Retro Party Invite a Welcome Change

Bits & Pieces Column

Helpful Chitchat







By Evelyn J. Mocbeichel




This summer we were invited to a friend’s house for a barbeque and get-together with longtime school buddies. Our host had a novel idea for entertaining and served many of the foods we loved back in our childhood days. Along with the regular barbeque items of hot dogs, hamburgers and grilled chicken, she had other foods that took us back to happy days — reference intended — of our youth. What would a “retro party” be without our comfort food, mac and cheese? Before our meal started we gathered around two fondue pots and did our dipping with crusty Italian bread into the delicious bubbly melted cheese. Later, at the end of the meal, the second fondue pot contained melted chocolate, surrounded by large platters of fresh fruit. Plates were stacked high with huge strawberries, banana slices and fresh pineapple for dipping. Other desserts included a Jell-O mold, a party staple back in the fifties, and several plates of Twinkies and Devil Dogs. I have to admit though, that while the packaged treats that were anxiously looked forward to in my lunch bag when I was in grade school just didn’t taste the same now. Have my taste buds “matured” or has the formula changed? I’m not sure.

Dinners Back Then

There is an email that has circulated for years that I find most humorous and nostalgic at the same time. It is all about what dinners were like back in the fifties and it struck a familiar chord with me. Some of the thoughts that cause one to smile in recognition are these simple statements. Enjoy this trip back in time as you ponder some of them!

  • Seaweed was not a recognized food.
  • None of us had ever heard of yogurt before.
  • Sugar enjoyed a good press in those days and was regarded as being white gold.
  • The word pasta was not used. It was macaroni or spaghetti.
  • Kebab was not even a word, never mind a food we’ve heard of.
  • All potato chips were plain, not flavored.
  • Prunes were considered “medicinal.”
  • Pineapple came in chunks or rings in a can. (Mom used rings to top a canned ham, dotted with     fresh cloves).
  • Water came out of the tap. If someone had suggested bottling it and charging more than gasoline for it they would have become a laughing stock.
  • And lastly… The one thing that we never ever had on/at our table in the fifties…was elbows, hats and cell phones. Those were truly “the good old days!”
August 30, 2017 |

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