of sneakers instead of having cross-training athletic shoes with air cushion soles and built-in light reflectors that cost as much as a small car. I can't recall any injuries but they must have happened because they tell us how much safer we are now.

We got the strap for doing something wrong at school. They used to call it discipline and we all grew up to accept the rules and to honor and respect those folk older than us.

We had 40-plus kids in our class and we all learned to read and write, do math and spell almost all the words needed to write a grammatically correct letter.

We all said prayers in school and sang the national anthem, and staying in detention after school caught all sorts of negative attention especially when we got home.

I thought that I was supposed to accomplish something before I was allowed to be proud of myself.

I just can't recall how bored we were without computers, PlayStation, Nintendo, X-Box, or 270 digital TV cable stations. I can’t remember ever being bored.

Oh yeah, and where was the Benadryl and a sterilization kit when I got that bee sting? I could have been killed!

We played King of the Hill on piles of gravel left on vacant construction sites and when we got hurt, mom pulled out the bottle of Mercurochrome - it didn't sting like iodine - and then we got our butt spanked. Now it's a trip to the doctor followed by a 10-day dose of antibiotics and then mom calls the lawyer to sue the contractor for leaving a horribly vicious pile of gravel where it was such a threat.

Not a single person I knew had ever been told that they were from a dysfunctional family. How could we possibly have known that? We never needed group therapy and/or anger management classes. We were obviously so duped by so many societal ills, that we didn't even notice that the entire country wasn't taking Prozac. How did we ever survive?

Love to all who shared this era and to all who didn’t, sorry for what you missed. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.


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