Fifty years ago I was 12 years old, getting ready to enter my teen years in a few months. (13 in October of that year)

Many things are different from back then in comparison to today's teenagers. I started thinking about some of those changes that I saw back then.


  • Gas prices in 1971 were approximately .36-.40 cents per gallon. This is the equivalent to around $2.36-2.40 in 2020.
  • To get gas in your vehicle, you pulled up to a full-service pump where an attendant checked your tire pressure and washed your windshield while your gas was being pumped. You most likely didn't leave your car for this service.
  • If you did pump your own gas, you most likely had to go to the back of the car and pull down the license plate (hinged) to gain access to the gas tank cap.
  • You or someone in your family most likely changed the oil themselves along with other minor mechanical duties.
  • You spent Saturday afternoon in the driveway at your house washing and waxing the car. Why? Because your dad told you to do it.

Generally, a Saturday afternoon also included being outside all day playing either at your house or at a neighbors. Playing tag, pick-up baseball games, climbing trees were the norm for 12-13 year old kids. (At least for a boy)

If you got your allowance you headed to the nearest store that carried comic books and/or baseball cards. You grabbed a comic book, a candy bar and a bottle of pop. Total cost around a quarter. that probably shot your allowance for the week.

You went to one of the local toy stores, or should I say department store that carried toys. You checked out the hottest toys on display. You knew that your birthday was coming up and Christmas was just around the corner. Had your eyes on a new toy called an Etch-A-Sketch. Maybe a little too pricey to just buy outright with your measly .25 cent weekly allowance. It went for $2.83. If you were lucky and good, maybe your parents would get you a cool new toy-Rock em Sock em Robots. Wow, this would definitely set someone back with a price of $8.99. That would have to be a Christmas present. The price was too high just for your birthday.

Just some insight to stuff happening 50 years ago, For now, this Boomer is signing out.

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