I remember childhood visits to my grandparents’. There usually wasn’t a whole lot for me to do there, so my default was to read. Often my first stop would be to the dining room, where I could find all the letters my mom wrote to my grandma each week. I’d read those, to find out the “real scoop” on what was going on in life. But it didn’t take to long to go through them.
My next stop would be the living room, where there were often quite a few magazines. I specifically remember Reader’s Digest.
I enjoyed so many issues of Reader’s Digest over the years. Is it still around? Don’t know, because I never see them anymore, but at the time they were a staple of life, at least at my grandparents’.
I enjoyed all the short features: Humor in Uniform — Life in these United States — All in a Day’s Work. I learned a lot of words through the vocabulary feature. Then it was on to the “Adventure in Real Life” for the month — often a harrowing tale of an emergency rescue. And, once I was warmed up, the end of the magazine always included a condensed book. Sometimes these didn’t interest me, but I recall reading lengthy narratives about various body parts and health issues, along with more tales of life-or-death.
All this was packed in the pages of a small magazine (maybe about 5″x8″), with its signature index on the cover (what a good idea; it is frustrating to me to pick up many magazines now and have to flip through a dozen or more pages of ads before reaching the index).
I suppose I wasn’t the only fan of the condensed books, as Reader’s Digest published groups of them in their Reader’s Digest Condensed Books anthologies, of which there are many, many. Any home of the 1970s worth its salt had a shelf or two of these ;).
What about you? Did you read Reader’s Digest? Or maybe you still do? Any memories?