My grandparents always used to tell me stories about waking up at 5 a.m. to feed the pigs and milk the cows and walking to school up hill (in both directions) in the snow-– things like that. They told me these stories knowing I’d never understand those struggles, which is true, but my generation growing up in the ’80s and ’90s had some pretty big struggles of our own-– things kids today will never understand either.
9 Struggles Kids Today Will Never Understand:
1. Being bored.
I remember sitting with my mom at the DMV for HOURS. I had to play tic-tac-toe or look around at my surroundings, or just sit and talk to my mom. I won’t ever get that time back.
2. Taking pictures and not seeing them right away.
Back in the day, we took pictures with our cameras, and we had to turn them in at Walgreens or somewhere and wait an unbearable amount of time (a few days) before our pictures were developed.
3. Rewinding videos.
“Be kind, rewind“-– that was the saying, but not everyone was kind. Sometimes, you’d rent a new video from Blockbuster and the person that watched it before you wouldn’t have rewinded it, and all your excitement at watching a movie turned into anger as you spent at least 2 full minutes rewinding a video.
4. Dial-Up Internet.
Kids today take the Internet for granted, but once upon a time, getting on the Internet was a process. You’d dial up and wait and wait, all while your modem made this horrible, awful sound. Then you’d finally get on and start chatting with friends on Instant Messenger, that is, until your mom picked up the phone and kicked you off the Internet, and you had to go through that terrible process all over again.
5. Calling the weather channel so the home phone wouldn’t ring.
It’s 10 p.m. and you want to call your boyfriend/girlfriend. What do you do? Just call, right? Yeah, and then get lectured by their parents for calling too late? No way! You had to make a plan, and figure out a time. One of you would call the weather channel and listen to the weather, while the other beeped in. It was a coordinated, spy-like effort.
6. Using the phone book.
When you wanted to know when a store closed, you had to open this really thick yellow book called the phone book and search alphabetically for the store name, then call the store on the home phone (imagine a big phone with a long cord that only stays in one room) and talk to a person who worked at the store (assuming they answered), to find out when they closed.
7. No GPS.
Back in my day, “Northwest” was a direction, not just some celebrity’s kid’s name. We used these things called maps to travel from city to city or state to state.
8. Meeting people somewhere and not knowing why they were late.
Sometimes you’d agree to meet someone somewhere, and you’d get there and wait and wait, thinking, “Did I get the time wrong?” “Was this the place he said?” And you’d just sit there bored (see No. 1) wondering where that person was or if they were ever going to be there.
9. Not knowing the answer to something.
Google has spoiled kids today. In my day, you had to rack your brain, trying to think of what that actor’s name was or what band sang that song. Sometimes, you’d just sit there thinking, and thinking, and thinking. Everybody would go home, and you still wouldn’t have an answer, and then like a month later, you’d yell out, “Kurt Russell,” but no one would have any idea what you were talking about.
Fortunately, my generation was resilient. We pressed on and dealt with these daily struggles. I’m not sure how we ever made it, but we did. But kids these days, they’ll just never understand.