Friday, May 11, 2007

A Charming Sight

I grew up right on the cusp between the video game generation and the generation before it where kids actually participated in highly social pastimes and cooperative activities; games which involved lots of imagination and improvisation. At the risk of sounding curmudgeonly, I am often a bit disheartened by what seems to be a new generation of kids who are conditioned to stay indoors, playing their Playstations/Nintendo wiis and surfing the internet, busying themselves with things which I believe are causing an unnatural level of sociopathy as well A.D.D. and other emotional/mental disorders, robbing them of the chance to form good social bonds.

On my way to the mountain for what was to be a lovely hike, I saw a group of kids out on the street, drawing designs, pictures, and artificial trails with sidewalk chalk. They had also constructed an ingenious little partitioned play area on the nearby lawn, using sticks, flat rocks, and various bits of found junk to simulate an indoor living room complete with a pretend TV, some chairs, and a few fanciful modifications thrown in.

Sometimes I focus too much on some of the negative aspects of modern life. I have to say that it was a beautiful breath of fresh air... seeing that there are still kids who do... well... normal kid stuff. Whoever the parents of these kids are, I applaud them.

And the hike was indeed awesome. The wild columbines are forming buds and should be blooming within a couple weeks. I sat on top of the mountain and watched two separate thunderheads in the distance, throwing bolts of lightning around with a lot of great cloud-to-ground action. It almost looked like they were competing.

1 comment:

Christine Bakke said...

I really agree with you. I thought of my childhood yesterday, and how my sister and I rode our bikes all around the neighborhood, picked wild blackberries under the city's water tower, played in the backyard and in our playhouse, etc.

I also think just free play is important. When I talk to other people who have kids, they're in day camps all summer and have their lives totally programmed to the gills.

Anyway, yeah, I love it when I see kids just being kids, and not something connected to playstation or in some kind of camp every day.