Things Ain’t What They Used To Be


Raise your paws, er, hands if you like your vitamins gummified…

I remember as a kid, having cod liver oil, liquid form, and I loved it. Haven’t found too many others that can claim their love of Cod Liver Oil straight from a spoon.

But we didn’t have as many choices back then.

It was Crest or Colgate. Coke or Pepsi. Batman or Superman. Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew. Up the down staircase we went, and it was fun. So was sliding down the banister. We played outside, sometimes ate dirt, well, not me, but some did I suppose, climbed trees without the fear of being arrested because in my little town it is now illegal to climb a tree apparently, rode our bikes without helmets or training wheels, and we could run our lemonade stands without a city permit. We could walk the dog without a leash, because in those days, the dogs were actually taught to heel. We didn’t have to pick up after them, it was a fertilizer for the grass, which did look greener, now that I think about it. And nobody stepped in it, because we weren’t in such a big hurry, and we actually could see where we were going without the constant distraction of cellphones, headphones, MP3 players, or notepads. How did we ever survive it all?

Then one day, Big Brother, who by this time was getting very good at meddling in all our affairs decided what the world really needed was more choices.

Fast forward to yesterday, today and tomorrow. We are now faced with a mind-boggling array of choices in all things consumer. What used to be a 1/2 hour shopping trip, now takes me over an hour, while I examine every product, every variation and choice, make sure the ingredients are healthy enough and have the proper nutritional values, decide which size is best, because in our ever-increasing narcissistic world, size really does matter, contemplate flavours I’ve never heard of, and try to get it all on sale before the expiry date ends, or they bring out the new and improved version which automatically renders what I just bought obsolete, and possibly on some recall list which I will find out about when I get home and watch the evening news….

Today, was a good example of the above. I ended up buying gummy vitamins for big people because they were on sale, couldn’t find any popsicles, so I had to buy mango sorbet instead, bought some cat food on sale, but not the kind my cat likes, but I’m hoping she will forget she doesn’t like it and eat it anyway….Agonized over my choice of available fruit, only to have it explode in front of the cashier, which sent her scrambling to get me another package of blueberries that wasn’t so volatile. Got home, went back because I was over-charged on a few items, couldn’t get the sale price on some others, forgot my list altogether and came home once again without Q-Tips…

Shop till you drop is no longer an option. It’s more like, shop before someone drops you, butts in front of you in the loooong lineup, gets in a fight with the cashier, slows everyone down with at least twenty coupons and blocks the way with an oversize shopping cart designed to make people purchase more in order to fill it up.

I don’t know why we need more choices on this already over-crowded, confusing planet. It’s only served to make people even more confused, cranky and self-indulgent.

Things ain’t what they used to be….why not though? Bring back the good old days, and soon please, the sooner the better.

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One comment on “Things Ain’t What They Used To Be

  1. I was last in the USA about 2.5 years ago. I got a load of culture shock in seeing an ENTIRE aisle of M&M’s. all colours! In separate bins! Cocoanut, mint, dark chocolate, probably white choc too. When I’d left, there were three kinds, and the crispy ones were pretty gross, to me. So yes, I know what you’re seeing, and believe me the changes are coming hard and fast (I only left 8 years ago, had had been back once before with no memorable shocks – except for the changes in my hometown).

    I’d say move, if possible! like I did – but the choices are in some cases even harder. Even finding a spaghetti pasta is difficult for me here as I don’t have any experience of the brands. And, ye know, pasta is ‘foreign food’ to my new family so they’re no help!

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