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10 Things I Did Not Have When I was 10

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It was 1972, the year I turned 10 years old.  My parents purchased our house for 25,000, a gallon of gas was 55¢, the Watergate Scandal was in the headlines, and The Godfather was a box-office hit.  I was a lucky 10-year-old who had a pool in my back yard, my own bedroom, and a new blue bike.  However, many of the things kids have today were not available when I was young.  Here is a list of the 10 things I did not have when I was ten.

    1. A Computer.  I did not even know what a computer was or what it could do.  When I needed to research a report for school, I had to walk to the library and look it up in the card catalog. Kids today do not know just how lucky they are to have information readily available whenever they want it.

    2.  Cellphone.  We had a phone with a 25-foot cord.  The phone hung on the kitchen wall and when someone called, you ran from where ever you were in the house to answer the phone.  If the car broke down on the side of the road, We either walked to the nearest gas station to get help, or we hoped some nice person would stop, pull-over, and give us a hand.

    3. Remote control.  Our TV did not have a remote control to flip through the channels.  When a channel, and there were only six channels, needed to be changed, we got up and changed it by hand.  Usually, the kids changed the channel while dad sat on the couch.  My dad would call me in from outside, just to change the channel.

    4. Air Conditioning.  We did not have air conditioning.  It was available; however, it was too expensive.  We did have a pool.  In the summer, when it was hot, we slept with the fans in the window with as little clothing on as possible.  We would go swimming at night, right before we went to bed, so that we would have cooled down before we went to sleep.

    5. Wii, X-box, Playstation.  No video games for me!  If I wanted to play a game, I got all the kids in the neighborhood together and we would play things like red-rover, Barbies, steal the bacon, or hide and go seek.  When I had to go home, my dad would whistle.  Every dad had his own original whistle so we kids would know whom he was calling home.

    6. Fruit Snacks, Granola Bars, and Juice Boxes.  A fruit snack for me when I was ten would have been an apple, a handful of grapes, or an orange.  Granola bars were not around; we would just eat cereal from the box.  Moreover, no juice was found in a box.  You poured yourself some Kool-Aid in a glass.  Sometimes you dropped the glass and broke it.

    7. Bottled Water.  I could have had water in a bottle.  All I would have had to do was take an old glass bottle that held soda, rinsed it out, and put water from the tap in it.  Mostly, I used a cup.  Sometimes, I drank from the hose, a water fountain, or just put my mouth on the faucet.

    8. Netflix, Cable, Satellite TV.  I watched whatever was on TV.  There was not on-demand anything.  If I wanted to watch a show for kids, I had to get up early in the morning to see it.  After, three in the afternoon, all shows were geared toward adults.  The only time I was able to see a movie, other than the 3 O’clock movie on ABC, was when my parents took us to the movie theater. Occasionally, they would take us to the Drive-in, but that is another story.

    9. Texting, Email, Face book, Social Media.  The only social media I had as a ten-year-old was school.  When I went to school, I would see my friends in class, or in the hall and talk.  If I wanted to talk to my friends on the phone, I would have to ask permission to use the phone, first.  Mostly, I walked to my friend’s house, knocked on the door, and asked if they could come out to play.

    10. Microwave Ovens.  If I wanted my food cooked, I put it in a pan and cooked it on the stove.  I did not have microwave pizza, fries, chicken nuggets, nachos, or anything.  If I needed to have lunch, I made a sandwich of whatever was leftover in the refrigerator. (Yes, we did have refrigerators!) LOL!

      Copyright © Jamie Nowinski and Grandmother Wisdom/ Grandmother Musings 2012-2013.
      Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jamie Nowinski – Grandmother Wisdom/Grandmother Musings with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


About bigsmileu1

What good is living life if you don't share all the experiences, mistakes, and knowledge you have gained? I am a grandmother, a wife, a mother of two grown children, a Jr. High Teacher for almost two decades, an elementary principal and I want to share my experiences.

5 responses »

  1. This was great! It reminds me of the time my son asked me what kind of cell phone I had when I was little (uh, none!). And there was life before Google??

  2. No only didn’t we have a remote control – we only had one TV in the house and had to watch whatever Mum & Dad wanted most of the time!
    Junk food/takeaway/eat out was never more than once a week.
    No way was I allowed to use the phone to call a friend – you’ll see her in school tomorrow!!
    And if I make a mistake on a school assignment I had to re-write it by hand – no delete button, no backspace 😦
    Really makes you wonder what the next generations will consider ‘normal’ everyday things?

  3. Fun list and certainly brings back memories.

    With your #9, seeing how distracted other parents are when they should be playing with or watching their kids, I am not certain society has greatly benefited from out social media addictions. So many real life experiences are passing us by and are gone forever–as our focus is on portable devices.

    • Social media is definitely changing the way we socialized. Kids don’t need to walk to their friend’s house, they can just stay in their rooms and text. Only the future knows if this will be good or bad.
      Thanks for your comments. 🙂


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