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Skills We Took Pride in, Now Obsolete

mmaahmmaah Registered User Posts: 944 Member
edited January 2007 in Parent Cafe
I am always having to consult my kids for technical skills I have not acquuired (how do something with my cellular phone, how to download a certain program....) so spend a lot of time feeling behind the times. While stuck in traffic today I found myself pondering skills I (or peers had) that I realize my kids will probably never learn (unless they own an antique store or do historical reenactment work!) I thought the Parent Cafe gang could help round out my starter list: Skills We Acquired and Needed--at one time

checking arithmetic by "casting out 9s"
doing square root by hand
using a slide rule
taking "short hand" notes or dictation
changing a typewriter ribbon
correcting a mimeograph
using a dial phone
sprinkling clothes and starching a shirt (our gym clothes no less!)....

jump right in, I know I'm not the only dinosaur out here...
Post edited by mmaah on

Replies to: Skills We Took Pride in, Now Obsolete

  • LWMDLWMD Registered User Posts: 334 Member
    diagram a sentence
  • mathmommathmom Registered User Posts: 29,733 Senior Member
    using a t-square or parallel rule and adjustable triangle
    running a blueprint
    reading an analog clock
  • latetoschoollatetoschool Registered User Posts: 3,143 Senior Member
    I actually still use shorthand. My handwriting is so bad - guess from years of computer work, I cannot read anything I write. So if I'm on a telephone call or something and need to take written notes, I do most of it in an old style of shorthand that I think is called "ABC" (vs. Pearl I think the better style is called). It's the only way I can read anything I wrote.
  • ldmom06ldmom06 Registered User Posts: 5,564 Senior Member
    Getting out a pencil and making a true reconciliation of a bank statement instead of just checking the balance online. I'm afraid our kids have been lulled into a sense of false security when it comes to the possibility of banking errors or theft.

    Learning how to gently put the turntable needle on the vinyl without making a screeching noise.
  • HImomHImom Registered User Posts: 29,774 Senior Member
    Hanging clothes on the clothesline.
    Ironing clothes--tho son does iron once every few years.
  • northeastmomnortheastmom Registered User Posts: 12,379 Senior Member
    I still use shorthand too.

    There are skills that my grandmother had, that I never acquired, and I think about that quite often.She attended to a "finishing school". They taught her how to darn socks, she made lace tablecloths with beautiful embroidery. She had many secret recipes that never got handed down to the next generation.

    Another somewhat lost skill-threading a sewing machine, and knitting (although my younger sister-in-law knits very well).
  • icesk8momicesk8mom Registered User Posts: 295 Junior Member
    Using carbon paper
    Trying to adjust your spacing/typing to allow for footnotes...and retyping the
    page when it didn't pan out!
    Figuring out present values and annuities using tables and interpolation
  • mathmommathmom Registered User Posts: 29,733 Senior Member
    I have darned socks
    I can embroider quite nicely thought it's been a while
    I still use the sewing machine occassionally
    I knit a bee-yoo-ti-ful baby sweater 12 years ago (it had a mohair bunny rabbit)
  • seoleseole Registered User Posts: 298 Junior Member
    I would love to learn shorthand. Do I need to learn it from a class or could I learn from a book? How did you learn? It seems like it would be extremely useful.
  • Dad23Dad23 Registered User Posts: 37 Junior Member
    good penmanship
  • northeastmomnortheastmom Registered User Posts: 12,379 Senior Member
    seole, My mother used to teach shorthand, as well a "keypunch" in college. This was actually taught in high schools and colleges at one time.

    There were books that taught it, and mainly through practice, practice, practice, taking dictation, and then reading it back one improved one's skill.
  • northeastmomnortheastmom Registered User Posts: 12,379 Senior Member
    mathmom, Sounds like you have some wonderful old world skills. Geez, you could open up your own "finishing school" of sorts.
  • northeastmomnortheastmom Registered User Posts: 12,379 Senior Member
  • MarianMarian Registered User Posts: 12,555 Senior Member
    Typing. Real typing. The kind where you get the words right the first time because you can't easily correct any errors.

    Also, adjusting the antenna on the TV just perfectly, so that you could see the actual picture rather than a screen full of snow.

    And using a slide rule (I found my old one a few months ago). I remember that we had to learn how to use one for high school chemistry class.
  • Brandon's momBrandon's mom Registered User Posts: 237 Junior Member
    Crocheting, "knit one, perl 2", and baking apple & lemon meringue pies from scratch - learned from my grandmother
This discussion has been closed.