7 Things That Were Different in the Old Days – You Know, When I Was Young

Did you know that there are at least three different methods of division they are teaching kids in school today? Yeah, we just had one. Divide this number into that number and write down the answer. Now they have to use the designated method and show the work for that method or it is wrong. I wonder how many of us adults would pass in school today? I was explaining this to my oldest son the other day and he proceeded to tell my second oldest that “They only taught mommy one way to do division back in the old days.” I felt like I should disintegrate into dust right then, but I got to thinking, how many other things were different in the “old days.”

1. There were hardly any electronic toys. You went outside found a stick or a rock and you were good to go. I can remember making entire cooking shows out of plants I found in the yard. Too bad I don’t still foster that love for cooking. Everything is more fun when you aren’t old enough to do it.

2. Girls clothes were longer and covered more. Seriously, why does almost every outfit in the store for tween or teen girls look like it belongs on a stripper pole?

3. Electronics were not as prominent. These days you can’t walk two feet outside your door without seeing a cell phone attached to someones ear and even my 11 year old has an iPod Touch. When I was young, you were the coolest kid if you had a Walkman. I had a bright yellow sport one and I thought it rocked!

4. You could let your kids run loose in the neighborhood. We live in a fairly isolated, quiet area in the country outside of town, but there is no way I would feel comfortable letting any of my kids run around the neighborhood by themselves. Not with the constant stories you see in the news.

5. Songs were less raunchy. Is it just me or does pretty much any new song that come out cuss at you or talk about sex? Not that I don’t enjoy the beat of some, but when I have to mute parts of songs on the radio in the car, it is not a great thing. You also shouldn’t have to answer questions like “Mommy what does she want people to take off?” “Their coats honey, she wants them to take off their coats and stay awhile.”

6. Have you seen kids cartoons lately? Adventure Time, Chowder, The Amazing World of Gumball, Flapjack? What the hell were those guys smoking when they created these cartoons? I mean really, some of them are enough to give me nightmares. I grew up on Barney, Mr Rogers Neighborhood, Gummy Bears and Smurfs.

7. Everything is made for convenience now. There are tons more prepackaged foods, pay at the pump, self checkout lanes at the grocery store. Don’t get me wrong, I take advantage of some of these things, but they sure didn’t exist when I was growing up. If you walked out the door at the grocery store and told them you “did the self checkout” they called the cops.

What else was different when you were growing up and don’t say the color of your parents’ hair!


  1. I remember when MAC machines came out, and then they started calling them ATMs. Man, I feel old. I remember when we went to the bank every week to deposit paychecks every week and get money for grocery shopping before going grocery shopping.

  2. I never understood that about the math. As long as you get the right answer, doesn't the process seem irrelevant? Songs were way less raunchy. You're absolutely right!

  3. I'm old enough to have been grown and had a child when Walkmans came out. When I was a kid there were 3 TV stations and you walked to the TV to change channels. Households had one TV, and it was in the living room–probably a console style. I graduated college without owning a computer. And really? There are three ways to do division?

  4. Elizabeth you are so right. I don't understand why it matters and it is pretty confusing to have to learn all the different ways.

    Beth, we had one TV too and my parents didn't buy cable when I was younger so we had 3-4 channels too. We did get a computer when I was about 13 though.

  5. I have to disagree with the music, it was raunchy then, we just didn't know what it meant then. Cherry Pie, Like a Virgin, Big Butts and on and on.

  6. I was not aware that there are now 3 ways to do division…ahh the new math. But being new or different does not make it better.

    Like BethElderton, I grew up in the b/w tv age with 3 channels to choose from.

    And I think it is a naughtier, raunchier world today. I would give up my computer to go back to a more simple time so that my grandchildren could grow up in a safe, honest and Godly world like I did.

  7. Yes indeed the times are a changing. I pretty much bowed out on helping the kids with their math homework once they hit junior high 🙂

  8. I like the cartoons like Adventure Time and the Regular show but I do agree, they are trippy. lol I love the new Looney Tunes as well.

  9. See Lisa, that is true. I guess you don't see it when you are young lol. I do think that the atmosphere nowadays is much more sexually charged than back then though.

    My youngest actually really loves Looney Tunes Megan.

  10. I'm 56 years old, and I remember learning short and long division. I suppose the third method today would the division by calculator!

    They were definitely simpler times.

    Cartoons were cleaner back then but still violent. Popeye and Bluto were always beating the (you know what) out of each other over a girl. Tom & Jerry, Roadrunner, etc….

    You never would have seen a commercial with a woman or man walking around in their underwear!

    BTW, very good post. I had to laugh out loud at the comment about calling the cops for "self checkout"!

    Or would I just say LOL?

  11. First, I adore the post's title! I was born in 83 and one of my oldest memories is listening to Madonna's Like A Virgin with my mom, jumping on her bed, dancing, while she got ready for work. I must have been around 4. I can still picture her blue eyeshadow and teased bangs LOL

  12. I'm LOVING the pic! I sooo wish we could just let the kids go outside and ride bikes without worrying. I remember we left the house at breakfast and was gone riding bikes all day.

  13. Yes, the times sure are changing. We also had just 3 channels, and I clearly remember getting our first VCR when I was 13 and being SO EXCITED! Even microwaves were a novelty…now they're a necessity, lol.

  14. "Pay at the pump" and self-serve is not an advance for anybody but the station that cuts down labor cost. I love going to New Jersey and Oregon where they pump your gas for you with no premium. In Oregon, if you get out of the car and try to pump your own gas, they run you back into your car.

    Another thing I miss is cheap gasoline and gas wars. (Gas Wars were between two stations across the street from each other. One would lower their prices, the other would lower their prices. The point was to get customers. I can remember prices lowered to as little as 17 cents a gallon. Doesn't that sound great right about now…)

    There was Gulf oil commercial that showed a young kid in a car buying 50 cents worth of gas, about 2 gallons. The station attendants washed his windshield, checked oil and water, (they didn't use much coolant back then)…

    For 17 cent a gallon gas, I'd put up with a Walkman over my iPod… LOL

  15. Great post!! I remember we had an old tv with only 4 channels. No remote, no vcr or anything.
    I got my first stereo in 7th grade and I cried!! LOL

    Ohh..love the old days 😉

  16. LOVE this post… I remember being able to drive for 2 weeks on $10 worth of gas… and you left out tin cans from our "playthings" you know when "kick the can" was AWESOME…

    Ranchier songs – I don't know about that one… Kinda like Grease – HOLY COW I missed it back then but get it now… I just think as kids WE were more innocent and didn't notice… great post!

  17. No Curt, there are really crazy methods they use for division now. I had to Google them just to learn them to teach my son lol.

    Sam, I totally forgot VCR's we went from those to DVD's and now to Blu-rays. Pretty soon they will just stick a chip in our brain.

    MTgunfighter, I had no idea about that in Oregon. There were still a few stations around here that pumped for you when I was a teenager. I agree about the cost of gas too. When I was 16, it was 99 cents a gallon.

  18. I totally agree about the clothes. I have to really search now to find clothes that are appropriate for kids. I still remember when I bought my first Nintendo when I started working. Those were the days. A few years ago my husband found me one with tons of games at a garage sale. I still pull it out to play on it. My kids hate it because you can't save, lol

  19. Oh heavens times certainly have changed, LOL! I use to have the TALLEST bangs in middle school! Ha!

  20. Yep, times have changed drastically! 🙁

    And, what the hell is Adventure Time, Chowder, The Amazing World of Gumball, Flapjack? New ones for me! Perhaps, I'm glad my son doesn't watch any of these? 🙂

  21. don't get me started on todays math there was absolutely nothing wrong with math the way I did back when why on earth they have to change it to make me feel like a mindless math nut is beyond me

  22. You grew up with those? I am 19 and I grew up on Gummy Bears, Mr. Roger's Neighborhood and Smurfs. I feel that people my age are the last of an era. When I was a kid, we watched broadcast and saw movies on VHS.

  23. Hi'Lesha Yes, you probably are glad he doesn't lol.

    Barbara – You sure don't look any older. 🙂

    Anonymouse- You are probably right. Even my oldest boys had tons of VHS tapes when they were little. It wasn't until they were 4-5 that I started getting the DVD's.

  24. Record player! With 45 rpm's and 33's. That was when I was about 8 or 9 (in the early 50's). Stayed with my Grandma – she didn't believe in tv and NEVER had one. Dial phones that STAYED attached to the wall by the phone wire. B&w tv's, no microwave, no computer. In high school in 1963, we took typing ON A TYPEWRITER.

  25. I wish I could put my kids in a time machine and raise them in the 80s. Seriously. I hate that they have to grow up in a world where everyone is so entitled and lazy and privileged. It's ridiculous and it drives me insane.

  26. WHAT?! I love Gumball and Adventure Time! LOLOL!

    I remember listening to my Bon Jovi "Slippery When Wet" RECORD. It rocked!

  27. I must be older than most of you here because I remember H.R. Puffenstuff and if you think cartoons are crazy now, check it out … these guys were definitely smoking something

  28. Going round to a friend's house at the arse crack of dawn to see if they wanted to build a dam or just hit weeds with a stick. Kids don't do this unless there's a zombie version of these activities on Call of Duty or some other similar wank.

  29. i remember when all you had to do was stand on the porch and yell for the kids to come and they did. or when you could babysit at 12 years old to earn money for the things you wanted. when i told my kids about picking strawberries and beans on my summer vaction to earn money to help pay for new school clothes, they think i'm teasing them. the look on thier faces is priceless. lol

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