Things Aren't What They Used To Be #1 - Kids

In what I envisage to be the first of a semi-regular posting, "Things Aren't What They Used To Be" aka "I'm Getting Old" I will take stuff from when I was growing up and compare it to the same sort of thing in this fangled day and age.

Now, don't get me wrong, but I am fully aware that there are things NOW that are better than THEN.  So don't jump up and down on that aspect.

Anyway, this is a rather broad umbrella, comparing the Kids of old with the Kids of today.  Quite often I'll talk with people around my age that are at a loss with the kids now.

Again, I know there is stuff that we had better back in the day, but still ;)

Firstly, you get lots of "health experts" discussing how kids are eating junk food, and are fat and unhealthy.  I've already solved it - it's the implementation that will be hard.  Get Junior OFF the Playstation, the Xbox, the Wii - whatever - and get them outside in the fresh air.

As a kid, me and my friends - Kellie included - would get up early on a Saturday, and make subtle banging sounds in the house so the parents woke up equally early.  We'd have breakfast, get dressed, shout out "CYA!" and run out the front door.  And the parents would hardly see us till dinner time that night.  We'd climb trees, build camps in the bushes, run around playing tag or run-outs or seeing how fast we can run around the block...

If the weather was shite, we'd still be out, maybe in the alleyway (which isn't as dark and dreary as it sounds!) or in a friends house - or even with all the friends invading your own house!  We'd be playing with Star Wars figures or Lego or Meccano.  The thought of seeing what was on the TV never even entered our minds.  And those of us that were lucky enough to have computers, it wasn't worth putting on a game as A) It took too long to load, and B) There was no such thing as Multi-player back then!

On top of this, we had respect for everyone living around us.  Sure we didn't like certain neighbours, and there were grumpy old men nearby - but if they said "stop making so much noise!" we'd mutter about the grumpy old man, but still quieten down or move off elsewhere.  Our friends parents could tell us off.  If we were misbehaving, your friends mum could tell you off, or give you a clip around the ear or - worst of all - use the phrase "That's it, I'm phoning your mum"

If we misbehaved, we were fair game - and at NO POINT would we consider putting in their windows or stabbing someone.

Mum always used the saying "No matter where you are, no matter what you're doing, there is someone that knows you watching" and it was true.  Even when in the middle of a forest attempting to build a camp fire, we'd get home and get the third degree.  Not that we ever got a fire going.  "There's no smoke without fire" is a complete load of rubbish.  We could get a pretty decent smoke going.  At a push, we could get a smoulder, but never a fire!

Of course, you go home smelling of wood/grass/paper smoke, and as far as the parents were concerned, we'd built a conflaguration and destroyed the known world.

Lastly, kids back then were so much tougher.  You'd fall, graze yourself, cut yourself, bruise - even break something - and for the most part, after a random parent was summoned (using the age-old tenent of "who is closest!") you'd get splashed in something that stinks and burns the cut - but go back out and play.

Showing off the latest cool injury of course!

And at no stage would someone use the words "sue for compensation"  You fell over, you were being a twat, you brushed yourself off, you moved on.  No suing the council for the uneven path.  No suing the neighbour over the branch  overhanging their fence, no suing the person who's tree you fell out of.

So, kids of today.  Go out and play.  Socialise with your friends in person.  Trip, fall, get muddy, get wet in the rain or a pond, ask your mum for a biscuit, and take one for yourself, and one for the dozen friends outside - but when mum questions you about it, tell her "but you said WE could have a biscuit!"

Life is much too short.

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10 Responses to “Things Aren't What They Used To Be #1 - Kids”

The Random One said...

Amen.

The Sween! said...

Good sermon Dan - all too true!

Posh Totty said...

Just this one time and one time only I have to say it ... as much as it pains me hehe!! .... But .... I AGREE TOTALLY. well said that man :oD

debbie said...

so very very true,,

Chris from KiwiLand said...

Oh you crusty old devil Dan. If it wasn't for the fact that I agree with you completely I'd be calling you a crusty old devil ... oh, wait ...

Anonymous said...

loved every second of it,, great times,

from cassie xx

splodge said...

The good old days for sure!

As a tomboy it was a badge of honour to always be covered in bruises, cuts and scars - never whinged or used plasters though - you should hear the fuss my strapping great lunk of a teenager fuss over the slightest scratch.

The Special Zipper said...

So true. Now whilst you have solved the childhood obesity issues .. I can solve the adult obesity. Get off Blogger and Facebook!

I'd love to see an application that timed the amount of time that people spent on Facebook, the converted it into the amount of calories/kilojoules (or whatever your choice of energy is) that one could have burnt in that time if they spent but a quarter of the time exercising ... even just mildly. Not so sure FaceBook would like the application but...

Nathan said...

I find it odd that you're opposed to kids playing on the Wii, I get more exercise on that than I do running around! At the end of the day, I think it's more of a social attitude to food rather than the amount of exercise kids get.

Kids love running around, they always have. When I was growing up, me and my friends would always be running around the playground tripping each other up, then we'd go home and play Nintendo! It's just different how we got our exercise.

Tim said...

I still totally agree with Dan. Straight after school I would be on the street kicking the football (that's the egg shaped AFL style not soccer ball) or down the oval in the cricket nets etc. Then came the Commodore 64 computer and later the Atari and then the next generation gaming consoles which diverted some time away from activity but nothing like now.

I think it is also a social problem in that the working and other demands on parents are far greater than ever before so it is not so easy to be outside ourselves with our kids running around etc. Of course as a society we have become risk adverse to just letting them roam the streets at the young ages we used to (some of that valid ... some not).

That's my thoughts anyway.