One of my beloved “cousins” came around the other day, full of beans. He is a teenage athlete who can play ball and fish and hunt with the best of them. He has has a little girlfriend he spends time with. When he was sitting there with his I POD, I got to thinking about how easy he has it on the dating scene and just on the teen scene compared to us “old folks” who grew of age in the 1980s.
While my dear “cousin” comes of age with the I POD and things like it, those of us who came of age in the 1980s dealt with the cassette tape. Back in the 1980s we did not have the chance to rip songs online. If we were lucky, we could hit “record” on a blank cassette tape and record our favorite songs as they were played on the radio.
Certainly some readers remember the cassette tapes of our youth. We would work hours at K-Mart or at some farm or in some mill just to be able to buy the cassette tapes from the bands we wanted. At least I did.
I also had bulky cassette cases to carry around the tunes in. There was no little MP3 device, the cassettes were housed in bulky cases complete with handles and latches. I had two of them. One was for when I was alone or out with the fellows, the other was filled with cassettes for date nights. It was not until I was in college that I had a dual cassette player and recorder and could make mixes. Such a thing took hours of work.
Today’s youth gripes a lot, but, at least when it comes to music, they have it so easy. A download here or there onto a device as big as cigarette lighter, and they have the perfect mix for a date night. We old guys had to work with our cassette cases and the like. When I think on it, I want to scream out to today’s youth “Stop your bitching and wining, plug in your MP3 device to your car stereo, relax, and have a good time. Be glad.”
Besides, the youth of this time don’t have to deal with that dadgummed tape getting “ate” by the player right in the middle of making out with Betty Sue like we all had to deal with the 80s. When your Barry White cassette tape is hung up and goes “Come on, garble garble garble,” there goes the mood. Chances are the population would be a good bit larger today had those teens of back in the 80s had digital music instead of crappy old cassettes that jammed just at the wrong moment.