How Good Were the ‘Good Old Days?’
Among the dilemmas I find myself often facing is whether or not the “good old days” really were or is that simply a generational term?
In other words did people 50 or 100 years ago wax poetic about the good old days when talking about a time period before the present? Of course only those say 50 or above would ever use the term and I think the older you get the more likely you are to refer to some time period in your life as the “good old days.”
I often wonder if 50 years from now, long after I’m gone will that term be used by my children who will be in the 70s and 80s.
I think more than anything else those words were used to describe what we view as simpler times. Life seemed to move a lot slower, partly because we don’t have all the conveniences we have today. You patiently stood in line for things we simply don’t do today from cashing a check in a bank to buying a cup of coffee.
Traffic, especially in Ocean County, was only seasonal as once you got to Labor Day getting from one point to another was a pleasure. Now that’s a different story. Dinner time was family time when you recounted the events of the day. Now eating together is often a once-in-a-while thing and who needs to talk when you can text throughout the day about what’s going on.
I really think what this comes down to is that as we get older we get more nostalgic and tend to look back on life with rose-tinted glasses. Yes life was simpler and slower and maybe people were more respectful but it was far from perfect. Women were expected to raise families and not have careers, minorities were treated as second-class citizens and accepted sexual behavior left many as outcasts even within their own family.
Life does move too fast today but it also comes with benefits that most could not envision and if you think and look objectively you will likely realize that the “good old days” might not have been quite as good you we thought they were.
However I will tell you the one thing that was better 20, 30, 40 and even 50 years ago and that was music. That’s not an old-timer talking. That’s simply a fact!