I saw several interesting things while walking around the Baptist Megaplex and Hotdog Stand last night. It was Little Girl’s Pee-Wee Soccer Night, and there were dozens of little girls rushing gladiator-style toward the soccer fields of glory. One precocious little future soccer all-star, herself barely past the toddler stage, caught my attention as she was giving a very unwanted, death-grip hug to a very unwilling little brother before she charged off to join her friends. Her dutiful dad was unloading a folding wagon from the back of the mini van and he started piling stuff into it.
I thought to my self that he had to be the coach and this was the load of whatever equipment is needed to facilitate pee-wee sports. But as I got closer, I realized there was not one bit of sports gear on it. It was a load of toys, doo-dads, noisemakers, distractions, cookie crumbs, diaper bags, sunscreens, shiny bits, small animals, and sippy cups designed to distract the so recently hug-accosted Junior. Meanwhile, all he really wanted to do was pee on the retaining wall.
If my parents had decided to take everything I owned at that age out to the field for a thirty-minute outing, the wagon load would have paled in comparison to this kid’s traveling gear. It seems a shame to me that so many parents spend so much time distracting their kids and so little time engaged with them. Kids don’t need a wagon load of crap to make their little life worthwhile; they need human interaction. They need positive examples and good role-modeling so that they can grow up to be intelligent and healthy adults, not sad and desperate human beings who cling to the belief that their television loves them and wants what is best for them, and that it expresses this by showing them all of the many wonderful worthless things that if they could just somehow own would undoubtedly make their lives seem meaningful and worthwhile and — most of all — a little less desperate.
In Other News… Ralph Died.
I’m glad I wrote about Ralph yesterday morning, because when I went out for a walk yesterday afternoon Ralph was gone. I can only presume he is dead.
It was quite clear that the mowers had been through. Though I searched diligently, I could find no sign of Ralph’s remains. Though nature and the ravages of insects couldn’t harm him, the whirling blades of death were his undoing.
Poor Ralph. I hardly knew ye.