When You Have Everything Yet Nothing


I sometimes marvel at all the shit kids have to entertain themselves with these days.

While the technology they have at their fingertips would have blown the minds of entire teams of NASA scientists from back in the day, there is a part of me that feels  somewhat sorry for the little bastards.

They don’t have to use their own imaginations.

As I am sitting here drinking some coffee and trying to get fully awake there is some kind of game console with the hand held controllers laying on the floor in front of the television.

Nintendo, Play Station, Wii, I don’t fucking know nor do I care.

It did cause some very old memories to flash through my half awake mind of what we did as kids to entertain ourselves and it’s like comparing the Stone Age to the futuristic dream worlds of science fiction.

I spent many a day playing with scraps of wood pretending they were either swords or sub machine guns.

I also spent many a day playing in ditches, making dams and little boats out of wood scraps.

We usually lived fairly close to wooded areas and had bike trails that literally went for miles.

In other words, we entertained ourselves OUTSIDE.

It had to basically be pouring rain before we would scurry for cover and even then, you didn’t go in the house unless you had a damn good reason.

It wasn’t until I started junior high school that I discovered that I had grown up poor according to some people.

I would still argue that point to this day. We might not have had a lot of money but we were generally pretty happy.

Granted, there are several times that I can remember things being really bad, I grew up in a broken home and my parents finally divorced when I was eight. There were more than a couple of times when my little brother was hungry and there was no adult around to feed us and there wasn’t really anything to feed us with anyway.

A couple of slices of white bread with mustard and ketchup smeared on it became pizza for him to get by with and I got real damned good at making pancakes and frying eggs at a very young age.

I believe those times when I was growing up and taking care of him by myself  with no adults around all day helped me to learn how to think outside the box and shaped me into the creative, make it work, re-purpose every damn thing guy that I grew up into.

It also probably helps explain this mild case of hoarding that I have.

Most kids these days are spoiled rotten, have no real wants and have never had to learn things for themselves the hard way.

It shows too.

I think I’d rather be poor and not know it.

25 thoughts on “When You Have Everything Yet Nothing

  1. It reminds me of an old Eddy Murphy gag about being so poor, his family couldn’t
    afford a Jacuzzi so we had to fart in the bathtub.

    As a kid in the middle 60s, our social media system was riding bicycles, skateboards,
    playing stickball, climbing trees, and a fag or a homo was someone who would
    not come out to play with his buddies.

    We had realistic looking cap guns, and bolt action rifles with spring-loaded wooden
    cartridges that looked they were chambering when we cycled the bolt. It is amazing
    to think that I cannot recall a single kid being killed by a cop who confused a toy
    gun for a real weapon.

    We did not wear bicycle helmets or other protective gear when riding skateboards.
    We skinned our knees and cracked our melons on the concrete and fell out of
    trees and somehow managed to survive into adulthood.

    When kids got beaned by line drives playing little league baseball, no parent
    EVER sued the organization. We took our lumps and moved on. In my day,
    the girls were tougher than the pussified Millennial man-bun wearing males.
    Sorry Snowflake it is not a man-bun, it is a saddle horn for your boyfriend!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. “I think I’d rather be poor and not know it.” I would rather be poor and know it and not give a fuck about it, like I am now. I don’t have to worry and have tension about my new car or truck or boat or $30,000 home entertainment center. I don’t have them so I don’t give a fuck. I know how to fix what I have and I know how to get by with little and know how to ask for work to trade for food or shelter, like the old Southern saying: “Country boy can survive.” I have found myself happier by NOT having shit and not been able to buy shit that I know won’t make me happy. Having good friends, country music and BBQ does it for me.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As kids, my brother and I could entertain ourselves using worn out v-belts and a couple of sticks.
    Didn’t have a TV until late grade school, and I think that helped build the imagination for self-entertainment.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sounds like my life in the 50’s in Chattanooga. We didn’t have trails in the woods but we had those concrete drainage ditches we could ride in. Water or not. On top of that, my friend and I, even at the age of eight or ten, could ride the bus downtown on Saturday to see the Western Double feature.

    Later, we moved back to East Point, Ga (suburban Atlanta) and we crawled the storm sewers for fun.
    I did listen read and listen to the radio a lot.


  5. I was always in trouble with my Dad, I was constantly leaving tools layin in yard. But I had to get Johnny Wests fort built to keep out the “INJUNS” 😉


  6. There is plenty of freedom in poverty.

    Never, ever had a boat, quad or sled. Dad constantly worked overtime, so he was home to eat and sleep, so I pretty much raised myself. There were a couple neighborhood dads who would keep an eye out so I didn’t set myself on fire or worse.

    We had a roof, heat and food. Both parents worked their asses off and even at a young age, I was acutely aware of it.

    There is a new term in Canada for my generation and older: we are now referred to as “Old Stock Workers”. I would rather call us by what we are: not afraid to do the tough stuff; not afraid to do the unglamorous tasks; still in better physical shape at 55 than 95% of those soft shits under 35; and still get up at 4:30am every day AND PUT IN A FULL DAY!

    Liked by 1 person

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