1. When wasting time at work involved reading the newspaper and writing letters?
  2. White tennis balls?
  3. Why you came upstairs?
  4. Where you were when Kennedy was shot?
  5. Having to hang your clothes in the shower to get rid of the cigarette smell?
  6. The first time The New Yorker printed a photograph?
  7. When AIDs was a death sentence?
  8. Queuing for a phone box with your pocket full of coins?
  9. Navy blue PF flyers with white crescents on the toes?
  10. Stacks of love letters?
  11. Buying a bottle of wine from the pub?
  12. When McDonald’s had a sign that said “We have sold over 1 million”?

I started thinking about this and wondered what else might end up being a thing of the past.

Like cancer.

Or books.



15 thoughts on “Does anyone else remember….

  1. Shelley Souza 6 years ago

    I remember many those things. Not the McDonalds; we had Wimpy in London! And I don’t know what “Navy blue PF flyers with white crescents on the toes” were/are.

    I hope books do not become a thing of the past. I very much hope cancer does.

  2. Ambiguity 6 years ago

    I don’t know what ‘Navy blue PF flyers with white crescents on the toes’ are either.. would you care to enlighten us, Meg? I’m from Australia, so that’s my excuse (for pretty much anything). I’ve never even heard of white tennis balls (how transgressive!) but I do remember queuing for phone booths with the requisite amount of coins. And I also remember when colour TV was a really big deal and – later – when remote controls were attached to the TV with a cord. And, later still, that *ding!ding!beep!whirrrr* sound of a dial-up modem connecting to the internet.. there should be a museum of lost and forgotten sounds.

  3. Marian De Smet 6 years ago

    This one is for Ambiguity. The museum for lost and forgotten sounds is…the internet. 🙂

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      Thanks for this, Marian. It’s an astonishingly evocative sound, known to only a small slice of a generation. Great.

  4. nicola baird 6 years ago

    I’ve been wondering when bowler hats, flat caps and head scarves for the ladies stopped being the fashion. A black and white pic with figures in seems to have these as a reference to time before. But people in their 60s don’t seem to remember such head gear well, nor even those in their 70s.

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      Or even ties. My father always wore a tie 7 days a week. A casual tie on the weekends, but still. My husband doesn’t own one.

  5. Candy Gourlay 6 years ago

    I remember cutting and pasting when I was an editor on a magazine. And I remember the thrill of doing it digitally for the first time … on Wordstar!

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      Of course!! And when I made TV commercials, all the film cutting was done with a razor blade and sticky tape.

  6. Kate 6 years ago

    I entertain my children by relating how, when temping in Personnel, we had to do five copies of documents, each on a different colour sheet of paper, so we had tippex in all colours, and wow! the excitement when electronic typewriters arrived, allowing us to type and correct a line at a time before letting it print on the page …
    I also temped for the Terrence Higgins Trust at a time when people were still scared of being in the same space as someone who had AIDs.
    And my mother remembers going into the grocery store (in NYC) on her way to pick up from school and finding people standing weeping as the news came through about JFK.
    Anyone remember when you could ride camels at the Zoo??

  7. Catdownunder 6 years ago

    I can remember one of the secretarial staff coming back from an information session about a thing called a “word processor” – and how she said “this will be how it’s done in the future”!

  8. judy Astley 6 years ago

    I learned to type on a manual typewriter – you had to give it a fair old bashing. I got fired from my job at Balliol College partly for wrecking the horrible Gestetner duplicator. Remember those waxed stencils you had to correct with pink fluid? I should have remembered you were supposed to let that dry.
    And the joy of the IBM Golfball typewriter with proportional spacing. A bugger to correct as you had to keep remembering that m = 4 spaces, v = 2 etc.
    Oh how I love my Apple Mac…

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      I adored the IBM golfball. Can still hear the sound it made.

  9. Cate McKay-Haynes 6 years ago

    I’m hoping there will be a day when none of us remembers Alzheimers. See what I did there? But I mean it. By the way Meg – I do enjoy your blog – I met you briefly at Voewood – I was a woman with a baby boy – you thought he was cute and he is – I kept leaving him around the place on his own sleeping. Fortunately I did remember to bring him home despite necking teacups full of delectable gin.

    1. Meg Rosoff 6 years ago

      The gin was very distracting…as was your beautiful baby. And I add alzheimers to cancer.

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