mandag, juli 22, 2024
Home » Before the Internet: The Unbelievable Childhood of the 40s to 70s Generation

Before the Internet: The Unbelievable Childhood of the 40s to 70s Generation

Villy Roar Hornberg wrote an open Facebook post reflecting on what it was like to grow up in Norway for the generations now well into adulthood. The difference from today’s upbringing environment is vast, and we believe Hornberg hits several points spot-on.

To Everyone Born in the 40s, 50s, 60s, and 70s:

«Firstly, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while pregnant, and lived in houses full of asbestos. They took aspirin, ate blue cheese, raw egg products, loads of bacon and fatty foods – not to mention food with all kinds of colorings and additives, tuna straight from the can, and we weren’t tested for diabetes or severe cancers.

After that nightmare, our cribs and strollers were covered with all kinds of lead-based paints in pastel colors.

There were no childproof caps on medicine bottles or dangerous cleaning supplies, nor child locks on cabinets and drawers. When we rode our bikes, we had no helmets or cycling shoes – not to mention the risks we took hitchhiking with strangers.

As kids, we sat in cars without seat belts or airbags. We often lay in the rear window shelf.

We drank water from the garden hose, NOT from store-bought bottles.

Take-away food was limited to hot dogs & fries or hot dogs and bread. No Pizza Hut, McDonald’s, tacos, baguettes, or kebabs. Stores closed at 5 PM and were shut on weekends. Somehow, no one starved because of it.

We often shared a bottle of soda with our friends and all drank from the same bottle – without anyone getting seriously ill from it.

We collected empty bottles to exchange for money at the corner store to buy candy and gum or firecrackers that we set off in people’s front porches after ringing the doorbell.

We ate butter cookies, bread with real butter, unpasteurized whole milk, and sugary soda, and we were not overweight because:

We were always outside playing!

We could go out in the morning and not come home until the streetlights came on at night.

No one could reach us all day. And we were OK.

We could spend hours building a go-kart from old planks and wagon wheels, and then race down a hill only to discover we forgot to build brakes.

We built treehouses and dams, played by the river/ocean with homemade cork boats or toy cars in the sand.

We had no PlayStation, Nintendo Wii, X-Box. No video games at all, no TV with 999 channels to choose from, no video or DVD movies. No mobile phone, no laptop, no Internet, blog, or online chat rooms.

We had friends and we went out to meet them!

We fell out of trees, cut ourselves with pocket knives, broke bones and teeth, and there were no lawsuits or complaints after such injuries.

Only girls had pierced ears.

We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live inside us forever.

For Christmas and Easter, we made and painted our own decorations.

We got air rifles and made slingshots at the age of 10, we biked or walked to our friends’ houses and knocked or rang the doorbell, or just called out for them.

Football or softball teams had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn’t had to learn to cope. Imagine that! Getting on the team required skill or reputation.

Teachers used to give us a slap and bullies ruled the schoolyard during breaks.

The thought of our parents picking us up if the police caught us doing something illegal was unimaginable. They actually sided with the police.

Our parents didn’t come up with idiotic names for their children like we hear today.

We had freedom, failure, success, and responsibility, and we learned to deal with it.

And you are one of them.

CONGRATULATIONS! Perhaps you’d like to share this with others who were lucky enough to grow up as children before our lives were regulated for our own good too much.«

While you’re at it, send it to your kids so they know how tough and brave their parents were.”

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