Dispatches From The Transient Programmer #4: Stuff I Took For Granted: Then And Now

Now that I have moved out of my single-family house, and I have been back visiting my parents often at their house where I grew-up, I realize that I will probably never be able to provide my kids with the same type of house that I grew-up in. Yes, I can get them a bigger house with more stuff, but I don’t think I can ever provide them the comforting nuances of in a 70’s/80’s suburban neighborhood. Given that, here is a list of “Things I took For Granted As a Kid Growing Up In A Single Family House In Middle-Class Neighborhood In The 70’s and 80’s”

  1. A Front Yard that could be played-in
  2. A Tree that could be climbed
  3. A long drive-way that could be used for multiple games and to park cars
  4. Visiting friends houses on the street and not having my parents worry about were I was going.
  5. A garage that balls could be kicked against, thrown against, etc.
  6. Room for a basketball hoop and game of one-on-one
  7. The freedom to ride my bike any where wanted
  8. My safe feeling of having my dad coming home from work
  9. Mom coming back from the supermarket with bags filled with food
  10. A street filled with single-family homes each with a front and back yard.
  11. A House with a regular address with only numbers (i.e. with no #A, 1/2. Unit 1, etc).
  12. Coming home when the street lights turned-on
  13. All kids sent outside to play instead of inside to play video games
  14. Available parking…on both sides of the street
  15. Walking places
  16. Marathon candy bars and Bubble-Up soda in a returnable bottle
  17. Big Wheels.
  18. Playing guns, ditch ’em, etc. at the local school and not having the SWAT Team called-in.
  19. > Zero Tolerance
  20. Paperboys with bad aim
  21. Playing Atari 2600 games and wishing I had one.

On the same note, now that I’ve been living in a hotel, I’ve realized that there are tons of things I simply took for granted when I owned my own place. Many of these are things that I never knew I wanted until I did not have them any longer. Now I can’t wait to get them back.

Things I Took for Granted When Living In a House And Not a Hotel

  1. My own parking space
  2. More than 13 TV channels
  3. Secure, encrypted Internet access
  4. A wired phone that did not charge 50 cents a minute.
  5. Light switches that turned on lights that they logically should turn on
  6. A temperature Control system that could be turned off
  7. My own artwork/photos on the walls.
  8. A place to have mail sent.
  9. My own garbage can.
  10. A place to wash clothes that did not cost $3.00 per load (including drying).
  11. A refrigerator that did not freeze everything.
  12. An oven
  13. A lock on my door I trusted
  14. A printer (I didn’t take mine)
  15. An answering machine
  16. A doorbell
  17. A modicum of privacy
  18. A junk drawer
  19. An array of readily available tools
  20. An unlimited supply of filtered drinking water
  21. Sunlight
  22. A bed that did not hurt my back
  23. Multi-ply toilet paper
  24. Removable coat hangers
  25. More than two chairs for 5 people
  26. The option to let the cat go outside
  27. The option to let the cat crap outside
  28. The sounds and smells of home
  29. Space to have people visit
  30. Being able to relax
  31. Fences and gates
  32. A sense of control

We still have 10 days on this Transient sojourn. It will be 10 days too many. I thought I would have a demo of the “Free Beer” game today, but that will have to wait until next time.

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