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  • Alex Allen

Kids Today Won't Understand These Things...

I'll be turning 30 next year and it's honestly a little hard to wrap my head around that concept. I'm sure those of you who are approaching 60, 70 or beyond are rolling your eyes but there's a good chance you probably felt similarly when 30 was creeping around your door. It's just one of those milestone years that sneaks up on you and leaves you feeling a little perplexed and disoriented.

Don't get me wrong; it's not exactly a negative feeling. The Lord has blessed me in so many ways and I'm truly happy and content with my life. For me, approaching thirty is more of a "Wow! Really?!" sort of feeling. In fact, I've found myself lately saying things like "Really? That thing happened THAT many years ago?" One slightly painful example of this was myself and my wife watching a movie one night earlier this week that I remembered seeing in theaters when it first came out. Once we looked at the release date and started counting the years, though, we realized that the movie was old enough to have a driver's license now. Ouch.

Perhaps worst of all is the fact that I've adopted the cliche phrase I recall adults using when I was kid; the all too popular: "Kids these days..." followed by some sort of statement as to the way things have changed since I was a child. And with how rapidly technology and culture have changed over the last few decades, there are plenty of things from my childhood that I can, with all sincerity, say that "kids these days" will never really understand or be able to experience. Won't you take a little stroll with me down memory lane as we reminisce on some of those things?

1.) Movie Rental Stores

I truly regret that if I have children of my own one day, they'll likely never have the experience of walking into a good old fashioned video store. Of course, I love convenience just as much as the next guy and having every movie known to man at my fingertips with the plethora of streaming service available today is certainly nice. But there was just something special about going with mom and dad to the movie rental place and having a "movie night" at home.

2.) Rewinding VHS Tapes

Speaking of movies, "kids today" will never experience the joys of having to rewind a VHS tape. It seems that even DVDs and Blu-Rays are becoming a thing of the past now, with everything going digital. But I'll certainly never forget those beautiful rectangular chunks of plastic we called VHS tapes.

3.) Dial-Up Internet

Personally, corporal punishment is not my first choice but if I have kids of my own one day and they ever start complaining about their download speeds, I'm going to smack them. These days, we'll get frustrated if a video clip lags for a few seconds but I can remember the days of having to listen to that awful screeching noise while you connected to the internet and begging mom for just five more minutes online when she had to make a phone call. That's right, kids. You couldn't make a phone call and be on the internet at the same time.

4.) The Paper Clip Guy

I miss this guy. If you used Microsoft Office between 1997 and 2003, you'll likely remember "Clippit," the friendly office assistant that was always there to help. To be honest, I can't ever remember actually using Clippit for help. It was just nice to have the company as I typed on Microsoft Word. Alas, the Office Assistant feature was discontinued for later versions of Windows. RIP Clippit.

5.) Milky Way Reindeer

Okay, I'll admit that this one is a little personal. I honestly might be the only person on planet earth who remembers these wonderfully unique Christmas treats; but I'm including it on this list because the loss still leaves a lingering pain in the depths of my soul. I'm not sure if it was the size, the shape or the caramel to chocolate ratio that made these things so special; but they were undoubtedly better than the regular Milky Way bars and I have fond memories of eating my weight in them during the Christmases of my childhood. Unfortunately, they disappeared at some point from store shelves and I can't even find much about them online.

We could go on all day with this list and I'm sure there are many of you who could come up with some things that I couldn't even think of. But in all seriousness, as I reminisce on some of these things, I realize it isn't the things themselves that I miss; but rather the memories attached to them. I think the reason we long for things of the past so much is that they often remind us of happy times and good memories with the people we love. So I don't know about you but I'm determined to continue making memories with the people God has blessed me with for as long as I possibly can.

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