No way I spend $1


I was mad and felt upset and so were my friends and my husband. We couldn’t believe they wanted to raise the price to 1 Dollar. Who did they think we were? Rockefeller? We worked hard for our money and it seemed just outrages and unfair.The year was 1987 and we had just heard, that they would raise the prices on cigarettes from $0.87 to $1. I remember it well, we were all upset and decided to boycott them. It was our protest so they would know. “They” would be the tobacco industry, Philip Morris in our case and they didn’t really care and raised the prices anyway. We both smoked and it would have cost us $2 each day to keep up with our habit and we were not willing to just give in.


The next day we bought tobacco and cigarette paper and started rolling our own cigarettes. No matter what I tried, I couldn’t get a handle on it, they always looked like a disabled joints. So we got a rolling machine, sat there in the evening and rolled our cigarettes for the next day.

It was cheaper, but I didn’t like it that much. I didn’t care for the tobacco pieces, that I had to spit out and didn’t like to smoke a cigarette without filter. We upgraded and bought another machine and empty filter cigarettes. The machine stuffed our tobacco in the filter and voila…there it was, our own, homemade filter cigarette. It almost looked like a store bought one, but it was a hassle. One of us had to sit there every night and had to make 80 new ones for the next day, regardless of how late it was.


We did that for quiet some time, at least for a couple of months. Then one of us broke down and bought a pack. We still rolled our own, but the packs we bought were just better and after all we were used to “our brand”. Our effort to boycott the $1 cigarettes crumbled and we gave in.


We retired the rolling machine, the paper and everything else and continued to buy our cigarettes again. The discussion about the high prices was never mentioned, until a few years later, when they raised the prices again. The next step was $1.50, then $2, each and every time we were outraged and felt cheated, thought that this really would be the last time we would be willing to accept another raise on our beloved cigarettes.

I quit when I paid $5.50 for my favorite brand. 28 years after our $1 discussion. Hard to believe isn’t it?

Today, I found a list of things people were complaining about just 60 years ago. Interesting enough, cigarettes were already on it.

Complaints in the year 1955:

‘I’ll tell you one thing, if things
keep going the way they are,
it’s going to be impossible to
buy a week’s groceries for $10.00

(Oh, I wish)


‘Have you seen the new cars
coming out next year?  It won’t
be long before $1, 000.00 will
only buy a used one.’

‘If cigarettes keep going up in
price, I’m going to quit; 20 cents
a pack is ridiculous. ‘

(I started when they cost 40 cents, can you believe it?)

‘Did you hear the post office is
thinking about charging 7 cents
just to mail a letter?’


‘If they raise the minimum wage
to $1.00, nobody will be able to
hire outside help at the store.’

(That’s a good one)


‘When I first started driving, who
would have thought gas would
someday cost 25 cents a gallon.
Guess we’d be better off leaving
the car in the garage.’


‘I’m afraid to send my kids to the
movies any more.  Ever since they
let Clark Gable get by with saying
it seems every new movie has
either HELL or DAMN in it.’

(They would drop dead today wouldn’t they?)


‘I read the other day where some
scientist thinks it’s possible to put
a man on the moon by the end of
the century. They even have some
fellows they call astronauts
preparing for it down in Texas ’


‘Did you see where some baseball
player just signed a contract for
$50,000 a year just to play ball?
It wouldn’t surprise me if someday
they’ll be making more than the
President. ‘

(No comment)


‘I never thought I’d see the day
all our kitchen appliances would
be electric.  They are even making
electric typewriters now. ‘

(I do wonder, can kids today even type on typewriters?)


‘It’s too bad things are so tough
nowadays.  I see where a few
married women are having to
work to make ends meet. ‘

(Laughter, just laughter here in front of  my screen)


‘It won’t be long before young
couples are going to have to hire
someone to watch their kids so
they can both work.’

(Sadly this is normal today)


‘I’m afraid the Volkswagen car
is going to open the door to a
whole lot of foreign business.’


‘Thank goodness I won’t live to
see the day when the Government
takes half our income in taxes.  I
sometimes wonder if we are
electing the best people to

(And so we wonder since 60 years and continue to do so)


‘The drive-in restaurant is
convenient in nice weather,
but I seriously doubt they
will ever catch on.’

(The foreign cars, it’s their fault)


‘There is no sense going on short
trips anymore for a weekend.  It
costs nearly $2.00 a night to stay
in a hotel.’

(Don’t I wish)


‘No one can afford to be sick
anymore.  At $15.00 a day in
the hospital, it’s too rich for
my blood.’

(Today we can’t afford being sick period)


‘If they think I’ll pay 30 cents
for a hair cut, forget it.

(Note to myself, forward this to my hairstylist)


14 thoughts on “No way I spend $1

  1. For a bit I would pull up to the gas station booth, jump out of my car with my dollar, and buy a pack of cigarettes. The day he said it was a dollar ten I quit. I wasn’t gonna pay that. A few years ago I was sitting at a stop light and I looked over at the sign at a gas station and was so shocked to see that a pack was ON SALE for $7.something. Holy Moly. I am glad I was too cheap to pay over $1!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Cigarettes are REALLY cheap overseas where they don’t tax them like they do here. Israel, where I started smoking, they were about 25 cents/pack … and although that was more money that it would be here, it was still cheap, even by Israeli standards. And everyone smoked.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh Goodness Marilyn, you missed out on a lot of fun trying all these different rolling machines. I traveled to a few countries were I had to pay $5 for a coca cola, but got cigarettes for just a few cents.


    • I remember having a whole Dollar burning a hole in my pocket. At the weekend we went to Woolworth, there was an ice cream bar, we bought ice cream, floats or something to drink. Then we went to the movies and bought popcorn and came home with a few cents left. Gosh I am older than dirt am I?


  3. I was just remembering the other day how my mom complained when gas prices went up to $0.50 a gallon and how she used to pay $0.25 a gallon. I remember it clearly because I was looking at the price today ($3.09 where I live) and thinking the old adage is true: The more things change, the more they stay the same. I remember when it went over a dollar a gallon and everyone lost it. Boycotts everywhere. Nothing changed. Prices will always go up, and people will always complain about it, even as they’re shelling out the dough.

    Liked by 1 person

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