Saturday, 14 February 2015

The past lives on, and Valentine's Day

I read a post via a tweet yesterday, titled '11 jobs that no longer exist'

One of them was milkman.  The article informs us that, many years ago before refrigeration, there used to be a man who delivered milk on a daily basis.  Who'd have thought it, eh?  Um, I've got news for you, article writer - these quaint old fashioned chaps have not yet slipped into history!  My father still gets milk from the milkman, for one, and I am sure he's not the only person in the country...

... actually, it's quite an interesting article.  It's HERE.  If you click on it you also get to look at the totally weird post mortem photographs in the article at the side, too - but, anyway, back to the jobs of yore.  Amongst others, the article mentions 'knocker-uppers' - in the days before everyone had alarm clocks, each community had a chap or woman who would go around knocking people's windows to get them out of bed so they wouldn't be late to clock on at t'mill, or whatever.  Now, here's a thing.  I used to live with a chap called Marcus who came from a very 'we don't like no foreigners round 'ere' type of village in Northamptonshire.  In that village he was known by most people as 'Knocker', as was his father afore him, because his grandfather had been the village knocker-upper.

Me and 'Knocker', around 20 years ago.  I am sure there's a joke somewhere about 'knocking up', but I won't look for it.  And I didn't choose the picture of me looking quite sweet and him looking weird on purpose, either; I have very few of him scanned for computer use!!

Incidentally, it being Valentine's Day 'n' all, I'll just add this.  On February 14th, 1990, when we'd only just met, he made a most romantic gesture. This was in the long ago era before Valentine's Day became 'Suppose I'd better take the Mrs out for an overpriced meal and spend half my salary on a bunch of red roses and some daft heart shaped box of chocolates' Day.  He put a single red rose through my letter box, without anything to say who it was from.  Would have been so thrillingly mysterious had my flat mate not seen him through the window, walking away.  And I don't suppose his current girlfriend would have thought it was that romantic, either.  Oh, well....

I hope y'all feel loved and appreciated every day, not just today, and preferably not by someone who lives with someone else!


19 comments:

  1. Good one, TT! I could do with a knocker-upper these days, and I mean the sort that wakes me, just to be clear. Getting up is such a struggle in these winter days. As for Valentine's day, I have been told quite plainly that Valentines are when secret admirers get the chance to let you know (as in your rose through the letter box) and since himself knows me a bit by now, it seems I'm not eligible for Valentine's treatment…such is the way of Dutch honesty :)

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    1. Tell Koos I agree with him - Him Indoors and I don't give each other owt!!!!

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  2. I got a very nice card and a book from John's teddy bears, thanking me for all I do for them (spa days, making Tedward 2 new waistcoats etc) and another card and a box of chocolates from the cat, which is all very sweet! The loopy world of JM!

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    1. Sathe says: "How come you've never given me a spa day, Auntie Julia?" That's nice that you got them things, eh. We don't do owt for it. Mind you, we don't bother with our wedding anniversary, either. Or Christmas. Bit weird, really!

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  3. I've never received a Valentine's card in my life but I did once get a single red rose. It was delivered to my place of work when I had a holiday job in a bookies by Interflora. It was anonymous and I spent all day giving any half-way decent bloke the glad eye thinking it could be from them. Tragically just before the shop was about shut the local nutter who lived in a half-way house and drank meths came dashing in to see if I'd got my rose. It about summed up bloody Valentine's day for me - you can stuff it :D

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    1. Ha ha ha!!!!!!! Top stuff!

      That and one other are the only two 'anonymous' ones I've ever had - the second one was left behind the bar of a pub where I was working of an evening. I was daft enough to marry the person who left it. You know what you said about 'nutter'?????

      On the whole, though, I agree with you. Mind you, you're talking to the woman who forgets her own wedding anniversary and agrees with her husband that we don't need anything, so why buy Christmas presents? I just hate the whole idea that we're all so easily sucked in by the retail trade. This is me standing there with mad, unruly greying hair, shaking her fist and going, "you're not sucking me in, fuckers!!", and probably looking like the guy who sent you the red rose. :^D

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    2. I'm with you 100% Terry. Don Draper and his ilk have a lot to answer for - they've turned everything into a cliche.

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  4. We used to have a milkwoman, called Candy, who was American, but she sold the round to Jim, who sold it to the dairy so that he could become a bus driver. The dairy's bloke was rubbish, trying to charge us for milk he hadn't delivered, so we went to Tesco's instead. We used to have bread delivered by a Mr Jose, who also sold tinned food and ciggies. He sold the round to a young woman, who got pregnant. A new bread van came round, driven by Geoff, but in the end he got a job at the bakery. John Cray took over the tinned food round, but he went to work as a bailiff in the end. However, we have never had a knocker upper.

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    1. No, I had never heard of knocker uppers until I met the gentleman so named above. Sounds like there's still room for some serious door to door trading in your neck of the woods, Pottsy. When I was a child we used to have an egg man (he had bright red hair and I believe he was called Tom) as well as a milkman, and a laundry man (Mum used to send the sheets away in some van and they'd come back all launderised). If only we knew what happened to Candy, John Cray, Mr Jose, Tom, etc. Perhaps they're all Aldi managers now.

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    2. I see Candy every so often in Tesco, on a Thursday morning. John Cray ended up working on the trains, and I see him from time to time. I bumped into Geoff in town last year. I think Mr Jose is probably dead, along with Tony the Fish, who used to come round on a Friday. Maybe, with the rise of Fifty Shades, there's room for a whips and chains round.

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  5. Never heard of a Knocker Upper, but when I was a kid I loved it when The Mother's Pride bread van came around, we were allowed to climb inside to see all the loaves, the smell was delicious, no plastic wrapping, I think I always wanted my Mum to buy the lot! We lived on a farm so we had the dairy milk lorry come and collect the milk churns of milk which we had to roll up on a concrete stand which was the same height as the lorry for easy loading. Fresh mint grew around the end of the standing and I remember jumping off into it all and coming up smelling lovely.

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    1. A different world, our childhoods!!!! Sad....

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  6. I've seen pictures of the knocker-uppers - some were employed by factory owners, I think, to make sure their workers arrived on time.

    As for Valentines, I watched some young couples in a restaurant yesterday. Great food, candles, roses. And most of them were on their phones not talking to each other. Oh well, I expect they put the phones down when they got home ...

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    1. There are some good pics of them in the article, too!

      Maybe all those couple were texting all the people they're having online flirtations with....!!

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  8. When I was a wee lass living in Leeds, I used to love watching the Rag n' Bone man come down the street. He had a big, black shire horse pulling a cart full of crap, oops I mean useful recycling! Today we have to chain our bikes to the front door so that some white van man doesn't whip it away for scrap! :-)

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    1. Ha ha! Where I now live, I believe rag and bone men could be seen until quite recently.

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  9. My father in law thinks he has a milkman - I'll tell him he's just a figment of his imagination.

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    1. Ha ha! I don't see many where I live now (north east) but used to see them in Northants and Norfolk.

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