Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Just Do It

My son has gone nearly seven years without knowing the thrill of computing gaming. That spell was broken by the introduction of Bejeweled. In some ways it has been a great diversion for him, he being sick and unable to go outside. In other ways, I fear it contributes to the reproduction of the American Couch Potato. This past birthday his dad got him a Gameboy. A cousin gave him a Star Wars game for Christmas. This summer his dad found a Playstation at a garage sale. A recent stay with his uncle garnered the boy an Atari. And now he's taken over the laptop. Where will it end?

Most recently CWGIII has gotten an 8x16 log cabin playhouse with a red tin roof. This was part of his inheritance from my mom. I fancied him spending hours inside it -- pretending to be Davey Crockett or Daniel Boone. His aunt is coming Friday to do some upgrading on it. She has some leftover paneling from a remodeling project. Daddy also says we're wiring it for electricity. So much for roughing it. I now imagine him sitting inside -- or laid out on a bunk -- coolly sipping his KoolAid and playing video games. Not the scenario I would prefer. What happened to imagination and necessity being the mother of invention? What happened to improvisation and creativity, playing in the dirt and fort building? Maybe we should ban the electronics to winter time usage and long road trips. I can hear the moaning and whining now.

Yes, I want my son to be computer literate and electronically hip. Yes, I want him to be able to keep up with the trends of the tech world. But I also want him to have fond memories of old-fashioned summers. But I fear they've gone the way of the typewriter. Now it's dangerous to even be out in the sun without sunblock. Now you can hardly let your children play outside for more than 10 minutes alone without checking to make sure they haven't been abducted. Now you have to wonder about all the mutated germs that could take over his body via a cut or scrape. Maybe I'm too overprotective about some of those things. Maybe I should be turning off the radio, the television, the video games, and heading out with him to a museum, an old cemetery, a fishing pond, or maybe just out to the playhouse for a picnic. I just hope it's not too hot. Have I made my point?

10 comments:

Jade said...

I see your point and I imagine it can be very frustrating. Why don't you do something outdoors together--just the two of you? Then it's not time away from his game but moments he'll cherish as he remembers how much fun he had with his mom.

your friend from cyberspace,

Jade

Mike Goodwin said...

Yes Cindy, that's the way our society has become. My son has had some form of electronic entertainment for several years. He has always had a computer, but also has an XBox, VCR, and DVD player. Most times, I have to force him to go out with me and do something different, but I'll tell you, once I do get him out, he has a wonderful time and I DO believe it is times like that that he will remember, as will your son; not how good the last video game he played was.

Delia said...

If you're too overprotective, so am I, because I've always been the same way! My kiddos have had video games and computers pretty much all of their lives and I've only recently unplugged the TVs, VCRs, and DVD players in their bedrooms.(Which is still in the experimental-they-don't-wanna-do-it phase.) We're trying to get out and do more, together. Because like you said, it can be too dangerous out there for them. My youngest are 10 and under and I can't bear to let them go outside without someone else for more than a few minutes at a time! And then I'm continuously peeking at them from a window!

MugwumpMom said...

Yup, times they are definitely achanging. Gone are the days of tree forts, plundering castles in our imaginations, and riding sticks as horses...
My 17 yr old online games for his R&R (when he's not playing ball), and it was bugging me alot, till my husband pointed out that he's either here gaming online, or out there partying with his friends..having said that, he just told me he wants to try golfing, so we have a golf date Saturday!

Magnolia said...

I think the key is balance. If he plays games for two hours, he has to do something else for two hours. Nice theory huh? LOL

I've been reading your posts faithfully, but sometimes blogspot won't let me post a comment.

I think you're plenty earthly good! Not everyone will agree with what you write or how you live your life. Personally, it's nice to meet someone who writes in such a warm way that others can relate.

On my end, I'm waiting to hear back from the doctor once she gets the test results. She thinks I might have diabetes. I hope not.

Morning Glory said...

It's a real curious situation, isn't it? I didn't face this with my children because electronics hadn't progressed quite this far back in the 70s and 80s, but I see it with my grandchildren. Fortunately, my daughters try to maintain a balance with their kids and they do a pretty good job of it. I think the fact that you're aware and you care is a huge step toward figuring out what to do. I agree about finding a balance and doing things together.

Morning Glory said...

BTW, have you changed your blog name back from Under His Wings? I need to update my links.

C. H. Green said...

yeah, I just can't seem to make up my mind. LOL. We went to the park today!

Maggie Ann said...

Ahh, how to have the best of both worlds?? A question for the sages...=)

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