Wednesday, December 28, 2011


Cloning was a term used in science fiction movies.  In reality, several gestation cycles occurred before cattle were produced of sufficient quality to even be considered "graded".  Branding was not always necessary, since cattle sometimes had very identifiable markings.


 The smooth bayou waters afforded opportunities for fancy water-skiing.  One needed to be careful though, since what often appeared to be floating logs, were watchful alligators.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


All I wanted one Christmas was a red Schwinn bicycle.  My wish was granted, but it was found under the tree with a price tag attached.  I didn't understand how that could possibly be...


Coffee - who can perform without coffee - especially a dark Southern brew?  Chicory is a noted ingredient, and in New Orleans, cafe au lait is served with beignets.  Community Coffee, the brand most people drink, is a free offering when one stops at visitor centers upon entering Louisiana. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


"Basin Street Blues" is a song that characterizes feelings Southerners had during the Fifties.  Racial problems existed but were less defined when jazz was played; especially in New Orleans "where the white folk and the darkies meet".  People came together listening to and playing that outstanding music.


One year was especially memorable because my family became disoriened in the woods while looking for the perfect Christmas tree.  Darkness fell, followed by rain, and we were lost.  We eventually encountered a farmhouse where the friendly and helpful family who lived there lent dry clothes and helped locate our car.  The next morning, after a return trip to the woods, a less-than-perfect tree was strapped to the top of our car to decorate at home.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


It was a very exciting day when one heard music from the popsicle man's truck.  Neighborhood children would run indoors to get five cents before he arrived.  It was a very upsetting when he did not come or didn't have one's favorite flavor.


One young man was promised the position Director of Army Bands if he would enlist rather than wait to be drafted, although it didn't happen.  He enlisted and spent his entire non-musical Army career peeling potatoes for mess.  WWII was soon over and his safe return home was welcomed by family.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011


The Fifties was not a time of tolerance toward people who were "different".  One little man who hung around downtown all day, wore haphazardly smeared lipstick and dressed in a strange manner.  He had a smile for everyone and children were not afraid when he followed them from store to store.  Someone in the community felt differently since he was forced to leave town.


1.  bombs  2.  polio  3.  snakes  4.  the devil  5.  abandonment - not necessarily in order

Monday, November 21, 2011


Sibling rivalry was at its peak during elementary school, but lessened as the years went by.  One older sister unsuccessfully tried to teach the parakeet to talk, saying over and over, "Mom likes me best"!


The family unit was strong and most relatives lived nearby.  Because of close proximity, relatives strived for congeniality even when they were quite different.


The arrival of television introduced new ideas for eating - including TV dinners placed on TV trays.  People wanted to spend as much time as possible watching their favorite programs. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


The drive to visit out-of-town relatives began as a joyous occasion.  Burma-Shave signs were read and songs sung, but two siblings were soon separated by a line drawn down the middle of the car's back seat.  Threats were made to stop the car and "take care" of the problem makers.  Arrival at the planned destination was not soon enough!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

#3 Sunset Circle B

Formative years five through twelve were spent living on a cul-de-sac consisting of nine houses.  Parents hoped that values instilled during this time proved lasting.

Magical School Bus

Young children thought the school bus magical - picking up and dropping off neighborhood friends.  One could hardly wait to be old enough to attend school.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Soph 59

Group of high school sophomores followed tradition by painting SOPH 59 on high school property.  Night watchmen witnessed activity and reported to principal, who called parents.  Disciplinary action - remove the paint after school - simple compared to individual punishment waiting at home.

Too Young to Drive

The usual setting for learning to drive was neighborhood streets.  Local police were tolerant when encountering young drivers, obviously without licenses, but accompanied by parents, older friends or siblings.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Temptations never ceased, but it was "up to the girl" to determine how "far" a relationship would go.


Girls played basketball on half the court at a time while using a smaller ball, although all schools did not offer sports for girls.  Being a cheerleader, majorette or member of the pep club that supported boys' sports were the main options.   

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

DHS Dragons

High school football was and continues to be today, a celebrated event.  Citizens of small towns were great supporters of their high school whether it was for sports, music or academics.

Sock Hop

Since most high school dances were held in the gym, students removed their shoes to prevent damaging the hardwood floors.  Couples danced the jitterbug, the bop and the twist in socks (or barefoot).  Tunes written for slow dancing were also popular, and enamored couples sometimes became "entangled" while still managing to walk around to the music.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Attending Sunday School and Church was mandatory and it was difficult to sit still for both - especially when participating in the children's choir.  Children sat together in the front of the Sanctuary with few adults nearby.    During one memorable Service, the usual loud whisperings and raucous behavior occurred, as well as the addition of several paper airplanes made from folded Church Bulletins that soared overhead. 


Two sisters whose parents both worked were involved in quite a bit of neighborhood mischief.  One of their acceptable undertakings was stringing two empty tin cans between houses to enable "communication" amongst their friends.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


He played the guitar and sang "Blue Suede Shoes" for a junior high talent show.  Everyone thought he looked just like Elvis, and the girls all screamed!  My family needed to meet him and give their approval though, before being allowed to date.


Financial affairs were frequently discussed by mentioning whether the family "ship" was in port or out to sea.  Times were very bleak when the ship was described as adrift and sometimes lost.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Older womenfolk said, "Honey-child, don't believe a word he says!  He'll sing a sweet song, tell you how pretty you are, just to get what he wants.  Then, he'll drop you as quick as a hot sweet potato.  Be careful!"  Luckily, these words did not apply to all males.


Whole days were spent with one teacher - not only academics, but also art, recess, music, lunch and after school, if necessary.  The teacher was responsible for what was taught in the classroom, as well as contributing to personality development and table manners.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


The weather was warm and hours were spent out-of-doors roller skating, playing hopscotch, softball and kick-the-can.  When middle-of-the-day heat arrived, board games and cards were played in the shade of a tree or taken indoors to seek relief provided by the attic fan.


Sitting under the hairdryer for an hour or more was difficult.  Bobby pins were used to curl hair, then clippies, small pink sponge rollers, large wire & brush rollers, and then VERY LARGE rollers - even cardboard toilet tissue rolls.  In between the once a week visit to the beauty shop, girls would roll their hair every night and somehow manage to sleep!

Thursday, September 15, 2011


Voodoo was a practice that was never witnessed.  It was linked by reputation to the Louisiana swamps and bayous where voodoo dolls lurked in abundance.


It was easier to become an American citizen than it is today; however, some citizens were not always treated well.

Thursday, September 8, 2011


Slumber parties were most popular during fourth through eighth grades.  Girls spent the evening calling boys, sharing hilarious comments with them and quickly hanging up.  Fortunately, caller ID did not exist.


Girls spent a considerable amount of time talking about boys.  Boys, however, had other interests than girls:  #1 sports, #2 cars, #3 girls.  Sometimes an older female would appear and persuade them to change their order of preference.

Thursday, September 1, 2011


Several hurricanes occurred during the Fifties, creating high winds, flooding and damage to homes and businesses.  Hurricanes did not instill a great amount of fear for everyone though, since warnings were issued that provided ample time to prepare.  Our little house was very lucky to continually be spared.


There was a definite division of labor - the wife stayed at home, while the husband left to go to the office.   Even though he worked to support his family, sometimes there were distractions.  Society looked the other way when extramarital affairs were committed by a male, but not the female.  This remains somewhat true today.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


When people were sick, the family doctor would drop by the house instead of the patient going to his office.  Office visits were mostly scheduled for the dreaded complete physicals. 


Andy Warhol "won" with his many pop art creations - especially the silk-screened soup cans.  The latest art movements in New York, however were not readily embraced in the South.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


A favorite game - everyone wanted to be a cowboy, but no one wanted to be an Indian other than Tonto.  On Friday nights, "The Lone Ranger" was listened to on the radio, and there were many western movies, starring Gene Autry, Lash LaRue, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans shown at local theatres.


People didn't lose much sleep over the not-so-frightening horror movies that lacked color and the special effects that we expect today; however, one movie, "The Thing" (which was only a hazy, white blob), did cause many childhood nightmares.

Thursday, August 11, 2011


After Russia launched Sputnik, the U.S. was even more determined to be the first country to land a man on the moon.  Children didn't understand the gravity of the situation, since Superman was always available to help.


Watermelons were cooled in the creek during swimming or fishing outings and eaten with a favorite utensil or none at all.  Watermelon fights usually followed - especially squirting the seeds.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


On Saturdays, children went to the movie theatre where it cost 25 cents to watch five cartoons, two full-length movies, and become eligible for gifts donated by local merchants.  Parents did not attend, and a glorious time was had by all - talking loudly, eating candy and meeting kids from other elementary schools.


A lot of excitement occurred when "Spin the Bottle" was played at parties in the fifth and sixth grades.  One never knew with whom they might be paired or what they would be told to do;although, holding hands, walking around the house and kissing on the cheek were not unexpected.

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Music and dance were studied in hopes of getting to Hollywood.  Silver Screen and Photoplay were scrutinized and autographed photos of movie stars prized.  Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher were loved, but Eddie became less popular when he left Debbie for Elizabeth Taylor.


Most children tried smoking at some point, and were easily discovered because of their increasingly loud coughing sounds, the puffs of smoke coming from hideouts, missing cigarettes, and sometimes crying.  Warnings and/or punishment usually followed.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

I Dreamed I Was Uplifted in My Maidenform Bra

Purchasing one's first bra and enduring the embarrassing but necessary fitting was a major event.  Popular advertising slogans described the hopeful nature one felt - an overnight transformation, with beauty, maturity and desirability following.


What could possibly be more fun than a day at the beach!  No one worried about the sun's rays - just having a good time.

Saturday, July 16, 2011


The advent of television brought a variety of entertainment right into homes - no need to attend concerts or movies.  Favorite programs were "Hit Parade", "Dragnet" and "I Love Lucy".


Feed companies began selling their products in more closely woven and colorful fabrics, instead of the usual burlap.  Women accompanied their husband when shopping for feed to make sure favorite patterns were purchased.  The fabric was sewn into wearing apparel as well as used for home decoration.