In the age of smartphones and streaming services, it’s easy for younger generations to have misconceptions about life in decades past. In a social media thread, Boomers recently shared their insights into what young people get completely wrong about the good ol’ days. Let’s take a trip down memory lane and debunk some common myths.
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“And actually reading the TV Guide to know what new shows were coming out and when they were coming on.”
Many users agree that before the era of video rental stores, people gathered at school or work the next day to discuss what they watched on TV the night before. Back then, it was an enjoyable, shared experience as nearly every family tuned in together. In a world of limited viewing options, conversations revolved around the same shows.
“When I was older and worked in a grocery store in the 80’s, I would have to sweep up cigarettes that were stubbed out on the floor in the aisles.”
Some users talked about how health regulations in the 1980s were quite different. It wasn’t uncommon to see people smoking throughout public spaces, even in grocery stores. Ladies with cigarettes hanging out of their mouths were a common sight, making grocery shopping a smoky adventure.
“Essentials, while quality, weren’t cheap, and not many jobs paid well. You could afford an apartment, but you wouldn’t be doing much else at all but conversing with friends in-person.”
Entertainment budgets were tighter back in the day. People passed the time with simpler activities, like gathering to listen to the radio with friends. Streaming services and frequent device upgrades weren’t on the menu and finances were often allocated to necessities, not luxuries.
“I literally had this happen at work yesterday where my younger co-workers were saying in effect ‘Israel, who knew all this was going on?’ and ‘People wouldn’t have known without social media!’ Believe me, we knew.”
Contrary to popular belief, many users want young people to understand that they didn’t live in silent bubbles just because they lacked smartphones and common computers. Social interactions thrived without digital devices.
“Honestly it’s shocking how poor the mic quality is on even high end modern smartphones. We had so much better on landline phones as a rule.”
Landline telephones were known for their remarkable audio quality, far surpassing what modern remote conversations offer. Users recall late-night phone calls, hearing every breath and sigh, feeling incredibly close to their conversation partners without the lag and interference that plagues telephony today.
“Working in computer repair, computer and phone companies realized they’d make more money if they made it as difficult as possible to fix. But people started realizing that, so we’re fighting the “right to repair” fight.”
While some label the ’80s as the epitome of consumerism, others argue that the products were exceptionally well-made and fixable. Repair shops dotted towns, and tossing a broken item for a new one wasn’t the norm. The throwaway culture that prevails today was yet to come.
The early ’80s retained the earthy fashion hues of brown, orange, and yellow from the late ’70s before pastel shades took over. So, for those who think the ’80s were all about neon, think again!
Before the age of GPS and smartphones, reading paper maps and scanning for landmarks were the keys to successful travel. Younger generations might struggle to find their way without a digital guide.
Some users pointed out that cars in the past, while durable, weren’t necessarily reliable. They might have been built like tanks, but they often required frequent trips to the mechanic for repairs.
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