In 1961 ...
John F. Kennedy became the 35th president of the United States;
The Beatles performed for their first time at the Cavern Club;
The Peace Corps was established;
The Twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution was ratified, allowing residents of Washington, DC to vote in presidential elections;
The Bay of Pigs Invasion of Cuba begins and fails in two days;
A Freedom Riders bus was fire-bombed near Anniston, Alabama and the civil rights protestors were beaten by an angry mob;
The British protectorate ends in Kuwait and it becomes an emirate;
Ernest Hemingway commits suicide by gunshot in Ketchum, Idaho;
Construction of the Berlin Wall begins, restricting movement between East Berlin and West Berlin and forming a clear boundary between West Germany and East Germany, Western Europe and Eastern Europe;
Digital photography invented by Eugene F. Lally presented in a technical paper at the American Rocket Society's Space Flight Report to the Nation in New York;
The Fantastic Four #1 debuted, launching the Marvel Universe and revolutionizing the American comic book industry;
Catch-22 is first published by Joseph Heller;
"Barbie" gets a boyfriend when the "Ken" doll is introduced;
Ann Coulter, American author, political commentator and attorney was born.
Not all of these things were bad. Some of the developments of that year were downright wonderful.
Proctor and Gamble also introduced the disposable diaper in 1961,
Of course the Pamper - now just a slender, soft, chemical laden, cloth-esque, urine soaking titan of its former self - has the unique distinction of being loved AND hated. Beloved because it freed women from the drugery of piles of poopy laundry but reviled because its padded puffs have added to our disposable economy and tipped the balance on our beleaguered landfills.
Over the years the lowly Pamper has gone from looking and feeling like a pile of paper towels wrapped in a plastic bag to a thin piece of padding "that gently gathers at the legs" and holds a literal shit load of liquid. It has confounded upstanding grannies of all ilk with its easy tab closures ... (cartoon character in the front, yeah?) ... because (some of them) didn't have such novelties when they were raising their children.
So in honor of 1961 (also the year of George Clooney's birth) I've made some small changes that might mean BIG changes. I've invested in cloth diapers.
For $150, I've purchased eight different diapers, two diaper covers, four inserts, four cloth wipes and a wet bag.
I'm starting slow: Weekends and vacations at first. (I don't want to scare the babysitter). But hopefully - at home at least - we'll see a little less of Ernie and a little more of our earnings. We might even help save the Earth. Anything is possible.
I mean, truly. If I'm excited at the prospect of washing poopy diapers ANYTHING is possible.