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BBHQ Boomer Essays:

A-Camping We Will Go

Our Boomer-In-Charge at BBHQ, Hershel Chicowitz, writes about boomer memories and current events... from a boomer’s perspective. He is sometimes funny, sometimes provocative, some-
times a little of each. We hope you get a kick out of our Boomer Essays.

The Howard Johnson’s have all but disappeared. If you’re just looking for a place to sleep, motels are too expensive. Motel 6 may leave the lights on for you, but you pay as if it were the stadium lights. Besides, there is a nasty motel along the outer banks of North Carolina that made it abundantly clear to us that we should never come back there. I didn’t see that “Absolutely No Pets” sign until after I had checked in. Downright un-American, if you ask me.


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Summer, 1999:

Hurray! It's that time of year again... Princess and I are planning our summer vacation. I hadn't taken a vacation in years; but now that I have a dog... well, it just seems natural.

I guess I get that from my mother; she thought nothing of packing up two kids and a dog and driving all over the country... and those were the days before interstate highways. When we had gone about 300 miles in a day, we'd start looking for a Howard Johnson's. It didn't matter to my sister or me, as long as the motel had a swimming pool.

Among our favorite sites along the way were the Burma Shave signs. I didn't even know what Burma Shave was, but I memorized many of their signs. (For you non-boomers: Burma Shave was... and still is, I guess, a brand of shaving cream. From the late 20s up to the mid 60s, they placed hundreds of sets of 4 or 5-line poems along the side of the roads, each line a couple hundred feet apart. It may sound corny today, but it was effective, different, and entertaining. They have become a classic symbol of the boomer years.) Here's a sample:

Dinah doesn't
        treat him right;
                but if he'd shave;
                        dyna-might!
                                - Burma Shave

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