Last Sunday, I was chill ‘in in front of my house enjoying the end of a nice quite day. Watching the neighborhood kids run around screaming, laughing and enjoying life. I envied their freedom from financial obligations, jobs, marital bliss or sudden discontent. The young don’t know they’re free agents…what a waste!
Anyhow, what got my attention was a teenager named “Sam.” Like most teens his face was glued to the screen of his cell phone. Eyes gazed like he is hypnotized. Suddenly, he yells, “I’m only counting to fifty and then I’m coming to get ya.” As the girls, ran off he turned to me and laughed, “I bet they left their phones on. It’s gonna be easy to find them.” My thoughts jumbled for a moment cause I thought “Hide-and-go-seek” was a fairly straight forward game.
Back in my day, one person stood with their face pressed into the tree with their eyes closed and diligently counted to 50 maybe peaking every now and again…come on you remember? And then, the other children ran and hid behind a bush, some garbage cans or in someone’s house – pretty simple.
Well, the game has changed. Kids in my neighborhood play hide-and-go-seek with their cell phones. I couldn’t believe it! They track each other down via GPS and if someone happens to leave the ringer on…gotcha ya…that was easy!” A few minutes later, “Sam” returned laughing, “Ha ha she forgot to put her phone on silent.” Forget counting with your eyes closed that’s passé ya need to turn off your cell.
I wanted to look up to the sky and yell, “It’s a bird. It’s a plane. No, it’s George Jetson!” I felt antiquated, archaic and scared. Something happened and I didn’t know when…and I just found out! This was quite fascinating to watch. Gaming at its best. And it set off a spark of curiosity and got me thinking. What else changed? I figured let’s start with the basic games: tossing the ball, hop-scotch, skate boarding and a Nintendo 3DS Black Game Consol.
Tossing the ball, check, up in the air and come down again, we’re still good on this one; hop-scotch, check, stones are still the number one choice; skateboarding, check, kids have way more padding, safety is good; but the Nintendo, well the kids were up in the bedroom for a good hour laughing, joking and playfully yelling. One of them comes downstairs doing some kinda dance shouting, “I captured all the knights, breathed way more fire and blew him up.”
Something is terribly wrong here. No for real. Look what we used to do…it was simple now they’re using crosshairs in the name of fun. Doesn’t this seem strange? Kids can’t fully appreciate life but yet they are taught through cartoons to achieve a goal where destruction and annihilation is a means to a victorious end.
Put down the Wii, Nintendo and cell, find five to eight good friends. One of you press your face into a tree, count to fifty and everyone else run and hide. No capturing of knights, launching some sort of cartoon weaponry of mass destruction and blowing ya brotha up. Just the sweet sounds of human laughter without the noise of violence.