February 29, 2012

The Times They Are a Changin'


Having kids really gives you perspective on many things.  For example, kids make you feel old sometimes.  And I don't mean like I feel like my hips gonna give out old, I mean . . . dated.  

For example, have you ever tried to watch a VHS movie with someone under the age of 12?  Yeah.  "What is this?  Just skip to the menu.  What are those lines?  Rewind?!?!?!  What is that?"  Oh yes, people.  I still own VHS of all the classics and yes, I still have a VHS player.  And my kids think that it is the most archaic piece of machinery on the planet.  

When I was a teenager, if I liked a song and wanted to own it, I had three options: 1) save up for the CD or 2) get a couple bucks and go get the single or 3) really ghetto-ize it and stick a blank tape in my boombox, wait for the song to come on the radio and dub that shit. 

If  I wanted to talk to a friend, I called them.  From a phone.  With a cord.  And I knew the number by heart.  Or, worse case scenario, I had to wait until school the next day.  There were no cell phones.  No texting.  If something came up while we were outside of the house, we had change with us at all times in the event we had to use a pay phone (do these things still exist anywhere?).

If someone broke up, we found out gossiping in the hallways.  It was not from a relationship status change on Facebook.  If we wanted to get in touch with someone from long ago, you better hope to God they didn't ever change their phone number because that was the only way that you could get a hold of them.  

If we were invited to a party, we would anticipate an invitation in the mailbox.  There were no e-vites, no Facebook events, no mass texts sent out.  I vividly remember writing letters to my favorite celebrities--not joining a website newsletter.   

If we had a question or had to do some research, we went to a library.  Not for the internet, for books.  Good ole fashion DOS screen search systems to point you to some 64 digit number treasure hunt to find just the book for you.  There was no Google, no Wikipedia. 

And speaking of computers, when I was in high school only the rich kids had computers.  This was not a necessary household item--it was a luxury.  And certainly, no one had more than one.  You know how you used to be able to tell your rough draft from your final draft?  One was in pencil and the nice one was handwritten in pen.  

If you missed your favorite show, you missed the show.  There was no Netflix, no DVR, no Hulu.  You got a recap the next day at school and had to call it good. 

And somehow, every time I try to tell my kids about how different it was when I was growing up, how easy they have it now, how amazing all of these advances are that they have grown accustomed to, I feel about 112 years old.  Which reminds me, I really need to get a car with electronic windows.  I mean, I don't want to churn butter, I just want some fresh air!  <-------if you can name what comedian uses this line, you will be my new favorite person. 

Polka Dot Shear Asymmetrical Hemmed Dress-vintage; Suede and Knit Cardigan-Avalin, thrifted; Suede Peep Toe Pumps-Worthington; Earrings-gifted; Shell Necklace-vintage from Grandma



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