As part of my ongoing effort to impart wisdom to damned young people, I am planning to start a website which will house definitions of outdated conventions, obsolete products and the archaic ideals of a better age.
My first entries will be as follows:
Back when convention stated that trousers were to be worn at waist level or higher, people often used elasticized straps as a means of ensuring appropriate modesty. Equal parts style and function, suspenders became obsolete with the introduction of hoochie momma shorts, low rider dungarees and the asinine practice of publicly displaying a fist-full of underpants like some form of low-rent urban peacock.
An early precursor of Wikipedia but in a bound form, printed on paper and written by actual experts in their fields rather than socially-awkward, opinionated shut-ins. Volumes tended to provide information in areas of scholarly and historical importance rather than lists of Jedi Knights, biographies of the cast of Jersey Shore and the unofficial rules of beer pong.
Now primarily known as a sexual proclivity, discipline was once used to provide damned young people with structure, limits, boundaries – and to stop them from whizzing in sandboxes, strangling kitty cats or trying to set their mother’s hair aflame.
Before a camera was simply an option that came with your telephone, photographic images were taken by hobbyists and captured on film. This arcane method of recording history became outmoded once damned young people deemed it essential to immortalize every banal gathering of two or more preening assclowns with a minimum of 6000 Facebook-worthy digital snaps.
The Manual Typewriter
The manual typewriter remains a unique writing device in that it required authors to organize their thoughts in advance of composition and relied on deft, muscular fingering as its key internal processor. Surprisingly, this arcane machine did not require upgrades, add-ons, speakers or external memory devices and was not considered to be functionally obsolete 6 months after purchase. And you couldn’t watch god damned porn on it either.
The complicated 2nd cousin of sympathy. Originally considered a hallmark of decency, empathy became problematic with advancements in single person shooter video games, reality television programming and narcissism.
The Stay at Home Mom
The shoes-optional and ever-expecting icon of the 1950s, the stay at home mom was pushed from her perch behind the Tappan Visualite Electric Oven and out into the workforce in order to ensure she could afford the material goods her family would no longer have time to enjoy together. Primarily charged with the task of raising children, the stay at home mom’s role has now been deftly assumed by day care providers, television broadcasters and the state.
The Gay 90s
A reference to the idyllic final decade of the 19th Century – not the small subculture of homosexual nonagenarians currently residing in West Palm Beach.
Prior to the culinary revolution that brought you frozen breakfast burritos, microwaveable cheese and the always delicious powdered butter, young people were forced to eat food that had been grown on farms. While undoubtedly nutritious, mundane foodstuffs like fresh carrots, sweet corn and bell peppers were time consuming to prepare and could not be easily supersized.
Coming next to Fogeyopedia: hand me downs, the homburg, personal responsibility, rotary phones and the milkman.
With sincere thanks to my friend, Clifton L. Tanager, for suggesting this subject and prompting the writing of this post.