10 Things I Wish My Kids Could Enjoy

ice cream van

Image by Yersinia via Flickr

  1. Metal playground slides. They go so much faster than the new plastic, staticky ones!
  2. Ice cream trucks! I know they have them in some towns, but a) they’re sometimes sketchy, and b) they’re pretty rare.  They were starting to be “endangered creatures” when I was young, but now they’re even worse.
  3. Riding bikes around the neighbourhood by themselves. I was allowed to ride around the block by myself as a kid, but there’s no way I’d let my kid do that today.
  4. Going down the street in the open back of a pickup truck. My dad had one when I was a kid and it was the best feeling in the world to sit back there on a summer day, my hair flying in the wind and the warm sun on my face.
  5. Typewriters. I learned how to type on an electric typewriter my mom purchased to do the bookkeeping she did for a restaurant her friends owned, as well as her annual family newsletter.  But before that I typed up my own “family newsletters” and slipped it under my parents’ door once a week, all done on an old-school lever-and-hammer style typewriter.
  6. Lemonade stands. Nowadays kids need food service certifications in order to sell 5-cent cups of lemonade at a card table on their front lawn.  A neighbour girl and I once set up shop in her driveway and the mailman stopped by…three times!  (He was a big spender…or maybe it was because it was summer in the high desert.)
  7. Meeting Grandma at the airport gate. When I was a kid, Grandma coming to visit was the highlight of the year.  She always brought presents, always stayed up late playing games with us, and never said no to buying us ice cream.  And it was always so much fun to watch the line of people exiting the plane and walking up the “tunnel” to see who would be the first to spot Grandma.
  8. DOS games. My husband has a CD of dozens of old DOS games he grew up playing, and I got hooked on them, too.  Sure, the graphics suck, but they’re fun games and nothing like any of the new, nearly-true-to-life, 3D computer games.  Unfortunately, newer computers don’t even let the common user open DOS, so we can’t use the CD anymore.
  9. Snail mail pen-pals. At age 14 I had 30 pen-pals from around the world.  Getting international emails is cool, but not as awesome as getting one of those small, thin envelopes with the red and blue lines around the edges and the exotic stamps in the corner.
  10. Film cameras. True, they still exist, but they aren’t widely used and digital is so much easier and so much higher quality.  I still remember the anticipation of taking my film to be processed and the torture of waiting three whole days before I could see what pictures I’d taken, and whether they were as good as I’d hoped.
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2 thoughts on “10 Things I Wish My Kids Could Enjoy

  1. That is the most awesome thing I’ve heard in a long time. I hope she chooses the typewriter. It can’t go out of style, because it already has. The Kindle will only be cool for a year or two, most likely.

  2. Signs of the times: my daughter is debating which she wants more – a non-electric typewriter or a Kindle (the typewriter is more expensive). She just loves the idea of banging away on the typewriter even though she has grown up typing on a computer keyboard.

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