Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A to Z - S



For my A to Z Challenge theme I will be posting items that are no longer with us or are close to becoming extinct.

These are great items to use if you are trying to set a time period in your story or to stay away from if you want your story to be timeless.

I'm having so much fun wracking my brain for items that have existed in my life time. I hope you are enjoying these items as much as I am.

Service stations. They are now more appropriately called gas stations because the full service is gone. There are no longer station attendants who fill your tank, check your oil and wiper fluid.  If I still lived somewhere with weather I would mourn the loss of these service stations more than I do living in sunny CA where I am never out in the elements and it is never colder than 50 degrees F.

Shorthand was essential for taking records of oral dictation. It used to be an essential part of training for all secretaries and necessary for journalists. Dictation machines, recorders, and of course the computer have made stenography and shorthand unnecessary.  I always wish I knew shorthand because while I was in college we didn't have laptops to take to class.  I had a really cool Brother typewriter that could remember two sentences of type before you printed it on the page so you could correct before printing and having to deal with messy white out. Yes, it used to be a gloppy and messy liquid

Saturn-  "A different kind of car company." Saturn emerged in 1985 and disappeared in 2010. Saturn was owned by GM and still has a website that directs you to other GM cars you can purchase.

 Studebaker Phaeton

Studebaker This classic car existed from 1852–1963. Headquartered in South Bend Indiana. They came out with electric vehicles in 1902! Their first gasoline car was built in 1912.

Salesmen, door to door. While they are not gone, we still have Avon, Mary Kay, AmWay and a host of other these tend to be people you meet or know they do not just show up at your door and knock on it trying to sell you a vacuum or a set of encyclopedias. That may be because so many people work and no one is home during the day but the internet also made the need for someone to come to you and tell you about a product unnecessary.

Shag rug. No one misses these wall to wall monstrosities. This was the reason we had to have door to door vacuum salesmen. These rugs were murder on vacuums and you could loose a small pet in the carpet. Looking back on them they came in hideous colors and patterns, I am sure the people who bought them wouldn't agree with me. These rugs definitively set a period for your story, welcome to the 70's. 
1960s-1970s Carpets Lovely right?

Sam Goody: Retailer of music and entertainment in the US and UK. Founded in 1956 they went defunct in 2006.  Suncoast Motion Picture Company and Sam Goody were both purchased by Trans World and suffered the same fate as Sam Goody in 2006.

Happy Writing!



11 comments:

  1. Another great list. Some I miss (Wouldn't it be great to have someone pump your gas?) and some not so much. (That green shag says it all.).

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    1. I concur with the miss and can do without!

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  2. These are awesome...so weird how much things have changed.

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    1. It does make me feel a bit dated at times.

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  3. Oregon doesn't allow self serve so they still have service stations. In college I went on a spring break road trip with a van full of girls and we crossed the California border and I was the only one (of 10) who knew how to pump gas... many of these I am glad to say by to... door to door salesmen and shag... tee hee--nice list.

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    1. Wow. That is such an interesting tidbit of information about Oregon. Your friends were very lucky you were on the trip. I hope you taught them so you didn't have to do all the fill ups!

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  4. I wish I had taken shorthand in high school, too. I probably would've understood shorthand notes better than my own cryptic notes.

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  5. I actually live in a town that doesn't allow self-service gas stations. I've never pumped my own gas! I may be moving soon so I should probably learn...

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  6. My grandfather had a Studebaker with a pointy nose. I got to polish it when I was a kid. We go to the Concourse at Pebble Beach each year to mosey among the cars of yesteryear and Studebakers are there. Can't touch those. Ah the shag carpet! So many things lost inside their shaggy wool. Loved finding your blog in the AtoZ.

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  7. Hi Kat - lots of Ss .. shorthand, self-service now ... and then the cars .. Studebaker - is such a lovely name .. and Shag Pile .. monstrous!!! Cheers Hilry

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  8. I had a friend who had rust orange shag rug...oh boy! LOL
    Katie @TheCyborgMom

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