Rix Quinn’s Minute Story: The milk man

A.B. Munroe milk man

Many of us grew up during the 1960s. Some, like me, never grew up. But we’ve continued to age without expiring.

Let’s see…where was I? Oh, yes. If you grew up back then, you probably remember a neighborhood visitor called the “milk man.” He worked for a local dairy, and came by in a truck two or three mornings a week delivering fresh products.

Now, back in those days most milk and cream came in thick glass bottles. You would leave your old bottles out on the porch for him to pick up and recycle. And, you’d leave a note telling the milkman (they were nearly always guys) what you wanted that day.

Our route man brought us regular and chocolate milk, cream, butter, and ice cream. But what happened to this wonderful tradition?

Apparently, as suburbs expanded, each person’s route got longer. His added expenses meant he was forced to raise rates. So, many shoppers just added dairy products to their supermarket shopping lists.

The good news, however, is that in some rural areas milk routes are coming back. It’s a welcome reminder that some old traditions deserve to return.

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Rix Quinn is a former magazine publisher who works as an independent biographer and broadcaster.

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