04/11/11 - posted by Steve
My memories of Saturdays are similar except that I watched older cartoons and kids' shows ("serious" ones included Hopalong Cassidy, Sky King and Fury), I came along before the Sting Ray bikes (we usually rode the 26-inch 3-speeds), and the schools didn't provide anything on Saturdays. Being close to Sunset Playground and Golden Gate Park we spent a lot of time there. For the book-ish, there was the library too.

I have seen several versions of the following but this fits:


People under 30 believe the Boomers should be dead.

Here's why they believe this:

According to today's regulators and bureaucrats, those of us who were kids in the 40's, 50's, 60's, or maybe even the early 70's probably shouldn't have survived, because:

Our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paint.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, or locks on doors or cabinets.

When we rode our bikes, we had no helmets. (Not to mention the risks we took hitchhiking.)

As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags.

Riding in the back of a pickup truck on a warm day was always a special treat.

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


We ate cupcakes, Twinkies, frozen Milky Ways, bread and butter, and drank Coke with sugar in it, but we were never much overweight because we were always outside playing.

We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle, and no one died from this. Then we returned the bottle (along with others we gathered) for the deposit.

We would spend hours building coasters out of lumber scraps and skate wheels and then we rode down hills, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes (or something harder) a few times, we learned to solve the problem.

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

No one was able to reach us all day. NO CELL PHONES! Unthinkable!

We did not have Wii, PlayStations, Nintendo, X-Boxes, any video games at all, 200 channels on cable or satellite, video or DVD movies, iPod, surround sound, personal computers, instant messaging or Internet chat rooms. Even Pac-Man was decades away. Television was black and white.

We played football or baseball or dodge ball, and sometimes the ball would really hurt.

We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth, and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. They were accidents! No one was to blame but us. Remember accidents?

We had fights and punched each other and got black and blue and learned to get over it.

We made up games with sticks and tennis balls. We ate worms. Although we were told it would happen, we did not put out any eyes, nor did the worms live inside us forever.

We had friends! We went outside and found them. We rode bikes or walked to a friend's home and knocked on the door or rang the bell or just walked in and talked to them.

Local football and baseball teams had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment.

Some students weren't as smart as others, so they failed and were held back to repeat a grade. Tests were not adjusted for any reason!

We drank to excess in college, or even before that.

If we lived in the country, some parents taught their kids to shoot real guns or BB guns. If we lived in the city, some kids had illegal firecrackers and other small explosives. We did not shoot our playmates or blow off our fingers.


Our actions were our own.

Consequences were expected.

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

The Boomer generation has produced some of the best risk-takers and 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 only the under-30s had our experiences!

The majority of students in universities today [when this was written anyway] were born around 1987. They are called Gen Y or ďMillennials.Ē

For them, there has always been only one Germany and one Vietnam. AIDS has existed since they were born. CDs have existed since they were born.

To them John Travolta has always been round in shape and they can't imagine how this fat guy could be a god of dance.

They believe that Charlie's Angels and Mission Impossible are just new films, out in the last few years.

They cannot imagine life before computers, or even with old computers. They've never heard of Pac-Man, Space Invaders, or VisiCalc. They donít know what a floppy disk is.

They can't believe black and white television ever existed and don't even know how to switch on a TV without a remote control. They will never understand how we can leave the house without a cell phone.

They donít wear watches. Some canít tell the time unless it is digital. They know their cell phones and other devices have the correct time, but they donít know why.

A camera that requires film is prehistoric. CDs and DVDs are almost obsolete. Streaming audio and video are the thing. A vinyl record is an object of curiosity from the last century.

Many of them have never used a telephone with a cord. One said she had, but only at her grandmotherís house.

Now let's check to see if you're getting old. If so:

1. You understand what is written above and you smile.

2. You need to sleep more after a night out.

3. Your friends are married. (and have grandchildren!)

4. You are always surprised to see small children playing comfortably with computers.

5. When you see teenagers with cell phones, you shake your head.

6. You've developed more and more feelings about your work. It's your life.

7. You spend less and less time talking on the phone with your friends daily.

8. You meet your friends from time to time, talking about the good old days, repeating again and again all the funny stories you have experienced together.

9. Having read this, you are thinking of forwarding it to some other friends because you think they will like it too.

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