Different Worlds

The almost 8-year-old girl stopped building her empire long enough to ask me how I know so many songs and then answered her own question.

“Daddy, I was going to ask you how you know so many songs and then I remembered it is because you were alive in the eighties.”

Her comment didn’t have anything to do with the music of the eighties or conversations about what I was doing then. That comment was said with a big smile and a glint in her eye that made it clear she was trying to tease daddy.

That is ok with me. I am one of the original troublemakers so I can’t fault her for following in my footsteps. I tease the people I like. If I don’t tease you it is because I am a grumpy old man who wants to use my size 12 boot on your behind. 😉

Music has always been a central theme in our house. The kids have been dancing around the house for as long as I can remember. Could be because she and I started dancing together the day she was born.

The girl who tried to teach me how to shuffle started out twirling around to the Godfather Waltz and never stopped. Turn some music on and her little body starts to move. I don’t know if she is even aware of it. It is a part of her and I love it.

Different Worlds

My children are growing up in a different world than I did. They think I am kidding when I talk about the Black and White television set my parents had when I was little.

I can’t make jokes about Rabbit Ear antennas, going to the drug store for tubes or snowy screens because they don’t know what I am talking about. They don’t know a Rotary phone from the Rotary Club either.

That is ok, things change.

They don’t appreciate how we couldn’t pause our television shows so we would have to “hold it” or just miss a part.

That is ok, things change.

Did I mention that the kids ask me why I repeat myself and tell bad jokes. When they say those things I tell them it is in the parent’s handbook and that when they hit junior high my goal will be to embarrass them as often as possible, because that is what people from the eighties do. 😉


One day they’ll be big and have their own sets of memories and jokes about what life was like growing up. One day they’ll tell stories about their parents and their lives just as my siblings and I do now.

I know this to be true. I see it happening already. They talk about the old house and what life was like. Brother and sister share memories about things I said or did and laugh.

I love these moments. I lived them as a child and am doing so now as a parent.

Still it is sometimes surreal. I look at them and think about how college feels like it was yesterday and high school was last week.

But neither is true.

Technically my parents are senior citizens but that is more about decisions made by government and less about perception. I look at them and it is clear to me they aren’t “young” anymore but I don’t necessarily think of them as being “old” either.

They have entered that stage of life where it is not uncommon for health issues to creep up. Later this week we’ll mark the 8th anniversary of my father’s triple bypass.

Later this year we’ll mark a year since the fathers of two dear friends died. They were in their seventies. Not young men, but not really old either.

I look around and see friends who have parents who are in their eighties and recognize this as more evidence that time has passed for all of us.

What is strange to me is the realization that my children have reached a place where time will accelerate for all of us. I will blink and they will be in college. I won’t be old when that happens but I won’t be young either.

Does it really matter? Probably not.

What We Are Listening To

Can’t end this post without some links to some of what we have been listening to. Can’t walk away without mentioning that I responded to my girl’s crack about the eighties by saying that I was around during the sixties and seventies too. Should have seen how wide her eyes got.

  1. Where The Streets Have No Name–  U2
  2. BURN IT DOWN- Linkin Park
  3. Little Talks- Of Monsters and Men
  4. Baby Got Back -Sir Mix-A-Lot
  5. This Little Girl Of Mine– Ray Charles
  6. Ain’t No Mountain High Enough- Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell
  7. Closer To The Heart- Rush
  8. Walk On The Wild Side– Lou Reed
  9. The Sun’s Gonna Shine Again– Ray Charles
  10. Summertime- Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong
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  1. CrossBetsy July 17, 2012 at 4:40 am

    We STILL aren’t up to date with the “Jones'”!! And I have no desire for more unless it’s to make life easier!
    My dad refuses to learn how to use a cellphone that we got for him so that we could all him in the nursing home. But that makes us visit more often! So, it’s okay.
    My mom asks me all the time to help her on the computer, too. She’s perfectly capable of learning, just unwilling. And that’s fine with me, too. Gives us more to do together.
    Even though there is a considerable difference in our worlds when talking about music and technology, the one thing that really worries me (even though they must be up to it or they wouldn’t have been born at this time in history) is the violent and abusive world they live in while on the bus and at school. It’s so bad. I never knew! It makes me wonder about how well I’m doing not just enjoying them, but strengthening them to live in that world however I can.

    • TheJackB July 17, 2012 at 1:53 pm

      Easier is a good thing, I can get behind that. 😉 My dad knows how to use his cellphone perfectly but it often is left at home or magically loses its battery.
      It is nice that you help  your mom with the computer. I am sure she enjoys it.
      I am not sure if school is any harder than when we were in it. I think some things have definitely changed and that cyberbullying is clearly one of them. But, mean people have always been around so whether it is worse now is unclear to me.

  2. bdorman264 July 16, 2012 at 6:03 pm

    Ah, TV’s w/ tubes and only getting 3 channels; I remember it well………and black and white……….and no remote………….and not only rotary dial, but a party line……………
    Blink of an eye is the truth but you are doing a great job of enjoying the time with your kids and won’t have to think back and wish you would have spent more time with them. 
    For some reason your post did not pop up in my Reader as a new post………hmmmm……

    • TheJackB July 17, 2012 at 12:14 am

       @bdorman264 Oh I expect there will always be a moment or two where I wish I had spent more time with the kids, but I am ok with that.
      It is kind of the nature of the beast. But I feel pretty good about the effort I put in and expect that at the end of the day I’ll know I did my best.

  3. Hajra July 16, 2012 at 11:02 am

    I love that video in the beginning! 
    As for transition, I think I have seen the change happen. How the internet became such a big phenomenon when I was in high school and how it is practically the world we now live in. My 5 year old  nephew doesn’t know how people will live without an iPad; sometimes when he stares with his big wide eyes as I talk to my sister about the first computer we had and how amazed we were to see a laptop, I feel he has so much more to see!

    • TheJackB July 17, 2012 at 12:13 am

       @Hajra Me too. I think it is fun.
      The changes that have taken place in my life blow me away. Things move so quickly now, or so I say. Sometimes I think it has always been like that.
      Your nephew’s reaction sounds just like my children.

  4. Sandi Amorim July 16, 2012 at 10:43 am

    Love the image of your girl dancing around the house! I’m kind of like that too, although my creaky knees aren’t always happy about it! Last week I attended an event with an awesome DJ. The music started to work on me but my brain said, “No, Sandi, don’t do it. You’ll be sore tomorrow.” I resisted for about half an hour then suddenly found myself on the dance floor. TWO hours later I sat down, exhausted. A week later, my knees are still not too happy, but the rest of me is 🙂
    I love this post on what we remember from our childhoods. I have such great memories and having just recently visited my family experienced what you wrote about – my siblings and I reminiscing and teasing our parents at their 50th wedding anniversary. 
    Good times. In my memory and in my heart. 

    • TheJackB July 17, 2012 at 12:11 am

       @Sandi Amorim 
      Happy Sandi meet angry knees. 😉 Sounds like a book, doesn’t it.  Sometimes the best moments are when we just let go and have fun doing whatever it is we are moved to do.
      Kids are really good at that. I think that it is part of their magic and part of how they help keep us young.That 50th anniversary party sounds like it was a lot of fun.

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