Sunday, July 14, 2013

This is Home, Part 21 - Uncle Doc fixed tires, Mom curled our hair, Tangee, the Toni

This is part 21 of my mother's book about her life, written in 2004.

Uncle Doc fixed tires

Uncle Doc used to do some repair I thought was interesting. I don't know that this was something that would especially be done during war time. I think it was probably just something necessary when one lived out of town.

Uncle Doc used to take off the car's flat tire. Then he took the inner tube out of it. He put water in one of the large galvanized tubs and put the inner tube in it. He had to keep pushing it down; it wanted to float. When he held it down, there would be bubbles of air from the puncture.

Uncle Doc had a tire repair kit with a light weight metal thing about the size of a flash light. It had metal pieces sticking out on one end that he rubbed over the puncture, then he put glue from a tube in the kit on one of the patches and glued it on. Of course, the inner tube had to be taken out of the water and dried before it could be patched. After the glue dried, the inner tube could be put back in the tire and the tire put on.

Mom curled our hair

Sometimes Mom used to curl our hair before we went to school. She had a metal curling iron. This was before we got electricity, so it was during grade school.

The curling iron was longer than the ones used today. The curling iron had a long rounded (like a pencil) part that the lock of hair was wrapped around, then had a long curved piece that fit halfway around the rounded part. It had handles that resembled handles of scissors.

Mom would open the curling iron and put the rounded part and the part that fit over it carefully into the opposite sides of the lamp chimney. The heat from the lamp flame would heat the iron. It cooled fast, so she had to keep heating it.

My hair uncurled itself in a short time.


We had a very interesting first lipstick. It was called Tangee. It was a small tube like the ones used on the large Barbie faces by Patricia, Sharon, and Christina. However, Tangee was for girls, not dolls.

When we put it on it felt like Chapstick does and had a faint orange tint. We found out that the more we put on, the more color our lips had. However, we still had just a small amount of color.

This was in grade school. In high school I had a medium red lipstick. I think Jean had a different shade.

The Toni

There used to be an ad in magazines showing twin young women with curly hair, with the question: "Which twin has the Toni?"

A Toni was a permanent one could give oneself. Jean and I liked the twins' hair, so sometimes during the summer Mom would give each of us a Toni. We sat out on the concrete top or steps of the well from which they got drinking water, to dry our hair. We loved the soft curly hair that resulted from Mom's work.

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