Popsicle’s have been with us as long as I have been on this planet.
Back when my shoes were size five, we neighborhood kids would hear music marching down our street and see a big white ice cream truck with black speakers mounted on its roof. It was playing happy music on a dreadfully hot summer afternoon.
The truck stopped in front of our house as we stood out front with coins in our little fingers. It wasn’t a glamorous job for the drivers, but, then, people worked to pay their bills.
Grown men with two day beards were paid one to two bucks an hour to drive the truck and sell us treats. They smoked Marlboros or Lucky Strikes and had anchors tattooed on their right forearms. They took our money with a smile and always gave us back the correct change. A radio hanging from the truck’s rear view mirror played Patsy Cline or Hank Williams.Some of the men had fought on the battlefields in Europe and the Pacific.Others were just drifters.
The Popsicle’s were all flavors. You could get cherry, lime, orange, banana, pineapple, and half a dozen more tastes..The ice cream in the freezers was vanilla, chocolate, chocolate chip plus lime or orange sherbet for those who didn’t like ice cream. There were also ice cream concoctions covered with chocolate that were popular – Eskimo Pies, Dilly Bars, Ice Cream Sandwiches.
When you finished your Popsicle you were left with a stick and a joke like these:
” What is the most musical part of a turkey? (The Drumsticks)
” What did the horse say to the angry cow? (What’s your beef?)
” What is the mouse’s least favorite weather? ( When it rains cats and dogs)
” What do you call a girl in the middle of a tennis court? ( Annette)
Popsicle’s are still sticking around though I never see the trucks in neighborhoods anymore.
What is touching is the generation of kids that bought them from a white truck in front of their home during summer vacation now have gray hair, walk with a cane, or need oxygen to keep them going.
The popsicle jokes are still funny to me even if my gray hair isn’t.