We remember low prices, but forget about inflation

  • Follow Bill Kirby

Nostalgia is like a grammar lesson: you find the present tense, but the past perfect.

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- Owens Lee Pomeroy

Gas prices are climbing, and most of us are complaining that they are too high. This usually involves a two-step process. Step 1: We announce to anyone who will listen that something costs too much. Step 2: We will launch into a nostalgic story about how cheap things were when we were young.

Everybody does this.

I actually heard a young man in his early 20s last week describing the much more affordable days of his youth - you know, back in 2003.

Before we get too enamored with the good old days, maybe would should adjust those prices of 40 years ago for inflation.

That's when you might find that:

- The $2,368 you'd pay for a Mustang in 1967 would be $14,653 in 2007 dollars.

- The $6,500 for a Cadillac 40 years ago would be $40,223 today.

- The $1.25 for a movie ticket would now be $7.74.

- The 15 cents for a can of Campbell's soup would be 93 cents.

- The 10 cents you paid for a candy bar in 1967 would be worth 62 cents today.

- And a $25 man's suit would cost $117.58 today.

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JOB FAIR: Audrey Barnett writes: "I was amused by your story about four people (Everybody, Somebody, Nobody and Anybody). I used to work at a weaving operation in Washington, Ga., before the bottom fell out of the electronics industry in 2001. I lost my job after 22 years of service. The plant finally closed in 2006.

"Anyway, we would come in the morning and find something had been done wrong in production during the night. We were acquainted with a fifth person, It Wasn't Me.

"A fellow office worker was lamenting her futile attempt to track down a problem. Everyone she talked to said, 'It wasn't me.'

"Just then, another associate spoke up and said, 'That (guy) works 24 hours a day!'

"Of course, he used a little more colorful language. We all had a laugh, and 'It Wasn't Me' became a catch phrase around the office."

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TODAY'S JOKE: Here's one from Everette Fernandez.

It seems two gas company employees were out checking meters in a residential neighborhood. They parked the truck at the end of the street and worked their way to the last house.

Unknown to them, a woman was watching them from her kitchen window as they checked her meter.

Finally finishing their work, the older man, a supervisor, challenged the younger man, his trainee, to a race back to their truck, wanting to prove that an older man could still beat a younger man.

They raced back to the truck, with the supervisor holding a lead, when they noticed the woman from the last house was racing up behind them. They stopped until she caught up and asked what was wrong.

As she gasped for breath, she said, "When I saw you two gas men running as hard as you could, I figured I'd better run too!"


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