Trust Me, The Build-up Is Worth It.

The way we go about Parenting these days is very different from past generations; some of the changes were by virtue of necessity and some were just brought on by preference. Sadly, safety and “Stranger Danger” is a much bigger concern now than it was when I was a kid.

I remember, in the ’70s, happily walking with a friend (we were about nine years old) from our home on Bigelow Road in Park Forest, Illinois over to Park Forest Plaza, an outdoor shopping center (before “Malls” were being built). Alone. With no adult supervision.

I remember playing outside until well after dark, and my parents not having to worry that somebody was going to drive by and scoop my sister and me up, never to be seen again.

I remember walking to and from school, having to cross–with a Crossing Guard’s assistance–a major area intersection.

Nowadays, most kids don’t play outside for long once it gets dark. They aren’t going to the mall alone at the age of nine. And if there is a major intersection on the way to school, they’re either being bussed or their parents drive them when that’s possible.

I have to preface this next part–the punchline, if you will–with the fact that Julie and I have amazing parents and we credit them for turning us into the fine, upstanding citizens we are today. So let me continue.

One more thing kids aren’t doing today is…

…Being handed over to a complete stranger for a hilarious photo op!

I almost peed my pants when I found this photo the other day, while looking for tiara-appropriate pictures. There are so many things wrong with it! Julie retouched it for me a bit because the color was a little off. Hold your cursor over the photo to see what she renamed the file before sending it back to me! (By the way, in case you didn’t know, I’m on the left, wearing yet another piece from my 1982 Rainbow Collection, and that’s Julie on the right, in the arms of some random Mountain Man at the 1982 World’s Fair.) Oh, and you can click on it if you want to see it in all its glory.

I wonder what Mom was thinking and saying when she came up with this photo idea. Let’s imagine it together, shall we? Leave a comment as if you’re my mom in 1982, when things were obviously safer and less worrisome than they are today!

14 Comments

  • Manic Mom

    Is that a character from a Harry Potter book or something???

    And what’s with you and the gay-pride shirts??? LOL!!!

    Your sister does not look scared at all!!!

  • Melissa

    Hmm, this man has a silly beard and a mustache. I think I will plop my youngest daughter in his lap and see if he can make her talk like a ventriliquist…

    Either that or it was totally a blackmail picture….

  • Angela Moore

    Who /what is that?? Holy cow, that’s one of the funniest pictures I’ve seen in a long time. Thanks for the great pick me up (and for instilling the fear that my mother will bust out some of mine like this in the near future)!

  • Jules

    Several things came to mind when you e-mailed me this photo:

    1) Was the Deliverance theme playing in the background as this photo was taken?

    2) Hey, look! I had Osmond teeth!

    3) Is he wearing a rubber shirt?

    4) THE HILLBILLY WANTS ME TO BE HIS CHILD BRIDE

    5) Just HOW many rainbow shirts did my sister own?

    Jules
    House of Jules

  • me & them

    That is hilarious – and extremely creepy. I can’t even begin to think what was going through your mothers mind – but I do know in every photo of myself with Santa I look horrified!

    I just wanted to say – things have changed even since I was a tiddler. I.e in a kilometer around a school, the speed limit drops to 40km. There’s so many things that seem like they should be natural selection, or if kids are being so molly coddled they don’t understand the concept of crossing a road without getting squashed, there’s not a lot of hope for them to be the next generation of brain surgeons etc.

    Just wanted to pass on this, too – you can totally wear them in public!

    http://whowhatweardaily.com/website/full_article.php?id=575

  • me & them

    That is hilarious – and extremely creepy. I can’t even begin to think what was going through your mothers mind – but I do know in every photo of myself with Santa I look horrified!

    I just wanted to say – things have changed even since I was a tiddler. I.e in a kilometer around a school, the speed limit drops to 40km. There’s so many things that seem like they should be natural selection, or if kids are being so molly coddled they don’t understand the concept of crossing a road without getting squashed, there’s not a lot of hope for them to be the next generation of brain surgeons etc.

    Just wanted to pass on this, too – you can totally wear them in public!

    http://whowhatweardaily.com/website/full_article.php?id=575

  • me & them

    That is hilarious – and extremely creepy. I can’t even begin to think what was going through your mothers mind – but I do know in every photo of myself with Santa I look horrified!

    I just wanted to say – things have changed even since I was a tiddler. I.e in a kilometer around a school, the speed limit drops to 40km. There’s so many things that seem like they should be natural selection, or if kids are being so molly coddled they don’t understand the concept of crossing a road without getting squashed, there’s not a lot of hope for them to be the next generation of brain surgeons etc.

    Just wanted to pass on this, too – you can totally wear them in public!

    http://whowhatweardaily.com/website/full_article.php?id=575

  • Melisa

    Manic: Are you telling me you had no clothing items that had a rainbow on it? You must have been walking around all punk-ish and stuff. LOL

    Melissa: LOL at the ventriloquist! Perfect!

    Angela: Thanks for stopping by! And you’re welcome! LOL

    Joozie: I think I only had two rainbow shirts. But I do remember having LOTS of other rainbow stuff. It went with the cloud wallpaper in my room (and yours too!)

    Mags: I know. Speechless.

    Katie: Your Aussie is showing! I love it! šŸ™‚
    And of course you can wear tiaras in public, silly! But I’m glad you got some verification for me. It’s a great link! šŸ™‚

  • Kat

    ROFL though it is rather sad in what kind of world we live in today the picture is hilarious. The 80’s really weren’t kind on anyone. I just laughed my ass off about 80’s pictures I found at my parent’s house.

    Thanks for the pics and your well-wishes.

  • SpAzzGiRL

    I went to a Cubs game and sat in the bleachers when I was 12, all alone with a group of girls and we took the CTA to get there by ourselves!!!
    Man, I guess things were safer back then or my parents just didn’t care, that’s another possibility.
    That could easily be one of my relatives!!

  • Dea

    “Girls, doesn’t that man look like Yosemite Sam??? Go give him a kiss!” OY. VEY. And I am dying over the file name!

  • Melisa

    Kat: I’ll wait for you to post your hilarious ’80’s photos…soon, please!!!

    Simone: I’m sure things were just safer back then!!! Amazing, isn’t it? I bet you’d love for your son to have that same experience at Wrigley…maybe you can stay 50 paces behind? šŸ™‚ (Maybe not)

    Deanna: You really didn’t just say Oy Vey…

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