Monday, 6 August 2012

Whatever happened to...? 15

embossed wallpaper (imitating bark, with a raised baroque pattern etc)
adding sliced raw mushrooms to salad (with cress)
beauty queens

being ashamed of not knowing about computers (and thinking they'd go away if you just made enough fuss)

biscuit cutters (in the shape of stars, Scotty dogs etc)
black cherry jam
brass objects and fittings (doorknobs, fingerplates) that you have to clean with Brasso
calling Ireland “Eire”
chemistry sets (health and safety)
cherry pie filling
Chinese Checkers
complaining about the word “hopefully”
Corby trouser presses
Croid glue
cucumber sandwiches
Dentine chewing gum
downmarket canteens in city galleries (the National had great sausages)

Early Music fad for performing Bach and Handel at breathless speed (replaced by fashion for giving it a saccharine gloss)

fancy bread (became rosemary and rock salt focaccia)
fast breeder reactors
firewalking (health and safety)
flies, flypapers, flyspray
foot muffs (probably still available from small ads in the back of The Countryman)
foot-warmers (they looked like casseroles and you filled them with hot water)
French skipping
fussing about which vegetable oil was best for your heart
gender equality
giant wooden tongs for picking up hot washing
gluten-free peanut cookies
God was an astronaut

graffiti (Far away is close at hand in images of elsewhere. My karma has run over my dogma. To do is to be.)

gunnera (60s plant for your water feature)
hatpins (became hijab/scarf pins)
health farms (which starved you for a few weeks)
Instamatic cameras
letter openers
Lyons Maid ice cream
machines dispensing soup
marmite and cheese sandwiches
mosaic dishes (and tabletops)
Notes and Queries (became the internet)
nougat (it came in huge slabs)
painting your walls in “earth colours”
palmtops and PDAs
pinafore dresses
plaited ribbons of mending thread
polyunsaturates (which people fussed about a lot)
Pond’s cold cream
Potty Putty
psychic surgeons of the Philippines
quilted housecoats (and wearing them in the daytime)
raspberry leaf tea as a cure for all kinds of things
receiving lines at weddings
recipes called “something medley”
roast chestnut sellers (health and safety?)
sailcloth dresses with rope belts and reinforced belt-holes
sateen (glazed cotton with a nap)
skirts buttoning down the front
small brass bells in the shape of a Dutch peasant
sound of a foghorn
speed reading
stock car racing
sugared almonds in crocheted bags at christenings
Super Wate-On

telegraphese (unnews unjob; how old Cary Grant; streets full of water, please advise) Revived by Twitter.

the chink of milk bottle on doorstep
the ker-ching! of a mechanical till
the rrrr-rrrr of a computer reading a floppy disk
the smell of mothballs
the Swingle Singers
the weird postures models used to adopt in the mid-60s

tinned potatoes
toasted sugared peanut sellers (health and safety again)
turtle soup
Twitter novels

variety shows (they were there, they went, now they’re back)
walrus moustaches
watchdogs (oversight committees)
wearing slippers to the shops
woollen plaid headscarves with fringed edges
working parties (committees formed to do something)
Worrying that everybody would end up speaking Estuary. (Very 80s. Now it’s Jafaikan. Or was that last year?)

worrying that TV would damage children’s eyesight/turn them into zombies (They hadn’t become zombies, they were absorbed. And before TVs, people complained if you were absorbed by a book.)
worrying that your children read too much (when they should be running about in the open air)

More here, and links to the rest.

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