For the last eight weeks, I’ve focused on COVID-19 related issues, from how to receive your Economic Impact Payment (which most of you should have received by now), through coping with self-isolation, to last week’s column about how to wear and care for your facemask.
So I’d like to change the channel and share something totally unrelated: Words we seldom use any more — well, at least most people.
Words such as thingamajig or whatchamacallit — which I often used when I forgot the name of something. (No one thought I was old because I couldn’t remember. I was only seventeen! But now because of my age, it’s a “senior moment.”)
And do you remember these words and expressions? Fat city, cruisin for a bruisin, wet rag, fink, out to lunch, give me the skinny, passion pit, made in the shade (which is different from today’s “throwing some shade,” which I have no idea whether it is a complement or an insult!).
Or how about discombobulated, nincompoop, whippersnapper, canoodle, poppycock, skedaddle, brouhaha, catawampus, persnickety. Or how about …
“Okay, McKay, I’ve heard enough! Change the channel back!”
I will next week. But hold on. I have a pop quiz for you (which was forwarded to me by someone, some time ago).
So, get out your paper and pencil and see how many of the following ten words from “days gone by” you still remember.
1. What were “cooties”? a) Tiny cookies, b) Earrings, c) Prizes in cereal boxes, d) Imaginary infestations.
2. If a woman was “stacked”, what did she have? a) Too much eye makeup, b) Beehive hairdo, c) Large breasts, d) Tall stature.
3. What was a “flattop?” a) Skateboard, b) Haircut, c) Table, d) Stupid person.
4. If a girl had a reputation as “fast”, what was she? a) Skinny, b) Goodie two shoes, c) Sexually active, d) Reckless driver.
5. What were “dibs?” a) Nerds, b) Candy, c) Claims, d) Hair styles.
6. What was a “spaz?” a) Cold cut, b) Russian astronaut, c) Uncoordinated person, d) Candy mint.
7. What was a “blast”? a) A dance, b) A Coca-cola and Seven-Up mixture, c) A television commercial, d) A good time.
8. What were you if you had a lot of “bread”? a) Uncool, b) Fat, c) Rich, d) Smart.
9. If a person were to “go ape”, what would they do? a) Dance funny, b) Become angry, c) Dress sloppily, d) Date an ugly person.
10. What was a “pad”? a) Residence, b) Notebook, c) Article of clothing, d) Paid advertisement.
I suspect you remembered most of them if not all. (If you are unsure, I have posted the answers on the Mid-Columbia Senior Center’s website.)
But words, as with smells and tastes, can bring back special memories — memories of those pre-teen years when the opposite sex was just a distraction, of conversations on the playground during recess or just silly adolescent pranks. How about you? Did any of these words trigger lost memories?
The actor who played the “Man with No Name” in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly was Clint Eastwood. I received correct answers from Sam Bilyeu, Jess Birge, Diana Weston, Lana Tepfer, Rhonda Spies, Judy Skelton and Felton Jenkins from White Salmon, who is this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket.
I’ve been told that this week’s question was too easy, so I hope this new question is a little more challenging.
I remember reading my favorite newspaper comic strips every day and especially on Sundays when they were larger and printed in color. One of the most popular was Li’l Abner, a satirical comic strip featuring a fictional clan of hillbillies in the impoverished mountain village of Dogpatch, USA. The strip was even censored in 1947 by the Scripps newspaper company because they thought it wasn’t “sound citizenship to picture the Senate as an assemblage of freaks and crooks... boobs and undesirables.”
For this week’s “Remember When” question, who created this comic strip that entertained many and irritated a few? Email your answer to email@example.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or send it with an explanation of Sadie Hawkins day which many of you may have celebrated in the 50’s and 60’s.
Well, it’s been another week, remembering the past and looking to the future. Until we meet again, you know you are living the good life when you can enjoy a thrilling television mystery for the second time, and you are still surprised by the ending!
“Learn from yesterday, live for today, look to tomorrow, rest this afternoon.” Charles Schultz
The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels daily menus but may change because of donations from local restaurants.
Thursday (28) Taco Casserole
Friday (29) Salisbury Steak
Monday (1) Parmesan Chicken with Noodles
Tuesday (2) Salisbury Steak
Wednesday (3) Cheese Burger