Friday, July 12, 2013

Ma Didn't Have an iPhone

My first babysitter.
The year I was born, 1955, was the year my parents purchased our first family TV.  Mom would describe how she would put my playpen right in front of this new-fangled marvel.  "It was incredible.  You loved it.  You would smile and laugh.  I could get so much done"  Yes, I am a product of  some of the first technological babysitting.  This was the same mother who later declared our household "TV free" in 1968 when that same TV died.  I think she referred to the deceased as "devil spawn."  1968--I was in the middle of my Star Trek obsession, having fallen madly in love with Scotty, engineer for the Starship Enterprise.  Weird, I know. Everyone else was all tingly over Spock.  My Scotty fix had been taken from me.  I was totally despondent.   My dad (and the football season) prevailed. We had a new TV within two weeks.
"Beam me up, Scotty..."

Two things amaze me:  1.)  I actually grew into a fairly normal and productive member of society despite the plugged-in babysitter.  2.) That TV lasted 13 years!

I could now go into agonizing detail how I tried to raise my own children with limited TV, but I will save you from that sanctimonious blither .  "Being raised Amish", as my nieces call it (My sister was my mentor in this regard.).  Limited TV was about as successful as shielding my grandson from the concept of firearms.  Hold a hot dog a certain way and add the appropriate sound effects,  and you have a toy gun.  Grandma can tell you that it is a carcinogenic-filled preserved meat, but David knows it is a gun.  Both kill.
David with yet another weapon of mass destruction.

So where is all of this going?  Well, our household is filled with electronic gagets.  I am typing this on the family computer, but I could use my iPhone, or my middle daughter's MacBook Pro, or my youngest's Chromebook.  Our family's current TV can  record any program with the simple push of one button.  I never need to go to the video store any longer.  Netflix and Hulu, wirelessly connected to that same TV, could keep me entertained for hours if I could ever figure out the damn remotes. If someone were to take away my smartphone, I would probably go for the jugular   We are so wired and connected via wireless, fiber optic, and electrical that we virtually glow.  

But I still have to make my bed.

I think of this each morning (and yes, I do make my bed every day) as I retuck the sheets, fluff the pillows, and straighten the bedspread. When I was a child, I use to think that this would be a chore that my future would not hold.  Heck, my mom told me that I would probably be flying to work each day in my personal aircraft. Why do I have to do something as prosaic as make a bed?  But yet, I make the same motions as my mother, my grandmother, and my great-great grandmother.  Why hasn't someone invented an alternative?  Heck, the Jetsons had all that stuff figured out.  Scotty wasn't spending his time fluffing pillows.

I am guessing those with the smarts to create technological gizmos either don't make their beds, have their mom's still doing it for them, or never sleep.  They don't experience my pain, therefore they don't see the need.  So, like Ma, Laura, Mary, Carrie, and Grace  (Pa sure never pulled a sheet tight over that straw tick)-- I make the bed.  An age-old art will be long preserved.
Just like Mom taught me.

Yikes, it is Friday, and I need a beauty tip!   If you need to polish a piece of silver jewelry in a pinch, just rub with a dab of white toothpaste on a soft, damp cloth.  Rise when done.  Your jewelry will sparkle and smell minty fresh.  Toothpaste also makes a great quick polish for light colored shoes/sandals.  Scuff marks be gone!

Prairie Sherry 


Prairie Eydie and I have a special Laura Ingalls Wilder Saturday planned for tomorrow!  Pictures and details coming next week!! 

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