Appeals for Support
For over 236 years, we Americans have owed our freedoms to the men and women of the United States Army. Now, at long last, the American solider will be honored with the National Museum of the U.S. Army near our nation’s Capitol.

Many members of our community have proudly worn the uniform of the U.S. Army. As a founding sponsor of the museum, I ask that the Crescenta Valley Weekly help make everyone in our community aware of this long overdue national project by running a story on the plans to build and open this important museum on June 14, 2015, the Army’s 240th birthday.

For more information, please contact the Army Historical Foundation by calling (703) 562-4173 or visit the website at www.armyhistory.org.
Tom Suter
La Crescenta

Remembers the Days of Paper
Jim Chase’s column on plastic bags [“It’s (No Longer) In The Bag,” My Thoughts Exactly, July 14] reminded me of my very first job. It was 1964 and just graduated from John Marshall High in the Los Feliz area. I went to work at Ralphs Grocery Store #25 located on the corner of Santa Monica and Vermont. I worked there while I went to Los Angeles City College and then at Glendale City College. I was hired as a wrapper earning $1.58 per hour. Big money back then. I worked almost 40 hours per week while still carrying 16 units at Glendale earning my (A&P) Air Frame and Powerplant license. This was when Glendale had a great Aircraft Maintenance Program. But that’s a different story.

Back then, of course, everything was paper bags. I had to learn how to “correctly” pack a bag and, depending upon how big the order was, which size bag to use. I was taught that in order for a bag to keep its shape, to always try to first line the bag with square items, such as cereal boxes, cake mix boxes, etc. Then put cans and bottles in the middle. Don’t put two bottles together, [but] if you have to, put one of them in a small paper bag so that they don’t clink together.

Every now and then, the manager would test and time us how long it would take to “correctly” pack a bag. There would be a basket with a set number of items in it and while a cashier rang up the items (by the way, the cashier was also tested for speed and accuracy), we would bag the items. This was when the old NCR cash registers were used.

We also were made aware to use our common sense to judge the customer. If the person looked like he/she could not carry a lot of weight, we would pack accordingly. Eventually we got to know the customers and we knew how to pack their bags when they came in. There was a Head Wrapper who made sure a cashier was never left to pack the items. We had to run from cashier to cashier to bag. After a couple of years, they promoted me to a cashier.

The Ralphs family owned the stores and every so often George and Albert and their families would come and visit every one of their stores. It was actually fun working there and I seriously considered not going to work at an airline as a mechanic and staying at Ralphs.
Paul Liu
La Crescenta