The 60s Official Site Blog

Dedicated to the memory and history of the 60s from a personal and historical point of view.


Monday, December 01, 2008

How In The World Did We Survive?

I just finishing reading an interesting article about childhood obesity. In the article it was stated for the first time we may have a generation that will not live as long as the baby boomer generation which now has a life expectancy of 78. Statistically life expectancy has increased year after year but now it may decline. Amazing isn't it? Why do children today face this possibility of dying younger than their parents and grandparents? Illnesses from lack of exercise and overeating. One disease is Diabetes II, which was once common only in adults over the age of 40, now is being discovered in children younger than 12. The reason for this is obesity and lack of exercise. We baby boomers faced many difficulties ourselves but lack of exercise wasn't one of them. We didn't have the luxuries that today's kids have when we were growing up. How did we survive without these now "can't do without items" and all the you can't do that because it's not good for you.
First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us. They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can, and didn't get tested for diabetes. Then after that trauma, our baby cribs were covered with bright colored 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 pick up on a warm day was always a special treat.

We drank water from the garden hose 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 cupcakes, white bread and real butter and drank soda 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 Play Station's, Nintendo's, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, no video tape movies, no surround sound, no cell phones, no personal computers, no Internet or Internet chat rooms..........WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!
We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever. We were given BB guns for our 10th birthdays. We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many 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! Little League had tryouts 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!

Unless we as parents and grandparents take it upon ourselves to insure our children of today become more active in sports or outdoor activities and not lying around the house on the computer or TV we may find many of us outliving our children. What a sad consequence that would be. They should be moving around doing something at a minimum of 60 minutes a day.

We survived but will our children survive on the road that many are on now?

Babyboomers site

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