What the HAYnes? Teenagers acting up? Banish them to 1986

HUMOR – Do your children spend too much time on the Internet? Are you tired of seeing the backside of an iPhone instead of your teenager’s face? A Canadian family has a solution for you.

Upon realizing that their children preferred staring at a glowing iPad screen to playing ball with their dad in the backyard, Blair and Morgan McMillan of Guelph, Ontario decided enough was enough and they rode Bill and Ted’s telephone booth time machine all the way back to 1986.

The McMillan family has forgone all technology that has been invented since 1986, including but not limited to: cell phones, computers, tablets, Internet, CD players, cable television, and fancy coffee machines.

They do all of their banking in person, they take pictures and develop the film, and they use a fax machine. It is unclear who they trade faxes with, given that nobody in North America has used a fax machine since 2004, but it is there if you are ever inclined to send a fax back in time. I imagine receiving a fax would make Blair McMillan’s day. He is trapped in 1986, after all.

The McMillans have taken it one step further, perhaps one step too far: Blair and his sons wear their hair in mullets. Blair even has a “Magnum, P.I.”-esque moustache. The only exception they have allowed themselves is their car, a 2010 Kia – minus the GPS. Personally, my one exception would have been a haircut with slightly less “party in the back,” but to each their own.

How is that for effective punishment? Instead of banishing your children to their room, banish them to 1986.

If your children refuse to remove their ear buds, one hour of listening to “Walk Like an Egyptian” on a Walkman ought to do the trick.

Does your teenage daughter send 2,000 text messages per day? A rotary phone will bring the texting to a grinding halt.

Does your son refuse to do anything but sit at the computer? It is 1986 for him! Relegating him to 10 rounds of tetherball followed by an “ALF” marathon should kick that habit.

The McMillans’ 1986 project began in April 2013 and is scheduled to conclude in April 2014, when I am sure they will be thrilled to learn about the fall of the Berlin wall, the end of the Cold War, and the rise and fall of Miley Cyrus.

There are days when I have to repeat myself 10 times before my children hear me because they are so tuned in to the tablets and television. There are days when I have to force my children to play outside. There are days when I wish it were 1986 at my house like it is at the McMillans’ house.

There are days when I wish that I could unplug everything and throw it all into the Virgin River – and if it were 1986 no one would care because environmentalism had not gained much ground at that point. There are days when I wish that we could bring back Ronald Reagan, John Candy, and “Magnum, P.I.” But let’s leave the mullets in the ’80s where they belong.


Elise Haynes chronicles family life in her blog Haynes Family Yard Sale. Any opinions stated in this column are her own and not necessarily those of St. George News.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2013, all rights reserved.


Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!


  • Betty September 13, 2013 at 10:52 am

    Love, love , love the article! Sounds very tempting if only we still had kids at home.

  • Richard September 13, 2013 at 11:23 am

    But….but….Cable TV was first available in the USA in 1948. What are they thinking?

    Seriously. Dumb idea.

  • Troll September 13, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    All of the tech stuff mentioned in this article is invented here the U.S… So I agree with Richard.

  • debbie September 13, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    Ru kidding me? Mullets r back baby, just wander over to the high school… oh and yeah the new “middle eastern” look, i passed 4 boys the other day that i thought were visitors from a middle eastern country… i suddenly realized they were wearing blue vests.. they work for walmart? I realized… guess what style is in now folks… was bound to happen..

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.