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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    Default A (Long) Day in the Life of Your Grandparents

    6 a.m.

    Mary wakes up early because there’s a lot to pack into the morning. Before her two kids go to school at 8 a.m., she needs to iron Linda’s dress and John’s shirt, make their lunches, and get breakfast ready. She’s in a rush, so it will probably just be cereal: Grape Nuts for her and Sugar Frosted Flakes for the kids. Sugar cereal was still a novelty and they’d begged her for Sugar Frosted Flakes after hearing Tony the Tiger say they were “Grrrreat!”

    Robert has coffee and cereal with the kids and skims the morning paper. He gives the kids the comics page. Then he hops in the car and drives to work (“Goodnight Irene” on the radio). Their house is in an urban metropolitan area just outside the city, in a nascent ring of suburbs. Like a third of American workers, he has a job in manufacturing, at an automobile factory.

    8 a.m.

    Having put the kids on the school bus, Mary cleans up the kitchen. Then she throws a load of laundry into the washing machine. Before marrying Robert, she had worked briefly as a secretary (the most common job for women at the time) but now runs the house. Most of her friends do the same: only 33 percent of women work, while 86 percent of men do.Yet the 20 hours a week she spends cooking certainly feels like a job.

    Robert clocks in and takes his place on the factory floor. He supervises the new machines that the company is experimenting with to cut and install parts. Automation is just beginning at car factories, but there were still a lot of human operators on the noisy floor. It’s a boom time in the industry.

    12 p.m.

    Robert and his co-workers have an hour for lunch and go to the diner a block from the factory. They scan a menu of toasted club sandwiches, burgers, and milkshakes — though they could also treat themselves to veal cutlets or crab cakes.

    Mary goes to the supermarket, which has recently opened and was more convenient going to multiple mom-and-pops. The number of supermarkets in America doubled between 1948 and 1958, offering shoppers plenty of parking, wide aisles, bright lights, and air conditioning.

    3 p.m.

    With the kids home from school, Mary keeps them entertained. John watches a slinky climb down the stairs and Linda blows bubbles. Other popular toys are Legos and a new Fisher-Price fire truck. The decade would later produce classics like Mr. Potato Head and Play-Doh.

    5 p.m.

    Robert leaves work after an 8-hour day, as set by the Fair Labor Standards Act in 1938. He makes about $13 a day, which makes his annual income around the national median of $3,216 per year (about $32,00 today).

    Mary has Betty Crocker’s Picture Cookbook open on the counter. The family is tired of casserole so she’s trying a new ham meatloaf, made in a ring pan for visual interest, with a side of canned pineapple. She is often tempted to pull out a frozen TV dinner — the important thing is that they all eat together, right? — but Good Housekeeping says you should take pride in your cooking. (And always makes it sound so easy.)

    7 p.m.

    After dinner, the family plays a game of Monopoly. In the years before TVs were common, board games were a popular form of entertainment. Only 9 percent of American households had TVs in 1950, but everybody wanted one. If the family went to a bar or a friend’s house, they might catch Milton Berle’s Texaco Star Theater. A variety series filled with gags and jokes, it was the most popular show on television in 1950-1951.

    8 p.m.

    Mary gets the kids ready to bed while Robert reads. Following the advice of Dr. Spock, whose child-care Bible came out in 1946, she tries to make bedtime pleasant, with stories or songs. Unlike her parents, who thought too much affection could make a child spoiled, Mary makes them feel loved. Sometimes, she dozes off with them. It’s been a long day.


    http://blogs.ancestry.com/cm/2014/07...-grandparents/
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  2. #2
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Shorter day than most of us now. Those were simpler times.

  3. #3
    Atomic Punk edwardv's Avatar
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    Emails keep you working 24/7
    EVH 1979: Well, actually it's not much of a vacation, because we run everything ourselves. We design our own album cover, we have to be in the office every day to sign checks - the whole corporation revolves around us. Nothing can be done without our approval. We even have photo approval.

  4. #4
    Master Bluesman Elwood P.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    Shorter day than most of us now. Those were simpler times.
    Shorter only that we spend so much time today commuting, surfing the net (damn band/fan websites), and watching the tube. All that takes time.
    "I'm the opposite of Bill Cosby. Diamond Dave always gets your approval." (DLR)

    "Kids, just say NO to marriage". (Al Bundy)

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  5. #5
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    I personally only worked yesterday from 5:00am to 2:30 am this morning.

    Ah yes. The good life.

    Edit: a little miss-leading, I did take an hour nap from 6:00pm to 7:00pm. Just like I'll take a short little nap today in the parking lot before heading into class.
    Taylor Swift is nice to look at. Adele can sing.

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  6. #6
    Atomic Punk Little Dreamer's Avatar
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    Ham meatloaf? Pass.

    Also Legos were popular toys in the 1950s?? I very much doubt this.
    Little Dreamer

  7. #7
    Damage your reputation seenbad's Avatar
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    Actually not too terribly different from our routine to be honest.

    And funny, my Grandpa and Grandma on Mom's side were John and Mary.
    sheepa latta peepah dabba looka foh a moopy

    Gunter glieben glauchen globen

  8. #8
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Dreamer View Post
    Ham meatloaf? Pass.

    Also Legos were popular toys in the 1950s?? I very much doubt this.
    Legos back then weren't like Legos today. Back then it was mostly square and rectangular bricks, what you made depended on your imagination, not a pre-designed model

  9. #9
    Good Enough cabomiro's Avatar
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    Lego sales didn't begin in North America until after 1960.

    And between 8am - 3pm she has to do a load of laundry and go shopping ? How does she manage so much in one day ?
    Cabo x 20
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  10. #10
    Atomic Punk
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    Quote Originally Posted by cabomiro View Post
    And between 8am - 3pm she has to do a load of laundry and go shopping ? How does she manage so much in one day ?
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  11. #11
    Gird your loins Daisy Hill's Avatar
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    the really long day was my grandparents.....who raised their children without many of the time saving equipment taken for granted today

    wringer washing machine anyone? hanging the laundry on the line? (not to mention that my grandmothers sewed most of their childrens clothing. no dishwasher, hand pump at the sink. wood stove. no processed convenience foods either. baked their own bread. had the mini farm in the back yard with chickens and veggies and canned their own produce....heck when I was a kid I remember helping out with the canning...stewed tomatoes, beets, corn, green beans, peaches, apple butter, pickles, peppers, jelly, cherries and my favorite green tomato relish It all had to be "put up" or all that work tending the garden would be wasted

  12. #12
    Atomic Punk edwardv's Avatar
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    I got 2 years on you Daisy and I don't think we had a clothes dryer until I was about 10. Laundry was hung out to dry and in winter we hung it in the unfinished part of our basement. My mother use to patch and repair clothes rather than but new ones. Hell I still do dishes by hand but no biggy as I live alone. One TV one radio morning and evening newspaper oh yeah milk delivery in a glass bottle!
    EVH 1979: Well, actually it's not much of a vacation, because we run everything ourselves. We design our own album cover, we have to be in the office every day to sign checks - the whole corporation revolves around us. Nothing can be done without our approval. We even have photo approval.

  13. #13
    Baluchitherium Ted Van Halen's Avatar
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    I'm younger than both of you & we didn't have a dryer until I was 10 or 11. Of course living in the south line drying clothes wasn't a big deal. Never more than 1 TV even to this day. No color TV until I was probably 13 or so.
    -TVH-


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