Ontario Family Ends Year Of 80s Living With No Regrets But Mullets Intact

Ontario Family Ends Year Of 80s Living With No Regrets But Mullets Intact

A Guelph family of four have just spent the last twelve months living as if it were the 80s in an attempt to distance themselves from all the technology invading our lives, epic hair and all.

via dailymail

A family-of-four have told how they went for one year living like it was 1986 with no cellphones, iPads or computers to distract them from conversation. 

Blair McMillan, 27, his partner Morgan Patey, 28, and their sons Trey, five, and Denton, three, from Guelph, Ontario, Canada, even changed their appearances for the duration, donning Eighties-style haircuts and clothing.

'We just trying to find a happy medium when it comes to technology. It's surreal, everything changed for so long.'

The father-of-two was inspired to rewind to 1986 - the year he and Ms Patey were born -  when he noticed how their sons had become 'tethered' to technology.

He spontaneously moved his family into a house built in the Eighties with retro decor and packed up every gadget.

Cable television was banned along with the internet, PS3, DVDs and other electronic devices that weren’t around in 1986. On car journeys a map would be used instead of GPS.

The only 'high-tech' forms of entertainment allowed included a rotary telephone, radio cassette player, Nintendo game console and VHS machine. An adopted dog also offered another source of play for the children.

Asked what he will miss most about living in the Eighties, Mr McMillan jokingly said 'the hair'.

However, he added on a more serious note: 'I'll just miss relaxing in the family room, while the kids play and there's no distractions and I'm not caught up in my phone.'

The CBC asked the McMillian's a few questions about their return to "the future":

What has this experience been like for your family?

It was a real positive experience. It's actually kind of bittersweet, knowing it's ending. We had a lot more fun than we expected. When the project first started there was a lot of anxiety and Morgan was really nervous about giving up her iPad and her smartphone and it was almost like we lived in a whole different world than anyone else. I think it would just be sad going back to everything because we had a lot of positive experiences. But obviously the way the world is in 2014, it's impossible to live your life like that because eventually you won't have any friends left because you're such a nuisance communicating with everybody else. 

The most challenging part would have been that we are out of the loop with everybody else. And we did live in our own little box in our house because we kind of cut ourselves off from the rest of the world because the only way we could talk to people was to call, and nobody does that as much anymore.

Obviously, we still talk to a lot people but I think people just kind of forgot about us because we're weren't...[into] texting, we're not in emails and things like that...we're not on Facebook so you can't invite us via Facebook. So we're kind of in our own little world so that was hard, obviously, and it'll be nice to get back into knowing what's going on and things like that."

How will you live your life differently after this experience?

I don't think we'll parent our kids the same – and it will never really be the same because we'll be a lot more aware of what they're using. Obviously the kids are at an age now where they're just using their technology for games and, you could argue, not productive things.

As Trey and Denton grow up I think we'll try and keep it as it is right now, having them play with toys, using their imagination, building. And then, as they get older and they need to use computers for productive things when it comes to school...we'll have them use them for that.

As you head into 2014, do you have any final thoughts on the 80s?

Just that it was a fun year in the 80s and now I know why everybody loved the eighties. [This] project forced us to be more social and use our time more wisely because we didn't have as many distractions. So we just had a fun year... introducing to our kids what we did as kids and that's just playing, just doing silly things, hand paintings, colouring, and playing with trains.


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