I don't think anyone would ever hear me say something like "when I was your age, a loaf of bread cost .35 cents and gasoline was .75 cents a gallon". Nope, because that's never ever been true...but I've heard stuff like that all the time...from my parents. Nowadays, bread costs $4 a loaf, milk is $5 a gallon and let's not even talk about the cost of gasoline or a movie ticket.
Last night I was talking to the new guy and trying to finalize plans for our second date. As usual, you do the normal chit chat and asking questions about each other's family and upbringing. He asked me what my parents did for a living and I told him that my parents are blue-collar immigrants. They are both retired and have been for years but they worked a hard life of being a steel metal factory worker and a seamstress. They are jobs that are taken for granted and fairly underappreciated. When my mom first came to the States, she worked for Levi's and helped sew together countless number of jeans. I wonder how many people out there ended up owning a pair she had handled, sewn the seam on, shaped the pockets. To think that those jeans may be surviving somewhere out there when the factory's been closed now for years. As I was telling this guy about their work history, it occured to me that my parents worked hard jobs that they were thankful for but that didn't really pay a lot of money yet they were able to buy a home in San Francisco and raise three children in private schooling. Everyone knows private schooling doesn't come cheap and neither does property in the San Francisco Bay Area. In fact, it's ridiculously expensive...now. It wasn't so bad way back when but still. They probably brought in the same salary (give or take a few thousand dollars) combined as I do by myself now. Now that same salary can barely support me in a one-bedroom rented apartment with my 10-year old car! Forget being able to buy and own a condo, let alone a house and let's not even get on the topic of kids.
I guess thoughts like these make me realize that even though I have my complaints about growing up and having overly strict parents, they really did a decent job bringing up three kids on a limited income, limited command of the english language and no extended family. It's a little inspiring...that and they've been married for 52 years and haven't killed each other.
But since date planning with the new guy brought this realization about, I'll probably post a post-date entry later. Date #2 is tonight!