Monday, June 1, 2009

To Those of You Born 1930 - 1980

Click on the image to enlarge

1930's, 40's, 50's, 60's and 70's!!

First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they were pregnant.

They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can and didn't get tested for diabetes.

Then after that trauma, we were put to sleep on our tummies in baby cribs covered with bright colored lead-base paints.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, locks on doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had baseball caps not helmets on our heads..

As infants & children, we would ride in cars with no car seats, no booster seats, no seat belts, no air bags, bald tires and sometimes no brakes.

Riding in the back of a pick-up truck on a warm day was always a special treat.

We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle.

We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and no one actually died from this.

We ate cupcakes, white bread, real butter and bacon.. We drank Kool-Aid made with real white sugar. And, we weren't overweight. WHY?

Because we were always outside playing...that's why!

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on.

No one was able to reach us all day. And, we were O.K.

We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride them down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem.

We did not have Playstations, Nintendo's and X-boxes. There were no video games, no 15 0 channels on cable, no video movies or DVD's, no surround-sound or CD's, no cell phones, no personal computers, no Internet and no chat rooms.

WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!

We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.

We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.

We were given BB guns for our 10th birthdays, made up games with sticks and tennis balls and, although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes.

We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them.

Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team.. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment.

Imagine that!!

The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of.. They actually sided with the law!

These generations have produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever.

The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.

We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all.

If YOU are one of them? CONGRATULATIONS!

You might want to share this with others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers and the government regulated so much of our lives for our own good.

While you are at it, forward it to your kids so they will know how brave and lucky their parents were.


Anonymous said...

I endeavor to raise my kids in as much as possible in the way described by your post. OK, the car has airbags and the kids have car seats (and most of the time they are buckled). And yeah, they do have DVDs and no lead based paint. But the stuff about outdoors, sharing sodas, drinking from the hose, playing with friends, taking responsibility, and playing in the woods...I want them to grow up in nature and as free as possible. I suspect I'll have to make compromises. They'll want some videos and computer. I suppose they'll want a cell phone at some point. I won't try to control them, I'll not be a helicopter parent, and I'll save your post to remind what growing up is all about!

Mookie said...

Admittedly, my youngest is in a car booster seat most of the time, and while buckled, you often find him removing the shoulder strap and moving all about as much as he can. And we do have airbags...not as a chosen option, but it seems hard to get a good reliable car without them already built in...I'd rip them out, but I'm pretty sure I'd manage to break my neck in the I'm a bit lazy!!

American Elephant said...

"We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt"

Ok, you lost me there.

"and the worms did not live in us forever."

thats what you think. mwahaha.

Brilliant post!

mike said...

Thanks for passing along the message on your blog.
As for "and the worms did not live in us forever."
"thats what you think. mwahaha."

Well, sure there was that one worm, Fred, he's still in there, but I don't consider him just any old worm, he's my friend!!!


All In said...

... and Fred talks to him. Tells him to do things. Crazy things. Like own guns, be a member of the NRA, and take responsibility for his actions. Darn that Fred.

Anonymous said...

It's interesting that my wife and I have a different attitude towards car seats. I see them more as something necessary because I don't want a ticket, while she worries of what'll happen if they unbuckle or if it isn't on properly. I just remember playing with my sister, unbuckled, in the back of our station wagen as my dad drove 15 miles over the speed limit on country roads to Grandma's house in southern Minnesota. Air bags don't really bother me since I don't notice them!

Jedidiah said...

My wife insists that our kids (when they get here) will be required to wear helmets when they bicycle.

Crazy I say. Why not just wrap them in bubble wrap.

Mookie said...

Helmets?!?!!? Bubblewrap?!?!?

I can see that Uncle Mike is going to have to make frequent "business trips" out to Wyoming some time in the future. My consulting business, Life Survivors Inc (no need to check on incorporation status, all my clients just pay cash!), will see to it that your kids learn to successfully play in traffic, lay down bikes in gravelly parking lots after speeding through at roughly 45 mph, and other such character building experiences! We will also teach them socially acceptable interactive statements such as "Hey, see that kid wearing a helmet and getting on that short bus?? What a dork!!!" (of course most often that helmeted busrider will be me!)

Anonymous said...

I was in Italy with students earlier this year, and some kids were playing in the street. "Why are they playing in the street," one student asked.

"Toughens them up," was my response. The students liked that.

Ryan, age 6, is biking around and not wearing a helmet. He gets that 16 inch bike going fast too. He has a helmet, it bugs my wife that he won't wear it...but geez, I grew up on a bike and never had a helmet until I was living in Minneapolis and having to ride through downtown traffic.

Mookie said...

I also never had a helmet....until I turned 18, and was living in North Central California with family, right after high school. My graduation present from my dad was a bike and a helmet....the helmet didn't last long. I figured if there were teems of kids riding around the city without helmets, I surely wasn't going to be shown up!

Graceful Threads said...

I miss the music and the hairstyles...

Mookie said...

Graceful Threads,

Thanks for stopping in for a quick read. Hope you continue to visit... And if you would, please start an argument, I'm tired of inciting it all!! LOL

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this Mike! It brings back such wonderful memories for me, even though I grew up in the Bronx in New York City! I don't even think bicycle helmets were invented when I was a kid. I remember the go carts too.....we'd leave one of us on our street corner telling us when the coast was clear and then go sailing down the hill, over our street and down the next hill to the busy main road and we did that all without brakes! Same thing with sledding in the winter!

Ahhhh, the summer days when we'd walk forever to use different parks all over the borough.

I miss those days and feel sorry for kids today who have no real clue what being a kid is all about. Their parents are too busy wrapping them in bubble wrap and helmets, sunblock and vaccinations.

Is it just me or have others noticed that kids 40 years ago were much stronger and healthier than kids today?