A journey back in time
In the run of any given day, I receive in my inbox many “ forwards,” emails passed along from another address to my address. I read very few of them because it takes up so much valuable time. But sometimes one of the forwards catches my attention. Like the one I received in late December. It’s entitled “1955 Ford Thunderbird and the conversations that went with it.”
I got a real kick out of reading the following comments that were being made in the course of a conversation 55 years ago. I invite you to accompany me on a journey back in time to 1955. I’ve added editorial comments along the way.
“ I’ll tell you one thing, if things keep going the way they are, it’s going to be impossible to buy a week’s groceries for $20.” At the start of 2011, am I being reasonable in suggesting a family of three spends an average of $150 on groceries weekly?
“ Have you seen the new cars coming out next year? It won’t be long before $2,000 will only buy a used one.” The 2011 Ford Thunderbird Deluxe is priced at only $36,925. And that’s new, not used.
“ If cigarettes keep going up in price, I’m going to quit. A quarter a pack is ridiculous.” Is the price closer to $10 a pack today? I really don’t know.
“ Did you hear the post office is thinking about charging a dime just to mail a letter?” To ask Canada Post to deliver your letter today will cost you 57 cents.
“ If they raise the minimum wage to $1, nobody will be able to hire outside help at the store.” The truth is that today some employers are struggling to pay employees the minimum hourly wage of $10.
“ When I first started driving, who would have thought gas would someday cost 29 cents a gallon? Guess we’d be better off leaving the car in the garage.” Now, drivers are expected to fork over $1.18.5 per litre, more or less.
“ I’m afraid to send my kids to the movies any more. Ever since they let Clark Gable get by with saying ‘damn’ in Gone With the Wind, it seems every new movie has either ‘ hell’ or ‘damn’ in it.” My reaction? @%$#%@! I don’t know the price of a movie ticket in 1955, but today one costs $10-12. And that’s not including an identical amount for popcorn and fast food.
“I read the other day where some scientist thinks it’s possible to put a man on the moon by the end of the century. They even have some fellows they call astronauts preparing for it down in Texas.” Next stop: Mars.
“ Did you see where some baseball player just signed a contract for $75,000 a year just to play ball? It wouldn’t surprise me if someday they’ll be making more than the president.” In 2009 the presidential salary for Barack Obama was $ 400,000 The average salary in major league baseball is around $2.5 million.
“ I never thought I’d see the day all our kitchen appliances would be electric. They are even making electric typewriters now.” Mom, what’s a typewriter?
“ It’s too bad things are so tough nowadays. I see where a few married women are having to work to make ends meet.” I was going to ask my wife about this, but Sherry’s working outside the home.
“ It won’t be long before young couples are going to have to hire someone to watch their kids so they can both work.” Our kids have left home, but Sherry and I are still both working.
“ Thank goodness I won’t live to see the day when the government takes half our income in taxes.” I’m not even going there.
“ The drive-in restaurant is convenient in nice weather. But I seri- ously doubt they will ever catch on.” I rather enjoyed the St. John’s A&W drive-in in the 1970s. More than once I forgot about the tray of food perched precariously on my window and rolled it up.
“ There is no sense going to Lincoln or Omaha anymore for a weekend. It costs nearly $ 15 a night to stay in a hotel.” How about $126 for a one-night stay for a couple at a St. John’s hotel?
“ No one can afford to be sick anymore. At $35 a day in the hospital, it’s too rich for my blood.” Thank God for MCP.
“ If they think I’ll pay 50 cents for a haircut, forget it.” Twelve bucks is closer to the truth today, even for someone who is follicly challenged.
To quote my late father, “ The good ol’ days weren’t all that good.”