Thursday, June 15, 2006

generation gap

Today I was talking with a young co-worker. It turns out she is 19 years old. This means I am old enough, with room to spare, to be her mother. This thought led to other thoughts. I am wondering if I am now officially experiencing a generation gap with my colleagues.

I for instance, remember 45s. You used to have a little plastic adapter, so you could play them on your record player. I remember record players, which later became turntables. Is there anyone under 35 that knows records used to skip? that you could tell how old a record was by the "fuzziness" of the sound?

We had eight-track tapes. Then we had cassettes. Now, I have an iPOD.

I remember gas-rationing. I read almost all of Anna Karenina while waiting in gas lines.

There were presidents before Ronald Reagan.

I used to buy penny candy. It really cost a penny. For a quarter, you could eat yourself sick at Dawson's.

There didn't used to be warnings on everything. No one ever told you how old you had to be to play with a toy -- they figured your parents weren't dumb enough to let you choke.

Kids flunked when they didn't do well in school. No one cared about our self-esteem.

The school nurse could give you aspirin. Kids could take aspirin.

Cereal came with good prizes; so did Cracker Jacks.

I had a pass book savings account; I actually took the little booklet to the bank when I made a deposit. They stamped my book and gave me a lollipop.

I actually had to go to the bank to put money in and to take it back out.

You used to have to ask people for directions. And find a pay phone when you needed to make a call.

I could eat at McDonalds for a $1. I could eat at McDonalds.

Paul McCartney was a Beatle. Arnold Schwarzenegger was a bodybuilder.

Nobody had air conditioning. Getting a colored TV was a big deal. We used to hang our clothes out on the line to dry, and we used to have to run out to take it down when it rained.

There weren't walk in closets. There was no Wal-Mart.

Old people always talked about the way things used to be....

6 comments:

cl-sandy said...

Yes, it was very amusing the other night on Leno when Al Gore was the guest. Leno remarked that it was a strange world when Schwarzenegger was getting ready for another political campaign and Gore was touting his new movie.

Here's another one--I remember when it was exciting to have a single color TV in the house. Now every room in many houses has one, with a DVD player and games system to boot!

I remember that the first home computers hooked up to your TV and you used a cassette tape to save your programs. And that 16K was a HUGE amount of memory! (But Dad was even more excited when he upgraded to 64K!!!!!)

And I remember when you didn't own your telephone--you leased it from AT&T.

I also remember when the mouth of the Shark River at Belmar, NJ was not lined with condos (sigh!) I have a photo in my office of the sunset over the bay with a lone sailboat in the center.

cl-sandy said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
changejunkie said...

The first PC I bought cost over $3,000 and had 4MB of RAM. I was teased unmercifully by folks wanting to know how you could ever USE 4MB of RAM... since DOS could only use 1MB....

Kitten Herder said...

A dishwasher was a person who worked in a restraunt's kitchen.

Frozen meals used to be called "TV dinners". They took 30 minutes to cook in your oven. Their packaging was all alluminum. (Wouldn't our microwaves just love that.)

You could go to a movie matinee, and buy a popcorn and a drink for less than two dollars.

Family life was scheduled around the times of certain TV shows.

Kids played outside all day long. When their parents wanted them to come home, they openned the door and yelled. If they didn't come immediately, the parents got angry at their kids for wandering out of shouting distance, not paranoid that their children were dead in a ditch somewhere or being violated.

Playgrounds were covered in hard, hot in the summer, black top. The playground equipment was (sometimes painted) metal. If painted, the paint might have been lead-based. Parents were not shocked that kids skinned knees or broke bones while playing at the playground.

Thank you for reminding me how old I am!

changejunkie said...

I forgot about playgrounds... every year in school there would be at least one kid with a broken arm from swinging off the monkey bars or jumping off the top of the slide. Do you remember how HOT those metal slides got?

Kitten Herder said...

The metal slides WERE hot. But, hey, you could go down them so much faster than the "safer" plastic slides. Geesh. Of course, the speed was probably a contributing factor to the broken bones aspect of it all. :)