TELEVISION

10 09 2011

When the television stations first came on the air in my area of the country, it was probably late 40’s, early 50’s.  I am sure everyone has heard of the dancing toothpaste images with the jingle that went with them.   It was really something to see.  In fact, we were invited to my brother’s boss’ house so we could see television for the first time.  No one had a set then.  Just those privileged few who had dared to purchase one of those ‘things’.  And it was considered a real folly to do so.

The television set was very small, probably a 9″ size.  It was on top of a cabinet and all their family and all my family sat in the dark room in order to see it because with the light it generated, it was possible to see the images through all the snow.  And there was definitely a lot of snow.  It was very hard to see through it all sometimes.  And then the television set might start with those diagonal lines that were all too frequent and we might just miss seeing anything at all.

But this night at my brother’s boss’ house, we could see well enough to make out the dancing toothpaste images.  And we were all properly impressed.  I think we were probably watching the Ed Sullivan Show at the time.  Of course I had no idea who Ed Sullivan was nor what the show was all about.   But I was very impressed with those dancing tubes of toothpaste.   I had never seen anything quite like that!

Later on, my husband and I, being newly married and without any children on the way, bought our first television set.  Ours was small, too, but it was larger than what we had seen before.  And there was not quite as much snow anymore.  Besides that, you could actually make out most of the people on the shows and actually keep up with what was going on.  That was a big plus at the time.

We had so much company then that we almost had to make appointments for people.  It got so we couldn’t even go to bed on time at night because someone was watching the Dave Garroway Show in our living room.  But it was o.k.   We were young enough to take all that and still keep going.  And we were both working and making enough money to afford all the popcorn and colas and other snacks that we were serving every night.

After that ‘new’ phase passed though, we had less company.  Most of the people decided that this new fangled thing wasn’t so bad after all and they were buying their own sets.

I went to work for a firm of accountants in the early fifties.  None of my bosses had a television set.  But that Christmas, they all got one.  It was the happiest bunch of people I had ever seen.  They were all talking about having the sets delivered to surprise their families and how exciting it was watching their first shows and how the kids were enjoying all the kiddie shows.

At that time, we only had television during the evening hours.  So we all turned on our sets in the late afternoon and watched the test pattern until the shows came on.  Oh, we were really hip at that time!  But it was all a lot of fun.  And I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.

And speaking of the world.  Our world was never quite the same after that.  Such is life.  Progress, you know.

 





MORE GOOD MEMORIES

4 09 2011

Hi again:  when I was growing up which has of course been quite awhile ago, we did not have shampoos as such.  I guess there was something around because there were beauty shops but I don’t know what they used.  At our house, we used a bar of ivory soap and rubbed that in our hair and then scrubbed with our fingers until we were clean.  This was done in the kitchen sink.

Then we rinsed until we were sure all the ivory was gone.  After that, we rinsed our hair with a combination of vinegar and water.  Probably about 1/3 vinegar to a cup of water.  Then we rinsed more with water and we were through.  The vinegar worked like a combination  of conditioner and rinse.  Anyway, it worked beautifully.

To this day, I have used many a shampoo in my time and  some I liked and a lot I did not.  But in the last few years, I have gone back to the soap, using liquid dawn most of the time.  Then I scrub my head with my fingers just as I have always done.  Then I rinse with that same combination of vinegar and water.  Then I rinse again with plain water and I’m done.  Not expensive, not hard to do and my hair always turns out o.k.  Don’t have a lot of tangles and never have any oily or fine type problems.

When shampoos first became popular, it was advertised on the radio every Sunday night with the girl singing of the shampoo.  I am sure you have heard the jingle many times.  My grandmother who lived with us believed in all the commercials.  So she insisted my mother pick us up some of that new, wonderful shampoo.  But don’t think any of us liked it much.  My grandmother went to the beauty shop every week anyway, so didn’t matter to her.  When she went to the beauty shop, she usually came home with blue hair.  But we all told her how nice she looked so she was happy with blue hair.

I hated beauty shops because I only got to go there to get that terrible, awful permanent wave every year before school started.  The last one I got was so fuzzy that my date called me fuzzy bear when he picked me up to go to the movies.  After that, I was permanently through with fried permanent waves.  But then home permanents came out and that was a whole new story.

Meanwhile back at the shampoo story, earlier in the century, my husband’s grandmother lived in the country and she combed kerosene through her hair to make sure there were no bugs.  At that time, women washed their hair in soft rain water which was caught in a cistern.  Didn’t want to use that hard well water.  So, see, things really aren’t so bad after all in this world of today.  At least we don’t have to worry about having our hair catch on fire because we have just combed through it with kerosene.

If you like this sort of story, you will love my books.  #2503 (my address when I was growing up) tells of growing up in the 30’s & 40’s.   In The 1940’s is the name of the next one and tells all about those War years and living at that time and  The Wonderful 1950’s is all about that time.  Each book is $10 with no postage or order all three for $25.  Just send check or money order to BET   P.O. Box 2249, Benton, AR  72018    You will love them!

 





PANTYHOSE

3 09 2011

Back in the 1950’s, there were no pantyhose.  In fact no one had even heard of such a thing.  Here I go back to old times.    But anyway, we women wore garters and they were truly awful.   Especially if you had skinny legs like I did.  Nothing was going to hold those baggy hose up anyway. But that ring of elastic was the best we had at the time.  And it was either too loose and the hose fell down or it was too tight and the veins in your legs quit working.  Take your choice.

And if it was hot weather and those hose stuck to your sweaty legs, then all was lost anyway because the wonderful marvelous hosiery probably had a run in it or maybe even two or three.  Then you had to start all over again, trying to pull those horrendous hose up your legs with that garter attached.  What a mess!  Of course you could pull on the hose first and then put the garter over them, but that was a massive operation in itself.  If you had a run, you could put nail polish on it and it wouldn’t run anymore, but then gossipy people might start talking about the red spot on your leg.  Have to watch out for all those kinds of people you know.

Then garter belts came along and they were a wonderful improvement if you could get the things to work right.  First you had to either pull it up over your body and make it fit right or clasp it in the front and turn it to the back.  By the time you were finished with that, you felt like you were playing in a band somewhere what with all the clacking and zinging going on.  But, when you once got all that straightened out, then and only then could you put the rest of our clothes on.  Then you attached the hosiery to that wonderful zinging garter belt and you were in business.  Of course by this time, the hose might have acquired a run or two considering all that you had been through.

Several years later, those wonderful pantyhose came onto the market.  At first of course they were just considered tights for little girls, but then someone – probably Mr. Swiffer- thought up the pantyhose using nylon hosiery and that was a marvelous invention – just like the Swiffer is today.  Not that you can compare the two of course, but I have written a blog you might like entitled Dear Mr. Swiffer.   and then another one about having a household blower to blow the rest of the dirt out of my house.

But back to the subject of the pantyhose – could get dressed in a zip and a zing and ready to go.  Great improvement over all those other massive problems.  And then, then, then came the knee hi’s.  Now that was a real step in the right direction.  But of course no one ever  owned pants or could wear pants even at home until the middle and late 50’s.  We all wore skirts before that so we had to wear the full length hose.  Period.   Was required.  Even in hot summertime,

But now with the pants suits and the ‘allowing’ of wearing pants outside the home, we were free to use the knee hi’s.  And today, I wear something called socks which I think I started out wearing when I was born.  But you know what they say – the more things change, the more they remain the same.

How about the no shampoo days.  Will tell you about that one next.  Meanwhile, you might really like my books about the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s.  Each of my books is $10 no postage.  Or 3 for $25.  Look them up on my website booksbybet.com and order straight from me.  You will really like them.  Great reading, great fun and lots of living history.