The Land That Made Me Me

I think I’m putting this on here (and FB viewers might need to go to the link if photos don’t show) for a couple of reasons. One is nostalgic, nostalgia simply for times that I live within and nostalgia for the benefits that a simpler life provided for society. The other is to preserve for my children and grandchildren some images so vividly descriptive of my childhood and early adult years.  This was purloined from an email posted to my high school class email group (thanks, Eric) … and you can pretty well guess what year we graduated!

And by the way, while the exact years may vary, it’s the same land that made most of my friends — young and old alike.

The land that made me, me …

Long ago and far away, in a land that time forgot,
Before the days of Dylan, or the dawn of Camelot.
There lived a race of innocents, and they were you and me,

For Ike was in the White House in that land where we were born,
Where navels were for oranges, and Peyton Place was porn.

We learned to gut a muffler, we washed our hair at dawn,
We spread our crinolines to dry in circles on the lawn.
We longed for love and romance, and waited for our Prince,
And Eddie Fisher married Liz, and no one’s seen him since.

We danced to ‘Little Darlin,’ and sang to ‘Stagger Lee’
And cried for Buddy Holly in the Land That Made Me, Me.

Only girls wore earrings then, and 3 was one too many,
And only boys wore flat-top cuts, except for Jean McKinney.

And only in our wildest dreams did we expect to see
A boy named George with Lipstick, in the Land That Made Me, Me.

We fell for Frankie Avalon, Annette was oh, so nice,
And when they made a movie, they never made it twice.

We didn’t have a Star Trek Five, or Psycho Two and Three,
Or Rocky-Rambo Twenty in the Land That Made Me, Me.

Miss Kitty had a heart of gold, and Chester had a limp,
And Reagan was a Democrat whose co-star was a chimp.

We had a Mr. Wizard, but not a Mr. T,
And Oprah couldn’t talk yet, in the Land That Made Me, Me.
We had our share of heroes, we never thought they’d go,
At least not Bobby Darin, or Marilyn Monroe.

For youth was still eternal, and life was yet to be,
And Elvis was forever in the Land That Made Me, Me.

We’d never seen the rock band that was Grateful to be Dead,
And Airplanes weren’t named Jefferson , and Zeppelins were not Led.

And Beatles lived in gardens then, and Monkees lived in trees,
Madonna was Mary in the Land That Made Me, Me.

We’d never heard of microwaves, or telephones in cars,
And babies might be bottle-fed, but they were not grown in jars.

And pumping iron got wrinkles out, and ‘gay’ meant fancy-free,
And dorms were never co-ed in the Land That Made Me, Me.

We hadn’t seen enough of jets to talk about the lag,
And microchips were what was left at the bottom of the bag.

And hardware was a box of nails, and bytes came from a flea,
And rocket ships were fiction in the Land That Made Me, Me.

Buicks came with portholes, and side shows came with freaks,
And bathing suits came big enough to cover both your cheeks.

And Coke came just in bottles, and skirts below the knee,
And Castro came to power near the Land That Made Me, Me.

We had no Crest with Fluoride, we had no Hill Street Blues,
We had no patterned pantyhose or Lipton herbal tea
Or prime-time ads for those dysfunctions in the Land That Made Me, Me.

There were no golden arches, no Perrier to chill,
And fish were not called Wanda, and cats were not called Bill.

And middle-aged was 35 and old was forty-three,
And ancient were our parents in the Land That Made Me, Me.

But all things have a season, or so we’ve heard them say,
And now instead of Maybelline we swear by Retin-A.
They send us invitations to join AARP,
We’ve come a long way, baby, from the Land That Made Me, Me.

So now we face a brave new world in slightly larger jeans,
And wonder why they’re using smaller print in magazines.
And we tell our children’s children of the way it used to be,
Long ago and far away in the Land That Made Me, Me.

Memory lane

this was the life!!!
DO YOU REMEMBER WHEN…?
All the girls had ugly gym uniforms?
It took five minutes for the TV warm up?
Nearly everyone’s Mom was at home when the kids got home from school?
Nobody owned a purebred dog?
When a quarter was a decent allowance?
You’d reach into a muddy gutter for a penny?
Your Mom wore nylons that came in two pieces?
All your male teachers wore neckties and female teachers had
their hair done every day and wore high heels?


You got your windshield cleaned, oil checked, and gas pumped,
without asking, all for free, every time?
And you didn’t pay for air?  And, you got trading stamps to boot?

Laundry detergent had free glasses, dishes or towels hidden inside the box?

It was considered a great privilege to be taken out to dinner
at a real restaurant with your parents?

They threatened to keep kids back a grade if they failed. . and they did?

When a 57 Chevy was everyone’s dream car…to cruise,
peel out, lay rubber or watch submarine races, and people went steady?

No one ever asked where the car keys were
because they were always in the car,
in the ignition, and the doors were never locked?

Lying on your back in the grass with your friends
and saying things like, “That cloud looks like a .”


and playing baseball with no adults to help kids with the rules of the game?

Stuff from the store came without safety caps and hermetic seals
because 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 the children of today?


When being sent to the principal’s office was nothing
compared to the fate that awaited the 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 survived because their love was greater than the threat.


Send this on to someone who can still remember
Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys,
Laurel and Hardy,
Howdy Dowdy and the Peanut Gallery,
the Lone Ranger, The Shadow Knows,
Nellie
Bell, Roy and Dale, Trigger and Buttermilk.

As well as summers filled with bike rides, baseball games,
Hula Hoops, bowling and visits to the pool,
and eating Kool-Aid powder with sugar.
Didn’t that feel good, just to go back and say, “Yeah, I remember that”?

I am sharing this with you today
because it ended with a double dog dare to pass it on.
To remember what a double dog dare is, read on.
And remember that the perfect age is somewhere between
old enough to know better and too young to care.

How many of these do you remember?

Candy cigarettes
Wax Coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water inside
Soda pop machines that dispensed glass bottles
Coffee shops with tableside jukeboxes
Blackjack, Clove and Teaberry chewing gum
Home milk delivery in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers
Newsreels before the movie
P.F. Fliers


Telephone numbers with a word prefix….(Raymond 4-601).
Party lines

Peashooters
Howdy Dowdy
45 RPM records
Green Stamps
Hi-Fi’s
Metal ice cubes trays with levers
Mimeograph paper
Beanie and Cecil
Roller-skate keys
Cork pop guns
Drive ins
Studebakers

Washtub wringers
The Fuller Brush Man
Reel-To-Reel tape recorders
Tinkertoys

Erector Sets
The Fort Apache Play Set
Lincoln Logs
15 cent McDonald hamburgers


5 cent packs of baseball cards –
with that awful pink slab of bubble gum

Penny candy
35 cent a gallon gasoline
Jiffy Pop popcorn

Do you remember a time when…

Decisions were made by going “eeny-meeny-miney-moe”?
Mistakes were corrected by simply exclaiming, “Do Over!”?
“Race issue” meant arguing about who ran the fastest?
Catching the fireflies could happily occupy an entire evening?
It wasn’t odd to have two or three “Best Friends”?

The worst thing you could catch from the opposite sex was “cooties”?
Having a weapon in school meant being caught with a slingshot?
A foot of snow was a dream come true?

Saturday morning cartoons weren’t 30-minute commercials for action figures?
“Oly-oly-oxen-free” made perfect sense?
Spinning around, getting dizzy, and falling down was cause for giggles?

The worst embarrassment was being picked last for a team?
War was a card game?
Baseball cards in the spokes transformed any bike into a motorcycle?
Taking drugs meant orange-flavored chewable aspirin?
Water balloons were the ultimate weapon?


If you can remember most or all of these, then you have lived!!!!!!!

Pass this on to anyone who may need a break from
their “grown-up” life . .I double-dog-dare-ya!