1900s, 1920s, Culture, History, Nostalgia, Photography, Pics, School, Vintage, Youth

Life Before Sonicare

Living Lens by Newhouse

Over 100 years ago, these Jewish children practiced oral hygiene with a standard “Toothbrush Drill,” popular at New York public schools. Pretty sure these kids didn’t have gingivitis.

Good oral hygiene was also important for these young women during singing class at Jewish People’s School in Otwock, Poland in the 1920s. Note that every single one wore her hair bobbed.

If those girls played their cards right, they might end up with nice Jewish boys, like the ones below at Yeshiva College in NYC, where students were able to “harmoniously combine the best of modern culture with the learning and the spirit of Torah.”

Today let’s pause and be grateful that we have the freedom to worship in our country without being persecuted.

giphy.com

 

 

1930s, Culture, History, Nostalgia, Photography, Pics, Vintage

When The Substitute Is Wearing White Diamonds

The Dust Bowl by Duncan & Burns

If you’ve frequented this blog, you know I loooooooathe White Diamonds. Having endured the presence of not one, but two Boomer women in my life who sported the scent, I can honestly say that it makes my stomach churn. Colognes are so subjective. In any event, these poor kids wish they were breathing the scent of rank perfume. Instead, they were stuck in an Oklahoma one-room school smack dab in the middle of the Depression, covering their mouths against the dust that had permeated the air and suffocated cattle. Dust pneumonia, aka the brown plague, proved lethal for children and the elderly. Makes the cedar pollen plumes of smoke in my home state seem tame.

Photo by Bert Garai/Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
1980s, Culture, History, Photography, Pics

Take A Seat (Literally)

Nat Geo Dec ’85

Back in 1985, the ill-equipped school system of Managua (Nicaragua’s capital) couldn’t provide desks for each student. In order to make sure she always had a seat, this young student carried her desk to school and back from the barrio she lived in.

Lest you think this is a thing of the past, a 2012 article reported on Central China’s  Macheng City in Hubei province, where the elementary schools had 2000 desks for 5000 students. In some cases, grandparents helped bear the burden.

https://www.chinasmack.com/chinese-schoolchildren-must-bring-their-own-desks-to-school

Fortunate families strapped them to the backs of scooters. I guess the police don’t fine you for that.

Makes a simple classroom chore seem like nothing.

Michael H/Getty Images
1930s, College, Culture, History, Humor, Nostalgia, Photography, Pics, Vintage

Masochists In The Midst

Ralph Kestly

Setting: First day of school, fall 1939, at the University of Puerto Rico in Rio Piedras.

Plot: Same old song and dance. Upperclassmen defile face of newbie frosh. Onlookers smile. Well-dressed people spank each other with paddles.

Y’all, I just don’t get it. I don’t get hazing. I didn’t do the Greek scene. I would never have allowed myself to be humiliated like that. But golly, it’s in every single one of my yearbooks. The tradition continues!

People have always been cruel, since the first brothers to exist, Cain and Abel, became murderer and murderee. Honestly, murderee rolls off the tongue better than victim. Why don’t we say that instead? Anyhoo, the point is that violence always has been and always will be, and praying for world peace (which Andie McDowell’s foolish character did in Scrooged) is like trying to boil the ocean, as they say.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jmZRORDUM0

Fun fact to temper bitterness: That looming tower is the FDR Tower, which contains a carillon of 25 bells. What’s a carillon? A set of bells.

The tower still stands today (unless Dorian takes it out).

It commemorates then-president Franklin D. Roosevelt, and will remain named after him until future generations decide they don’t agree with something he did–at which point, it will either be renamed in honor of a more PC and palatable figure–or toppled altogether in the name of retribution.

 

1930s, Culture, Fashion, History, Nostalgia, Photography, Pics, Style, Vintage

I Was Espresso When Espresso Wasn’t Cool

National Geographic Society

Granted, the fellow on the left looks 57, but apparently, he and his buddy were both Roman university students, sipping caffe espressos made from Brazilian beans between classes way back in 1937. Each student’s neckerchief bears colors denoting his course. Would you get a new neckerchief each time you changed majors?

1960s, Culture, High School, History, Nostalgia, Photography, Pics, Vintage

When Students Took Books To School

Anchor 65

P.S. They really don’t use books any more. At least not here. Our school district leases Lenovo laptops to students once they enter middle school and they can continue with the same one for years. Families pay for them yearly. Back in my day, we were issued used textbooks and we covered them with paper ads, such as Mrs. Baird’s bakery or Big Red. We had to fold them just right at the corners to keep them in place.

This is one I’ve actually kept for 40 years. Any of you recall doing this with paper bags?