Due to a death in the family, I’ve been doing a lot of reminiscing lately. Talks about my childhood have brought upon fond memories and lots of laughs. Just ten years ago, my brother and I were still trying to beat Super Mario on Nintendo 64. Our weekends were consumed with trips to Hollywood Video with my father and trying to finish those movies in the allotted two days that we were allowed. Nowadays, I can just stream a movie from an online site. Many of the things that we loved about our childhood are completely obsolete. How the hell are we going to explain portable CD players to our future grandkids?
When I was four, my parents divorced. As a result, my mom had us during the week and my dad has us for the weekends. On the weekends, my dad, brother, and I would go to Hollywood Video and rent at least four movies for our stay. We always had a great time roaming all the aisles, excited to obtain the new releases and find old favorites. Now, in 2014, I’ve watched as the Hollywood Video in my general area has finally gone out of business. Due to things like Netflix, YouTube, and Redbox, Hollywood Videos and Blockbuster just don’t stand a chance. The instant convenience of services like Redbox and Netflix are great, but I won’t ever be able to have a night with my future child just roaming a video store picking out movies and snacks. It’s a little disheartening.
Just five or six years ago I took a pretty hefty road trip all the way down to California. We all have these iPhones and TomTom GPS systems that tell us when to take a left and when to use caution because there’s heavy traffic ahead. With smartphones, we’ve opened up a lot of doors. For instance, how many people do you know that actually still have a landline? Probably not many. Landlines are definitely on their way to just being a thing of the past. I remember growing up having a phone with a cord in the kitchen and that’s the only place you were making your calls. Now, we can have a phone call anywhere we can get reception and without a cord. It’s great. Something else I noticed about the growing popularity of cell phones and smartphones in general, is that with the increase of smartphones out there, there is a decrease of public pay phones around. I see maybe one a day, but I couldn’t tell you where one was off the top of my head. God forbid your phone dies and you don’t have the means to charge it, because you won’t be able to find a pay phone anywhere.
Although we may be entering a new year of new mind-blowing technology, must we never forget the VCRs, Nintendo 64s, and portable CD players of the past.