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Tony Grist

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Top Of The Milk [Apr. 17th, 2005|03:45 pm]
Tony Grist

An ice cream van just went down the road with its chimes playing a song I remember from my 1950s childhood and which I can't think I've heard since. The chorus goes something like this.

You, me and us;
We are my favourite people
we both go together like peaches and cream
And bells and a church and a steeple.

Ghastly.

Is it a Doris Day number?

Ice cream vans never play anything up to date. I guess it's a copyright thing.

But now I can taste the tinned peach slices in syrup, with cream from the top of the milk bottle, which my mother used to give us for dessert.

"What's for pudding, mumma?"

"Peaches with top of the milk."

"Oooh-  super!" 

linkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: strange_complex
2005-04-17 08:02 am (UTC)
Depressingly, most of the ones I seem to hear these days play 'O Sole Mio', because of its appropriation by Wall's as 'Just One Cornetto'. :(
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[User Picture]From: aellia
2005-04-17 08:33 am (UTC)
Your user name is what my husband calls me :-)
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[User Picture]From: strange_complex
2005-04-17 08:43 am (UTC)
Oh wow! That, plus the fact that you express an interest in Roman history in your userinfo page, is enough to have just made me friend you. No obligation to reciprocate, but I consider it polite to let people know when I've done so.
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[User Picture]From: aellia
2005-04-17 08:58 am (UTC)
Adding you now!
Pleased to meet you :-)
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[User Picture]From: aellia
2005-04-17 09:02 am (UTC)
Ps I have a couple of filters,witchcraft and dark poetry.just give me a nod if you'd like to be on them
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[User Picture]From: strange_complex
2005-04-17 09:40 am (UTC)
Thanks for adding me! As for filters, the dark poetry sounds good, so please add me to that. I'll leave the witchcraft, though - although I am a polytheist, I'm very Classical in approach, so it wouldn't really be my thing.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-17 12:04 pm (UTC)
A popular tune round here is, "O, O Antonio."

O, O Antonio,
He's gone away
Left me on my ownio...."

And then there's "The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze" and- my particular favourite- "Daisy, Daisy".



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[User Picture]From: strange_complex
2005-04-17 12:13 pm (UTC)
Much more culturally varied than Oxford, then! (Which was the last place I heard and ice-cream van at all).
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-17 12:16 pm (UTC)
They ply their trade round here in all weathers. Even through the winter.
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[User Picture]From: halfmoon_mollie
2005-04-17 02:19 pm (UTC)
Ours plays the good old Scott Joplin tune, "The Entertainer". When I was younger, he used to drive through here just ding ding ding ding...Skippy. Once in a great while I got ice cream from him...it was always pretty expensive and, as I never realized until I was much older, there wasn't a lot of ice cream money. But, Sunday afternoons my father would stop whatever project he was doing in the garage and wash up, my mother would grab her pocketbook and we went off to Barnes Dairy (providing my brother wasn't in bed with some sort of bruise). Hm. I always liked Raspberry Sherbert (that's how I pronounced it, Sure-burt) best. Ice cream has never tasted as good as it did back then.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-18 12:49 am (UTC)
When I was a kid, sherbert was a fizzy confection made of icing sugar and baking soda. It came in a cardboard tube and you were supposed to suck it up through a tube made of licorice. Thing was, the tube always got clogged, so you gave up on sucking and used the tube to dip into the sherbert.

This was called a sherbert fountain.

There were also sweets called sherbert lemons- hard candy with sherbert in the middle.

I loved sherbert.
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[User Picture]From: hepo
2005-04-18 03:03 am (UTC)
Memories! I'm with you all the way.

Remember sherbet dabs, lucky bags, penny blacks/black jacks, Dandelion & Burdock lemonade, and crisps with those little blue salt bags, arr, those were the days.

HePo
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-18 03:27 am (UTC)
It's all coming back.

When flavoured crisps were first introduced- ready salted, salt and vinegar, cheese and onion- we thought they were really exotic.
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[User Picture]From: aellia
2005-04-17 08:32 am (UTC)
Peaches and top of the milk were a Sunday tea special in our house :-)
Milk cannot be milk these days,with a shelf life of around a week and no cream on the top,that's why I never drink it.
We also had it on porridge,with brown sugar.
The sort of porridge that you had to stir as it boiled so that it didn't stick to the saucepan,
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-17 12:06 pm (UTC)
I don't suppose anyone under thirty would recognise (or understand) the phrase "top of the milk". I don't suppose my kids would.
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[User Picture]From: cybersofa
2005-04-17 09:16 am (UTC)
It was a hit for Alma Cogan, the girl with a laugh in her voice, in 1957.

Recently something reminded me of an old ice cream advertising jingle from those days, remember this one?
Hey, what's for afters? Lyon's Family Brick!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-17 12:08 pm (UTC)
Thank you for identifying the singer.

I don't remember that jingle, but I remember the brick itself.

Family Brick- now doesn't that sound appetising?
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[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2005-04-17 11:24 am (UTC)
Thank you for this lovely moment from your childhood!

We had the Popsicle man. He had--get this: root beer Popsicles.

We'd be roaming the neighborhood with our nickles in our pockets and we'd hear the tinny music 'way down the street, so everybody ran, afraid he wouldn't see us.

Those peaches were good, weren't they? We had them, too, but with no cream, as we lived in a city without milk delivery.

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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-17 12:15 pm (UTC)
We didn't call then popsicles- we called them ice lollies.

There was one with ice cream on the inside and strawberry lolly on the outside. This was called (God knows why) a Mivvi.

Then there were ones shaped like space rockets. They had names like Sky Ray and Boost.

Or have I made that last one up?
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[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2005-04-17 02:10 pm (UTC)
Boost is my absolute favorite name.
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[User Picture]From: halfmoon_mollie
2005-04-17 02:27 pm (UTC)
I liked blue popsickles. I'm still not sure what flavor they were, so when someone asked me what flavor I wanted I said "Blue". My Mom bought a 'popsickle set' for home (when they were frozen they were sort of a triangle shape, but the edges were softer...). I was the popsickle maker. I made them out of root beer Kool-Aid, and Grape, but never orange. I hated orange KoolAid. (Still do). I even made them out of iced tea - unsweetened, of course, because that's the way I drink my tea. Sometimes when we didn't have KoolAid because my folks couldn't afford sugar, I made them out of ice water.

For a little while when I was a kid, Mom used to get milk from a local farmer. It was NOT paturized. She had a big milk can (I'm still not sure how big it was, I was not even 10 yet). I don't know how she kept it cold...but I do remember it was good. And she'd take some of the cream off the top and make butter. We'd have cream on our oatmeal,or our cornmeal...

We did have milk delivered, later on, and it did have cream on top...but it never tasted quite as good as that germy old unpaturized stuff.



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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-18 12:54 am (UTC)
Ailz contracted TB from unpasturised milk when she was a kid. Back then they were still experimenting with cures. Luckily for her she drew the long straw and was given the treatment that worked.

We had an ice lolly maker- but home-made lollies never tasted as good as the ones you bought in the shops. And the texture was wrong.

Also if you sucked them the flavour came out leaving the unflavoured ice behind.

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[User Picture]From: seaslug_of_doom
2005-04-17 04:41 pm (UTC)
Strangely, despite growing up in Florida, I don't believe I ever saw an ice cream truck in my neighborhood.

We have an ice cream truck that passes through my current neighborhood in summer. It, too, plays The Entertainer but the thing must travel very fast because there's frequently a doppler effect to the music which makes it all creepy and Stephen King-ish, so I never step out for anything.

Also, I can't stand wooden sticks in popsicles. Nor could I abide those wooden spoons in those old cups of ice cream one used to be able to get. The texture. *shudder*
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-18 12:55 am (UTC)
Not just the texture- those things used to taste woody too. Yuk!
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[User Picture]From: sina_says
2005-04-18 09:26 am (UTC)
i think the entertainer is standard ice cream truck music in the usa. it's the only thing i've ever heard one play.

also, about the wooden stick phobia... my boyfriend erik absolutely abhors the idea of wooden anything in his mouth, he won't eat popsicles and we've had the discussion about those little wooden paddle things that used to come with ice cream cups. he won't even use pencils for fear that he'll absentmindedly start chewing on one.
i really thought that this was unique to him. i'll tell him he's not the only one!
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[User Picture]From: seaslug_of_doom
2005-04-18 12:21 pm (UTC)
Oh my no. My last girlfriend also absolutely loathes the wooden spoons from the old ice cream cups. She gets a serious case of the heebie jeebies when you just mention them.
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[User Picture]From: huskyteer
2005-04-18 01:52 am (UTC)
Round here we get 'Greensleeves', 'Yankee Doodle' and 'Popeye The Sailor Man'.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2005-04-18 02:07 am (UTC)
Ah yes, I think I've heard one of the vans round here playing "Popeye, The Sailor Man."

"I yam what I yam
And that's all that I yam."

Stirring stuff.
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