475 Comments

Not to be totally unoriginal but this is one of the most wonderful pieces in recent memory and your baseline setsa pretty high bar in its own right.

"that is the most important lesson in all of growing up. not piano or soccer or interpretive headstand watercolor painting and certainly not indoctrination into the grievance cults of wokedom:

what must be learned is how to become self-governing.

and it has been stolen from our children."

For all of us who flourished with benign neglect, lawn darts , clackers, plastic super bubbles, injection mold vacu-form at lava like temperatures, playing Mumbly-peg throwing jackknives everyone of us always had in our pockets, even at school this is powerful nostalgia.

When there was an outbreak of measles or chickenpox our moms would drag us to the home of the infected kids; in my mother's words, "Better to get it now when we know what it is and all of you get it at the same time and get over it and send you back to school together. If you catch it later we might need to go to the doctor to diagnose you and what a pain that is!"

Everyone ate PB&J sandwiches in a lunchroom with our two cent container of milk. We never conceived of lactose intolerance or life threatening peanut allergies, we never knew other kids on prescription drug regiments, we never heard the word syndrome, but we all had first hand experience with broken bones and stitches and we did indeed draw priceless lessons from that. :~)

Expand full comment

Yes to the chicken pox parties! peanut oil in the increased childhood vax schedule= peanut allergies. Like our bodies don't like to have shit injected into them or something....

Expand full comment

dead on

Expand full comment

Yes, I'm a kid of the 70s, too. And yes, we kind of just wandered off, for hours at a time, and in many ways it WAS carefree (and it WAS mostly fun and games...until someone lost an eye!). We let our kids wander off, too, and they get up to all sorts of mischief (we live in the country). But they still come home again in one piece.

Our kids wear helmets on their bikes & scooters, and they're MEANT to wear shoes outside (!) but they don't wear masks. They play make-believe, write stories, make up games, read, sing & dance around. They also do some household chores. We'd let them all play in the water but our youngest can't save herself yet (they do walk around our huge dam, though). Our oldest is fine at the deep end of the pool by herself when we go.

Other people comment on how well-rounded our children are. Can't say I always find that living with them (!!) but we ARE trying to prepare them for a crazy world - so they need to learn a huge range of self-reliant skills. They're also very argumentative!!! Sometimes I wonder if they'd make good politicians - and that worries me!!! I am constantly reminded that I was NEVER this difficult as a child - but they are children growing up in a different world to what I was, and they have different (and hopefully better) parents.

However, there ARE risks that we were unaware of as kids: risks that are very real and still exist (and even moreso today due to population rise & the use of the internet): for us, the risk of paedophiles on our property or the next one is zero - but there is a risk a few KM away...so we still have to be wary.

As much as this post has been memory-inducing, it's just not that simple. Because of rising chemical pollutants in our world, allergies HAVE increased. Because of high vaccination rates, it has led to worse problems in the next few generations. Our house is gluten-free, dairy-free & soy-free. No nasty chemicals, additives, colours or preservatives. We basically can't eat out, but we eat REALLY well!! The problem is that we can't re-create the growing up we did in the 70s - because the environment is NOT the same. Now I feel my children are losing their childhood because of world changes. We try to let them be as free as possible and learn from their mistakes whilst trying to help them learn to cope in this changing world, but the future is not looking bright, and this concerns me greatly. However, I still REFUSE to mollycoddle them because they are meant to metamorphose into adults, where they will spend the largest part of their life, and they need to be RESPONSIBLE adults who can stand their ground where necessary and make good decisions.

I've said for years that my children are not the easiest kids, but they'll make good adults. I really hope I'm right!!!

The funny things is that the friends I grew up with (who were also born in the 70s) don't parent the same as me (there's a lot more mollycoddling going on!) - but then again, I married a country boy, not a city boy like almost all of them! Maybe they're more concerned with social acceptance/status quo rather than what's really going on. Perhaps these things make the difference, I'm not sure, but ALL of my school friends have jabbed themselves & their kids, whilst friends I met later have not necessarily.

Anyway, if hubby & I can give our kids some great memories from childhood, then whatever happens, they have some good (and useful) memories in there to call upon.

Expand full comment

Your not just giving them great memories you are giving them skills, real world ones they will need to be successful adults. That is the whole point.

Expand full comment

Couldn't agree with you more. This post is really wonderful. What's happened to us? As a child of the 70's, I read this and think 'what the hell have I been doing?'. I believe I have brought my kids up 'well' - but did I let them go to the beach or within a 5 mile radius of the house without knowing EXACTLY where they were...NO! I hang my head.

Expand full comment

Child of the 80s and 90s and just had to write a companion post on the Boomers. I'm sorry if it's harsh, but they were given a rich harvest by their parents, and they absolutely squandered it and poisoned the soil.

https://bherr.substack.com/p/the-epic-failure-of-the-boomers

Expand full comment

"Your parents fought ACTUAL NAZIS, and yet you cower in fear of a disease that’s 99.9% survivable." Yes, that sums it up nicely. Thank you for sharing!

Expand full comment

Thanks. It's kind of scorched earth, but I don't feel anything but justified saying what I've said. I'm working on not being bitter and wanting solutions.

Expand full comment

I understand your frustration and anger, BHerr. I feel like I'VE been the parent and my Boomer parents have been the children! And it's STILL this way and they're in their 70s now!!!

We have, do and will continue to, pick up the pieces. They are not about to turn around and say "We're sorry about that. We've been a bunch of total pricks and hypocrites. We'll change our ways and help you now." No. We will forever be picking up their pieces and most of them will die, clinging onto that last shred of greediness that made society a rotten place.

I don't think you're being too harsh. These Boomers are so worried about self-preservation that there are only a handful of them stopping to think about the mess they have created, let alone helping to clean it up.

I could say that we're a capable generation. But the problem is that so many in our generations (X and Y) have succumbed to the same old covid bullshit and followed the same suit as the Boomers. Problem is that there's not going to be some fancy house price rise in our lifetime (no, just massive economic downturn) and most of our generations will be sick to boot. What an inheritance, eh?! :-(

Expand full comment

I hate to say it but amit if the lactose/peanut/pet dander allergies and possibly even the gender confusion issues are VACCINE related, believe it or not. They grow the futures/proteins for the vaccines ON aborted fetuses — both sexes, (what could go wrong??) AND in peanut

proteins, with kidney cells and other cells

from monkeys, dogs, cats, horses and even porky pig! It’s true. MRC-3, “Mercy” is a female aborted fetus, aborted in the 60’s before abortion was legal in the US, and has been used since then. Wi-38, “William”, is another.

Expand full comment

Certainly possible there's so much by way of novel assaults on our system from a wide array of sources. My own research history w Rockefeller-Gates biotech gmo foods and their novel proteins dates from 1997 so my thoughts go there first. Because cotton is not regulated as a food crop it is allowed greater toxic level applications; over 90% US cotton is gmo and the rotation crop in alternate years is peanuts. As tubers these draw more heavily from soils and peanuts are among the highest contaminated foods.. if immune systems are working it seems an allergic reaction to swallowing toxic chemicals would be Mother Nature's way of flagging a danger. While we can't know exact harms for any of it we know none makes us healthier! :~)

Expand full comment

Animals in the wild do not have nearly

the level of cancers, early death, injection site tumors, arthritis, infertility and so on that our pets, livestock and baby humans have.

DISSOLVING ILLUSIONS by Dr. Suzanne Humphries, MOTH in the IRON LUNG and TURTLES ALL the WAY DOWN are profound reads in the subject, along with a dozen or 2 more.

Expand full comment

That’s true. I know animals are subject to the same levels of pollution/toxins/environmental overload as we humans BUT only

the animals who choose to bypass every God-given filter, skin, liver, stomach acid, gall bladder, etc. and INJECT ourselves w/ toxins & chemicals, oddities not meant for the body, polysorbates that can breach the blood brain barrier are the ones w/ skyrocketing disease, skyrocketing maladies.

Expand full comment

Clackers!

Expand full comment

I went through the same thing. And you know what? We were soft. Our parents would tell us the stories from when they were kids and we would marvel that they made it, haha.

Expand full comment

This is possibly the best, most poignant post I have read about the current state of humanity in a very, very long time.

Expand full comment
Feb 18, 2023·edited Feb 27, 2023

I wholeheartedly agree. I’ve shared it in twitter, FB and sent it to a dozen friends.

Expand full comment

This may be my favorite of all your posts.

The summer of ‘69 I was 10 and my little brother was 2. My mother would strap him in the stroller and tell me to take him for a “walk.” If I came back sooner than she wanted, she’d send me back out. No cell phone, no money, no water bottles. She’d be arrested now.

Expand full comment

This made me laugh. I was just trying to explain to my kids that having a water bottle with you at all times is a new thing.

Expand full comment

Heh! True and also we had a communal canteen or soda when hiking or we'd drink out of streams.

Expand full comment

Or the random garden hose. Water bottles are another sign of safetyism, imho. They are another thing to lug around just in case. Oh the freedom of not being tied to a hydroflask constantly!!

Expand full comment

OMG when my son cringes his face over tap water or, god forbid, the garden hose, I want to slap him. I used to take the cherry tomatoes out of the garden, dunk them in the pool to clean them off, then eat them! I was eating tomatoes dunked in chlorinated water and never had a second thought about it!

Expand full comment

I remember a HUGE creek at the bottom of a ravine that all of us kids used to play in. We’d be pirates, explorers making mud pies, catching tadpoles. In the winter my brother once fell through the ice and then he got his ass whooped because of it!!🤣🤣🤣

Expand full comment

Lol, you could dehydrate on your way to the video store

Expand full comment

Gosh, I love this image!

Expand full comment

My mom sent me to the corner store to buy cigarettes for my dad. I was 9. The ‘70s truly was the last decade of a free childhood.

Expand full comment

Same! My mom sent us to the store with a note which the cashier honored without question.

Expand full comment

🤣🤣🤣🤣

Expand full comment

It's an 80 year cycle.

Hard times create strong men.

Strong men create good times.

Good times create weak men.

Weak men create hard times.

We are at weak men create hard times....

Expand full comment

I just stormed I to my house the other day yelling “whatever happened to MEN?! I’m surrounded by weak ass pussies!” This was in regards to getting fired because I won’t jab. Male co-workers just looking at me like “just take it….” SMH

Expand full comment

Women did that to men!

Expand full comment

Cry-bully, safety first sort.

Expand full comment

My dad's way of putting this was "From shirt sleeves to shirt sleeves in three generations," a variation on the original "from clogs to clogs."

Expand full comment

My Mom would be in a Supermax prison in today's world! (I am a child of the 60's and early 70's as well) My favorite memory from my youth is Mom letting myself, my brother and my sister go camping alone on the prairie in my home state. Age 11, 10 and 8. Yep. A couple of blankets and a small back pack full of a few essentials. We had a fire, roasted weenies and marshmallows using sticks we found and sharpened ourselves (with a knife). We laid on our backs and looked at the stars and we fought like cats and dogs and we had amazing experiences that I will remember until my dying breath. There wasn't a helmet, a mask, a kneepad or any "protective" gear in sight. And somehow, we lived. The wisdom, trust and independence that was gained from this experience (and numerous others just like it) helped make me the kind of person I am today. A person who has the ability to say NO. A person who can muster courage if necessary. Not perfect of course, but able to manage my life without someone telling me what to do.

Expand full comment
Jan 25, 2022·edited Jan 25, 2022

Damn. Yes.

I can't count how many times in the past twenty years I've told people that my mom, one of the top ten worriers in the world, let us roam free in huge tracts of woods and ride our bikes for miles around. I look back and realize that on any given day, she had somewhere between zero idea and a vague notion of where we were after school and before supper. Today she would be seen as criminally negligent.

Fast-forward 45 years to last March in my rural seacoast village: On an evening bike ride I see a thirty-ish couple walking by the deserted pier with a few little kids, everyone face-diapered. And as I pass them, I realize that the "adults" have blindingly bright, flashing red panic strobe lights stuck to their backs as they walk ON THE SIDEWALK. That was my definitive "failed species" moment for Homo "sapiens". It's all over for our kind if we don't fix this.

Editing to add this great interview of Matthew Crawford by UnHerd's Freddie Sayers on the dangers of safetyism:

https://youtu.be/XxONOUwOX80

Expand full comment

The four of us (all girls) once collectively told my mom she had NO idea where we were and what we were doing from the age of about 10 until we left home...she denied this of course, but no, she didn't!!

Expand full comment

👏👏👏 I was mom shamed a few years ago for letting my kids play in the front yard by themselves. I will always be a champion of free range parenting, letting your kids fail, and natural consequences. I love many of your pieces but this is one of my favorites.

Expand full comment

Having mothers like you is so important

Expand full comment

I remember when my baby’s pacifier fell on the ground once, I picked it up, sucked the dirt off and plopped it back into her mouth….the look I got from the moms next to me! “Good for her immune system” I shot at them🤣🤣🤣

Expand full comment

Turned 10 in 1970. And while the fashions in the latter part of that decade were indeed hideous, it was a FABULOUS time to be a young teen. Riding my ten speed all over my city of 400K with my friends.

As we raised our children in the 2000's, we attempted to copy that experience. But it was difficult. Other parents thought we were child abusers for letting our youngest two, say 10 and 7, ride their bikes into town (we live in one of the safest suburbs on the planet) and just hang out at the park. The other parents would bring their kids to the park (for a play date) and then try and force our kids to accept a ride home. Our kids would decline and we would literally get calls from other parents "warning" us that our two had decided to ride home by themselves. They would assure us that they "tried to do the right thing" by bringing them home.

Can't imagine what it is like now.

Expand full comment

What ?? the fashions were great !! I had black crimplene elephant pants and a yellow polyester bubble shirt that I wore with yellow platforms.  When it was too hot for long pants, I had lime green hot pants. I thought I was the cats meow .

Expand full comment

I see your post and raise you one rock fight, two street stick-ball games, one skateboard made from a 2x4 and my sister's left roller skate, and a rubber-band U-nail launcher that could serve as a prototype rail gun.

Expand full comment

Unhooking the Bendix brake on your bike so you could pedal backwards (severe road rash), standing on the swing to pump as high as the bar (broken arm), skinny-dipping in the deep pool in creek (not sayin'.)

Expand full comment
founding
Jan 25, 2022·edited Jan 25, 2022

We grew up in a very hilly neighborhood. Two skateboards side by side, one person on each, facing 2 skateboards side by side, one person each. So 4 of us kids, holding each other's arms across our legs, legs extended to the others boards, screaming down our hills on skateboards... We called it catamaran-ing, insanely fun! In the winter, we'd hook rides on the back bumpers of cars, maybe with a board or better, just sneakers. That was pogey-ing. Day long trips wandering the rail road tracks, swimming in random ponds... Sneaking out at night in the summer to go to illegal bonfires "at the dirt road" or meeting up at new construction sites to climb in to water filled basements, or sit ona half finished roof. Man, those were great great times.

Expand full comment

Aaaahhh, Possum, we had a "dirt road" too! There's a great picture of me and my siblings from the mid-seventies. My mom always referred to us in that picture as "the dead end kids." Our hair is unkempt, we have dirt on our faces and these huge grins.

Expand full comment

And then acquiring impetigo from playing in less-than-clean creeks

Expand full comment

standing on the swings! what the hell is up with these butt-hugging swings? I can barely pump in them let alone stand. Oh, yeah, one of my older brothers broke his arm swinging somehow, too.

Expand full comment

It's not the standing while swinging, it's the jump and landing that gets ya'...

Expand full comment

LOL! Awesome. Oh, I am in tears - half from nostalgia and half from laughing. What a much-needed post by el gato!

Expand full comment

U-nails! Wow, pretty spiffy. We had to use straightened out paper clips. They could still puncture your skin and stick. I did have a manufactured skateboard with clay wheels though.

Expand full comment

Oh my God, I’m just remembering we used to build go karts out of whatever scrap wood we could find and ride them down the street where the buses came up. No one thought to stop us.

Expand full comment

Exactly, and BB gun fights and shooting bottle rockets at each other.

Expand full comment

bottle rocket wars. stopped by consensus when a too close call with an eye. water balloons thrown at car windshields, then running like hell thru a neighborhood we knew and the enraged driver did not. building our own clubhouse with zero adults in sight. hammer nails handsaws. age range 7-11. this led me to a life of backpacking, kayaking, cave exploring in remote countries. which meant I had to invent a job since no one else was going to give me 6 months a year off. which led to a genuinely wonderful life.

Expand full comment

Bb guns!

Expand full comment

Wow, Gato. This ranks as one of the best posts you've written. You said everything I wanted to say about our absurd, ridiculous, nerfy woke parenting and the movement in general. Not only that, but you gave the most astute credible reason why we are in this state today and why the woke progressive left are so infatuated by authority and the totalitarian agendas we face. I wonder if the woke movement was not induced by the very people who wish to impose those agendas. Certainly the steady increase in official Health & Safety measures in the UK (and US) have been a factor, so it seems so.

As a child of the 60s & 70s, I was given free rein (mostly). Life was adventure and it was fun. Plus you had Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Hendrix, the Stones and the Beatles, all in their twenties.

Expand full comment
Jan 25, 2022·edited Jan 25, 2022

This is absolutely the best thing you’ve written!! It’s only 0600hrs. but I don’t see my day getting any happier than it is right now reliving all my wonderful memories of my free and unbridled childhood. Who else’s mother tossed them out the door with this one admonishment…”do not come home unless you broke a bone or are bleeding badly enough to need medical intervention”? And yes, both of these happened a few times. Heck, a trip the the ER was something that elevated your status for a few days! Kids today have no clue how much fun childhood used to be. It’s quite sad.

Expand full comment

"a trip the the ER was something that elevated your status for a few days"

Fortunately, it also wasn't likely to break your family financially either.

Expand full comment

Nor would you risk a referral to CPS!

Expand full comment

My husband often talks about how if we brought our son to the ER as frequently as his mother brought him, we'd have CPS at our door. He has the scars to show for it too.

Expand full comment

Oh man, this is great and a flash back to my childhood (70s). My mom didn't have a clue where I was...ever. We were out from sun up to sun down, riding our bikes to what seemed like miles away, to remote parks, a nearby river, and friends houses. I hurt every bone in my body riding a skateboard (zero protection) up and down our street, and hung out at the beach alone with my cousins in the summer. In eight grade, I spent the summer with a friend of mine blasting Meatloaf from her living room and swimming all day...unsupervised....in her built in pool. My husband and I joke that we were raised by wolves, because we seriously barely saw our parents, but I can definitely testify that we did learn valuable life skills. What a blast...

Expand full comment

I wiped out once on my bike that was so horrific I am shocked I made it back to my house. My sister hurt her leg once when we were sledding and we put her in a sled and dragged her home. She kept complaining until finally my mom took her to the ER where they informed my mom that her she had broken her leg. Definitely raised by wolves!

I showed my youngest the Meatloaf video "Paradise by the Dashboard Light" and was shocked to realize that I still knew every word, every inflection of that song. Ah, such good times.

Expand full comment

sounds perfect!!!

Expand full comment

Lawn darts. Great start to a wonderful post.

I have a set of lawn darts out in my shed. We had them as kids. Probably lost during some move. My father found some at a yard sale after they had been outlawed and bought them. He passed them along to me. I will have my grandkids playing with them this summer. I recall we used to toss them as high as we could to see how deep they would stick. We never considered trying to catch one. Never tried to catch a javelin either, we knew better. My father gave me a single shot .22 when I was 11 and I had permission to shoot starlings only anytime as they were an invasive species and nested in our barn soffits. The YMCA camp I went to had riflery as an activity and I shot there as a 9 year old camper and supervised as a 15 year old counselor in training. Other summers it was my goal to not wear shoes once the month of August. Travel everywhere was by bike.

Calvin and Hobbes was a staple when my kids were growing up. Will always remember one comic when he and Hobbes were walking along and came across a mud puddle. Calvin looked at Hobbes and said, “Our afternoon just got booked up.”

When covid hit I looked at the initial data and made assessments as to the risk posed by the virus early on. I am healthy but in what is deemed a high-risk age. I thought I had it in February 2020 as I had a bad flu which was unusual for me. Afterwards, as I determined this was being way overblown as to risk posed by this infection, I decided to take advantage of people not traveling. We went to Cabo for vacation in March 2020 and have made seven trips to Mexico and the Dominican Republic since then. The wonderful Mexican resort workers had their incomes collapsed by the shutdowns and we did our best to tip them.

In summer of 2020 two others and I changed a planned Alaskan motorcycle trip as Canada was closed and we went cross country. In June and July 2020 we crossed 15 states, ate in about 75 restaurants, stayed in campgrounds and hotels and rode 8,000 miles from Vermont through the Dakotas, Wyoming to the Pacific Northwest and back. We met many other people being out in the world who shared our skepticism as to the risks.

My son has three kids born within three years, oldest is 5. He puts them outside, has them figuratively eat dirt to improve their immune system, limits screen time, has avoided the covid vaccination and is planning to home school next year. He walks through the hall of his kindergarten and see the bad things they post on the bulletin boards; his kindergarten son has already been subjected to discussions about pronouns and racism. His wife is a science / biology teacher of twelve years in middle schools. She has taught in private school, suburban school and poor inner-city schools. She said the suburban kids are worse than the inner-city kids, and they were bad. She had to get away because of bad parents and very bad administrators. She also watched vaccinated teachers be ignorant about the risks, she hid that she was not jabbed due to fear and discrimination, and she saw many bad outcomes from adverse events. They live in an upscale college town and he is a tradesman. He cannot believe the ignorance and arrogance of the college population, students and teachers. He is afraid to fly an American flag for fear of his home being targeted. The town does not allow the town American flags to be flown on the town streetlights on September 11 except every five years because it is considered offensive. He is working hard to fix his antique house for sale to get away from the toxic atmosphere of this “liberal” town and is seeking a rural location.

We are raising the kids to have minibikes, ATVs, training in firearms, growing food and camping. We may add hunting to that.

Expand full comment

Good luck. We need many more people with attitudes about child-raising like yours and your family's.

Expand full comment

Seriously, don't let your grandkids play with lawn darts. A broken leg is one thing... impaled through the cranium and dead is another.

Expand full comment

Thanks, Karen.

Expand full comment

We're all laughing about our near misses in childhood. But I don't think anyone in this thread would actually let their grandkids play with f****** lawn darts.

Expand full comment

I was born in 1958 and grew up on a farm in central Indiana. Not only was my childhood filled with the glorious risk-taking detailed in everyone else's posts -- I had chores that today would be subject to OSHA mandates and safety inspections if performed by adults. I learned to drive a tractor as soon as my feet could reach the clutch pedal. During the summer I cut five acres of grass every week (I got paid $5 for that, and thought I was a queen when I spent the money in the local hobby store on Saturday!) When there weren't chores, I was riding my bike miles in every direction on dirt roads that had been treated with waste oil to keep the dust down.

I have two kids, now aged 33 and 27. My introduction to the brave new world of helicopter parenting was through their friends' parents, who mostly struck me as neurotic basketcases who were harming their kids with their obsessions and sterile preoccupations. My kids thought so too, and their friends often used my house as a refuge of sanity. I am still good friends with a lot of them, now adults and some raising kids of their own.

My hometown lost its rural character a long time ago -- the relentless demands of near-by Indianapolis for bedroom communities for the legions of soft-skinned middle managers and technocrats that work in the financial, insurance, and administrative jobs that predominate there ate up the soybean fields and cow barns decades ago. Just this week, the county made national news in the free markets press for the notable achievement of forbidding a woman from offering goat yoga on her own property.

https://reason.com/2022/01/24/leave-goat-yoga-alone/

Expand full comment

1957, raised in the woods with my father's youngest siblings, we had lots of fun, fell, got stung, bitten, bloodied, who cared? The only time mom intervened was when I fell so badly, that my whole knee lay open. Some disinfectant, band aid, done. Climbing trees, running through blackberry bushes, skinned knuckles and arms and legs... wow what memories we have. Poor children of nowadays, having to carry a smartphone and reporting every 3 minutes as to where they are... I am now getting on the bus. I get off the bus. I am going into the library.... no wonder they are used on 1. being spied on 2. being commanded 3. unable to make decisions. Even a lot of adults I know have become like this. Thanks for the memories Gato ! Of course, this also kinda betrays you are our age LOL

Expand full comment

When my husband went to high school in West-Central Wisconsin, he and his friends would take their hunting rifles to and from school on the school bus. During the summer, his mom would hand him a sandwich in a brown paper bag in the morning and say, ‘Go play in the park; don’t be home until dark. And make sure and play in the creek.” I remember as a kid spending countless hours playing in the concrete gutter, building dams for water from the garden hose. Also if I told my mom ‘there’s no one to play with today’, she’d say, ‘go figure it out’.

Expand full comment

Oh, and I asked my husband who taught him about gun safety. He said it was the Boy Scouts. I wonder if they still teach that?

Expand full comment

Early 80’s here, all of this is true. In all seriousness - this was one of your best

Expand full comment

As a child in the 70's in England, I once shot my brother in the back with an air rifle - at about 100 ft.

He once threw a dart into my neck from the top of our house stairs.

At school I tried to punch someone, he ducked and I hit the wall instead. Split open the skin on a finger and still have the scar 40 years later.

"Glory days, ohh , they'll pass you by."

Expand full comment

It's a creep... my dad used to play in bomb craters in post-blitz Plymouth.

I think the big change here occured post-bulger then post-mccann and every middle-class parent was scared into their child going missing. All blame on the parents.

Expand full comment

My son has an air rifle. His friend asked him to shoot him with it so he could "see how much it hurts". My idiot son obliged. Friend said it hurt like hell and had a bruise for about 2 months. Idiots.

Expand full comment