Do you Remember?

  • Having a indestructible phone mounted to the wall in your kitchen? It probably had a squiggly cord attached to the handset.. :woohoo: or, do you remember having to get off the couch to turn the channel knob on the TV?.. (black & white) :cheer: I am not that old but can remember such things very clearly,chances are I remembered more actual things back then as we were not bombarded with digital imagery 24/7. Curious what other ancient everyday technology items people remember maybe a bit fondly?...

  • The phones were not indestructible - but they were more rugged than those cheap phones today. In fact, the phone I have on my desk here is almost of that quality.

    I'm of an age where I only barely remember black and white TV sets, except for portables. I did say "barely" - I think the set we watched one of the moon landings on was B&W. Or maybe they just didn't bring color cameras to the moon?

    I remember, my first calculator (an original TI-30) used a 9-volt battery. These days, the only thing I still see those in is smoke detectors.

  • Portable Music

  • Like crabkey I too am not that old but I know about:

    When mums folded up prams, now old folk get out their seats for prams…...... 😞

    Kids collecting Gollies off jars of jam.

    Scrap books:

    Christmas presents were: an apple and an orange and a present from some voluntary organization.

    Making dollies out of clothes.

    Kids and parents had different values yesteryear than they do now, Technology has changed all that.

    My five year old grandson started school and he asked for his Ipad during the night…... :ohmy:

  • I not only remember B&W TVs, I remember when the TV listings would indicate if a TV show was in COLOR as opposed to now where they might indicate if it's B&W. I also remember the kitchen wall phone. The one at my parent's house was a bright yellow rotary phone. When i wanted to talk to one of my friends in private, i'd stretch the cord, drag the handset into the hall coat closet across from the kitchen, and close the door as much as possible. Eventually my parents got me a blue princess phone for my bedroom. I remember my dad's first calculator, too. it was about the size and thickness of a paperback novel, had only four functions (add, subtract, multiply, and divide), and I think it cost him a couple hundred dollars.

    Anyone else remember the metal ice cube trays with a lever at the end that had to be pulled up to loosen the cubes, or when soda came in glass 64-ounce bottles?

  • @crabkey:

    Having a indestructible phone mounted to the wall in your kitchen?

    I remember so well that my phone from 1954 or so is still there and in perfectly working order.

  • Moderator

    I remember of course those essentially indestructible phones. I even remember our first phone number from 1959, the first phone we, as a family, actually owned (prior to that we had to go to a neighbor's house to make a call).

    I remember ditto machines (aka spirit duplicators) that made purple impressions using alcohol-based ink and wax-coated masters you typed or drew on, adding machines that worked by pulling a lever rather than electricity (there was no such thing at the time as a "calculator"), telexes (aka teletypes - whereby you sent "cables"), manual and electric typewriters made by Royal or Remington, vacuum cleaners with bags you shook or beat rather than threw away, black and white TVs that showed Lassie and Bonanza and Maverick or Dragnet, Felix the Cat and Diver Dan and Mister Peabody & Sherman. I remember the old Model A you had to crank to start.

    I remember when home computers and cell phones were foretold in comic strips and the World's Fair in the Dick Tracy wrist radio and the "Office of the Future" (which, to be fair, didn't actually have a PC, but hardwired machines that would display or print the day's news, etc.) I remember percolating coffee pots before there was any such THING as drip coffee, hand-curing our own black and green olives in huge ceramic urns with lye and brine, home-canning with mason jars and metal lids, Spam, home baked bread and pizza, Ping. Pong and Pi-Li, ground chuck for less than $.45 a pound, OMG. I could go on forever.

  • I definitely remember those old phones, they weren't indestructible by any means though.
    I actually remember breaking handset when I accidentally dropped it while trying to hang up Dx

    I used to own an extremely old box TV back in a holiday home my family stayed in. I I remember it not being in black and white but every function had to be done with manual switches and dials on the box itself and it had a wooden border was quite nice actually.
    Only had about 4 channels but still, good little thing 🙂


    …died today. Let´s remember...



  • i love those phones. they fit the shape of your head better. we even had a party line at that time. so several houses would share the phone line (so to speak). you would pick up the phone to phone someone, but would have to listen first, to make sure your neighbor wasn't using it.

    cassette players are hard to find today. 8 tracks were before my time, though.

  • Remember ?
    I don't have to remember.


    1 toggle switch is broken and you have to use it on speaker-phone, but it still works.
    As it is the communications centre, you will see we have handy reference on the right, and an emergency stop on the left.

    …OK. OK. perhaps it is a little more robust than the average phone.

  • Huh, chuckle … our first phone was the kind with a handle you had to turn around, to wake up the operator, who then via some worm's nest of cables connected us further. It took mighty long time until we realized we didn't wake her up at all; she was steadily and busy listening to whatever happened, and that crow spread gossip throughout the entire county ...

    ... until that day the central was closed down, the crow was dismissed, and we received a dial pulsing device. Well, nobody could listen unveiled, but it was bloody hard to hit the right holes, and I met various people around by accident. We even made friends that way 😎

    Sometimes during the sixties, we got a phone with keys. Jeez, that was a hazard to goof with. I was trying to call a girlfriend the next neighbourhood to discuss the next day's lessons, and ended up discussing with a hotel clerk in the Maldives. That single call came to an amount of half of the month's bill. What? Meeee? No ... :oops:

    Still, 45 years later, I carry a cellphone with extreme large and heavy buttons. I don't care about carrying the web in my pocket. I care about unexpected bills.

  • @crabkey:

    I am not that old but can remember such things very clearly,chances are I remembered more actual things back then as we were not bombarded with digital imagery 24/7.

    I've sometime wondered to what to degree the increased amount of novel information we now process on a daily basis has affected our ability to remember as clearly our own lives as sharply as people used to.

    I don't think (as Arthur Conan Doyle had Sherlock Holmes hypothesize at one point) that we have a simple memory storage quota (i.e that that additional memories directly push out others). However older I get, the more I'm struck by how memories not thought about for a while have a tendency to get ruthlessly discarded by the brain as no longer relevant. I'm just in my thirties, but I think I've already forgotten details that I don't think I would have ever expected to forget.

    Mercifully perhaps, most forgetting happens without leaving a sharp-edged hole – memories tied to fully forgotten memories are themselves worn and frayed -- so that running or fingers along the irregular fabric, we aren't usually faced with cut-out sections whose abrupt edges would make clear the dimensions of the loss. Still, every so often, I try to trace a remaining dangling and am saddened to no longer find anything attached to it. There are people I was friendly with for years, but having fallen out of touch with them for a few years, I can only remember broad brushstrokes now. (Starting to mix my metaphors now, but you get the idea.)

    With so much information coming at us, it's possible we don't reflect back on our past as much as people used to, and therefore don't give boosts to our early memories as much. (On the other hand, while consciously recalling a memory once in a while helps keep it from fading or becoming wholly inaccessible, even that has its own problem -- some research has shown that each time someone recalls a memory, there's a risk --or even inevitability-- of modifying the memory a bit in the process.)

    Some things that I've seen more than once, like TV shows that I saw reruns of, I can remember a lot better than some real life memories I wish I remembered more clearly. Unless unless we deliberately record an event, we get one go at experiencing a real life event with our external senses.

    I sometimes have some regret over the fact that I've never kept journals, but that would take more time than I ever felt comfortable diverting from other endeavors, and I wonder how much I'd actually get around to ever rereading them, given my backlog of things I want to read. It would really be nice just to have a photographic memory, to just have it all there.

    Sorry if I got too ruminative for an otherwise lighthearted thread. Getting back to the general topic of the thread, I do remember my grandparents' bulky rotary phone.

    At least… I think I do.

  • When I was young…


  • @DarkFA 4 channels? Luxury! Our country ( NZ ) in my days only had a TV1 and TV2. I remember watching Lost in Space in B&W. In the 80s we upgraded to a colour TV with a remote control ... which had a long wire connected to the TV (lol). Lost in Space was still B&W tho 😕

  • @Catweazle
    Ha! I love the Google postcard!

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