Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Generation Gap(e)


Look closely. I'm sure you'll see some gaps . . .

Okay, I don't want to suggest that there is a generation gap in our family but . . . well . . .
Yes. There is a generation gap in our family.
And it was never more obvious than it was yesterday.
Several of my grandchildren were over for the long weekend.
It was a fun time, made even more fun by the 'launch' of our new pirate-ship playhouse.
All of the kids were in the house.
Because it had decided to rain.
And our intrepid pirates didn't want to get wet.
Ironic, I know, but there you are . . .
The oldest girls were colouring.
The eldest was also singing.
At least I think it was singing.
“You are Beau-ti-ful! You are Beau-ti-ful! You are Beau-ti-ful!”
Over and over and over.
After a few minutes of this, I leaned over the table, collected her attention and said, “Your record's stuck.”
Now this was a term from my childhood, teenage years, adulthood.
In fact, right up to the present day.
It was something I thought everyone knew.
I was wrong.
She stared at me, blankly. “Huh?”
I thought she must have simply missed what I said.
I repeated myself. “Your record's stuck.”
“Huh?” she said again.
I stared at her.
She stared at me.
Finally, “What's a record?” she asked.
“A record,” I struggled gamely forward, “A record is what you listen to. On the . . . record . . . player . . .” my voice dwindled away.
She was still staring at me, blankly.
Oh. My. Goodness.
I can't believe that this newest generation hasn't even heard of records! Why it's only been a few years since I used them. 
Ten at the most.
I looked at her.
Nine years old.
Oh.
Then I thought of all the things she would never understand from my childhood.
She would never pick up a telephone, crank the handle and hear the word, “Operator.” 
Never see the 'Indian-head' test pattern and hear 'O Canada' at the beginning of the television day. Or hear 'God Save the Queen' at the end of the day, before the TV goes dark and silent. 
Never sit around the table after dinner, listening sleepily to the hired men discuss their day's experiences with the boss.
And I thought of all of the things that I wouldn't - or didn't want to - understand from hers.
Yep. Generation gap.
Gives us a little breathing room.
Probably a good thing.

17 comments:

  1. You probably should've said 'Your CD is skipping'... :)P

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe she would have understood that!

      Delete
  2. I remember all those things, too. Fortunately, vinyl records are a recurring retro trend. All those vinyls in our closet have some sort of validation.

    Wonderful family photo!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have boxes of records in my basement. You mean they might be worth something?! Woohoo!

      Delete
  3. Culture shock.....they can't understand your world and you wish you didn't understand theirs.

    ReplyDelete
  4. lol. So true!

    This reminds me of the time my friend's husband brought up his prized collection of records from the basement for a sale he planned on taking them to the next day. Their daughter who was probably around 10 at the time, said, "Oh cool! Look at those GIANT cd's!!!" ; S

    ReplyDelete
  5. That's a huge gap.
    Technology is going too fast

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm staring at my granddaughter across a widening chasm. :)

      Delete
  6. We just hired an apprentice at the shop. He's 19 and hasn't heard of a carburetor, or distributor, or manually cranking windows. No power door locks? No AC?
    He's oblivious to VHS movies, or cassette tape recorders (funny he's familiar with the huge reel to reel though). But think about it. What has changed in the last 20 years? Nearly everything including my attitude.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unbelievable! You don't realize how things have changed until you come across someone who hasn't got a clue what you're talking about. And you realize that, for them, your memories are a lifetime ago!

      Delete
  7. Oh, my. Another common expression might bite the dust because the youth won't understand it's beginnings. Thanks for sharing that exchange and a lau!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have to keep updating my language. Sigh.

      Delete
  8. I am sure there will be generation gaps with me and my Valentina but I just plan to do the best that I can... ;) As much as I try to stay up with times, I am sure my age will show the gaps at times:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just keep talking. She'll keep you up to date!

      Delete
  9. I mentioned Gilligan's Island to my daughter the other day and she had no clue who I was talking about. I was flabbergasted. She didn't know what that meant either. Oh where have I gone wrong?

    ReplyDelete

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