Thursday, October 02, 2008

Blog Carnival-- growing up in the 60's

One of the challenges presented to the members of the Humorbloggers group that I belong to was to participate in a Blog Carnival. I'm not exactly sure what I'm supposed to do other than write about growing up and, of course, to use the expression uber sucktacular . Well, uber sucktacular was something I read on Sandy's blog ( www.witsbitch.blogspot.com/ ) today, and it is her contribution to the English language, so I just decided to fit it into my post today. It truly does enrich my vocabulary, and it pretty much describes my early years.

I grew up in the 1960's, in a small city in central NJ, though many of my friends and relatives would debate whether or not I have actually grown up. A few years ago, my spawn and her friends all got together and decided which of their parents fit different catagories like smartest, coolest, and so forth. I was voted most childish, so that's a good thing, isn't it?

Anyway, my city was a multi-cultural one, which means I got beat up by kids of various ethnic, racial, and religious backgrounds.

I lived across the street from an open sewer a babbling brook, and the Pennsylvania Railroad East Coast main line we were conveniently located near public transportation, according to the real estate agent.

The winters were pretty crappy, because my father worked in the heating business, but the summers were exciting. We often went to Florida to visit my uncle, and no trip to Florida was complete without encountering nature, which usually turned out badly.

http://crotchety-old-man-yells-at-cars.blogspot.com/2008/06/malevolent-monkeys-of-miami.html

The trips to Florida were extra thrilling, because my father decided that it was possible to drive the 1200+ miles to Fort Lauderdale in less than 20 hours. This was his goal in life because one cousin stated it was possible to do it in 18 hours, and the best Dad ever did was just under 21. Anyone with a calculator can tell that Dad's cousin was full of sh*t, but this was before calculators were invented, so Dad fired up the Mercury after plotting the best possible time to avoid Washington D.C. traffic.

By the way, there were long discussions in the corner garage a few days before the trip, as everyone in the neighborhood weighed in on what was the optimal departure time and route. Somehow, it always wound up to be 3 a.m. Every family outing always began at 3 a.m. I wasn't sure exactly how dangerous or tricky traffic was, but it had to be beaten, and apparently, no matter where we were going-- Florida, Virginia, Pennsylvania, the Jersey Shore--we always had to leave at 3 a.m. It wasn't until the Crotchety Old Lady and I had several discussions
Photobucket and I decided she was right, we didn't have to leave at 3 a.m. Photobucket

TV in the 1960's was pretty awesome, and I wouldn't be here without it. My family didn't have a remote, so it was my duty to carefully turn the knob to the correct station. Just as I started to get old enough that my father realized I only had a few more years of channel changing ahead of me, my sister was born. Dad bought a TV with a remote early in the 1970's, so he didn't need any more kids.

TV was such a big part of our lives. We got our first color TV in the mid 60's, and it was such a novelty, when anyone came to visit, we would have to try to find a show in color, so they could see it. Generally, only game shows were in color during the day, so we watched a lot of Concentration with a slightly green tinted Hugh Downs. It wasn't until many years later I realized most people were not, in fact, green hued.

My grammar school class often had nuclear attack drills, because everyone knows that nothing provides greater safety during an atomic bomb blast than a wooden school desk. And nothing instills a sense of well being in kids than explaining just how many missiles are aimed right at New Jersey. I suppose some may have taken comfort in Nike Missile bases in the towns I psssed every day, but it wasn't all that reassuring to me.

By the way, Humorbloggers are having a Humor Blogger of the Year contest.

Your old pal Crotchety would be pretty happy if he were to get a few votes. Just click here: http://www.humorbloggers.com/ and look for my name. I'm getting my butt kicked by "other," and that's just not right.

There may be chocolate. Just sayin'

http://www.humorbloggers.com/

34 comments:

Chat Blanc said...

I now have a new rule--I only vote for humor bloggers with CHOCOLATE!! :)

gosh, growing up in NJ sounds just idyllic. oy, I don't envy ya. but I do like that you were selected as most childish. that rocks!!

Da Old Man said...

@ Chat: Thanks. Chocolate does make everything better.

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

and what if "other" wins Humor Blogger of the Year?

Janna said...

OMG!
My dad used me as a human remote control too.
This was during the mid 1970's.
They hadn't bought a TV with a remote yet.
My only purpose in life was to be the channel changer.
Sad, really.
And, once they finally bought a TV with a remote, they gave up all thoughts of having more kids.
Which is why I am an only child.

Adullamite said...

There were no remotes in the UK until the 80's. Now they are everywhere and I often use one to answer the phone!

Lauren said...

Now that the spawn pointed out that you are childlike I would have to agree...your posts do have that writing quality. It's very endearing though!

Drowsey Monkey said...

Wow, nuclear attack drills, I remember doing that too!lol...we're old!

This Brazen Teacher said...

You grew up in the 60's? I thought you were an old man? I'm so disappointed.

:-)

shyne said...

Now waiting for chocolate to arrive....:-)

Da Old Man said...

@ Nanny: I don't care who wins as long as it's not other. I hate that guy. lol

@ Janna: I wonder how many siblings we would have had if remotes were invented earlier. I only has one spawn because I had a remote.

@ Adullamite: I misplaced my remote and I watched the same chasnnel all day. It was better than getting up and changing the channel.

@ Lauren: It made her proud.

@ Drowsey: I know :(

@ Brazen: I worked in social services and as a teacher. I was nearly always the oldest person, so guess what they called me.

@ Shyne: The chocolate is in the mail

Jenn Thorson said...

Have you ever gotten to see the movie version of Jean Shepherd's "Ollie Hopnoodle's Haven of Bliss"? Ralphie's dad has a very similar set schedule for beating the traffic. :)

Da Old Man said...

@ Jenn: I don't remember it. I have to watch for it, now. Lot of similarities between my dad and Shep's, BTW.

TheFLy said...

haha, you were a channel clicker/knob turner. "Hey old man,(because you were probably still an old man when you were 12) go and turn the channel. Yup, one more, nope not this one, one more, there ya go. Wait, where you going, go turn it up. A little more, a little more, alright, there. Ill call you if I need you."

haha
buzz buzz

Da Old Man said...

@ The Fly: Pretty much it.

MA Fat Woman said...

Changing the channel was almost as bad as moving the rabbit ears or going outside to move the big antenna by hand...thank goodness for cable.

Bill said...

Great post - your '60's' is a lot different from mine, I must be older (older than Crotchety, tell me it ain't so!). My 60's were Beatles, weed, rock, glow in the dark posters, hippies, tinted glasses, convertibles, tequila, and the seemingly endless assassinations of famous Americans.

GetSmartGal said...

You are kicking some tail Crotchety..44 votes, nice job! :D

Da Old Man said...

@ MA: We were upper crust. We had an antenna. :)

@ Bill: I remember lots of assassinations and riots, and yes, you are older than me. :(

Da Old Man said...

@ get smart: Thanks. I appreciate all the support I've been getting.

This Brazen Teacher said...

Really, I mean it when I said I was shocked! I always pictured you as this 78 year old man with socks up to his knees in his boxers on the couch. You're my dad's age! Which coincidentally does not qualify you as an old man.

Cars said...

WEll I just came across your blog, and must say that I am hooked after your most recent post. I am a child of the 80s, but I remember our family trips going to Fresno to see family had to start at the butt-crack of dawn too! What was with that?? Any way, thanks for the laugh, i will be sure to keep on reading!

Da Old Man said...

@ Brazen: I know, but I feel a lot older. And the mental picture you have isn't that far off. :)

@ Cars: Welcome, glad you found me. Keep coming back.

GumbyTheCat said...

I just visited humorbloggers and voted for you. You're so far ahead now you must be turning tricks to get votes. I guess that's one way to "blow the other contestants away"...

Da Old Man said...

@ Gumby: Thanks for your vote. No, I just have a lot of friends, though if the vote is close...

Nicole said...

The reason you only have one spawn is because I was so perfect in everyway that there was no reason to have anymore!! lol

You are an old man because if my memory serves me correct(which it always does) when I was growing up we had that t.v. with the 2 dials that I had to change all the time. Then when you brought me to the grandparents house I fulfilled my duties there.

I would sit right next to the t.v. to change it for grandpa because if I went too far away and he had to watch commercials, I got yelled at. Then once I flipped the channel I would get yelled at for sitting too close to the t.v. It was pretty much a lose/lose situation!!

Kirsten said...

Out here in california, we had earthquake drills instead. I wondered the same thing. How is this flimsy desk going to save me from the falling ceiling?

Da Old Man said...

@ Nicole: My dear Spawn, you are misremembering.

@ Kirsten: Those desks were protection against everything. In case of a crash, I'm sure they could be used as a flotation device, too.

howtolosegirls said...

funy post, but seriously, missiles were/are pointed at NJ? good thing i moved out of there... stone pony anybody?

Da Old Man said...

@ How to: Hell to the yeah. The missiles were pointed from NY to D.C. And right in the middle is the Garden State. Nike bases were in Piscataway, Watchung, and Sayreville area that I know of. Nike missiles were short range, so we expected trouble here.

VE said...

I always thought the green hued people were just preparing us for Mars colonization...

Oh, and I don't worry about 'other'. It's the other 'other' that worries me...

ReformingGeek said...

I remember our first color TV. Dad kept it running with whatever he could find. He worked as a TV repairmen for awhile. So, chocolate is the bribe for voting for you. That just might do it. Nobody else has offered me a bribe!

Marvel Goose said...

I count my bad vision to sitting too close to the color television so I wouldn't have to get up and change the channel. I also learned how to lay perfectly flat to avoid the dreaded, "hey, you're not made of glass!" announcement. These days it is impossible to lay flat, there's this round thing under my shirt and near my waist that won't-go-away...

Anonymous said...

lovely, i just made a lot of different emo backgrounds at my blog
http://www.emo-backgrounds.info

Anonymous said...

soma without prescription buy soma online no prescription mastercard - carisoprodol 136