More Proof Our Parents Tried to Kill Us

For those of us raised before intrusive regulations, FDA labels, auto safety campaigns, no-smoking ads and boring playgrounds, we lived in a fairytale land of denial and luck.

In a previous blog, Proof Our Parents Tried to Kill Us, I addressed the dangerous foods our parents unknowingly (they say) fed us, that should have landed us in a 10-year coma.

Here is more proof our parents tried to kill us.

  • Bike helmets were non-existent. In addition, we were encouraged to ride bikes without holding on to the handlebars, while standing on the bike seat and carrying our younger siblings. If we fell, “Well, maybe you should practice more, dummy.”
  • Lawn Darts were a common weapon our parents used to distract us from begging for food. “Go play lawn darts. I just sharpened them up for you.”

 lawndarts(Basically throwing knives at each other.)

  • EVERYTHING was sugar-coated, from breakfast cereal to toothpaste.
  • It didn’t happen often, because teachers didn’t really care, but occasionally we’d have a nuclear bomb drill–because everyone knows hiding under a desk saves you from radiation and nuclear fallout. And if that doesn’t work, stuffing 1,200 people in the basement of the local high school should be fine. Yep, no problems there.
  • Sunscreen? What the hell’s sunscreen?
  • Fisher Price even had a toy representing a bully. It’s motto was “Toughen up you little s***.”FB bully

(More proof that freckled little boys are demonic.)

  • Disco music.
  • Less than 10 percent of people in 1970 used seat belts because your mom was sure if she threw her arm across your chest during a car accident, everything would be fine. By 1989, 34 states passed seat belt laws–except for New Hampshire because they just didn’t give a @%#*.
  • The way our parents dressed us for school was a way of encouraging someone to beat us up. Clothes in the 1970s might as well have been printed with signs on the back stating, “Please, punch me in the gall bladder.”fashion

(My brother rocked some groovy polyester pant suits. So did my sisters.)

If nothing else, growing up in the ’70s taught us to be resilient and creative. It was either adapt or die. Because of my childhood, I am now a high-functioning sarcastic. Thanks mom and dad!!

Proof Our Parents Tried to Kill Us

If you grew up during the ’70s (the 1970s–not the 1870s) then you’re lucky to be alive. The ’70s ushered in the heyday of processed foods, experimental products and sugar, sugar, sugar! The things our parents fed us have now been banned in most countries and labeled with the warning: “DO NOT CONSUME. Side effects include DEATH.”

I’m not blaming my parents, they didn’t know they were feeding their children toxic chemicals that would eventually ruin their lives and cause worldwide destruction. These are just examples of the “food” products that have left a lifelong residue of regret and triglycerides flowing through my veins:

  • Bologna. Yes, it had a catchy tune–and it taught us how to spell–but what exactly is bologna? Here’s the definition. Not joking. “Bologna is a finely ground pork sausage containing cubes of lard.” Lard!?!?! Yeah, my bologna has a first name–F-A-T-A-S-S.
  • Hamburger Helper. Exactly what is this product supposed to help hamburger do? Taste like salty cardboard? Mission accomplished. (Besides, unless a hamburger is ready to ask for help, there’s nothing you can do.)

hamburger

(This hand should have covered our mouths.)

  • Chicken Kiev. This was my mom’s go-to meal to impress dinner guests. And it worked. It was fabulously delicious–and had 750 grams of saturated fat, and 4,355 calories per serving. This ’70s staple of elegance had the following steps: 1. Take a chicken breast. 2. Wrap it around a 1/2 cube of butter. 3. Roll it in bread crumbs. 4. Deep fry in oil until your arteries explode.
  • Space Dust/Pop Rocks. I can hear food scientists discussing this product. “I know let’s give our kids exploding candy!! Hahahahahaha!!”
  • Jiffy Pop Popcorn. It was innovative and clever. You watched it pop right on the burning hot stove. If opening the tinfoil didn’t melt your fingers, the face-vaporizing steam streaming off the popcorn would have you in the burn unit for days.

  • Cream-chipped beef on toast. I hated this meal. Mom would open a jar of dried beef (with more salt than the Pacific), stir it into a mixture of paste and sadness, then pour it on toast.

chipped beef

(For the love of all things holy!!! Why is this okay to feed to a child?)

  •  Candy cigarettes. Just in case the sugar, chemicals and mystery meats didn’t kill you, we had these chalk-flavored candy sticks to prep us for the stressful world of adulthood. (Disclaimer: my mom NEVER bought these for us. But dad did!)
  • Textured vegetable protein (TVP). This meat extender was created for use in THIRD WORLD countries, not Utah. (Although some would argue Utah is a third world country.) Mom mixed this . . . . well, whatever this is. . . with hamburger to make patties, meatloaf and meatballs. She always said we couldn’t taste the TVP. She was soooo wrong.

This is only a tiny sampling of the types of things we ingested during our formative years. What foods did you survive? Did you grow extra limbs, eyes or superpowers as a result?

 

I Blame The ’70s

I was just a little girl during the ’70s, but this decade was a formative time for my little brain. Many of my quirks can be traced  back to that crazy era of equal rights, cold war and my introduction to “The Pink Panther” movies.

Here are some of the trends that shaped who I am today (for good or bad):

The Gong Show: This early version of “America’s Got Talent” proved to me that if you suck–people will let you know in loud and obnoxious ways.

Pong: One day while visiting my grandpa, he pulled us kids aside to show us his latest treasure. It was a huge box that connected to the TV set. He turned it on and my life changed. Atari’s Pong taught me how to waste vast amounts of time while sitting on my ass. A tradition I still embrace today.

(Don’t mock me. This was some high-tech s*** back in the day.)

Test Tube Babies: I was too young to understand the concept behind this ground-breaking procedure. All I was concerned about was how a baby could possibly fit into a test tube.

“Jaws” (the book): When I was 8, I decided to read “Jaws.” I got it from the library–and my mom’s head exploded. “You are NOT going to read that trash, young lady!!!”” Which made me want to read it even more. So. I decided to run away. To my aunt’s house. Two blocks away. It didn’t work and my mom didn’t change her mind. (But I read it anyway–and had nightmares for about, oh, 35 years. Take THAT, mom.)

(Some scary stuff when you’re 8.)

“Charlie’s Angels” and “The Bionic Woman”: It was empowering to see women chasing criminals–and looking good at the same time. This taught me that women can be beautiful, strong and respected; as long as they wear skimpy clothes and/or have robotic legs.

Holly Hobbie: Instead of being the little girl with blonde hair, lanky legs, buck teeth and fat cheeks that I was, I wanted to be Holly Hobbie. With her beautiful curls, demure smile and tiny features, she was everything I wasn’t. She taught me to suck it up because I’ll always have buck teeth and fat cheeks.  Bitch.

(The first girl to kill my self-image.)

Then there was “The Waltons”, the Fonz, bicycles with banana seats, disco, “The Brady Bunch”, Fat Albert, Mr. Peabody and Sherman,  Spirograph, “Star Wars”, The Hustle, Mr. Whipple (“Please, don’t squeeze the Charmin.”), Pop Rocks, Slime and my Easy Bake Oven. All of these things made me who I am today.

Completely schizophrenic.

(Forget school. This is the place I learned all the important stuff.)