We’ve all heard it from our parents “you guys have it so easy with all of your ipods, computers and cell phones. When we were growing up, we were happy with pet rocks and soccer balls”!
So as you’re sitting and listening to your mother babble on, you question yourself “was it actually that different growing up in the seventies and does our generation have it easier”?
Well today I am going back 30 years into the disco era to see if growing up in the seventies was actually so different.
Apparently things were much simpler then. Children spent most of their summer days on their bikes exploring the town and when you wanted to find a friend you’d have to go to their house instead of texting or emailing. When you were thirsty, your parents garden hose was the solution and kids came home when the street lights came on. Instead of using computers kids would have to write out all assignments and in libraries you would have to use the Dewey Decimal System to locate books. How did they function without DVD players, cell phones or ipods? Their version of music fun was 8 tracks and records and if there was a street soccer game going on every kid on the street played despite their age. I think this is great since we don’t see this much today.
As different as the seventies seems kids still enjoyed going out to movies, hanging out with friends, and watching TV. The TV shows were a bit different with less special effects and drama but they still were very popular. Some of these shows were the
Brady Brunch, Soap, Happy Days, Wonder Woman, The Partridge Family and the Six Million Dollar Man.
When I think about the seventies the first thing that pops into my head is Disco. Disco was a revolution that shaped and controlled the seventies culture. Singers such as Donna Summer, The Beegees, and Gladys Knight helped create the disco era. Instead of downloading songs from itunes kids in the seventies would buy vinyl records and listen to them day after day until they skipped. Movies like “Saturday night fever” with John Travolta in his white suit still is watched today as much as it was back then and the music from the album is still played constantly.
The one thing I love about the seventies is the fashion. I admire the amount of individuality and the fact that no one looked the same. Some of the fashions trends were bellbottoms, halter necks, loafers, oxford bags, tights and afghan coats. I have heard from many of my relatives that labels were not important in the seventies. This amazes me because in today’s world people judge on what brand you wear which is definitely a problem in today’s culture.
As fabulous as the seventies seems, there were some downfalls. Kids started smoking very early on and drugs were everywhere. The seventies culture was less health conscious and the hippie era brought about a promiscuous environment.
Another problem in the seventies were their discipline techniques. At school, kids would routinely be punished by getting hit with the strap instead of receiving a timeout. If this happened in today’s society , teachers could be charged and possibly dismissed.
I really wish our society was more like the seventies. The culture seemed to be far more free and open and people didn’t have to worry as much about gangs and shootings. But in the end both generations deal with the same issues; peer pressure, grades, looks, stress, and overall acceptance. I just wish that when I look back at my childhood in the 90’s I remember with such joy and love as my mom and her peers do of the 1970’s.