Childish Things We Haven’t Put Away

Yesterday I was in Toronto and a dude in a suit and tie rolled by me on a long board. It got me thinking about how often I see men over the age of 25 riding a skateboard. I sometimes see them riding around with their young children, which is kind of charming.

That got me thinking about video games. I remember being kind of shocked to learn, a few years ago, that the average age of a gamer is now 33 years old. That is, that a significant majority of gamers has achieved the age of majority. Having grown up with video games, that shouldn’t surprise me (I still play them), but it does. I guess I always associated games with toys and play, and those were things that adults didn’t typically do.

Are there other ‘childish things’ that our generation exported into adulthood? Also, when I was young, video games and skateboards were mostly boy things. Are there analogous examples from the girls of the seventies and eighties?


  1. Cartoons… sorry, “animated features”.

    Also, my sister-in-law keeps a transformer on her desk at work. It turns into a purple motorcycle, and is therefore awesome.

  2. Movies and movie fandom. Action figures and toys overall. Candy. Not cooking. Not cleaning your own house. Posters on the walls. Wearing sports jerseys.

    Basically the whole generation feels a little stunted, particularly on the male side.

  3. Actually, I think that girls are less likely to take childhood toys/activities into adulthood, unless you count things like skipping (becomes aerobics, to stay looking youthful and sexy) or playing with dolls (becomes having babies). The dynamic doesn’t really compute because the gender dynamic isn’t dichotomous. Girls play at things like “house” and their general primary focus is bonding through relationships, where as boys’ general primary focus is establishing dominance through competition. In that context, the only thing that girls really carry through is the gossipy “you’re not my best friend” stuff which becomes the neighborhood coffee klatch or office water cooler dynamics (have you the latest episode of Celebrity Apprentice – you can see it in action). Having two granddaughters and two grandsons, I see this in action all the time.

  4. Remote controlled vehicles have always been a consistent favourite toy/hobby. Although these days, remote control helicopters and planes seem to be a big hit — especially those that we can fly inside.

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