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Author Talk: Peter Erickson, “Smoked Like Chimneys, Drank Like Fish: Raised Under the Influence” (POSTPONED)

March 22, 2020 @ 2:00 pm

After thoughtful consideration, the 1867 Sanctuary Committee is sad to announce that this concert has been postponed in response to serious public health concerns related to the coronavirus pandemic. The new date will be announced as soon as possible.

Preservation New Jersey is pleased to welcome Ewing author Peter Erickson as he shares photos and stories from his observations of life in his childhood and young adulthood published in his first book, Smoked Like Chimneys, Drank Like Fish: Raised Under the Influence.

Do you remember the sight of overflowing ashtrays everywhere you looked when you were a child? There were billboards, magazines, and television ads promoting the great taste and soothing qualities of various brands of smokes. If you’re a former 20th century kid, you probably have fond memories of running to the fridge to fetch your dad another Schlitz or Pabst Blue Ribbon!

Most of us born in the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s probably experienced these things at one time or another. To a 21st Century kid, these old stories seem like a vintage Hollywood movie plot. You ate what was served for dinner and didn’t complain about it. You will remember playing with your friends, completely devoid of adult supervision. You went home only when the streetlights came on. Today, local parks are empty. That’s because today’s parents wouldn’t think of letting our children go out by themselves. Play dates have to be arranged by parents beforehand—there is no more walking to a friend’s house and rapping on the door or meeting up in a vacant lot. Oh no, sir. The obligatory phone call must be made to see if visitors are being courted. We played board games on the living room floor. They play video games on their phones. And the differences between 20th Century and 21st Century kids don’t stop there.

Smoked Like Chimneys, Drank Like Fish: Raised Under the Influence, takes you on a meandering journey through the funny and terrifying, wacky and just plain weird, childhoods of Baby Boomers and Generation X. Want to look back on these and many other memories and see how they stack up against our children and grandchildren’s childhoods? You’ll love Peter Erickson’s stories and photos from Smoked Like Chimneys, Drank Like Fish: Raised Under the Influence.

Admission is FREE. Copies of the book may be purchased at this event at a discount.

Peter Erickson has lived in Ewing since 2000. He owns Done Right Gutters LLC. He graduated Bethany College in 1984 and has degrees in German and History. He has raised two 21st century sons aged 27 and 17 He has been married for the last 18 years. Smoked Like Chimneys, Drank Like Fish :Raised Under The Influence took 4 years to complete. You can find Peter on Instagram @65_biscayne Also on Facebook under Peter Erickson.

Wheelchair accessibleThe 1867 Sanctuary Arts and Culture Center is wheelchair-accessible through a wheelchair ramp through the gate on the left side of the building. All parking is across the street in the Ewing Presbyterian Church lots, including an inner ring across the street for disabled parking. Passengers may be dropped off at the curb directly in front of the main entrance; please use your hazard flashers when stopped there. Concert parking is recommended in the north lot (by the field closest to I-295). For your safety, please cross at the marked crosswalk and press the yellow button to activate flashers.


March 22, 2020
2:00 pm
Event Category:


1867 Sanctuary at Ewing
101 Scotch Road + Google Map