Sunday 16 August 2015

Kids born in the 60s & 70s, and their clean dinner-plate neuroses?

His mother's insistence that no food went to waste has stayed with Colm O'Regan all his life. The ritual of dinnertime shaming and being made to finish his dinner will inevitably be repeated when he has his own children, he writes in this week’s BBC Magazine.

Some great insights but key was the fact that days spent in unsupervised outdoor pursuits soon burned off any excess calories resulting from clean plate ‘over-eating’, and more importantly, were vital in helping us manage uncertainty in a world without patterns...

First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us.

They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, and tuna from a tin.

Then after that trauma, our baby cots were covered with bright coloured lead-based paints.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, not to mention the risks we took hitchhiking.

As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags.

Riding in the back of a van - loose - was always great fun. We drank water from the garden hosepipe and NOT from a bottle.

We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO ONE actually died from this.

We ate cakes, white bread and real butter and drank pop with sugar in it, but we weren't overweight because......


We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K.

We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem .

We did not have Playstations, Nintendo's, X-boxes, ipads,  had no video games at all, no 200 channels or catch-up on TV, no DVDs, no surround sound, no mobile phones, no text-messaging, no PCs, no Internet or social networking.......... WE HAD REAL FRIENDS and we went outside, found them and talked to them!

We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.
We played with worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.
Made up games with sticks and tennis balls and although we were told it would happen, we did not poke out any eyes. We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just yelled for them!

Local teams had try-outs and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that!?

The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!

This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever. The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.

We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all…….. !

So, the continuing unprecedented times are simply challenges and opportunities for many of us…

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