What Did You Do For Fun As A Kid?
Tuesday, July 21, 2015
I watched this clip the other day where people from three different generations were asked the simple question, "what did you do for fun as a kid?"
And then I asked myself. What did I do for fun as a kid? Honestly? Everything. Bikes. Scooters. Forts. Fishing. Running. Jumping. Swimming. I did every damn thing I could.
That is except play video games, they were never my thing. We had the games growing up (okay, I guess I had a very intense winter break in '97 where I got really into playing Aladdin and Super Mario Karts) but when it was summer I wanted to be outside. And I say this like it's a badge of honor now, which for some reason it feels that way.
I look at kids these days with their ipads (at the pool even!) and suddenly I become that grandpa telling them about when I was a child walking up hill both ways to school in the scorching heat of the summer during a terrible blizzard. It's just the way it was.
Aren't kids watching movies like the Sandlot or Now & Then anymore? It was films like those that inspired me to make the absolute most of summer every single year. My friends and I actually attached a radio to my lime green two-seater bicycle and rode it around town singing like we were Roberta and Teeny.
I figured you'd want a pic, so here you go. (Radio does not appear in this photo, but I assure you we had a trusty $5 Shopko thing that played music. Albeit terribly scratchy music, but sometimes we could tell what song it was. )
Kerri and I both had killer Dr. Martens on. No biggy. Also mom, please send me those green Docs ASAP. If I move to Wicker Park next summer those things will be a hit.
And after biking around town (usually to Dairy Queen to get Dilly Bars) we'd take a break to lay out in the backyard, either on my trampoline or on the roof of Kerri's playhouse. And when the sun started to go down and the night set in it was time for a neighborhood game of Kick the Can or Ditch Em.
And no, I didn't grow up in the 60s. I simply did everything I could to pretend like I did however.
Even once it got late when I had to be inside I still insisted on playing. Let's just say I was an active Barbie enthusiast until I was way too old. I remember one time my brother walked in on me secretly playing and shouted "Are you playing with Barbies???" And I quickly responded, "No! I'm practicing braiding their hair. I'm not playing. I'm learning how to do hair."
I was playing. And I was probably fourteen. That's too old, huh?
As I write this I remembered that once I "out grew" Barbies (and by out grow I mean I realized it was no longer socially acceptable for me to play with them) I did move on to one computer game for awhile. A game called Sims. But I only played that during the darkest hours of the night when no one was around to watch me torture my poor characters by trapping them in house fires and starving them to death... Jk! But really. That was my dark phase as a teenager.
Zabaducci!!! #rosebud (That's inside code for all of my other Sims nerds.)
Anyway, when I watch the clip mentioned above it's sad to me that children today get the most fun out of life via technology. They have their entire adulthood to stare at a computer screen. Why get started so young?
On the other hand, my nephew and niece (ages 4 and 2) know how to work an ipad better than I do.Who knows what other stuff kids will be able to do so young? But then I wonder what skills I had at their age that they don't? Building a tree house complete with a grass floor and bark wallpaper? Or how about making an entire pirate ship out of a tree that fell in our backyard one summer?
You know where those skills landed me? Improv classes... So.... So who am I to say technology is bad?
But still I wonder, is it possible to raise children in today's world that aren't addicted to ipads and video games? I'm honestly asking because I don't know.