Tuesday, March 22, 2011

But she’s right, they didn’t have the green thing back then.

In the line at the store, the cashier told the older woman that plastic bags weren’t good for the environment. The woman apologized to her and explained, “We didn’t have the green thing back in my day.”

That’s right, they didn’t have the green thing in her day. Back then, they returned their milk bottles, Coke bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, using the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled. So were the brown paper bags. But they didn’t have the green thing back in her day.

In her day, they walked up stairs, because they didn’t have an escalator in every store and office building. They walked to the grocery store and didn’t climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time they had to go two blocks. But she’s right. They didn’t have the green thing in her day.

Back then, they washed the baby’s diapers because they didn’t have the throw-away kind. They dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 220 volts – wind and solar power really did dry the clothes. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing. But that old lady is right, they didn’t have the green thing back in her day.

Back then, they had one TV, or radio, in the house – not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a pizza dish, not a screen the size of the state of Montana . In the kitchen, they blended and stirred by hand because they didn’t have electric machines to do everything for you. When they packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, they used wadded up newspaper to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap. But she’s right, they didn’t have the green thing back then.

Back then, they didn’t fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the lawn. They used a push mower that ran on human power. They exercised by working so they didn’t need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity. But she’s right, they didn’t have the green thing back then.

They drank from a fountain when they were thirsty, instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time they had a drink of water. They refilled pens with ink, instead of buying a new pen, and they replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull. But they didn’t have the green thing back then.

Back then, people took the streetcar or city bus and kids rode their bikes to school or rode the school bus, instead of turning their moms into a 24-hour taxi service. They had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And they didn’t need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza joint.

But that old lady is right. They didn’t have the green thing back in her day.

Come to think of it, she might have been talking to MY mother, that was MY day too.
(yeah, and there were 3, count them one, two, THREE channels of TV. Hell, I remember living in an area with just 2!)


BOW said...

Next you're going to say how you read books, used your imagination and put things together.

How sad.

(tongue in cheek)

Spider said...

Well done!!

And all those things are true. Sometimes, progress is just a modern way of going backwards.

Schteveo said...

Billy O,
oddly, I've kept up that silly 'reading' thing.

that thing is beautiful isn't it? Remember being a kid? There were NO cans, plastic grocery bags, plastic Coke bottles laying everywhere! If we eliminated those things, it would remove 2/3 of the trash on the streets and highways.

Anybody hear
that Liz Taylor died? She used to be good looking. She'd starve to death in Hollyweird now, too fat!!

C-Bug said...

Just poppin' in to say hi! Lots goin' on!

BOW said...

Can't use books. Little Johnny might get a paper cut and sue!

Cowpill said...

As a kid, my brother and I would collect cans and bottles for recycling,bottles were 5 cents cans were 12 cents a pound. Also lead acid batteries, we got 5.00 a poece for those! Now I will be first to admit I have a screen as big as Montana, but it only tunes in Discovery, History channel, Nat Geo and the Science channel, ........ok I like some stuff on SyFy. I love my Sirius but only channel 61 and 144, the rest I could do without and I only listen to the local AM station for the talk radio. I do not own an "I" anything, Xbox, playstation or nintendo Wii but my phone allowes me to tether my netbook so I can get internet on the road. I grow my own veggies, I have raised livestock, work on all of my vehicles and house projects but let the local Walley world change the oil in my 12 MPG truck so I don't have a bunch of oil around.

What it is most about is responsibility and self reliance. None of which the majority of the population has anymore.

Spider said...

You're right Stevie. Back then everything came in glass bottles. The the EnviroNazi's came along and told us we had to switch to plastic or the world would end. Now they say the plastic is no good. We should've kept the glass and hung the Enviros!

Anonymous said...


Q. What do you call 100 lesbians with guns?
A. Militia Etheridge.

Q. Why can’t lesbians diet and wear make-up at the same time?
A. Because they can’t eat Jenny Craig with Mary Kay on their face.

Q. How do you know you’re definitely in a lesbian bar?
A. Even the pool table doesn’t have balls.

Q. What’s the difference between a Ritz cracker and a lesbian?
A One’s a snack cracker; the other’s a crack snacker.

Q. What do you have when you’ve got 50 lesbians and 50 state workers?
A. 100 people that don’t do Dick.

Schteveo said...

you should'a saved that for Friday!

Oh, and ROFLMAO.

Schteveo said...

I missed your comment earlier.

When we were younger, I was in the navy, aluminum cans were collect whenever we could find them. We'd throw then in the back of our Toyota pick up truck and when we had 3 or 4 large trash bags full we'd go to the recycling center.

It was the late 70's, stagflation was killing us and those cans bought food and gasoline more than just a few times.

alan said...

Sadly I bought an Iphone 3 from Verizon the other day, but only because when I am in a remote area it is nice to check the weather so I don't kill myself trying to get home. We did away with cable & directtv 2 years ago. The kids haven't missed it. xbox 360, I will never advocate as a replacement for real exercise, but dang, 20 minutes of playing bubble pop with my son had me worn out. It also lets us watch netflix on the tv....so it is our sole means of mindless entertainment.

Books....I'm writing my MA thesis on the "first" American Civil War (Utah Expedition) I tried to read a biography of MG Winfield Scott Hancock, which was in the special collection at the Library. Then I found an 1886 copy on Amazon for $12...holy schneike!!! I love books....bag the kindle

Sorry I am so verbose....I've missed you guys for the last month.

I paid for my trip to the National Boy Scout Jamboree picking up aluminum cans for a year (back before they put "do not dumpster dive" at car washes)

I can't help but laugh at all of the "greenies" who insist that we use items that are advertised as green, but worse for the environment than the things they replace.

regularguy said...

Cowpill: I'm in your camp. You're right on with your point on self reliance. This has been the biggest casualty of the entitlement mentality that is strangling our country.