[APG Public List] Origin of a homemaker's habit

Debbie Parker Wayne debbie at debbiewayne.com
Wed Sep 8 15:54:27 MDT 2010

  Thanks to all of you who answered on- and off-list and on the blog. 
I'll wait a while for any other answers that come in then compile a list 
of responses.

Obviously, the Dust Bowl story is not true in general. But it may be 
true for some families. One person commented on the blog that her mother 
and grandmother in Kansas called the 1930s the "dirty thirties" and 
placed glasses and cups upside down so they wouldn't have to be washed 
again before using. I also liked one off-list comment where the person 
wondered if the upside down rims weren't getting dirty by touching the 

I can tell this topic caused some others to sit around with fond 
memories of mothers and grandmothers running through their minds. At the 
risk of touching off another round of memories -- I have never forgotten 
one of the end-of-story fillers in /Reader's Digest/ many years ago. 
Paraphrased from memory: A group of women were sitting around the 
kitchen table. One of the younger wives asked, "Which kitchen 
convenience is the one you can't live without?" As they went around the 
table the answers were garbage disposal, microwave, refrigerator, range, 
etc. When they got to the old grandma her answer was "running water." 
That story always reminds me of the things I forget to appreciate.

Thanks again.

Regards, Debbie

Debbie Parker Wayne, East Texas

Wayne Research -- http://debbiewayne.com/
Blog -- Deb's Delvings http://debsdelvings.blogspot.com/
DNA Project Admin -- Spanish_Grants and Texas State GS
Director -- First Families of Texas

Jacqueline Wilson wrote on 9/8/2010 3:10 PM:
> It was a common practice in the mid-west - Illinois as well.  I never understood how they could dry that way on a cabinet shelf unless they stood on a rack.  I think dust was probably the real reason.

Kathy Gunter Sullivan wrote on 9/8/2010 3:32 PM:
> Debbie,
> Your survey seems to caught everyone's attention. From the responses,
> it's pretty obvious the Dust Bowl did not create the habit of upside
> down cups and glasses. It is an interesting question--why do we do what
> we do?

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