Thursday, March 2, 2023

Kids These Days

I recently visited my smart, cute, amazing grandson who is three years old. And I marveled at how he knows how to use a tablet computer and to ask his father to play the "soundtrack" from a movie (because he likes the songs but the movie itself scares him). His father can pull up lots of kid-friendly videos on YouTube on his television, too (apparently there's a kids' YouTube; who knew?). 

And I thought about when I was three years old. Now, I don't specifically remember much from when I was three years old (except the John F. Kennedy funeral that I came across one day on television and thought it was a boring parade). But I do know that my electronic entertainment options were two black and white television channels. I lived in a rural area of Idaho and there were, literally, only two channels. (This was long before cable television.) I think we had an antenna on the roof, not rabbit ears.

And I, as the youngest, was the remote.

We did, occasionally, get to go see a movie at the theater. Disney movies, mainly. I didn't know what a "soundtrack" was until I bought the soundtrack (on two vinyl records) for Star Wars.

We had two channels until early 1970s when we got a PBS station. Then in 1976, we got a third commercial station. Cable television came at about the same time. I remember my parents being unhappy that HBO was going to show R-rated movies. My thought was, "Don't get HBO, it's an extra cost anyway."

My parents didn't get a color television until about 1968. Computers? Tablets? Smart phones? All many decades away. 

Kids today are growing up in a completely different environment than I did. They have access to all sorts of thing both good and bad. Parents need to keep an eye on what their kids are doing.

Did you grow up under different circumstances? Which did you think was better, then or now? Let me know in the comments below.

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