Congratulations to all of us who were born in the 1940s, 50s and 60s.
First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank beer or wine while they carried us.
They took aspirin, ate blue cheese, raw egg products, loads of bacon and processed meat, and didn’t get tested for diabetes or cervical cancer.
Then, after that trauma, our cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paints.
We lived in houses made of asbestos and still we have survived.
We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, or locks on doors or cabinets, and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets or shoes, not to mention the risks we took hitchhiking.
As children, we would ride in cars with no seatbelts or air bags. We drank water from the garden hose, not from a bottle.
Carry out food was limited to restaurants advertising “home cooked meals.” There were no pizza shops, McDonald’s, KFC, or Subway.
Even though all the shops closed at 6pm and didn’t open on a Sunday, somehow we didn’t starve to death.
We shared one soft drink with four friends from one bottle and no one died from this.
We could collect old drink bottles and cash them in at the corner store and buy Milky Ways for a nickel, and penny candy and bubble gum.
We ate white bread and real butter, drank cow’s milk and soft drinks with sugar, but we weren’t overweight because we were always outside doing chores or playing.
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, but we were OK. We would spend hours building go-karts out of old baby buggies and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes.
We built treehouses and dens and played in riverbeds. We did not have PlayStations, Nintendo Wii and Xboxes, or video games, DVDs, or colour TV. We used our imaginations.
There were no cell phones, computers, internet or chatrooms. 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. And we ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, too.
Only girls had pierced ears. You could buy Easter eggs and hot cross buns only at Easter time.
We were given air guns and sling shots for our tenth birthdays.
We rode bikes or walked to a friend’s house and knocked on the door or just yelled for them.
Not everyone made the school basketball, football, or baseball teams. Those who didn’t had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that. Getting onto the team was based on merit, both in skill and in getting grades good enough to be allowed to participate.
Our teachers hit us with rulers, gym shoes and threw the blackboard eraser at us if they thought we weren’t paying attention or trying hard enough.
We can string sentences together, spell and have proper conversations now because of a solid three Rs education.
Our parents would tell us to ask a stranger to help us cross the road.
Mom didn’t have to go to work to help Dad make ends meet because we didn’t need to keep up with the Joneses.
The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law.
Parents didn’t invent stupid names for their kids like Kiora, Blade, Ridge and Vanilla. We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all.
You might want to share this with others who grew up in an era before lawyers, political correctness, and the government regulated every part of our lives.