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Remember the Good Times?

Author Unknown

Pick a quiet time to reminisce. . .

It's fun to remember the "good times."

Close your eyes. . . And go back. . . Before the Internet or the Mac, before semi-automatics and crack, before SEGA or Super Nintendo.

Way back. . . I'm talkin' bout hide and go seek at dusk. Sittin' on the porch, hot bread and butter. The ice cream man, Simon Says, Kick the Can, Red light, Green light. Lunch boxes with a Thermos. . .

Chocolate milk, lunch tickets, penny candy from the corner store, hopscotch, butterscotch, skates with keys, jacks, kickball, dodgeball, Dixie Peach and Bonnie Doon socks, Mother May I? Hula Hoops and Sunflower Seeds, Whist and Old Maid and Crazy Eights, wax lips and mustaches, Mary Janes, saddleshoes & Coke bottles with the names of cities on the bottom.

Running through the sprinkler, circle pins, bobby pins, Mickey Mouse Club, Rocky & Bullwinkle, Fran & Ollie, Spin & Marty. . . all in black & white. Catchin' lightning bugs in a jar, playing slingshot. When around the corner seemed far away,

And going downtown seemed like going somewhere. Bedtime, climbing trees, making forts. . . a coaster made from orange crates & an old skate, backyard shows, lemonade stands, cops & robbers, cowboys & indians, sittin' on the curb, staring at clouds, jumpin' down the steps, jumping on the bed.

Pillow fights, "company," Ribbon candy, angel hair on the Christmas tree, Mary Martin as "Peter Pan," Jackie Gleason as "the poor soul," white gloves, walking to church, walking to the library. Being tickled to death. Running till you were out of breath. Laughing so hard that your stomach hurt. Being tired from playin'. . . Remember that?

Not steppin' on a crack. . . or you'll break your mother's back. Paper chains at Christmas, silhouettes of Lincoln and Washington. . . the smell of paste, buck bags and Evening in Paris. Crowding around in a circle for the "after school fight" and running when the teacher came.

What about the girl that had the big bubbly handwriting. . . who dotted her "i's" with hearts? Bob parties, slam books, The Stroll, popcornballs, sock hops and hay rides.

Remember when there were two types of sneakers for girls & boys (Keds & PF Flyer) and the only time you wore them at school, was for "gym". . . with those great blue gym uniforms.

When it took five minutes for the TV to warm up. When nearly everyone's Mom was at home when the kids got home from school. When nobody owned a purebred dog. When a quarter was a decent allowance, and another quarter a huge bonus.

When you'd reach into a muddy gutter for a penny. When girls neither dated nor kissed until late high school, if then. When your Mom wore nylons that came in two pieces. When all of your male teachers wore neckties and female teachers had their hair done, and wore high heels everyday.

When you got your windshield cleaned, oil checked, and gas pumped, without asking - for free, every time. And, you didn't pay for air. And, you got trading stamps to boot! When laundry detergent had free glasses, dishes or towels hidden inside the box.

When any parent could discipline any kid, or feed him or use him to carry groceries, and nobody, not even the kid, thought a thing of it. When pizza wasn't delivered. . . and chicken was. When it was considered a great privilege to be taken out to dinner at a real restaurant with your parents.

When they threatened to keep kids back a grade if they failed. . . and did! When the worst thing you could do at school was smoke in the bathrooms, flunk a test or chew gum.

And the prom was in the gym and you danced to an orchestra, and all the girls wore pastel gowns and the boys wore dinner jacket and paid for dinner. When a '57 Chevy was everyone's dream car. . . to cruise the strip, peel out, lay rubber or watch submarine races, and people went steady and girls wore a class ring with an inch of wrapped dentalfloss coated with pastel frost nail polish so it would fit her finger.

And no one ever asked where the car keys were 'cause they were always in the car, in the ignition and the doors were never locked. And you got in big trouble if you accidentally locked the doors at home. No one ever had a key.

And lying on your back on the grass with your friends and saying things like "That cloud looks like a . . ." And playing baseball on the empty corner lot with no adults to help kids with the rules of the game. Then, baseball was not a psychological group learning experience, it was a game.

Remember when stuff from the market came without safety caps and hermetic seals 'cause no one had yet tried to poison a perfect stranger? And. . . with all our progress. . . don't you just wish. . . just once, you could slip back in time and savor the slower pace. . . and share it with your children.

Can you still remember Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys, Trixie Belden, Laurel & Hardy, Howdy Doody and The Peanut Gallery, The Lone Ranger, The Shadow Knows, Just Plaiin Bill, Stella Dallas, Big John and Sparky, Nellie Belle, Roy and Dale, Trigger and Buttermilk. . . as well as the sound of a rotary mower on Saturday morning, and summers filled with bike rides, treasure hunts, baseball games, bowling and visits to the local public pool.

Remember eating Kool-aid powder with sugar off the end of your licked finger? When being sent to the principal's office was nothing compared to the fate that awaited a misbehaving student at home. Basically, we were in fear for our lives but it wasn't because of drive by shootings, drugs, gangs, etc. Our parents and grandparents were a much bigger threat!

But we all survived because our love was greater than the threat.

Ah, yes. I remember it well.


Larry James
P.O. Box 12695
Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695



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