Friday, February 29, 2008

Them Ol' And Dangerous Days Of My Youth

Cincinnati Skyline in the 1950's
I know my kids won't believe this and my grand kids won't fathom this, but when I was a little guy, living in Fort Thomas Kentucky, the sky was so clear, I could see the Cincinnati skyline from the picture window in my living room.

Playing at night

I used to play with my friends, outdoors, all day long without telling my folks where I was and they didn't even worry.

Calling Children

I didn't have to carry a cellphone so Mom could find me. 'didn't need to. At supper she would open up the back door and yell, "Markie! Supper's Ready!!!" I could hear her 4 blocks away.

I had toy cars similar to these

We had lead everywhere. Lead paint. Lead gasoline. Toys were made of lead.

Leaded Gasoline

One of the greatest smells in the world was pumping leaded gas into the tank of your car. It was worth the 25 cents a gallon price just to enjoy that lovely smell.


Let's talk Mercury. We used to have this wonder drug that Mom would paint on all your scrapes and cuts. It was called Mercurochrome. It was also called Merthiolate in it's generic version. Back then we didn't know what generic meant. Mercurochrome was not nearly as dangerous as Iodine. That was what Grandma put on my Mom's scrapes and cuts.

Wally and The Beaver
It was highly poisonous when ingested. However Mom knew not to drink it. Mercurochrome contained a key ingredient called Merbromin which contained traces of Mercury. This was the same Mercury that is found in silver dental fillings of that era. Leaded gas, no pollution control devices on cars and poisonous medicine and paint.........Ah! Life in the 1950's was good.

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