I took an history course at university, the history of sport (yes, I know, a liberal arts education, all thought and no substance! but it was interesting!) and it really showed me how even the concept of the american male as being the macho tough guy was born out of this time during the turn of the last century. we began to break away from the concept of the more feminie (or then beginning to be percieved as such) aspect of the english man. Though, there are plenty of tough as nails bull-dog cockney lads, the idea of propaganda was used to demonstrate to us that the american male were not the foppish men of europe but the tough as nails men in sport. This was during Theodore Roosevelts time and I think it might also be the time when American English took on some of the spelling differences we now use, such as we spell galmor without the "u". But, I dirgress, anyway this really began the idea which was later formulated into what we have now with sports stars being role models and recieving millions of dollars ,while the conept of education for intelligence and work is put aside. The goal of the star athelete is added to the 'dream list' for the average american, one they can never achieve (save for a very limited few) and in their dashed hopes they can makeup for lost dreams in millions of dollars of merchandise in jerseys, baseball caps, and video games where they are the star. Not just a fun little game of baseball with friends, but a frenzied merchandise buying and feeding ground. It is becoming more and more apparanet how we were fed such things. But, you see, had I not had a class that took me specifically to before we had organized teams of sports which then became business, I would not have known that the concept of the sport world is just another element made up of someones enjoyable past time twisted into some extreme business model.
I am not a sports fan, but I have friends who go to baseball games in Boston and they said the ticket prices are ridiculous and do not know how an entire family can afford to go.
In the story I had been mentioning in previous blogs about the young american couple, The McClosckys , her husband was both an high school coach but made 'extra money' playing basketball professionally. In 1955 this entailed his having to drive to the game where he recieved 50 dollars a game. Sure in todays money that is $350 dollars, but can you imgaine a modern basketball player recieving this and also living just a normal life at 50 dollars a game? But, on some level, it is rather nice. You can use your ability to make extra money for your family instead of being a product some company needs to use and sell.
I don't mean to keep coming back to this point, and please forgive me, but I am like a blind person who has just recieved their sight. I want to keep explaining to you how much I like the color yellow! The more I 'uncover' of the past, the more I begin to see our present on shaky ground. That things one just considers a normal part of life, like giant money-making sports teams, are just another product of the corporate world.
On to other topics,
I found this wonderful book when I found the 1908 housekeeping manual.
I think the sage advice from this one page would do so many of us some good. I really don't know that much about children's books, but a quick look around that section of a large book chain mostly showed me books about how it is 'okay to be who you are' and 'don't worry about it we are all different and yet the same'. Certainly, it is good to teach children to be happy and to co-exist, but practical living should not be put off until college or later. Why should not a child of 4 or 5 begin to understand spending and its consequences. But, really, probably most parents (and I am not saying 'oh bad parents') most likely themselves do not know how to save or how to spend appropriately. We have come from a generation of those who were not responsible for spending and now even our government and big business is teaching the lesson, "Don't worry, if you overspend or don't save, some one will 'bail you out'". I don't think that is a very good or realistic lesson.
I don't want to seem that I am becoming more preachy or political, but I cannot help that everytime I look deeper into the simplest aspects of the past I keep uncovering mistakes I make today that I would like to fix. How funny that a child's book from the 1950s is humbling me to a lesson that should have been with me since the cradle!
If you are all interested in the book, I would be willing to scan the whole of it, it is not too long, but why not share it with your own children? I love, too, that the book was written and illustrated by women. How funny, working women with sound advice in 1950 co-exisiting with homemakers and mothers. What a novel idea! (pun intended)
Now, I feel bad as I seem to have become a little lax in my blogging these past few days. This is due to a project that vintage friend and I are working on. The jist of it is, we are working on a small building to become our 'sewing studio workshop'.
My hubby and I own a darling little house in another town here. It is a wonderful old house, built in 1718, before this was even the united states. We, ourselves, once lived in it. Then, I had my parents in there, but they have recently (through some sad events I don't want to dwell on now) have left. We could not afford to keep the house vacant and so have rented it out.
The other building, which we call the "studio", is finished to a point, but was sitting idle. Vintage friend and I began a "Lucy and Ethel" scheme to turn it into our 'dream sewing room'. The second floor can be our place to sew and create. I also would LOVE to, in time, do our podcasts from there. We could treat it like the central spot for our vintage ideas and dreams. Pictures and progress will follow. But, it has taken up most of my non-homemkaing time. SO, I feel I have been rather lax here, and I do not want that to happen. I really believe the community I am beginning to feel with all of you is very important and I want it to continue as best as I can and to include all of you in it and perhaps ask your advice when we need it or give out our won, which I love to do of course!