Back in the Day

Tomorrow is Halloween! For me, no memory of Halloween can escape the pig; no, not a real pig but a costume that my mother made for me when I was in elementary school. My mother was a talented sewer. I have no idea how she came up with the idea of a pig costume for me for Halloween. With tan …

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My father is the man that has had the most significant impact on my growth and development. Then there is The Reverend Dr. Leon Howard Sullivan, who during the early years of my career, afforded me opportunities that paved the way for the things I accomplished. So, as we celebrate the centen…

Many of you recall having jobs when you were growing up, back in the day. I make this observation knowing that many families did not have the means to provide the things that their children needed or wanted. If you flash back to the 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s, you will recall that many parents di…

There was a time when people dressed for the occasion. What should or should not be worn was understood. Jeans, sweatpants, shorts, sandals, and sneakers were for play; short, tight, miniskirts were for parties. Many cringe in disgust when observing inappropriate dress today.  As I discussed…

You may not know the name of John Elroy Sanford but his stage name, Redd Foxx is likely familiar to you. You must recall his raunchy nightclub acts that left many in stitches. Whenever I think about Redd Foxx, I recall an incident that he described of a drunk who gets on a bus, staggers down…

Like me, a number of you were challenged by the traffic over the past several weeks. The traffic was heavy, mainly due to children returning to school. In spite of the inconvenience created by the yellow busses and the children making their way through the streets as they traveled to their s…

I have always admired old, classic automobiles. Whenever I see one, I think about those from my past. Last week as I rode with a friend, who is a serious automobile collector, we both admired the older automobiles passing us on the highway or parked in neighborhood driveways. While internet …

There was a time when families routinely ate meals together, especially Sunday dinner. In my household, it was not something that we happened to do, it was mandatory. The thought for this column came to mind while listening to a news report about how families today do not eat dinner together…

Over the past several years, daily discussions with a dear friend and fraternity Brother, Robert “Rob-Roy” Ridley, often stoke my thoughts of topics. Such was the case last week as I talked with him, and he asked if I was a fan of comic books when growing up. So here I am, taking another tri…

If you are collecting social security or a pension, then you are undoubtedly a senior citizen. To be blunt, you are old. It you do not currently fall into this category and you live long enough, you will eventually be a senior citizen. I can tell you that reaching the fourth quarter of my li…

Last week, I was searching the Internet when I came across a notice, “August Quarterly Festival Celebration,” presented by Evan W. Smith Funeral Services, Aug. 21 – 28, in Wilmington, Delaware. I recall August Quarterly as a young child and dedicated a column, more than fifteen years ago, to…

In last week’s column, I focused on things many of us did in an attempt to stay cool during hot weather, back in the day. I mentioned the basement as a favorite place for many to spend time to escape the hot weather. I received a number of comments about the significance of the basement, par…

In the past few days, there was some improvement in the weather, however, most days this week were hot. A close friend called as I sat at my computer to begin writing this column. I told him about my column and he quickly took me on a trip sharing how he and many others dealt with hot weathe…

In searching the internet last week, I came across an article that focused on national stores that no longer exist. It was right down my alley and my thoughts quickly turned to stores and businesses where many of us once shopped, in Philadelphia neighborhoods and Center city, back in the day.