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Saturday, November 5, 2011

How About Some Puffa, Puffa Rice?

I was researching old food favorites when I came upon this botched website.  It’s worth a brief perusal just to for a quick chuckle.  Maybe you will identify with more products than I did.

Although I must admit I didn’t remember about 80% of the items listed (mainly because my mother was not in favor of a lot of candy and soda was a definite taboo), it was interesting to see the evolution of junk food.  Can’t really say it has changed much.

I do remember a few childhood goodies we indulged in:

Atomic Fireballs
Dot candies on paper
Vinegar candy (I used to make it all the time)

Good and Plenty
Tonic (not tonic water, it was the name given to soda, like “pop”)
Maypo cereal
Fig bars
Real bubble gum

All consumed while watching Johnny Quest and the Monkees or reading Highlights and Ranger Rick.  Life was great. 

The above-mentioned web site article was entertaining and somewhat informative in a time capsule sort of way but… all this research was not supplying me with the specific information I was originally looking for - information on a childhood memory involving the milkman.  Yes, the milkman.

  Someone must remember Five (?) Gallon Milk Jugs from the 70’s.  Hopefully, by blogging my quest, someone will come forward.    Does anyone remember plastic containers in the shape of large rectangular jugs?  They were delivered by the milkman (I assume that was stranger that would enter our home and head for the refrigerator.) at least once a week during the 1970’s.    He would place the containers on the top shelf inside the refrigerator.  For some reason, and I am betting it had something to do with physical capabilities, he was the only one that placed them in the refrigerator.   There was a spout that was then pulled out and faced downward.  This allowed you to pour milk directly into a glass, eliminating the need for the dreaded heavy glass pitcher.

Of course, horrific memories arise when I recall these beverage wonders of the world.  Like the one where my brother turned the spout 180 degrees knowing I was the next to quench my thirst.  And as I opened the frig and put my glass under the spout he distracted me with conversation and I pushed the red button in and the milk sprouted upward like a geyser.  Brat!

 Obviously, my parents were convinced that these awkward milk containers were economical and since there were no environmental concerns regarding plastics (I mean, come on - Tupperware was the modern glassware and Saran Wrap was a must have staple in every kitchen), they genuinely believed they were being prudent consumers.  Obviously, with seven children and the nearest superette miles away, it seemed heaven sent for my mother.

I cannot think of the milk brand – probably Hood, but cannot say definitely.  I do remember my parents telling us we were the first family in Brewster to have these “automatic cows”.   Oddly, I never saw them at any of my friend’s houses.  So, unless we were part of some milk guzzling cult, there must have been others who bought these containers.  Where are you???? Please, fess up!!  Come forward.

One last thought with regards to the fun foods of yesteryear.
As the holidays approach keep it traditional but be realistic.  Try to use natural sweeteners.  Remember not everything needs to come from a can.   And, please, do not put anything bigger than a bread box in the frig.