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Country Discussion Topics
To add your comments to this topic, click on one of the 'Reply' links below.

How Did We Survive?
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EIEIO    Posted 10-18-2002 at 04:38:10       [Reply]  [No Email]

Looking back, it's hard to believe that we have lived as long as we have.
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 but on
cold winter days not so much fun. Our baby cribs and play pens were covered
with bright colored lead-based paint.

Our toys had all manner of buttons and beads that were sometimes swallowed.
We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors, or cabinets, and when
we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, knee pads or elbow pads. And we
learned how to ride those bikes without training wheels. We sometimes
hitchhiked to friends houses, the Sat. afternoon matinee and to school.

We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle. We would spend
hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then rode down the hill, only
to find out we forgot the brakes. And don't forget the skateboard made
from a piece of wood to which we had nailed the front half and rear half of our
metal roller skates. After running into the bushes or falling down on the
sidewalk a few times we learned to solve the problems. We didn't
immediately get carted of to the Doctor or Hospital if we little fever or

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were
back when the streetlights came on. We didn't have cell phones so no one was
able to reach us all day. We played hardball and sometimes the ball would really
hurt. We climbed big trees and sometimes got hurt when we fell out of them.
We swam in the local swimming hole without life vests and lifeguards. We
drank soda pops ate cupcakes, candy, ice cream, fried chicken, mashed
potatoes with lotsa gravy, eggs and bacon, and biscuits and bread with
butter on them, but we were never overweight.

We couldn't leave the table until we ate our veggies and had to ask for
permission to get up and leave. Adults were addressed as Mr. or Mrs. and
Sir or Ma'am'. The Little League and school had tryouts and not everyone made
the team. Those who didn't, had to learn to deal with disappointment.

We got beat up by the class bully at least once. When you did something
wrong at school you had to stay after school was out, and write 500 times
that you would not do it again - You were not just sent home. Some students
weren't as smart as others so they failed a grade and were held back to
repeat the same grade. We got paddled at school and/or home when we did
something wrong.

That generation produced some of the best risk-takers and problem solvers.
We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to
deal with it all.

And you are one of them, congratulations

magpie    Posted 10-19-2002 at 06:09:07       [Reply]  [No Email]
We survived, because, we had common sense. We raised our two girls the same way, I don't think either of them were paddled in school but they sure got it at home when necessary, which thankfully wasn't very often. They both have families and are homeowners, and seem to be responsible. I can't say the same for some small children I see now. Their parents seem to be afraid that they will offend them or something. They don't seem to be creative enough to play without a bunch of electornic crap. What kind of society are we becoming?

Salmoneye    Posted 10-18-2002 at 06:38:37       [Reply]  [Send Email]
We had no street lights either...just had to be home before dark, which up here in the North is pretty late in mid-summer.

Only real rule we had was don't cross anyone elses fences...a couple, three hundred acres or so is enough for any kid...


EIEIO    Posted 10-18-2002 at 07:44:54       [Reply]  [No Email]
Did you also have the rule about always wearing clean, mended underwear? Gosh forbid you get in an accident and your underwear had a hole in it.

Salmoneye    Posted 10-19-2002 at 01:44:30       [Reply]  [Send Email]
What is underwear?


Ana - no street lights here    Posted 10-18-2002 at 06:17:15       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I hear what you say and have said it to my children a hundred times. But I grew up in the country, no street lights, no friends to play with, only brothers and sisters. We went to town once a week---Saturdays, but my mother made us five kids sit in the car the whole day while she visited and shopped. (Can't do that now!) We had real guns and went hunting at a young age---that was supper. No welfare, if we didn't have food or clothes, we did without. I didn't have boots until I was grown. Never had a bike till I was married. Didn't have very many toys, we made our own--ever eat a mud pie? Didn't go to the doctor--most people died at home without one. Lucky for me, they gave inoculations at school. I saw my dad pull his own teeth with a pair of plyers--tough! But we didn't think we were so bad off cause most people out in the booneys were just like us. People in US are spoiled now-a-days! But I've seen this kind of life still in some foreign countries. Growing up like this gave me a lot of self-confidence---there's nothing I can't handle---I'm tough--but I doubt that I could pull my own teeth! :) May you all enjoy this day!

June in SD, Yayyyyyyyy,    Posted 10-19-2002 at 17:22:17       [Reply]  [Send Email]

EIEIO    Posted 10-18-2002 at 07:30:21       [Reply]  [No Email]
What a wonderful post, enjoyed your memories. You put me right there with you thanks for sharing.

LH    Posted 10-18-2002 at 05:53:05       [Reply]  [No Email]
I consider myself lucky to have grown up during an era where everyone was not liability conscious or lawsuit happy. We also worked hard baling hay, and doing other farm chores (Oh the lack of child labor laws) to make money instead of asking mom and dad for everything. We appreciated gifts we recieved and never expected anything except maybe at birthdays and Christmas, and were happy with what we got even if it wasn't what we had wanted. It's like the simple joys in life like star gazing, watching fireflies over a meadow, and the amazement of new life. I guess maybe that's why I still enjoy those simple things today.

Old Sarge    Posted 10-18-2002 at 08:27:45       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Talking bout child labor laws. I can remember when I was doing custom haying after I retired from the military. Using a Heston swather, a Freeman 3 wire tie baler, some of those bales of alfalfa got to weigh 100 lbs or more, the local high school football team used to come out and ask to load them onto the wagon and in the storage shed just to get the weight training that they needed.

EIEIO    Posted 10-18-2002 at 07:42:20       [Reply]  [No Email]
Did you ever get coal in your stocking at Christmas? Maybe you didn't have coal when you were growing up but we did. One year I guess I wasn't the best of kids and sure enough Santa left coal in my stocking. I can still remember the Christmas as if it was yesterday, talk about crying I am amazed I didn't flood out Dearborn, Michigan. I think that was the year I lit the toilet paper with a match to see what would happen and I burned the bathroom down. Honest, I did it, boy did I get beating - we called it the "FIRE BEATING", after that.

LH    Posted 10-18-2002 at 09:59:57       [Reply]  [No Email]
Yes Ma'am we had a cola funrace which wasn't converted over to oil until the late 60's, and yep I got coal and switches a couple a times.

bob ny    Posted 10-18-2002 at 05:22:24       [Reply]  [No Email]
wealso had polio,smallpox,malaria, diptheria and lots of other prob;ems that have been almost eliminated the good old days are everyones youth
no matter what generation

EIEIO    Posted 10-18-2002 at 07:38:16       [Reply]  [No Email]
You are right there, but look at all the "new" things they have found that are unsafe. So many things we can't eat, can't drink, can't touch etc. It seems the more knowledge we have the more frightening the world is getting.

bob I am not trying to be critical of your post and I am glad I am living in this day and age I just wish my adult children and their children could enjoy some of the freedom and worry free days that we had. It seems that they lose their innocence at such an early age, what with the TV, movies and newspapers. You can only watch out for them for so long and than they are on their own. You just hope you did a good job raising em when they leave the nest.

June in SD, Reminds me of the time when---    Posted 10-19-2002 at 17:36:59       [Reply]  [Send Email]
And that's what it is all about, isn't it?
Thanks, again.

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