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Was Life Better in the 50's?

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Was Life Better in the 50's?

Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:07
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Eight Gun Fighter
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Was Life Better in the 50's?

Rationing, coming out of rationing, sense of purpose, sense of future, Sunday Dinner, a job, good bacon, top cream of good milk...birds like milk?
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:11
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For me, the 1970s were probably the best.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:13
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:16
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No - not in my experience. The 50s were times of austerity, we forget what we didn't have then - most families didn't have a car, a telephone, a TV - a lot didn't have an inside lavatory or even a proper bathroom, central heating was for the privileged few, refrigerators were not that common etc. etc.

Life expectancy was shorter.

Were we happier? I doubt it - mnay people put on rose tinted glasses when remembering the past - long hot summers and proper winters, and forget the [email protected] of daily life for most people.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:17
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Oh I don't know so much. The 51-52 season cup final was a corker.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:25
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Wasn't around then, but seems in the mid 50s wives knew their proper position in life...


I like the suggestion about her being a little gay...!
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:36
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For me the '60's were the best, after the drab '50's. Two o/seas tours, in sunny
climes, with a young family.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:40
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For those of who were sprogs at the time of course it was,we had infinitely more freedom of action then to get up to the things that sprogs are supposed to get up to than the poor buggas do now,they say it was a gray miserable time,not for we urchins it weren't,twere a magic time of running around the back lanes tearing the arses out of our kecks climbing trees and getting scruffy playing in the gutters.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 12:49
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Dunno - I'm not 50 yet.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 13:00
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substitute "husband" in the above .. it's all dogma
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 13:02
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For me the 50's started when I was 3 and finished when I was 13. The teens (or whatever they're called) started when I was 63 and will finish (if I'm lucky) when I'm 73. It's blindingly obvious that earlier decades will seem better - we were younger! No doubt in the 50's the old folks were saying the 20's were better. Read George Orwell's Coming up for Air where the main character living in the 30's longs nostalgically for the Edwardian period - poverty and the workhouse and all. It will be the same in 50 years time with today's sprogs looking back fondly on the present.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 13:17
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I was born in early 1953 and I have to say that my memories of the late fifties were all milk and honey. Very little traffic, no telephone, no fridge, coal fires, and, no TV until about 1959.

Family values were much better than they are now; therefore, less crime. Doors and windows of your home could be left unlocked without any worry of being burgled/ransacked.

We were quite a poor family; however, my parents provided both my sister and I with an upbringing that wanted for nothing. These days it would appear to be a neccessity to have a TV and a computer in every bedroom, and, at least a 50-inch version in the sitting room. In these current days of financial uncertainty families should be cutting back on many (percieved) luxuries and not insisting upon more pay (or worse still... benefits) to pay for lottery tickets and the like. Greed is indeed the root of all evil.

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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 13:45
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While I agree with tony as regards sproghood, the 50s weren't much fun for our elders. Getting up on a winter's morn to a freezing cold house and getting the grate raked out and the fire lit. Wiping one's backside with old newspaper in the outside cludgy on a January morning made one's eyes water as well. Then there was the bicycle ride to work in the freezing darkness, perhaps through the snow. Nope, that was certainly no post-war party.

On the other hand, one could save up and buy a house for cash. You can't do that anymore.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 13:45
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Spot on!

Perhaps we weren't as "rich" as a country, but we could "achieve" more.

In my field there was far more variety to life, different motors to be enthusiastic about, plenty of characters to induct one into the mysteries of railways, steam locos etc, coastal ships and places to go exploring, where today if it hasn't gone entirely, its almost human free, or has to be visited by car because all those interesting bits of kit have fallen victim to the accountants.

As kids we could play freely, if clandestinely, amongst the building of the new estates - Commandos and cowboys and injuns was much more fun played in runs of new but as yet pristine four foot sewer pipes and half built houses and flats -someone would have a fit today.

Education - you made what you could - eleven plus - brainy - college beckoned, secondary modern - failure -eh???? One of my sec mod mates is now a nationally known name, and others achieved well in their own fields - but we all came out to "jobs" You are what you can be!

Foreign holidays have become cheaper and getting around the country less of an expedition, but when you get to places - all our high streets are now clones and out of towns B & Q and Argos - Tell me that's an improvement.

One thing with another - I would go back.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 13:52
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Wiping one's backside with old newspaper in the outside cludgy on a January morning
You had newspaper? You were lucky. On a good day we used to have t'previous nights chip paper and failing that we used next door's cat.

Well, somebody had to start it
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 13:56
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You were able to afford chips? From a proper chip shop? We lived on nettle soup and rabbit pie. Made without rabbits.

Did you have your own cludgy? We had to share ours with next door's cat. When it wasn't in the rabbit pie that is...
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 13:59
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Not OUR chips. We had to steal the papers from next door's dustbin. And when I say cludgy I meant t'hole in ground behind yon bush at the end of the yard.

Aye, them were good old days right enough.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 14:00
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It all depends on your perspective of the time doesn't it ? I'm sure that in all time periods of yesteryear, the having of enough wealth allowed one to experience life differently than say some factory worker doing 6 days a week to keep their family in food and clothing. Although today's innovations have 'lifted' the quality of life dramatically in all ways, there has, IMHO been a massive degradation of quality in being.

Back in the day (choose period) the people could for the most part be true to their nature, in that they generally walked a lot, ate moderately, talked and entertained themselves in a participatory way and kept geographically close to family and friends enabling healthy continuing relationships to prosper. The kids could expend all the energy they wanted (especially boys) by tearing around, as Mr Draper attested to, unencumbered by the threat of real or perceived miscreants etc. I guess what i mean is that although we've never been more connected in the history of mankind, we've never been more disjointed and disconnected in reality.

We are simple creatures, capable of complex thought, but simple nonetheless and i think that these harkings towards 'rose tinted' times of the past are a recognition that the way life was more simple and perhaps more satisfying than today's ADHD million miles an hour lifestyle.

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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 14:05
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We were so poor we used to 'ave to get up half an hour before we'd gone to bed, walk 8 hours to work at mill for tuppence a week ........

Seriously, I was born mid 1953, don't remember a lot about the late 50's but it was good. (Our father used to thrash us to death .....). My parents were strict but we had a decent upbringing and learned values, and the young folk nowadays ..... just don't have any. My sister and I used to walk to school and although we were warned not to talk to strange men, and all that guff, there wasn't the paranoia that goes on nowadays, I remember it was big news when a guy exposed himself to one of the kids on the bus one day, we were called in to school assembly for what was, I suppose then, the predecessor to 'counselling'.

Of course it was a Conservative government, then along came Harold Bloody Wilson and that lot and screwed things up in the next decade, fortunately I wasn't in the UK for most of it but what I remember was grim.
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Old 3rd Mar 2011, 14:12
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Hated the 1950's so much that I had to go and join the RAF
to get out of the way.
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