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How green WAS my valley?

The truth

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Terence Lynock21/05/2011 21:04:03
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How Wasteful the Older Generation Was ....

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

The clerk responded, "That's our problem today. The former generation did not care enough to save our environment."

He was right, that generation didn’t have the green thing in its day.

Back then, they returned their milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled.

But they didn’t have the green thing back in that customer's 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 streets.

But she was right. They didn’t have the green thing in her day.

Back then, they washed the baby’s nappies because they didn’t have the throw-away kind. They dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 3 Kilowatts– 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 hankerchief, not a screen the size of a football pitch. 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 a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.

Back then, they didn’t fire up an engine and burn petrol 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 tap when they were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time they had a drink of water. They refilled their writing 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 train or a 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 isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful the us old folks were just because we didn't have the green thing back then?
Biggles' Elder Brother - Moderator21/05/2011 21:20:21
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Brilliant! Made me feel 10 feet tall! When I was kid 90% plus of that was spot on true and part of my daily life.
 
BEB
Tom Wright 221/05/2011 21:24:53
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Excelent Terence.
Tom.
Tony Bennett21/05/2011 21:28:56
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we used to boost our pocket money by returning lemonade bottles to the off licence in the pub.
 
you forgot " we repaired things rather than throwing them away and buying new"
00121/05/2011 21:45:33
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And we built model aeroplanes from wood that we walked to the model shop to buy, cut to size and shape and spent hours in construction.
And we could spell simple words properly and multiply 17/6d x 10 without needing a calculator.
(Not to mention having a bus service, post office, school, doctor's surgery and police station in the village!)
Geoff Smith 121/05/2011 22:11:09
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Wonderfully true Terence. It's a pity we didn't have the green thing back then. LOL
Eric Bray21/05/2011 22:13:19
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The place I work claims to be a 'green' company - but every day I see hundreds of polythene bags trundling down the conveyor belt. These bags have the company logo all over, and not a hint of the possibility the bags are biodegradeable or recyclable. Mind you, a bit of common and a staple gun means that they can be re-used a few times!
Kozmyk21/05/2011 22:39:05
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£8/15/-
Olly Giles21/05/2011 23:21:02
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ye but 2011 is much better than 1951.
Phil Claridge21/05/2011 23:47:12
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we used to nick emty beer bottles from one pub and return them to the next one. as there were seven pubs locally and most of them stored the emties out the back we soon had enough pennies to buy a packet of five weights(remember them). i used to say the empties came from a house on my paper round, where a bloke had a lot of parties. we got away with this for about two years until my mate got greedy and was nicking the bottles as the landlord was putting them out, and taking them back to the same pub. the landlord gave him a good hiding which saved him getting one from us
Geoff N22/05/2011 00:04:00
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"we used to boost our pocket money by returning lemonade bottles to the off licence in the pub."

They were the ones recycled from the back of the pub in my case.
Terence Lynock22/05/2011 00:10:32
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Black Cat and Dominoes, Spangles and sherbet straws that you had to suck the powder out of and if you got it wrong and inhaled the stuff you almost choked to death.
There was far more of a community spirit in english life then, bonfire night was a time when everyone got involved and did their bit with roast chestnuts, baked potatoe's and bottles of pop for us kids, it just doesnt happen these days, people are too frightened to get involved.
Wiltshire Flyer22/05/2011 00:17:54
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Very interesting, true and well thought points Terence, great read
Terence Lynock22/05/2011 01:30:14
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If anyone wants a lesson in recycling and saving money they should sit down with a few people in their seventies and ask them how they lived in the late 40's and fifties when stuff was rationed or scarce, how to keep warm without a 80,000 btu central heating system.
I have to admit that the initial post was not my work but really does point out that recycling isnt a new thing, recycling is brought about by a scarcity of a particular item or material such as after the war when everything was in short supply.
Getting people to recycle material today will always be hard work because there is always another plastic bottle, plastic bag or polystyrene carton to replace the one you throw away without a thought for recycling, lets do away with plastic bottles for a start and go back to glass and charge a deposit on the bottle, if the buyer doesnt return the bottle somebody will because the bottle has a value, a plastic bottle doesnt.
Eric Powell22/05/2011 01:47:52
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It really make you wonder how we used to cope with life in the old days does`nt it
Eck22/05/2011 02:59:22
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A great thought-provoking read - Nice one, Terence!
Tim Mackey22/05/2011 08:13:19
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Ive posted this before, and don't wish to hijack Terence' excellent thread, but along the same lines....some may not have seen it.

TO ALL THE KIDS WHO SURVIVED the 50's,60's and 70's !!!

First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they were pregnant. They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can, and didn't get tested for diabetes.

Then after that trauma, we were put to sleep on our tummies in baby cots covered in bright coloured lead based paints.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, not to
mention the risks we took hitchhiking.

As infants & children, we would ride in cars with no car seats, booster seats, seat belts or air bags.
Riding in the back of a pickup truck on a warm day was always a special treat.

We drank water from the garden hose, NOT from a bottle. We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle
and NO ONE actually died from this.

We ate cupcakes, white bread and real butter and drank lemonade made with sugar, but we were not overweight because:

WE WERE ALWAYS OUTSIDE PLAYING !

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the street lights came on.

No one was able to reach us all day

And we were O.K.

We would spend hours building our Go-Carts out of old prams and scrap and then ride down the biggest hills, only to find out
we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes and trees a few times we learned to solve the problem!

We did not have Playstations, Nintendos, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 150 channels Cable, Video movies or DVD, No surround sound , CD's or I PODS, no cell phones, no personal computers, no internet or chat rooms............

WE HAD FRIENDS and went outside to find them !


We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.

We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.

We were given BB guns and catapults for our 10th birthdays!

We made up games with sharp arrows and bows made from trees, we played with sticks and tennis balls and, although we were told it would happen, we did not actually “put out any-ones eyes” !!

We rode our bikes or walked to a friends house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them !

The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law !

THESE GENERATIONS HAVE PRODUCED SOME OF THE BEST RISK TAKERS, PROBLEM SOLVERS AND INVENTORS EVER !
The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.

We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned
HOW TO DEAL WITH IT ALL !

If YOU are one of them. CONGRATULATIONS !


You might want to share this with others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers and the government
regulated so much of our lives “for our own good”.

And while you are at it, forward it to your kids so they will so they will know how brave (and lucky) their parents were !!

 
Josip Vrandecic -Mes22/05/2011 09:49:22
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Thanks Terry , Thanks Tim.....exellent analysis.....indeed...
Alan Cantwell22/05/2011 10:23:20
3039 forum posts
talking to the nurse at our practise, when she was doing her dracula act on me, she came out with a profound statement, she reckons the health service is going to be inundated with heart and obesity problems, when todays 10-15 yr olds reach their 50s, they dont play, they dont excersise, its the way societys going, scary, eh?
 
now then, A QUESTION, i am 57 now, when i was at pri mary school, about, 8 yr old maybe?? i remember maltesers bringing out a mint version, mintesers yet no  one, not even the makers, can recollect them, i loved them, but they dissapeared soon after, does ANYONE remember them?????????
 

Edited By Alan C on 22/05/2011 10:38:41

ericrw22/05/2011 10:28:07
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A local firm in Nottm called Trickets, who recycled woollens and other fabrics, was a good source of topping up my 1p pocket money, in the 40s

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