For this week's mission (should you decide to accept it), I challenge you to:
1) Geneablogger Alona Tester has devised a new meme called the "When I Was Young" genea-meme on her blog, LoneTester HQ.
2) Since the genea-meme is 25 questions, let's do the last 10 this time. This week, answer questions 16 to 25.
3) Share your answers on your own blog post, in a comment on this blog post, or in a Facebook post or a Google+ post.
Q16. What was entertainment when you were young?
A16. Defining "young" as between the ages of 12 to 21...and I won't cover TV or music. I listened to baseball on the radio if we didn't take the #2 bus down to Lane Field in San Diego and try to sneak into the minor league San Diego Padres games. My brother and I would go downtown or up to North Park on the bus to go to movies occasionally - this was the era of cowboy movies - Hopalong Cassidy and Davy Crockett were our favorites.
Mostly, we entertained ourselves - down at the park playing sports or roaming around the canyons, or riding our bikes all over San Diego, going to the San Diego Zoo for free, ten-pin bowling. We spent summer days in Balboa Park at the Morley Field swimming pool, or at the Little League or Pony League baseball fields where our dad coached.
Q17. Do you remember what it was it like when your family got a new fangled invention? (ie. telephone, TV, VCR, microwave, computer?)
A17. Let's see...what about a refrigerator? We had an ice box, then got a refrigerator, but it didn't make ice. I remember going with my father to the Ice Company downtown to get blocks of ice.
We had a telephone not on a party line - the number was AT1-4182 (the same backward and forward).
We finally got a washing machine in the 1960s, I think. My mother could wash clothes and then hang them out on the clothesline to dry.
Q18. Did your family have a TV? Was it b&w or colour? And how many channels did you get?
A18. Our first TV was a big black and white box with a small screen (maybe 8 inches wide?) - we got it in about 1950. In the mid-1950s, there were two San Diego TV stations, KFMB Channel 8 was CBS, and KFSD Channel 10 was NBC. We finally got an ABC station, Channel 6 XETV from Tijuana, in about 1960.
We watched the early TV shows in the living room - Jack Benny, Burns and Allen, Ed Sullivan, I Love Lucy, The Lone Ranger, Leave it to Beaver, Howdy Doody, etc.
I think the TV was black and white up into the 1970s, although the screens got bigger. My first real football game I watched was the Giants-Colts overtime NFL championship game in 1958. After that, I was hooked, and was in heaven once San Diego got the Chargers in 1961. I recall watching World Series games on weekends in the late 1950s too.
Q19. Did your family move house when you were young? Do you remember it?
A19. Yes, but not far! My parents lived in Chula Vista when I was born, and my mother and I moved into my grandparents house in San Diego when my father went into the U.S. Navy in 1944. When he returned in early 1946, we moved next door to our own apartment flat, and then across the block to the upstairs apartment flat at 2119 30th Street in 1947. I lived there until I moved out in 1966. My folks lived there until 1978.
Q20. Was your family involved in any natural disasters happening during your childhood (i.e. fire, flood, cyclone, earthquake, etc)
A20. No fires, no floods, no cyclones, and only relatively small earthquakes.
Q21. Is there any particular music that when you hear it, sparks a childhood memory?
A21. One of the highlights of my early life was listening to the popular music on the radio on Sunday mornings after breakfast. We sang along.
Then, in Junior High School, rock and roll hit the scene, and I listened to the radio to the Top 40 stations - KDEO-910, KFMB-760, and KGB-1360 were the favorite San Diego stations. We could also hear KFWB-980 and KHJ-930 in Los Angeles.
All of it sparks memories, I can still remember lyrics from most of the Top 40 hits from 1955 to 1967. From Elvis to Everly Brothers to Motown to Beach Boys to Beatles to Stones.
Q22. What is something that an older family member taught you to do?
A22. I learned almost everything by osmosis at school and at home. My father tried to teach me basic carpentry and painting, but that didn't work - he was too impatient. Same with driving - I finally took lessons.
Q23. What are brands that you remember from when you were a kid?
A23. I don't recall many - Wonder bread, Sunkist soda, Oreo cookies, Carnation ice cream, Spam.
Q24. Did you used to collect anything? (ie. rocks, shells, stickers … etc.)
A24. I collected stamps, coins, bottle caps, baseball cards, and more. We visited the stamp stores downtown, and my grandfather gave us plate blocks for our collection; We saved coins from our parents coin jar and put them in the coin books; we rode our bikes all over town to find different bottle caps; we bought the 5 baseball cards and a stick of gum for 5 cents at grocery stores and five and dime stores all over town;
As a teenager, I started collecting radio station Top 40 surveys by writing to stations. I went up to L.A. twice with friends to visit other collectors with different station surveys, visited Capitol Records, and wrote away to radio stations all over the country.
Q25. Share your favourite childhood memory.
A25. I think my favorite memory is being a "free-range" kid - I could ride my bike or flexy anywhere in San Diego, and could take the bus anywhere too. We used to hitchhike to Mission Beach from the Texas Street hill in the summer. We went to the park every weekend and played or roamed. Freedom is/was invigorating.
Thank you, Alona, for the genea-meme - it was fun to recall 50-60 years ago!
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Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver