Saturday, May 8, 2010

Things My Kids Will Never Know About

This week, I have been completely out of touch with the blogs I usually read. What can I say? Bad days, terrible nights and suddenly colder weather that the kids just seem to be rebelling against.

Anyway, I've been caught up on all those blogs and one particular post stands out. On Wednesday, Bilbo had a fascinating twenty points to determine if you're old or not. Well, I scored 0/20 so I guess I'm not old.

However, I am using Bilbo's post as a springboard for my own today. Here are things from my own childhood that my children will have no clue on.

1. The only type of phone about was the landline phones with a rotary dial designed to send interrupted electrical pulses. It took ages to make a call if the number had too many zeroes in it.

2. TV programs only aired from 5pm to midnight. And, there were only two channels when I first started watching. I think the English programs on the radio were only on at 2pm for a couple of hours and then again for a short time at night. This was in Malaysia and we weren't big on the radio back then so I can't really remember the details.

3. TV was the only place to watch anything. No DVDs, YouTube or illegal downloads. Actually, we didn't even have the old VHS tapes when I started watching TV.

4. The computer monitor was much like a 30cm x 30cm x 30cm solid cube. The screen was black with green or cyan words.

5. The only game we had was a cyan colored Lode Runner.

6. The game was preciously stored on a flimsy 5" floppy disk.

7. There was only one movie shown on a central screen in the front of the cabin during flights between Malaysia and Australia. The earphones were plastic, stethoscope-like things. It was a BIG DEAL...FREE new movies! (With budget airlines charging for everything these days, this particular blast from the past seems to have come full circle.)

8. The 20 cents I got for lunch money each day of Grade 1 could get me either a bowl of soupy noodles, a packet of deep fried noodles or an ice-cream sandwich (Anybody try these? A bread roll with a scoop of ice cream in side.)

9. Nuns are very often the grouchiest teachers on the outside but the most generous and kind hearted ones on the inside. They really do mean well. You just have to remember to end all your sentences with "sister" and stand up whenever they come in.

10. McDonalds was such a treat that we only got it when my father had to go to Kuala Lumpur for meetings. Back then, it was nearly three and a half hours drive away. Aaron and Adrian will not know about McDonalds because we never go there now. We're trying to go against nature and raise two kids who hate junk food.

According to his profile, Bilbo is 58 years old. That makes him about 24 years older than me. Its interesting to note the differences between his childhood and mine. And then, comparing my own childhood to my children's 30 years later. The thing that stands out to me is that there wasn't much change to the 'instant-ness' of life from Bilbo's childhood to mine. But from the time I was a child to now, it seems that everything is instant. There also seems to be so much more of everything material but much less time, even with all the 'instant-ness'.


Mike said...

Putting your list and Bilbo's together I'm 30/30.

Bilbo said...

Yep, 58 years old. 59 in November...gasp! I loved your list, and can relate to some of them myself: #'s 1, 3, and 9 are especially close to home. No one who hasn't gone to an old-school Catholic school can understand what a wooden pointer across the knuckles feels like! Great list...and happy Mothers' Day to my favorite Aussie!

Positive Dynamic said...

After they have grown up a bit, you can try to give your kids a history lesson by TRYING to get them to watch:

1) WarGames (1983) - Yes, that's how real computer 'cracking' is done.

2) Get Smart (1965 series) - The FIRST MOBILE PHONE EVER was invented by Mel Brooks and Buck Henry and was used by a bumbling but incredibly lucky spy and you could wear it as a shoe!

3) Battle Of Britain (1969) - Special effects of the day involved REAL pilots flying REAL warbirds restored from WWII. There was some RC models and manually painting on the film as well.

There is also this nice website to remind everyone what a modem connecting sounds like.