By Betsy Barbieux, CAM, CFCAM/ Published Sept 2015
Sometimes you just have to step away from all the drama, trauma, and frustration that come with management and community association living—and life in general. It seems the negativity, disrespect, and hatefulness is getting worse instead of better despite how “sophisticated” we consider our society to have become. So let’s step away for a few moments. Take a deep breath and remember when—
Pedestrians looked both ways before crossing a street.
Women were never seen standing or walking with a lighted cigarette.
Men opened doors—both car doors and entrance doors.
Women styled their hair.
You made eye contact with the driver of the car before you walked in front of it.
Men tucked in their shirts.
The store clerks looked at you, knew your name, and said “thank you.”
People said “please” and “thank you.”
Families ate dinner together.
Almost all families had fathers living with them.
Sunday dinner was the highlight of the week.
Fathers took their families to church on Sundays.
Ladies never showed cleavage.
Schools served fish every Friday to honor the Catholic students.
You ran behind the mosquito fogger truck on Tuesday nights.
At a four-way stop, the driver who arrived first went first.
Carbon paper and onion skin were used to make file copies.
Ladies wore hosiery.
Tickler files were the extended calendars of choice.
The school sold popsicles after lunch for five cents.
Fresh milk was left at your door every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning.
Your tests at school were duplicated on a mimeograph machine.
Stores were closed on Sunday.
Family vacations were at the beach.
Children and grandchildren took in their grandparents.
Sitting on the porch after dinner was what you did every night.
Watermelon Parades celebrated the good food of summer.
Walking to your next class, you always walked to the right.
You shook hands and made eye contact.
You “dressed up” to fly on an airplane.
All restaurants were local, family owned.
You could play out in the neighborhood all day long and only come home for supper.
You said the Pledge of Allegiance every morning at school.
They served Orange Crush and sugar cookies for snacks on the airplanes.
Coffee was a dime.
The Ten Commandments were displayed in every school.
Store clerks could count out your change.
Smoking was allowed on airplanes.
Adding was done on an adding machine.
Names, addresses, and telephone numbers were either memorized or on a Rolodex card.
The neighbors whistled (a very loud one) at dinner to let their kids know to come home.
There were no chain restaurants.
Paddling was allowed in school.
When daddy was gone on an overnight trip, Mom made breakfast for supper.
Cakes, cookies, and brownies were made from scratch.
Except for staples like beans, rice, flour, and sugar, there were no packaged foods.
Hair dryers had a hood and a long hose.
Old orange juice cans were used for hair rollers.
High school cheerleaders actually led the fans in cheers.
Kids played ping pong on the dining room table.
An empty neighborhood lot, a cardboard box, and a shovel entertained a group of children all day long.
You would swing as high as you could—then JUMP!
Dough balls were used to catch a bucket full of bream.
Sponge hair rollers and home perms were bathroom staples.
Milk came in glass bottles.
You could swim in the lake without fear of alligators, the EPA, or amoebas.
Politicians were volunteers; they didn’t get paid.
You chewed a red dye pill to show where you missed brushing your teeth.
You refilled your fountain pen; blue ink went everywhere.
There were three TV channels, and they all went off the air at midnight.
Walter Cronkite hosted the evening news.
Rabbit ears were on most televisions.
Spring break was always the week of Easter.
A straight A-B report card would get you a hamburger and milkshake at the Burger Queen.
Wally and June Cleaver were modestly shown as sleeping in twin beds.
You never heard a curse word on TV.
Plastic was invented and the first ball point pen.
Senior graduation trips were a day and night at Daytona Beach.
We used words like moxie, cut a rug, swell, and heavens to Betsy.
Your mother reminded you of all the starving children in China if you left food on your plate.
Ladies went first.
Family gathering moments were captured on Polaroid cameras.
There were no curse words in the movies except for Gone with the Wind.
Grocery stores were small because all the food was either fresh or frozen.
You drank out of the water hose.
Anything made in China was cheap and fell apart when taken out of the wrapper.
You were told America was great.
You could graduate from high school with a skill and make a living with no college debt.
There was no board of directors to tell you how tall your grass could be.
President Kennedy was shot and you knew where you were.
It was embarrassing to be on food stamps.
You were told not to wear stripes and plaids together.
It was safe to stay out on the lake all day in your Boston Whaler—just you and two other girlfriends—and water ski.
There were neighborhoods that were not planned developments.
You were told computers would shorten your work week.
You talked to your neighbor about their barking dog instead of calling the police.
Neighbors helped each other out in hard times instead of reporting them to child services.
It was rare to know someone who was divorced.
The only meetings you attended were the PTA or at church.
The neighbors gathered together for a block party instead of a riot.
The only elections you knew were for the president or the local mayor.
Okay, now it is time to get back to work!
Betsy Barbieux, CAM, CFCAM
Florida CAM Schools
Betsy Barbieux, CAM, CFCAM, guides managers, board members, and service providers in handling daily operations of their communities while at the same time dealing with different communication styles, difficult personalities, and conflict. Effective communication and efficient management are her goals. For more than 15 years, Barbieux has educated thousands of managers, directors, and service providers. She is your trainer for life! Barbieux is the author of Boardmanship, a columnist in the Florida Community Association Journal, and a member of the Regulatory Council for Community Association Managers. For more information, contact Betsy@FloridaCAMSchools.com, (352) 326-8365, or www.FloridaCAMSchools.com.