DO you feel young people should experience some of the shite you did in the 70s and 80s? Obviously yes. You’re not bitter, it’s just in the interests of fairness.
Tuneless music lessons
Every child HAD to learn the recorder. It was the 1970s equivalent of being in the Hitler Youth. Parents were made to suffer migraine-inducing massed recorder concerts. Strangest of all were singalong BBC radio epics played on a large mono speaker. On your death bed you’ll still be wondering ‘What the f**k was Return to Badlidrempt about?’
Having to use your imagination
Xbox and Playstation allow you play immersive games as a steampunk assassin or Darth Vader. Back in the day, you were stuck with acting out Blake’s 7. If memory serves, it didn’t involve actual roleplay, just everyone deciding to be Avon in a distinctly un-sci-fi 1980s playground.
Parents with no concept of being a teenager
Today’s parents realise teenagers are self-conscious and need to fit in. Not your parents, who sent you off to school with a freakish haircut done in the kitchen, Brains-from-Thunderbirds NHS glasses and unaddressed terrible spots that would revolt anyone except a medieval plague victim.
Parents who denied the existence of sex
Your parents gave you no practical advice about sexual relationships, leaving you to piece together the basic mechanics from pictures of fallopian tubes, sex scenes in The Singing Detective, and your friend Colin, who believed your testicles would explode if not used.
The worst day trips in history
Places of historical interest gave no quarter to children. Forget interactive displays and animatronics – you’d have to stare at Victorian medicine bottles like the most tedious local history buff. Even pubs didn’t get wise to marketing themselves as ‘family fun pubs’ for decades. Fancy another look at the horse brasses, kids?
Going to the library
Writers and Guardian journalists wax lyrical about going to the public library. It must have been a different one to yours, which was full of Tintin books (too bad if you didn’t find Thompson and Thompson hilarious), brain-rot Jilly Cooper horse rubbish, and a strangely large number of obscure paranormal tomes with titles like UFOs Over The Lake District.