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In the Good Old Days

Trivia Question

Which team won the 1954 World Series in a four-game sweep?

Eat in the Kitchen!

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As I handed my grandchildren a couple of orange sherbet push pops on a recent 90-degree day, these words automatically tumbled out of my mouth: "Eat in the kitchen, sweeties!" Immediately after the phrase crossed my lips, I had a flashback to my childhood, when my mom often uttered the same phrase to her five constantly hungry kids. She may or may not have followed the admonition with the endearment of "sweeties," especially after having to repeat the order 10 times in one day. But clearly, the moms of yesterday understood, as do the moms (and grandmoms) of today, that cleanup is much easier in the kitchen than in any other area of the home. Thus, messy food should be consumed there, within arm's reach of a dishrag or paper towel.

On the occasions when my mom didn't catch us before we slipped a sloppy snack out of the kitchen, it didn't end well. There was the time I absconded with a carton of chocolate milk from the fridge and promptly dropped it on the new living room carpet. My middle brother once decided my dad's couch was a good place to eat a bowlful of blackberries (he wiped his hands repeatedly on the cushions). And my little sister, so fond of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, left a trail of strawberry jam throughout the house, upstairs and downstairs. Those are just the incidents I can recall and don't include the nonfood disasters, like a broken bottle of nail polish on our wooden stairsteps and a chemistry experiment gone bad in my oldest brother's room. Evidence of those particular messes are still visible today. My mom must have been so frustrated with our inability to confine our messes.

But no matter how much time passes, some things never change. Kids will still be kids, and messes will still be made, so I suppose I haven't uttered my last, "Eat in the kitchen" directive. I just hope it's always followed with, "sweeties."

An editorial note: We inadvertently omitted a link in our Good Old Days on the Radio column in our September/October 2021 issue of Good Old Days magazine. For those interested (and why wouldn't you be?), you can get a free 30-minute download of the radio show Suspense by going to It will be available until Oct. 31, 2021.

'Til next time,

Mary Beth Signature

Mary Beth Weisenburger,
Good Old Days® magazine

PS. Did you ever make a colossal mess in your Good Old Days? We want to hear about it! Send a brief response to me at, and it could appear in a future update or in Good Old Days magazine! Here is one email response from the July 21, 2021, update question: What was your favorite summer activity in your Good Old Days?

Carol Schoepf shared this summertime fun: "My favorite summer fun was when I could take a day to spend in the woods. I got to swing on vines, nap by a stream, pester crawdads and, best of all, find unusual wildflowers to dig up and take home to plant in the yard. I got to pretend to be anything I wanted to be on those days. I loved the cool stillness, the babbling stream and even the sunny glades. It was my magical world for the day. Today no one would consider allowing a 6- to 8-year-old girl spend a day alone wandering in the woods."

Mary Beth Weisenburger has been with Annie's since April 2011. She has 25 years of experience in the marketing, advertising and publishing fields. In addition to her job as editor of Good Old Days, she has been writing a family humor column for over a decade. She and her husband, two college-age kids, two dogs and various other critters live on five acres in the country, where she enjoys reading on the back porch, refinishing furniture, feeding the birds and digging in the dirt of her perennial gardens.

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Trivia Answer

The New York Giants. The Giants defeated the Cleveland Indians. The first game of the series included "The Catch" by Giants center fielder Willie Mays, in which he made an amazing over-the-shoulder snag.

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