Instant Gratification

While I was driving the other day I asked my daughter if she wanted to turn on the radio. Her answer was, “No.”

She loves music and we both get a kick out of singing (loud) together whenever a mutual favorite comes over the air waves. It didn’t make sense. Why was she quick to shoot down the idea?

InstantGratificationI was informed that if she turned the radio on, the preset station probably wouldn’t be playing a song she wanted to hear. That would then require her to push a button over and over and over while searching for a song she did like. Once found, the song might be half over and then she would have to deal with the boring commercials. Plus, the whole venture would involve leaning towards the car’s center console. Sigh. It just wasn’t worth it.

Okay. I’m exaggerating a bit. But still, is it really too much work to change the stations on the radio?

I’ve always said that I wasn’t going to be the kind of mom who brings up how much better my kids have it than I did. No stories about walking uphill to school in snow up to my knees from me. I was going to live today and take the situations as they come. Everyone is different.

Of course that isn’t my reality.

There in the car I started in on her about how there didn’t used to be some app that lets you “skip” songs. We called into radio stations to make requests and sat around all night hoping they’d play our song. If it made the playlist, we’d revel in our victory.

I then told her how when she was a baby, I took film to a store to have photographs developed. We couldn’t look at the back of the camera or check in our phone’s gallery to see if our eyes were shut. There was just a sense of faith that it would all work out. Yes, they were really printed on paper. Twenty-four or thirty-six of them.  And we KEPT EVERY IMAGE because we paid for them. Even the ones that were just someone’s foot.FOOT

We also used to record television shows on these things called tapes. That involved setting a contraption to record a show EVERY SINGLE TIME we wanted to watch it. Hopefully you accounted for Daylight Savings Time and remembered the all important step of turning off the machine. Maybe it wasn’t such a big deal to us because we only had FIVE channels.

And The Wizard Of Oz came on once a year. It was an event. We came in from playing outside to watch.

Yes, we PLAYED OUTSIDE. Just us kids. No parents. No play-dates. When my mom called us in at the end of the day, we were dirty in such a way that she wanted to hose us off instead of letting us into the house.

I’m not quite sure where the rambling stopped. There was more talk about playing Kick the Can, working in a garden and eating dinners around a dining room table. My daughter seemed fascinated.

That’s when I decided I’m really not one of those parents who think kids have it better than we did. With all the technology that makes our lives easier, we’ve lost something. I’m a parent who wishes that my child could have had a life a little more like mine.


. . .


Geez. How corny.


Take care all of you out there. I’m going to go listen to some songs on my ipod.



What are your thought?


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Categories: Thoughts | Tags: , , , , | 6 Comments

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6 thoughts on “Instant Gratification

  1. Ooh, don’t forget that, while waiting for the radio to play your song, you’re hovering near the stereo, ready to hit “record.” I used to enjoy recording off the TV. I had fun waiting for the commercials where I’d pause the recording. It was like the best thing ever, being able to watch it later with no commercials! :O Of course, this was only *after* we had a VCR. I remember when they were new, and we’d actually rent one from time to time before we bought one.

    And yeah, we played outside sooo much. My knees were perpetually dirty as a kid. It was just their natural color, hehe.

    I love being all nostalgic. I don’t have kids, so I torment my nieces and nephews. 😉 When I was a kid though, I actually liked hearing how it was for my mom and, even better, my grandma. Maybe your daughter does as well. 🙂

    • You just reminded me of the time we tried to record “It’s A Wonderful Life” for my aunt & uncle. We paused the tape for every commercial to save them from having to fast forward when they watched it later.

      Somehow, the six of us kids failed to turn back on the machine after the very last set of advertisements. Grrr. The whole scene around the Christmas tree was left out. There was no “every time a bell rings and angel gets its wings” or “atta boy Clarence.” Needless to say, we were never asked to do them that favor again.

      Thanks for stopping by Sara!

  2. I burst out laughing when you said your daughter was fascinated. Of course she was. How you managed to live through those hardships is beyond comprehension. lol I’m glad I’m not the only one that points things like this out to the young. 🙂

    Anna from Shout with Emaginette

    • And here I am today fighting with the internet. Our server has been dodgy ALL DAY and I can’t get anything done. It’s funny how the tables have turned. I’m feeling like I’ve been transported back to caveman days because I can’t download my email. I guess I need my mom to tell me how hard she had it when she was my age. HA!

      Thanks for stopping by Anna!

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