And yet, surprisingly, most of us survived our childhood.

Our kids are spoiled beyond belief. I know I've blogged about this before but it really annoys me that my kids think I'm abusing them when I declare a "no-tv" night. So, I decided to make a list of things my generation never had as children, along with a list of what we had instead. And we are still alive to blog/talk about it:

1. School lunch "choices."
1a. Listen kid, the school cafeteria is not a restaurant. People who work in restaurants don't wear hair nets, and you aren't made to stand in line and give Jimmy Walters cutsies everyday, because if you don't? He'll punch you in the breadbasket later during recess.

Whatever the school gave you, you ate. Or not. What's that? You say you can't eat the school's beef and noodles ever since Kathy Durst threw up right next to you the last time the school served them? What do you mean "everytime I think of beef and noodles I feel nauseous and think of the janitor's pink sawdust"? Tough shit.

2. Car seats.
2a. A special seat? For the kid? Strapped securely in the car? Ha! You're joking, right? I regularly laid in the back window area, or hid in the wheel-well. And whenever the car came to a stop, I'd roll out of the back window onto the seats.

In fact, we never even used our seat belts, since my dad stuffed them in between the seats every time we got a new car. Because they got in the way, and anyway, who wants to sit on those things? Not us. Too uncomfortable.

3. "Safe" or "age appropriate" toys.
3a. Every Christmas, I was the gleeful recipient of toys made out of glass, tin and things with sharp parts, along with candy or gum cigarettes. Those things were awesome, because when you blew through them, a puff of powdered sugar "smoke" would appear.

When I was 8, I got a "Nurse's kit" for Christmas. It came complete with 3 glass bottles of  tiny candy pills. I can clearly recall carrying it around the trailer and saying things like, Looks like it's time for me to take my medicine!, before downing half the bottle.

4. Go-gurt, fruit snacks, probiotics, or almond butter.
4a.  Ho-Ho's, Twinkies, Zingers and Ding-Dongs. Those were our snacks. In fact, I clearly recall a time in my young life when my breakfast consisted of nothing but Ding-Dong's and Tang.
5. Finally seeing the Trix Rabbit getting to eat Trix.
5a. Ha! No way could the Trix Rabbit be allowed to taste the fruity goodness that was in every bowl of Trix cereal. Oh, sure, he tried. But he was smacked down Every. Single. Time. And kids LOVED that crazy rabbit. We rooted for him during each commercial, even though we knew how it would turn out.

In fact, the Trix Rabbit represented everything that defined childhood in the 1960's/70's. You don't get something just because you want it, kid. If the Trix Rabbit had ever been allowed to eat Trix, I imagine that would have pitted child against parent in a rebellion not unlike the French Revolution. Viva le Lapin de Trix!

6. Child-specific clothing stores such as: Justice, Aeropostale, Abercrombie & Fitch, American Eagle, Gap Kids or The Children's Place.
6a. Special stores that catered just to kids? HA! We had JC Penney's, Sears and Bergner's (for the rich kids). Didn't like what they had to offer? Tough shit. Now put on your Toughskins and shut the fuck up.

7. Computers, passwords, cellphones, the internet, cable tv, daytime cartoons or video games.
7a. Uh, wtf? We had books, Barbies, GI Joe, Magic 8 Balls, marbles, jacks, crayons and phones with curly cords that got tangled when we played with them as we made crank phone calls.

8. Caller ID.
8a. We could make crank phone calls because nobody had caller id. Conversly, when someone called us, we just....answered it. Without knowing who it was. Every. Single. Time.

9. Build-A-Fucking-Bear.
9a. If we had ever told our parents we wanted anything resembling this item, they would have said, You want me to pay an exorbitant price for a teddy bear that isn't even STUFFED? And I should pay extra so it sounds like a dinosaur whenever you pinch it's left paw? Then you want me to buy it a fucking cheerleader outfit? Fuck that, get your mom to take you to the fabric store and she'll make one for you.

1 comment:

  1. First off, "Ding Dongs and Tang" sounds like some kind of 70s sex party for 8 year olds.

    I totally hate modern parents who are overly concerned with kids' safety. I don't mean things like "don't let your kid play with knives", I get that. But we never bothered to baby proof our house. We let our kid ride her tricycle in the driveway (gasp) without a helmet. We survived. If your house is a deathtrap for kids, you shouldn't have them. And also, there is something to be said for survival of the fittest.

    The 24-hour kids channel really pisses me off too. I don't think my kid has EVER seen a regular television show. My parents allowed me to watch cartoons if the were occupied with other things, and then I had to pray there was something intersting on. I watched a lot of Three's Company and Mama's Family reruns. And I remember being terrified by the made for TV movies about killers and disasters that my parents watched just before they sent me to bed. I am pretty sure that Child Protective Services would be called if I did that to my kid!

    Oh, and the whole 'peanut-free' school thing. When I was a kid, I got diarrhea whenever I ate dairy. So I KNEW that I shouldn't eat fucking dairy. Why don't these kids just KNOW that they can't eat peanut butter cookies or Snickers bars? Boo hoo hoo! They might feel like they're missing out. God I hate modern kids. :-)