Note: The Washington Post recently had a contest wherein
participants were asked to tell the younger generation how much
harder they had it “in the old days.” Winners, runners-up,
and honorable mentions are listed below.
In my day, we couldn’t afford shoes, so we went barefoot. In
winter, we had to wrap our feet with barbed wire for traction.
In my day, we didn’t have MTV or in-line skates, or any of that
stuff. No, it was 45s and regular old metal-wheeled roller
skates, and the 45s always skipped, so to get them to play right
you’d weigh the needle down with something like quarters, which
we never had because our allowances were way too small, so we’d
use our skate keys instead and end up forgetting they were taped
to the record player arm so that we couldn’t adjust our skates,
which didn’t really matter because those crummy metal wheels
would kill you if you hit a pebble anyway, and in those days
roads had real pebbles on them, not like today.
And the winner:
In my day, we didn’t have rocks. We had to go down to the creek
and wash our clothes by beating them with our heads.
In my day, we didn’t have fancy health-food restaurants. Every
day we ate lots of easily recognizable animal parts, along with
In my day, we didn’t have hand-held calculators. We had to do
addition on our fingers. To subtract, we had to have some fingers
In my day, we didn’t get that disembodied, slightly ticked-off
voice saying ‘Doors closing.’ We got on the train, the doors
closed, and if your hand was sticking out, it scraped along the
tunnel all the way to the next station and it was a bloody stump
at the end. But the base fare was only a dollar.
In my day, we didn’t have water. We had to smash together our own
hydrogen and oxygen atoms.
Kids today think the world revolves around them. In my day, the
sun revolved around the world, and the world was perched on the
back of a giant tortoise.
Back in my day, ‘60 Minutes’ wasn’t just a bunch of gray-haired,
liberal 80-year-old guys. It was a bunch of gray-haired, liberal
In my day, we didn’t have virtual reality. If a one-eyed
razorback barbarian warrior was chasing you with an ax, you just
had to hope you could outrun him.
Back in my day, they hadn’t invented electricity. We had to watch
television by candlelight.
In my day, we didn’t have Strom Thurmond. Oh, wait. Yes we did.