I don’t want anything more than my parents wanted
By Tim Linscott
My daughters lost the remote control a few nights ago. They searched in a panic to find it as if the world would end if they did not find it and change the channel. Heaven forbid we watch a re-run of ‘Jessie.’
For those of you with children between the ages of 6 and 10, you know what show I am talking about and have, on occasion, scrambled yourself to find the remote to change the channel to avoid watching another re-run.
I felt my age as I said, ‘When I was your age, we had to get up to change the channel.’
I felt my age with the tried and true father-speak and I also felt pretty dumb. My generation really has nothing to complain about when it comes to these matters.
My father walked to school every day and was grateful, because he was going to school, something his mother and father’s generation rarely had the chance to do in that time. There is the Bill Cosby bit where he says, ‘My father complained about walking up hill, both ways, to go to school and fought off bears with a loose leaf notebook.’
There were no bears, per se, in my father’s account of traveling to and from school, but life was hard. He had very few comforts and worked to support the family with a paper route at the age of five, growing up during the Depression.
I had to get up to change a channel.
My mother went through rationing during World War II, saving and scrounging for many items as a means of helping the country get through a bitter war that the entire fate of nations hung in the balance.
I had to save 500 Kool Aid points to get a pair of sunglasses.
My parents both wanted better lives.
I wanted my MTV.
Once the remote was found I reflected on my situation. I had no real complaints and wanted a better life for my children.
That was the wish of my parents and their parents before them, so on and so forth.
Every generation can come up with a sob story of how rough things were ‘back in the day.’ My generation has global warming, AIDS, terrorist attacks, a financial downturn and ‘Honey Boo Boo Child.’ My children may have all of that and more but life is what you make of it and I have always felt a day above ground is a good day.
Getting stressed over a remote when you are a kid is a pretty good thing to have in life.
A roof over your head, food in the fridge and electricity to run the TV that has a lost remote isn’t so bad I told the girls. They rolled their eyes and went on with life, but someday I hope they will look back at the trivial notion of finding something like a remote with their children and think of their father.
Being grateful for what you have and loving your children are what I hope they get out of our little TV lesson…that and some of the shows on TV are really annoying.