Uphill, Both Ways!

Working in a college atmosphere, I sometimes forget that I am...well...older than my students. Considerably. As in "I could be your mother!" They often remind me, unintentionally, of course, in ways that usually involve technology or pop culture.

Well, all you millennials and Gen Y-ers, this one's for you! ;)

Thanks to Anne for this!


Do you remember getting up off the floor and walking up to the television to change the channel to one of the other two options - the 1970’s version of “channel surfing?”
Did your mom heat hot dogs in boiling water on the stove?
When I was a kid, adults used to bore me to tears with their tedious diatribes about how hard things were when they were growing up; what with walking twenty-five miles to school every morning … uphill BOTH ways ..
I remember promising myself that when I grew up, there was no way in hell I was going to lay a bunch of crap like that on kids about how hard I had it and how easy they’ve got it! But now that I’m over the ripe old age of thirty, I can’t help but look around and notice the youth of today.
You’ve got it so easy! Compared to my childhood, you live in a damn Utopia!

1. When I was a kid we didn’t have The Internet. If we wanted to know something, we had to go to the damn library and look it up ourselves, in the card catalog.
2. There was no email. We had to actually write somebody a letter … with a pen. Then you had to walk all the way across the street and put it in the mailbox and it would take like a week to get there.
3. There were no MP3’s or Napsters. You wanted to steal music, you had to hitchhike to the damn record store and shoplift it yourself! Or you had to wait around all day to tape it off the radio and the DJ would usually talk over the beginning and @#*% it all up!
4. We didn’t have fancy crap like Call Waiting! If you were on the phone and somebody else called they got a busy signal, that was it. Can you say emergency break-thru’s..until the operators caught on.
5. And we didn’t have fancy Caller ID boxes either. When the phone rang, you had no idea who it was. It could be your school, your mom, your boss, your bookie, your drug dealer, a collections agent, you just didn’t know. You had to pick it up and take your chances, mister.
6. We didn’t have any fancy Sony Playstation video games with high-resolution 3-D graphics. We had the Atari with games like ‘Space Invaders’ and ‘asteroids.’ The graphics were horrible. Your guy was a little square. You actually had to use your imagination. There were no multiple levels or screens, it was just one screen forever. And you could never win. The game just kept getting harder and harder and faster and faster until you died. Just like LIFE.
7. When you went to the movie theater there no such thing as stadium seating. All the seats were the same height. If a tall guy or some old broad with a hat sat in front of you and you couldn’t see, you were just screwed.
8. Sure, we had cable television, but back then that was only like 15 channels and there was no onscreen menu. You had to decode a little book called a TV Guide to find out what was on.
9. There was no Cartoon Network either. You could only get cartoons on Saturday morning. We had to wait ALL WEEK for Land of the Lost.
10. We didn’t have microwaves. if we wanted to heat something up, we had to use the stove or go build a fire. If we wanted popcorn, we had to use that stupid Jiffy Pop thing or a pan with HOT oil and real popcorn kernels and shake it all over the stove forever like anidiot.
11. When we were on the phone with our friends and our parents walked in, we were stuck to the wall with a cord, a 7 foot cord that ran to the phone - not the phone base, the actual phone. We barely had enough length to sit on the floor and still be able to twirl the phone cord in our fingers. If you suddenly had to go to the bathroom you were forced to hang up and talk to them later.You guys wouldn’t have lasted five minutes back in 1980!

Regards,The over 30 Crowd

P.S. I bet those of us 40 and over can think of more. My kids couldn’t figure out why I referred to music as “records” or “albums.” Sigh.


I knew I was getting old(er) when one of SS#1's first phrases was "ba-ya die", which translated as "battery died" and referred to one of his toys.



Anonymous said...

This was fun to read. As you can imagine, at 61, MY list would be "ancient history."


suburban prep said...

I am in the over 40 crowd and I have said to my mother who is in her early 70's that the kids today don't know how easy they have it. She started to laugh because she says she said this about me and my 6 siblings.