Article by Wendy McCance
I’m feeling a little nostalgic today. You know how you’ll have a moment when a picture, song, book or old tv show triggers a good memory from your childhood? What is it about these memories that seem so magical? Well my friend, would you like to take a walk down memory lane with me?
Below are a few of my favorite memories from my past-yikes the 70′s.
When I lived in Montana, I was in grade school. One of my favorite memories was of the ice cream man. Back then it was a small white truck with a simple bell (instead of the annoying extremely loud music you hear now) with maybe 7 different choices of ice cream to choose from. We also had a man with a cart on a bike that came around selling sno-cones. I remember if we were lucky to see both in the same day, I was always bummed if I got ice cream before the sno-cone man showed up. By the way, the rainbow sno-cones were my favorite.
When I was in first grade, I wanted a doll called a Baby Alive Doll desperately. Looking back, it’s kind of a creepy name. Anyway, I had wanted this doll and asked for it for my birthday and holiday with no luck. This doll ate gelatin and then pooped it out. So cool to be able to feed and change a doll. My mom held off for a year before she gave in and I got it. My mom had been afraid the stuff it ate would rot in the doll and cause a bug infestation. By the way, I was thrilled for months when I got the doll.
I used to be jealous of the toys boys got to play with. Playing with Stretch Armstrong or Matchbox Cars that you would put on these cool tracks seemed like so much fun. My favorite “boy toy” was the Green Machine. I had a Big Wheel, but the Green Machine seemed to be reserved for boys only. To be able to steer with two levers and spin on a dime was the coolest thing ever. When my son was small, I saw a Green Machine at the toy store and just had to buy it. I think my husband and I enjoyed that Green Machine as much as my son. (what??? yeah, we would sneak it out and ride it. Don’t judge)
When I was in second grade and my sister was in kindergarten, we would take our allowance up to the local Quik Pik and buy candy or get a soft serve ice cream cone. Back then, gum was .10, candy was .15 and an ice cream cone was .25. I loved the Marathon Bar which was a braided piece of caramel covered in chocolate or I would get the fruit striped gum (they used to make this gum in a chocolate flavor too which was good). I don’t know which was more unbelievable, the fact that you could buy a treat with a small amount of change or that my mom allowed my sister and me to walk several blocks to a main road by ourselves when we were so small. Needless to say, my own kids have not had that experience.
Finally, I will end this walk with my favorite weekend activity. Saturday morning cartoons were the best. I don’t know any kid who didn’t begin Saturday mornings without hanging out in pj’s, eating breakfast and watching great cartoons like Underdog, Mr. Magoo, Inspector Gadget and the Laugh Olympics. Back then even the commercials were fun because they were all geared towards the kids watching the cartoons. I saw plenty of cereal and toy commercials as well as the educational commercials about healthy eating and the “I’m just a bill” about how a bill is passed in the government. (remember Timer and his healthy snack of putting orange juice in an ice cube tray with toothpicks?)
I hope you enjoyed our walk. If you have some good memories of your childhood, please share them. It’s always fun having that, “oh yeah, I remember that” moment.
To contact Wendy McCance about a writing assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: [email protected]
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