With all the advances in technology and changes in style that have happened over the last 60 years, it’s easy to think that you and your grandparents have nothing in common. But, in many regards, things haven’t changed at all. Here are just a few ways in which you’re essentially the same person as your grandparents when they were your age.
Your grandparents may not have had television yet when they were kids, but by the time they were your age, watching TV was a national pastime. While the shows may have been tamer than some of today’s fare, your grandparents watched sitcoms, crime dramas, game shows, and other styles or programming that are still around today. The Today Show first aired in 1952, so chances are you and the grandparents may have even started your morning the same way.
2. You have to iron your clothes (and you hate doing it).
Even clothing that is supposed to stay wrinkle-free gets wrinkled. And when that happens, you have to whip out the iron — just like Grandma did. Irons haven’t really changed that much since her day, either. They’re still hot metal things you have to rub on your clothes. Sure, you can throw an item in the dryer or send it to the dry cleaners. But then again, so could your grandparents.
The Cold War may be over, but just like Grandma and Grandpa, you’re probably concerned about what’s going on in Russia. It may not be the Soviet Union anymore, but news stories today are talking about what the president is (or isn’t) doing about “that situation with Russia.”
4. You use the same kind of toilet.
Bodily functions haven’t changed over the course of history. The technology you use to get rid of waste , however, went through a lot of dramatic changes … and then suddenly stopped changing at all. If you hopped in a time machine and went back to your grandparents’ house 60 years ago, you’d be hard-pressed to tell the difference between your present-day throne and theirs when nature called.
5. You use the same kind of birth control methods.
You may not want to think about it, but Grandma and Grandpa had sex. Chances are that, when they did, they used the same kinds of birth control that are most popular today. Latex condoms had been in use since the 1920s and are still widely used. But what was newly available to Grandma when she was around your age were oral contraceptives, otherwise known as “the pill.”
6. You roll or spray on antiperspirant.
Deodorant didn’t used to be a roll-on or spray-on affair. It was a paste or solution people dabbed in their armpits, and it stung the skin and sometimes even ate through fabric. Then, in the 1950s, inspired by the ballpoint pen, a kinder, gentler roll-on antiperspirant hit the scene. By the 1960s, aerosol cans joined the team of products designed to make us smell better.
7. You call something you like “cool.”
Slang words come and go, but the word “cool” has stood the test of time. Your great-grandparents probably didn’t say it (unless they were unusually cool for their age), but Grandma and Grandpa almost certainly did.
8. You eat frozen dinners.
Though frozen food had been around since the 1920s, it wasn’t until the 1950s that the “TV dinner,” or frozen meal, came into our freezer aisles and homes. Grandma and Grandpa may rightly say that nothing beats home cooking. But just like you, they occasionally heated up their share of ready-made meals at the end of a long day, too.