...Gucci had only one small shop just off the lobby of the old St. Regis hotel.
...the USTA was the USL(awn)TA, tennis was played on grass courts, and the white balls became grass-stained after a few games.
...the Sunday Trib and Times listed every player's batting average, and you memorized them while stuck in traffic on the way to the beach.
...you shared music from a jukebox, ate 15-cent slices, drank real Cokes in bottles and lived to tell about it.
...you played every kind of ball you knew or could dream up on every empty lot in town and nobody could stop you.
...you would read on a rainy day just because you could and not because anyone made you do it.
|Sea Bright Tennis Club|
...you bought your own tickets (seldom), snuck past the guard (often) or got tickets from people, not companies.
...friends and family still left for trips on ships from piers on the Hudson River and many, if not most of your friends had never been on an airplane.
...grandparents looked and dressed and spoke and ate and drove like it.
..."luncheon meat" was not a disease and having bologna (baloney), liverwurst, or olive loaf was not a culinary sin.
...cereal didn't kill you, mayors didn't make menus and had a salary like every one else, you drank three Mission fruit sodas a day for years and never gained a pound, and fried egg sandwiches were better than caviar, whatever that was.
...a phone was a phone, a camera was a camera, a book a book, and a TV was a piece of furniture.
|Slocum Crescent "Field"|
...your new mitt was an erogenous zone, goal posts were in the front of the end zone, your parents inhabited the Twilight Zone, and there really was a Strike Zone.
...the Hardy Boys didn't mean a bar in the West Village.
...on the rare occasion when a grown-up asked a child what they thought they wanted to do they grew up not a single one said they wanted to work in a bank.
...several of your friends' fathers were doctors in town; they came to your house when you were sick and always seemed to prescribe "sulpha" tablets, whatever they were. For some reason doctors had really big families, as if they had learned something at medical school that not many other people had learned.
|K, PS 101|
Ed Note: The author attended kindergarten and elementary school from Sept 1953 to June 1962, when the NY representatives were: '54 Giants, '53/55/56 Dodgers&Yankees, '57/58/60/61 Yankees, '62 Yankees&SF(ugh!)Giants. For the record the LA Dodgers' opponents in '59 were the Sherm Lollar, Nellie Fox, Luis Aparicio Chicago White Sox.