QotD: When I Was a Kid

What did you do for fun when you were a kid? How is it different from what you see kids doing now?
Submitted by jaklumen.

My favorite time as a kid was time spent exploring on my bicycle. Not just riding it, mind, but actively figuring out where all the roads went, which connected with which, and where the good shortcuts were. I spent many hours doing it, and I don't recall ever feeling tired. I was able to leave the house without fear of pedophiles or drug gangs or any of the other paranoid nonsense parents feel now.

Now the kids are pretty much monitored every minute, living lives encased in foam and protective gear, in constant communication with their family and friends. Some choices are sensible, but some are made from the "what if" that nags our sense of nurture. I think some of this is caused by anxiety about awful stories that are routinely reported, and some is caused by advertising deliberately pushing our worry buttons. Sure sells a lot of product.

So we try to back off some, even if it's hard to do.

But freedom is a lot more complex for the kids now. My youngest feels compelled to indulge in endless communication, spending little time alone or in any quiet activity, constantly in need of her peers. This worries me, because I would hate for her to never experience the simple pleasure of finding a new place on her bike.

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