Looking back to stern rules'
Published 5:28 am Wednesday, January 4, 2006
Well, another year has gone by and we stand ready to jump into a new year. It seems as if it were only yesterday when I was young enough to want to see one year end and another begin. Now they seem to come fairly often and just when I learn to write one year on my checks, it's time to jump up another year.
I was thinking about the things that have changed over my lifetime and it is amazing. When I was in school, girls always wore skirts or dresses. You never saw a pair of pants on a girl.
We carried our lunches to school in brown bags and it was a treat to get to eat in the lunchroom. I remember my first day of school at G.W. Long Jr. High School, when I ate my lunch too early. When the bell rang for recess, I thought it was time to eat so I chowed down on my syrup and biscuit. When it came time to go to lunch, I got in line with everyone else. My brother, who was an older and more sophisticated person than I, saw me standing in line and asked me why I was there. I replied that I was going to get some lunch as I had already eaten what I brought. He, who was a fourth grader, had to take the time and go make a deal with the ladies in the lunch room that I would bring the money for my lunch the next day. My brother was like that; he was always on my side unless I was against him.
One other thing that is very different these days is the way of punishing unruly children. When I was a child, parents and teachers were in charge of punishment, but today that has gone out of style. Well, I know some of you will disagree, but I thank my mother for every lick she ever gave me. I deserved them and I needed them, but at the time, I was mortified. As I said before, little girls wore dresses and my mother's favorite form of punishment was to make me get what she called “a keen switch” off a bush in the back yard. Now notice that I had to get my own switch for my whipping. I thought that was a little bit too much to ask, but that is the way my mother handled it.
If we got into trouble at school (which of course never happened to me), we could look out when we got home because we would get it even worse from our parents. The teacher was always right and my parents would not listen to it any other way.
Now, I don't believe in hurting children. There is a difference in spanking and beating and most of us know the difference. But sometimes I just long for some children to be in fear of their parents and not in control of them. Yeah, I know I am old-fashioned person. I believe that is what I said at the beginning of this. I do not apologize for my beliefs and I think everyone else has the same right.
Well, I will get off that soapbox and say; many things have changed over the years. I have seen the, almost, demise of the radio. That is what we had when I was a little girl and everyone listening depended on what my father wanted to hear. We got no vote. When I was a child, television came into our lives. The first one in our community drew a crowd at the one house that had that new-fangled contraption that showed pictures. Looking back I think my uncle and aunt, who had the television, must have gotten very tired of all the visitors they had.
I saw television blossom with color and take over every household. As much as I like to watch it, I think it had many bad influences on our lives. We don't sit down to a meal as a family anymore, but we have gone to the moon and back.
I guess this whole looking back is all in the mind of each individual. Think about it and start your new year off with the right frame of mind, because we will all blow those resolutions before January is over. Anyway, Happy New Year.
Lydia Grimes can be reached at lydia.grimes at brewtonstandard.com or 867.4876.