Sunday, May 4, 2008

The follies of my youth

I often compare the things kids do today to the things my brothers and I did when we were younger. It really is amazing how times have changed in just the last 20 years. I realize that I had a slightly unconventional upbringing. We weren't gypsies or anything (I wish), but by the time I, the third child, came along my parents were...let's just say...slightly more lax than maybe they should have been.

So today I give you a list. A list of things that were totally normal to me as a kid. Here, in no particular order, is a rundown of things that today would get me and my brothers taken away by CPS.


#1 Bike Riding. We used to ride our bikes everywhere....and I do mean everywhere. When I was about 8 or 9 we used to ride our bikes to the Dairy Queen on 19th and Frankford (we lived at 30th and Chicago) and play the memory game. We also used to ride to Putt Putt at 29th Drive and Brownfield and collect the golf balls that people had hit outside the course. Over the years we gathered a nice little collection. When I was ten I would leave my house at 11 in the morning (b/c I had to watch The Price is Right while I ate my cereal) and I wouldn't come back until dark. DARK! There was no cell phone, no low-jack....my parents just let me go.



#2 Hide and go SHOOT. Yes......shoot. I know parents today that won't even say the word "gun" around their kids, let alone let them have one for a toy. Our guns looked real and sounded real. There was a pretty large group of us within a 5 block radius that would get together and play hide and go seek....with guns. It worked a little bit more on the honor system, b/c in order to "tag" someone all you had to do was have good aim. Needless to say I "missed" my brothers quite a bit...or so they'd say.






#3 Playing on the roof. We got the ladder out and used the drain pipe/basketball goal to boost ourselves up on the roof. From there we would use--you guessed it--our guns to "shoot" passing cars. Are you kidding me? Why didn't we fall off and break something? It probably would've served us all right. I also seem to remember us throwing water grenades at anything we thought we could hit...including the neighboors dog......

#4 The next door neighboors dog! This thing was a beast. You know the dog in Sandlot? Yeah. This dog hated us almost as much as it's owner did. The husband was friendly, the wife.....not so much. To this day she still doesn't like my brother Matthew. That could have something to do with the way we treated her dog. I guess they thought it was a good idea to build it's house in the corner of our adjoining fence. We'd step foot in our backyard and that dog would hang halfway over the fence, mouth foaming, and scream at us. It was so much more than a bark....so much more. My brothers would throw rocks at it. I remember just standing, stairing at it. Silently mocking it. At one point my mother put me on a dairy free diet which provided me with little juice boxes of soy milk. I hated it, I wouldn't drink it. So what else are you gonna do with your sisters unused soy milk boxes? We shot them at the dog. We stuck the straw in the carton....and squeezed.




#5 Rated R movies. I have been to adult themed movies where parents have brought their children. Scoff! What are they thinking? Don't they know you're supposed to corrupt your kids in the privacy of your own home? When I was six my Papa babysat us. He quickly fell asleep in the recliner, and my brothers quickly took advantage of this situation. We watched Friday the 13th and it scared the six year old crap out of me. My closet light was burnt out that night, so I had to sleep in the dark. Terrifying. When I was not much older we watched The Terminator...the whole family sat down and watched The Terminator. My brothers teased me and told me Arnold was going to come kill me b/c my name was Sarah (they assured me that it didn't matter that our last name wasn't 'Connor'...he'd find me anyways) I was too young to make the distinction between Hollywood and real life. I lived in fear for months. Then there was the time that I begged Matthew to teach me how to braid my "My Little Pony"s hair. He agreed, but only if we could watch Commando. Commando is Rated R for strong violence, language and nudity...I couldn't have been more than 8. We watched Predator, regularly....perhaps my mother's judgement was skewed by her intense love for Arnold Schwarzenegger....


All things considered, I think we turned out pretty well.

5 comments:

Adam Crawford said...

OMG!!! Priceless. I so remember all of that nonsense in our youth. you make me laugh.

Emily said...

this reminds me of the time we sat up on tori's roof waiting for those b's to come wrap her house. HAHAHAHAHA. i think we ended up going to ihope at like 4am...

Anonymous said...

This is the most amazing thing that I have ever read...ever. Seriously. And you know when you happen to witness an important function for another family and people are telling stories and crying and laughing about things that really don't make any sense to anyone else...yeah, that was me reading this. It brought such unbelievable joy.

Mark

Alexanders said...

This is stinkin hilarious!

J.E. said...

You had six year old crap inside you? Gross. One time I had my appendix removed when the doctors thought I had appendicitis, but it turned out to be a calcified piece of stool lodged in there, so I kinda know where you’re coming from.


Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind. ~Dr. Seuss