August 29, 2005
This isn't your mama’s decade
Approximately one day a year I wish I was a woman living in the 1950s. Welcome to today.

Sex: Wouldn’t it be nice if having sex out of wedlock would actually feel risqué, rather than expected? What could be more exciting while at the drive in than thoughts of later moments before curfew, when after a short drive to lovers lane he would make you shiver by removing your cone-breasted bra and Sears girdle...

Finding a man: In that bygone era, it seemed as if all a woman had to do was wash her hair twice weekly and wait at home with her “good” family to snag herself a thickly-bespectacled man to honor and obey. A woman in her 30s wouldn’t worry so much about finding a man to whom she would devote her life. She would smartly resign herself to the fact that she was probably only going to be an auntie and would get on with typing up the church newsletter.

Food: Oh, the sweetness my life would take on with all sustenance being made straight from a Betty Crocker cookbook. Are we having dessert tonight? Why, don’t we always, dear? Did we make it with Nutrasweet? I’m not sure what you’re talking about, honey, but it does have two cups of Crisco in it! [Insert Pleasantville laughter here.] Life would be full of freshly-baked, lard-full cookies and lots and lots of Coca-Cola from the bottle. And we wouldn’t even have to recycle the glass.

Work: Let me stay home. Let me do it even for a year. I might strike a bargain with you and bear your children if I could just stay home and eat my own cooking for 365 days. I’m also a great 50’s bargain as I don’t fear cleaning; I’m a 2005 woman who still doesn’t have a Swiffer or a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, so in a pinch I can do the whole place with a mop and some Windex.

Exercise: How many of your mothers were slaves to a stair or Thighmaster, or beat themselves up on a daily basis if they were not? Women were light years away from the pressure of a Jane Fonda or Olivia Newton-John “Let’s Get Physical” video. Of course, hand washing cloth diapers and ironing 500 of your husband’s work shirts probably burned some calories. But at least you didn’t have to wear a violet unitard and matching headband while you did it.

Plus, just think about it. In between baking pies and wondering whys some girls wasted their time going on to further education, you could come up with the blueprint for Tab or Valium before anyone else did.


39 Comments:

Blogger Megarita said...

You had me at Crisco...

I have moments where I wish people would dress like it was the 50s, and by that I mean wearing nice dresses and suits. Hats, too, even.

But it's Eisenhower, Kris! Ike! The temptation to turn off the big brain and turn on the oven can be tempting, though. Who needs a swiffer anyway! Cleanin' it old school...

Blogger Bobby said...

AAAhhh, the good old days. And with me being a man, I could come home to a drink waiting at the door, someone fetching my slippers, and some relaxing time reading the paper and giving advice to the children.

Wait, I forgot that Justin would probably make me be the one who stayed at home. As long as I could sneak drinks during the day, like the moms did back then (so I've been told) I would probably be alright. heh heh.

Blogger Slade said...

I laughed aloud--I just broke down and bought a swifter YESTERDAY!!!

I'm with you. I'd like to stay home too and eat my own cooking and not have to work! YAY!

Anonymous Jorge said...

Sex: Cone-breasted bras and Sears girdles are still quite popular in my house, Kris. Why, I have several pairs of the conical bras that I like to wear on any given day. PLus the girdles are so slimming. Ever since I created that hydraulic device to help me cram my body in there, I've received no more than 2 compliments (and one was from myself in the mirror!)

Finding a Man: I have to say that it was a pretty sweet deal for men way back in the bygone days. You could be a complete gimp, and still manage to be hooked up with a hot dame with great gams. I've always wondered why parents and pimps both begin with the same letter.

Food: I think that food is better now. Or maybe our taste buds have been manipulated.

Work: Housework is still underestimated in many households. They have yet to invent a house that doesn't collect dust in a hidden pocket somewhere.

Exercise: Is it just me, o are violet unitards really sexy. Unitard. Man, that word is just wrong.

J

Blogger babyjewels said...

It's true. women didn't exercise or eat a steady diet of low-cal stuff and they were much thinner. apparently housework and ironing burn more calories than lookking busy and blogging. dammit.

Blogger Jürgen Nation said...

Mmmmm...Valium and Benzadrine. That's why they were always so content. Bring back the 50s! I love a man in an overcoat and hat, and the cute A-line dresses that the women wore.

Blogger MKD said...

I hope that this one day you aren’t on your period. I think they had some sort of belt or other contraption that you had to strap to your body to hold rags in place. THEN you had to wash them out! There were no Always or even the super huge Kotex. Shudder.

Blogger A Unique Alias said...

Two words: "Paper Dresses."

Blogger Kiki said...

That sounds fantastic to me! Especially the staying at home part. Well, all of it actually!
Kris, you're a genius.

Yeah, but I'd have to wear a tie and a hat EVERY. SINGLE.DAY.

"Honey? Where's my hat? You KNOW I can't leave the house without my hat! If the fellas see me without my hat I'll NEVER here the end of it.
WHERE THE HELL IS MY HAT?!
What if the cops show up?
They'll say "Grab your hat fell, we're going downtown"

"WHAT WILL I DO THEN!?!?"

DAMN YOU 1950's!!!!!!

Anonymous Neil said...

Fantasize all you'd like. But I have two words for you that will change your mind about going back in time. "No Blogging."

Anonymous Bad Maria said...

Ah, the good old days,.. having grown up in the years before and after women's lib, I'll take the latter thanks. I am a stay at home wife because I'm going to grad school instead of working, I just don't think that I would have had either option in the 50s...and mkd's right, there is no way I'd want to wear a belt....god, I remember the film we had in 4th grade when those things were still around, thank a god just a few years made all the difference...

Blogger mysterygirl! said...

I might miss my soap operas-- oh, and Laguna Beach!-- but the rest sounds rather excellent.

And I'm with you and Megarita on the fashion-- every time I am sitting on some kind of public transportation next to someone wearing, say, a tank top with really lowcut armpit holes and lots of hair poking out, and indiscreetly short shorts, and a ratty trucker hat with a classy phrase like "rock out with your cock out" written across it, I wish for the days of "traveling clothes."

Blogger bandick said...

I have actually had thoughts like this many times...another indication that you and I were separated at birth.

Blogger bandick said...

I have actually had thoughts like this many times...another indication that you and I were separated at birth.

Blogger bandick said...

Although it is apparent that you are the one who inherited the computer skills and/or patience as I went nuts and posted my comment twice.

Blogger blog you said...

I think I'll stick with the women of today! lol

Blogger Sizzle said...

i do so like the clothes of that era though i don't know if i could deal with being well mannered all the time. it's nice to day dream about it though. ;)

Blogger JordanBaker said...

I often think about how nice it would be to go back to the fifties. . .then I think about how my parents and their friends all talk very casually about how their mothers periodically got staggeringly depressed and ran away from home for weeks at a time.

But hey! Crinolines, people! Who can be depressed when you have crinolines!

Blogger Jeremy said...

I think we all look at the 1950s though the lense of movies and old television programs -- none of which can possibly be an actual representation of what society was like. Yes a lot of women were housewives, but also many women had a lot of political power and were heavily involved in local governments. There wasn't nearly the same degree of equal opportunity in the workplace that society enjoys today, but women weren't just a bunch of Stepford wives either. We don't give them enough credit.

Blogger Melliferous Pants said...

I totally agree with you...except for two horrific 1950's words you left out:

THE BELT.

Did you read "Are You There God, It's Me Margaret?" I was horrified at the description of it...yikes!

acrih- a crummy ride in hell

Blogger deanne said...

Oh yes, THE BELT! God I remember that (the book 'AYTG, IMM' not the fifties - I'm not that old).

I'd make a great 50's housewife, sort of a "V2.0" version - I'd call it modern traditional, or 'mod-trad' to spiff it up.

Blogger Danielle said...

well golly gee kris, sounds swell to me... that'd be a gas, kitten.

Screw that. Thank God for the feminist movement. I have a hard time making enough money to provide for myself let alone a stay-at-home wife. What the hell am I saying? I'd work twice as much for some of those "lard-full cookies."

I was seriously going to start my comment off with "you had me at Crisco" until I opened the comments. Nice one, Megarita

Blogger Jackie said...

Heee...you know I'D love to wear a violet unitard and matching headband.

Cool post....I liked it a lot. Like frosting on top of your cake made with Crisco.

Blogger Bridget Jones said...

'and go runnin' for the shelter
of her mother's little helper'

Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

As much as we dog and make fun of the 50s (as with some things we definitely should, especially their music, or lack thereof), the porn from back then was better. And yes, it existed, got pics to prove it. Women in porn back then looked better.

Blogger Spinning Girl said...

Brava, and I say to you again--Brava.

Blogger Mel said...

Maybe it's because of my new little addition at home, but I'm with ya. Right now, I want nothing more than to stay at home with all of my little animals and take care of my husband. And with all the crisco home cooking, I'm sure that he would be mine FOREVER!

But, I'm sure after one week of being the "housewife", I'll be begging to go back to work!

Blogger Oh, that girl. said...

I just want to wear those cool dresses! The 50's were aweomse, with their poodle skirts and poofy dresses! Rock on!

Blogger Sub Girl said...

haha, i feel domestic, but only in spurts.

Blogger JJ said...

For me, it's the 1930s or 40s. I want to go back to a time when there were fewer rebels than establishmentarians. I like the sound of a typewriter, the taste of a good cigarette, and the feel of Rye whisky going down my throat. I would've made a great PI and you can come, too, and make great pie.

Blogger Curious Jane said...

All I can think of is how back then women had to wear these awful garder-belt type things for "sanitary protection" Tampons were taboo. Would have been like a sock between your legs. Blwah!

Blogger Vince said...

Damn. Can I be a woman of the 50s too?

Blogger mal said...

gotta get me one of them bullet bras! they look "dangerous"

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kris,

Check your email please.

Blogger sassyassy said...

When you find that magic pill that can transport us to that magical time--sign me up for a years supply...can I skip the girdle & stockings?

Blogger Jessie_dc22 said...

I so feel ya!

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