My friends and I, when we were kids, would just about wet ourselves waiting for the firework stands to start going up around town. We would save as much money as we could so that we could get some really cool things that went BANG! Or that you could launch into the air. The BIGGER the better. Pop bottle rockets, the bigger the better. Fire crackers, the bigger the better.
Cherry bombs, M-80s, zingers, black cats, fountains, whistlers, spinners. If it made a loud BANG! or flew, we just had to have them. Even the sparklers could be fun. We would have pop bottle rocket fights and Roman candle wars. We would blow things up like that old model car that had fallen on the floor of your room. Or maybe one of your sister's dolls. Coffee cans and soup cans were fun, also.
And you know, not once, ever, did we lose a finger or put someone's eye out. We never burned down any homes or torched a field. We were always told, reminded, and re-told what the 4th of July was all about. We all had fun. We would bar-b-q in the back yard, play games, visit with neighbors, and wait for it to get dark.
You could set in your front yard and eat homemade ice-cream, and watch fireworks up and down your street. Some places, like baseball games, had fireworks shows. But, now days, it's against the law to have or set off any type of fireworks in our area. I have even heard that you can't even have or light those little black cones that make a snake of ash on your side walk.
Yep, the 4th of July has gotten pretty tame these days. But what it means and what it stands for will never ever be diminished.
Hope that you all have a safe 4th.