Let’s be nostalgic for a few minutes shall we? Mom.me originally posted this list of 19 items that instantly brought me back to my childhood (good, bad, or indifferent)…
- Ride in a car without a seat belt. Yup. The shoulder strap keeping you from slamming your head against the glove compartment was mom’s arm that instantly stretched across the car not unlike the Stretch Armstrong toy. No matter how large the vehicle was, mom’s arm shot across you shoulder to shoulder.
- Style your hair with her spit. Yup. She had every ‘dippity do’ and extra strong Aquanet eating the ozone but her spit to keep my bangs out of my eyes was good enough for me.
- Put coke in my lunch box. Nope. We were not the high fa-luting type to afford Coke and didn’t have soda in the house until I was much older. We had powered milk; just add water (while the milk dust fills your nasal cavity and lungs). On special occasions we had Zarex syrup. A school lunchtime drink was using the dime in the foil in the lunchbox or mitten to pay for the 4 oz container of milk that, when finally opened, lunch period was over. The milk struggle was real.
- Send you to the store for bread. More like a pack of butts from the corner market. Society now frowns on the 8 yr old walking in alone and purchasing Virginia Slims.
- Tell you to walk to your friends house. Yup. Your friend list extended as far as you could walk-before the streetlights came on of course. For me, my shifty brothers stole a bike for me, painted it another color, and my ‘neighborhood of friends’ instantly expanded a few more streets away.
- Meet your date when they picked you up. Yup. The nervous sweating was not about actually going on the date, it was the 100 questions that he would be asked without even setting a foot in the door.
- Send you to the neighbors to borrow a cup of sugar. Yup. If you switch sugar with egg its right on the money. Lots of baking from scratch went on and to keep the household fed, the last of something was used the day before payday and the neighbors always helped each other.
- Talk to your neighbors. Yup. Not only talked to them but we were encouraged to visit. Hmmm maybe this was my mother’s way of giving herself some alone time under the guise of ‘saying hello to’ that old neighbor who could never remember who you were to begin with.
- Let you walk near a glass table. Well this one is not really fair we didn’t own one. I can say, however, that we did have a coffee table that I slammed my head on while I toddled around like a drunken sailor. She was kind enough to share that story with me later in life.
- Not answer the phone when away from their kids.Yup. How many times would I call to get permission to eat over my friends house and curiously no one would pick up the damn rotary phone. I know she is there! its dinnertime and she is cooking. WTH.
- Go to the pool without sunscreen. Yup. Sunscreen? Try lather up with baby oil to get that dark shiney glow! and not the pool but walk to the lake (another thing kids wouldn’t do these days; a two mile hike alone).
- Let the neighborhood teenager babysit. Nope. I had no need. On the very rare occasion my parents left the house, I had the pleasure of one or two of my three older brothers to
beat meum, make sure I was quiet and put to bed on time. I may have been safer with Son of Sam.
- Let you eat your Halloween candy as soon as you came home. Yes and no. Although I was allotted my share of the booty, the parents had first dibs on everything dumped on the floor. I like to think of it as the ‘vig’ – house gets their cut right? Mom was big on Squirrels and Mary Janes – two things to completely rip your teeth out of your head. Mom was living on the edge.
- Leave you in the car while she ran in real quick. Well, here is the thing about this one. My mom learned the hard way to never do that again. She ‘ran into the store real quick’ only to return and find her daughter screaming blue murder because she decided to put her finger on the hot coiled cigarette lighter. The skin quickly bubbled up and to much of my surprise, I didn’t lose any feeling in the tip of that finger. Lesson learned mom, right?
- Let your friends pierce your ears. Nope. We went to Cherry and Webb were I chickened out in the seat and my mom had her’s done instead. So not a completely wasted trip.
- Let you sit behind the wheel of the car and pretend you were driving. Yup. We felt all grown up sitting in their lap and ‘steering’. Brittany Spears can attest to the harsh reality that this is a big ‘no no’ these days.
- Ride your bike without a helmet. Yup. Not only did I not have a helmet I was self taught and wrist guards would probably have been more helpful. I do have to throw out there that where I live, flipping your bike over and using the pedals to spin the wheels and pretend you were an ice cream sales person was reality. It is surprising to hear that some kids never did that. Brienne F. – I am looking in your direction.
- Let you use a pair of scissors on your own. I cannot truthfully answer this. I can only remember using the rounded scissors growing up. Maybe we didn’t have any real scissors as it was too much of a temptation for my mother bringing up those three boys. I, of course, was a saint.
- Buy you candy cigarettes. Yup. Smoke’em if you got’em. Although I will admit actually inhaling the candy cigarette and choking on all the powder that is used to create the ‘smoke’. Whoops. Blow out not in. I needed the remedial class on smoking candy cigs apparently.
And there you have it. Have more that you want to share? Please do. It’s nice to know of other people’s childhood horror.