Without saying your age, what's something from your childhood that a younger person wouldn't understand?

This seems to be a pretty popular little game on places like Twitter.

When I was a kid, if we wanted to get on the internet and someone was on the phone, we had to wait until they got off the phone.

Replace “get on the internet” with “download naughty ASCII art from CompuServe.”

If your TV wasn’t working properly, you’d open up the case, pull out some parts (the vacuum tubes), bring those parts to a hardware store, and use a self-service electrical tester to figure out which part(s) needed to be replaced. You’d then buy those parts, bring them home, and re-assemble your TV.

When I was a kid, we watched cartoons on a black & white TV. The color TV, when we finally got one, was reserved for the adults.

For us, it was a Thrify drugstore of all places. (Yeah, a young person wouldn’t know what a Thrifty was, either.)

I do recall seeing the kiosks at drugstores, too. My dad owned a True Value hardware store back then, and I remember having to restock the tubes in the cabinet.

“Stop listening in on the party line!”

WIWAK, street repairs were marked not with blinkers but with black smoke in the day and open flame after dark

“Fill ‘er up!”

Dad going outside to adjust the aerial antenna, if the one on the console TV didn’t pull in a decent enough picture.

Wall phone cord just long enough to allow me to sit directly underneath the phone, on the kitchen floor.

24/7 anything wasn’t available. TV stations, all four of them (including PBS) stopped broadacasting shortly after midnight. Got a toy needing batteries for Christmas? Have to wait until 9am the next day when stores reopened.

Calling long distance, especially overseas required connecting to an operator (what’s an operator?) to patch your call through.

Have an emergency? Better hope you remembered the full phone number to the police or dial 0 for the operator. e

Also Sundays.

And a different phone number for the Fire Dept.

Toys made out of this substance called wood.

Having to wait a week and be in front of the tv at a specific time to watch the next episode of your favorite show. If you missed it there were no recordings, you’d have to wait until they showed reruns in the summer.

High school class registration was not computerized. On registration day we had to manually fill out a card for each class we wanted to take, then drop it in the box for that class. Meanwhile assistants kept track of how many students enrolled in each class. When one was full a runner would go to the room where students were filling in cards and announce “Class full!” which would result in moans as kids hoping to take that class had to rearrange their schedules.

Rotary phones. If someone called you and didn’t hang up, you couldn’t use the phone.

A ha’p’orth of cobbers, please Mr Storekeeper!

My wife and I were just discussing that. An old Seinfeld gag was how old phones could be used as a murder weapon, also you just can’t slam down a cell phone when you’re pissed at the guy on the other end – you have to press a button; oh, my stars and garters!

My first job was at age 14. Part of the job consisted of me knocking on people’s doors and when they answered I simply told them “Collect.” and they knew what I was there for.