Life Lessons – Learned before I was 10

February 18, 2008 at 3:04 pm (Being a kid, Life, life lessons)

If you actually read your junk email you may have seen this, or something similar to it anyway. It’s a pretty good read.


THOSE BORN 1920-1979
TO ALL THE KIDS WHO SURVIVED the 1930’s, 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and 70’s!!

  • First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they were pregnant.
  • They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can, and didn’t get tested for diabetes.
  • Then after that trauma, we were put to sleep on our tummies in baby cribs covered with bright colored lead-based paints.
  • We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, not to mention, the risks we took hitchhiking
    As infants &children, we would ride in cars with no car seats, booster seats, seat belts or air bags
  • Riding in the back of a pick up on a warm day was always a special treat .
  • We drank water from the garden hose and NOT from a bottle.
  • We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO  ONE actually died from this.
  • We ate cupcakes, white bread and real butter and drank Kool-aid made with sugar, but we weren’t overweight because,


  • We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on.


  • No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K.


  • We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem.


  • We did not have Playstations, Nintendo’s, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 150 channels on cable, no video movies or DVD’s, no surround-sound or CD’s, no cell phones, no personal computer! s, no Internet or chat rooms…….


  • WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!


  • We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bon es and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.


  • We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.


  • We were given BB guns for our 10th birthdays, made up games with sticks and tennis balls and, although we were told it would happen, we di d not poke out very many eyes.


  • We rode bikes or walked to a friend’s house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them!


  • Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn’t had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that!!


  • The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!


  • These generations have produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever!


  • The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.


  • We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned HOW TO DEAL WITH IT ALL!

    If YOU are one of them CONGRATULATIONS!


  • You might want to share this with others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers and the government regulated so much of our lives for our own good .


  • While you are at it, forward it to your kids so they will know how brave (and lucky) their parents were.


  • Kind of makes you want to run through the house with scissors, doesn’t it?!


Now here is the thought I had to day while reading this.

While we, who are reading this, are the kids who grew up in this life style we are also the adults to are preventing our kids from living that way.

Now I concede that today’s world isn’t the same as it was back then.

I also concede that we as parents should desire to give our kids more then what we had.

But is the internet, plasma TV, DVD Player, Playstation, Cell Phone, and what ever great new gadget we have really better then being a kid on a hot summer day, stretching our mind, and imagination learning how to build a go-cart the hard way, by trial and error, and learning from our mistakes. Or Playing a game of baseball at the local park with the neighborhood kids, then drinking kool-aid. Man that stuff was good on those HOT days in the summer.


I thought I might share a short list of life lessons that I remember still today from when I was a Kid.


We had an old buckskin horse, his name was Chief. I wasn’t old enough to see over his back yet, but… I was able to get a halter and lead rope on him, get him into the barn and from there managed to get a saddle on his back and a bridle on his head. I even was able to get my short self into the saddle. I ended up cracking a rib that day when I learned that old Chief could stop from a dead run fast enough to through me right over his head. What did I learn? First that with enough determination and thought I was able to do things that at first seem impossible. I also learned to respect nature, and the creatures that live in it. Not to fear nature, but to respect it.


I had a sweet black dirt bike, peddle type, back in the late 70’s or early 80’s

One day I found an old wood box that must have been about 3 feet tall, I also found an even older piece of plywood in one of our out buildings. More like a half sheet of plywood, so as you can imagine a 4 foot piece of wood rotten wood resting on a 3 foot tall box made a pretty steep ramp. I remember getting as far back as possible thinking I would really need the speed… Must have been 200 yards away from the ramp. I don’t think the distance helped much, but the anticipation as the wind hit me in the face as I peddled hard was AWESOME. I hit the rotten wood and cleared the box and felt like an eagle. I did this a couple more times and really thought I may have found a new carrier. Anyway on the 3 or 4th run I hit the plywood and it snapped in two… I drove head long into this wooden create, and low and behold that stopped me just has fast as old chief did in the last story. Bike and I both went for a heck of a ride, and I think I may have broken another rib that day.

What did I learn? That broken ribs hurt…

That sometimes with great achievement, we also face great pain.

And don’t use rotten plywood to build a ramp.


I was one of those kids that left when the sun came up and came home when the sun went down. I would swim, fish, hunt, play, what ever fit the bill for the day. It was a good way to be a kid.


What life lessons to you remember from before the age of say 10 or so that you learned on your own?



  1. Paul said,

    Very interesting.

  2. Dave K said,

    Cool post. Keep up the good work.

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