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15 Things Young People Get Dead Wrong About Past Decades. Are You Guilty?

Many young people seem to have vague ideas about multiple things from the past decades. 

A netizen recently asked, “Older folks, what do young people get completely wrong about past decades?”. Below are the most exciting responses!

TRADITIONAL MEDIA WAS UNIFYING 

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“Up until video rental stores in the early 80s, at school the next day, every kid talked about what was on television the night before, as every family watched television together every night. With some exceptions, most people watched the same thing as their schoolmates or coworkers, to be a part of the conversation.”

PEOPLE HAD TO ACCEPT THAT THEY COULDN’T FIND THE ANSWER 

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“Probably just how often you had to accept that you couldn’t find the answer. If you had a question, you could ask your family, maybe your friends, or your teachers. 

Your last chance was to check the library. But if the library didn’t have the answer, you just had to accept that you wouldn’t get an answer (or you’d have to hope to come across that answer someday). Now you ask Google and get ten answers in just seconds.”

TELEVISION SHOWS AND THE IMPORTANCE OF PUNCTUALITY 

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“How on-time you had to be for your favorite shows because there was little to no chance you’d see that same episode again until they (hopefully) did reruns during summer. 

I remember waiting anxiously for the nightly news to be over so I could watch my favorite television shows. Commercial breaks were just mad rushes for the bathroom or to the kitchen to get something quick to drink.”

THE NO PICTURES NORM

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“That it was widespread just not to have pictures of events or other things we see as important now. Not only did we have entire vacations where no pictures were taken, but we could go months without a single picture being taken of any member of our family unless it was particularly notable. 

A trip to Saint Louis? No pictures. A trip to Disneyland? Maybe a picture at the entry gate or one of the souvenir pictures of us with a character. A trip to the zoo? No pictures. An average day? Forget about it! Frequently, the only pictures taken were at major holidays like Christmas or someone’s birthday.”

HOW PERVASIVE SMOKING WAS

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“They understand restaurants had ‘smoking sections’ and that bars & clubs were filled with cigarette smoke. But I don’t think many understood how pervasive smoking was. Ashtrays and people were smoking everywhere. 

Jury boxes had ashtrays in front of every juror. The judge smoked, the lawyers smoked, and the gallery smoked. You smoked on planes, trains, buses, taxicabs, and all transportation centers. You smoked at the library, the parents’ teacher meetings at schools, the town hall, and all city offices. Hell, you could smoke in the courtyard at my high school as a student. 

You smoked in the elevator and on the escalator. The mall. Sports venues. Doctor’s offices. Hospitals. The movies. Plays, operas, concerts, and every other public performance. A non-smoker would come home often smelling like smoke. One was constantly surrounded by smoke. It was insane.”

THE FEWER CHOICES 

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“Probably underestimating how few choices there were. Today, everything imaginable is available in various sizes, delivered to your door overnight. Catalogs and mail orders took 4-6 weeks to deliver. Malls were the best thing ever. All the stores in 1 place, and not downtown.”

HOW COMMON DRINKING AND DRIVING WAS

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“How common drinking & driving was. Until MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) came along, people did this routinely. It’s where ‘one for the road’ originated.”

LANDLINE TELEPHONES HAD GREAT AUDIO QUALITY 

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“Landline telephones had seriously great audio quality. It’s better than anything for remote conversation today, in my opinion. I distinctly remember being a teenager and talking on the phone with someone late into the night, hearing them breathe and sigh, hearing their every little sound. 

There wasn’t the lag and the noise canceling, and the high compression that ruins telephony today. It was a much purer way to feel like you were closer to someone than anything we have today.”

THE PRODUCTS WERE WELL MADE AND FIXABLE 

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“People say that the 80s were all about consumerism, which is true, but the products were well made and fixable. Towns had repair shops for everything. You didn’t buy a disposable television. If it broke, you took it in to get it fixed. Nowadays, if your television breaks, it’s tossed, and you get a new one.

Televisions are just one example. Look at many instances under the comments, e.g., shoes, household appliances, cars, et cetera.”

THE TRAVEL COMPLEXITIES 

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“Travel. Reading paper maps and scanning for roadsides and landmarks to guide you to destinations you have never been to. Half of my younger coworkers couldn’t point north without their phones.”

THE SEVERITY OF THE 9/11 SITUATION 

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“9/11. Younger people don’t truly understand how the entire nation froze in shock. Security was never the same. For example, traveling via air was never the same afterward. I missed the days of walking my friends/family to the gate and dropping them off.”

THERE WAS PLENTY OF BAD MUSIC 

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“That all 80’s and 90’s music was good. There was plenty of bad music released then like there is now; it’s just that the bad music got buried quickly while the best hits continue to get played today.”

HOW SELF-SUFFICIENT ONE HAD TO BE

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“How self-sufficient you had to be. If you got a flat tire, you had to change it or walk. You had to make arrangements to meet up with friends well ahead of time and then show up. The world before cell phones was completely different.”

THE WAY JOURNALISM HAS CHANGED 

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“Journalism has changed. You used to be able to trust in the integrity of the journalist.  Now, they’re interchangeable, and all we know is the network. It has changed how we trust the new media, and it’s not good. We shouldn’t underestimate the danger of this change.” 

HOW BROWN THE 80’S WAS

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“How brown the 80s were, everything furniture, cars, wall paneling, everything was brown.” 

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This article was originally published on Mrs. Daaku Studio.