Wednesday, November 25, 2009

In the Old Days

Things sure have changed since I was growing up (in the 60s and 70s). I'm not talking about the leaps in technology (hey, back then, we got giddy over colour television and Atari's Pong). No, I'm talking about everyday stuff like:

Garbage Bags and Bins

We used paper grocery bags for kitchen waste. Paper! There was no backyard composting, no green bins. Can you imagine the oily, mushy mess that must've leaked through? On garbage day, we put the seeping bags into the dented metal garbage can with the lid that never seemed to fit properly. We didn't have to worry about raccoons getting into our scraps -- they didn't live near us because we hadn't yet used up all their natural habitat. But the dogs ...

Dogs That Roamed Free

There were no poop and scoop laws. No leash laws. Our own dog was either in a fenced yard or on a leash, but most dogs in the neighbourhood were let out through the front door, free to do their business wherever they pleased. And if they fancied a little snack, they could always tuck into one of the easily accessed garbage buffets.

One Bathroom

We were a family of four, and had only one bathroom in the house. Now, I've a family of three and have four bathrooms. It does make life easier at times, but those toilets and sinks still have to be cleaned.

What changes have taken place since you were a kid?


jan said...

I hope I don't sound like a crank, but I think people were more responsible in earlier times.

In our neighborhood some dogs were not confined, but they were never nuisances.

Dogs not spayed were kept confined. I don't remember ever an unplanned litter.

Lynn Sinclair said...

You don't sound like a crank at all, Jan. We had a samoyed, Tammy, that we bred twice (those puppies were so darn cute). One time, when she was in heat (and confined), a hound from many blocks away came and camped out in our front yard. I'm afraid he went away disappointed.

Georgie said...

Changes. Hmmm. Let me see....

1. The Dreaded Dog Catcher:

Remember him? Thankfully, we refer to it as "animal rescue" these days -- with a little less euthanizing once the animal is taken in, and more "adoptions" into loving homes.

2. Mandatory Immunizations:

Here in NY, it's now *law* that all house pets have a rabies shot.(Yes, even if the animal never leaves the house.)

3. Retractable Dog Leashes:

Jeez, I used to cringe when it looked as if someone was tugging at a poor pooch's neck just a wee bit *too* hard.

4. People who will now see a dog that's left in a parked car in 90-plus degree weather -- AND CALL THE COPS. Not nearly enough people were willing to get involved like that back then, trust me.

5. The end of a silly "era" when wearing dead animal fur was truly considered vogue. Thank goodness, so many of us girls are way past that rather sad "status symbol" these days.

NuclearToast said...

With always-on cell phones and voicemail, it's easy to forget my childhood house had just one phone (on the wall in the kitchen, with a 20-foot cord) and no answering machine.

Your description of the trash can cracked me up!

Anonymous said...

Maybe things have changed slightly though, there is definitely a problem with dog poop in our neighbourhood, maybe there are more dogs these days. Leaving your dog to run around is fine, leaving it to foul areas is not fine, it pollutes the waterways amongst other things. Thankfully we have some great modern inventions like these great pet poop scoops that make it easy for us to scoop the poop!

Lynn Sinclair said...

Oh yes, Georgie, I recall the dog catcher. He mustn't have been very effective in our area because (thankfully) the neighbourhood dogs never seemed to be picked up.

Lynn Sinclair said...

We had only one phone too, NT. There was no such thing as privacy. If we wanted that, we actually had to get together with the person.

You must've had one of those metal garbage cans too -- I think the flattened lids never fit because the garbage truck (or cars) drove over them.

Lynn Sinclair said...

Anonymous, I'm so glad the days of dodging the dog poop are over. Yet, I miss that first tell-tale sign of spring -- the thawing aroma of dog poop.

Anonymous said...

Lynn Sinclair said...

Dogs are so lucky, aren't they, NT? Their displays of happiness cause even more happiness. Perfect. Thanks for the smiles.

NuclearToast said...

Ha ha ha, that wasn't me, but that was awesome!

Lynn Sinclair said...

Okay, I'm definitely losing my mind -- I could've sworn that link was in your comment, NT.

Thanks, Anonymous!