In the past 30 years, many accepted practices have changed. What people considered normal and safe back then — transporting your newborn in the front-seat, having a latchkey kid at age 6, and letting them explore the woods with no parental guidance — is pretty much grounds for arrest these days. But, in that simpler time they call the ’80s, there were some great ideas that I’m thinkin’ we should totally revive — the way Disney Channel stars have brought back overly-sequined attire, off-the-shoulder shirts, and leopard print day-glow leggings!
Thanks, Shake It Up, I can barely look at my daughter without retinal strain!
In honor of the passing of Memorial Day, I’d like to start with re-instituting “adult swim” (not the one on Cartoon network). No, I’m talking about that 15 minute span when anyone who wasn’t shaving yet, had to evacuate the water and allow the older generation to have a civilized dip? AKA the worst part about going to the pool when you were a kid.
Now, as an adult, I realize it was probably the best part of every parent’s day. They got a quarter hour (every hour) in a splash-less, Marco Polo free environment, to float on those un-recyclable Styrofoam chairs (remember those?), and talk about Reganomics (remember that?) or how amazingly wrinkle free polyester is — all while smoking a cigarette without worrying a hyper child would snuff it out.
Of course, nowadays we’d be on “Aqua Loungers” made with recyclable (yet toxic) PVC vinyl, and purchased from Frontgate or Brookstone for 200 bucks a pop. We’d be debating over whether the Jodi Arias trial was real or just a ploy for ratings and who would best play Hilary Clinton: Reese Witherspoon, Scarlet Johansson, Amanda Seyfried or Jessica Chastain? There wouldn’t be a cigarette in sight, but we’d be enjoying iced lattes (possibly intravenously) that we purchased from the satellite Starbucks by the snack bar.
I’m not gonna lie, that’s 15 minutes I’d enjoy. Though, let’s be honest, the following would most likely happen as well:
- Our kids would completely disregard the rules and splash from the side of the pool.
- They would try to throw noodles over our heads to the other side, or simply pretend to fall in — oops.
- Those who were taking a break from swimming before the whistle blew, would immediately want back in.
- “Mommmy ma, ma, MOM” would be the only sounds one could hear, a mere 45 seconds after being relegated to dry land.
- Children would be running to the edge to show us their artwork, share proof of new high scores on electronic devices, and perform impromptu dance numbers for us to gush over and rave about. “Yes, honey, that was the best hip-hop ballet performed to Kesha’s Tik Tok I’ve ever seen! You’re a dance genius.”
OK, so millennium children may be a bit too over-stimulated, over-complimented, over-protected, and over-indulged to enable the revival of a true 80s style (ignore the children they’ll be fine) “adult swim.”
Our parents didn’t have necessary modern mandates like carseat and safety belt laws, but they had obedient children. Sometimes ignored, sometimes left to fend for themselves — children, who grew into the independent, free thinking Gen X moms and dads who have me me me millennium kids.
I can’t judge, I’m a true millennium mom! I may not be able to resurrect “adult swim,” but I’m hoping to find new ways to revive independence … and free thinking … and less trophies (sheesh enough with the trophies)! Oh, and leg warmers. G-d I loved leg warmers!
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Image via Joe Shlabotnik and Jenny From the Blog