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By Jesse Utz 

Kids, time to get dirty, with dirt

Jess Shut Up


Last updated 9/11/2013 at 11:11am

A post that has been making its rounds on Facebook got me thinking about the way things used to be and the way things are now.

When was the last time you saw kids playing cowboys and Indians? I know that’s not very politically correct these days, but when we were kids we had no idea what racial prejudice was. We just went outside and pretended to shoot one another over and over again. That’s one more thing that kids can’t get away with today either. But they can play bloody, violent videos games full of racial and sexual innuendos, and that’s supposed to be the norm.

We would watch the Dukes of Hazard and then go ride our bikes all day, taking turns being the sheriff and the Duke boys. Just having fun, never meaning no harm ….

Today, the TV shows have weird names and are full of over-the-head humor that most adults don’t get at all. The prime-time shows are full of violence and dead bodies in all kinds of awkward situations. The most awkward the Dukes ever got was when Daisy would flirt with Cleatis. No one ever died in Hazard County. But every night someone dies on today’s top shows.

Today’s child is surrounded by electronics, cellular devices, video games and PCs. Always connected, all the time. Electronic football game was as close as we got, but those games were lucky to last 15 minutes and we were lucky if the battery lasted a few hours. Later, we did get introduced to Atari, but even that seemed more like the adults played more than we did. We didn’t have time for sitting all day in our rooms, staring at a computer or TV screen. We had to go play with our Tonka trucks or Big Wheels out in the dirt. Yep, we got dirty.

It also seemed like every kid played Little League. Whether you were good or not, that’s where you would see all your friends. After the game, everyone met for ice cream, too. Now, it seems, the kids with a lot of potential are not seeing athletics until middle school and find if difficult to catch up with the rest of the more mobile kids.

It just seemed like a more kid friendly time. Kids these days are packing smart phones and iPads and look like mini-executives as they plan their days and keep connected to all their friends and parents and their favorite TV shows. They don’t watch the news because they can filter their info they receive and gobble up everything about Bieber Fever and the Kardashians by the second.

I think the kids these days need to disconnect some. They need to just be kids. Go outside, get dirty, and try and catch that Orange Charger with the 01 on it. Play catch for an hour with your mom or dad or anybody. Find a dragonfly. Or just try having fun with the sun shining in your face.


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