Thursday, August 15, 2013

When was the last time...

When was the last time you saw a group of kids playing baseball in the backyard...all by themselves...with no adults in the middle of it all?  I can't remember the last time I saw that.  Actually, the last time I remember it at all was when I was a kid and playing myself.  And that was a long time ago.
Every generation probably says it, but kids today are missing out. Not only are they missing out on the fun, they're missing out on the things that playing together, without an adult, teaches.  It's no wonder young adults today can't settle a conflict, that they don't know how to handle losing...or winning, that they don't understand why someone's not always around to help them or tell them what to do.   Playing baseball, or football, or basketball or soccer with my group of friends taught me a lot of those things.  We called balls and strikes, in bounds and out of bounds, fouls, outs, home runs, ground rules doubles--all of it, all by ourselves. Oh, and we cheered each other on. We encouraged each other.  Of course there were disputes, but if something couldn't be resolved, we had a do-over.  We didn't get mad, take our ball and go home.  I get that very rarely are there do-overs in real life, but you get the point. No one else had to tell us what to do our how to get the game going again.  We picked teams, played hard and when it was all over shook hands...really, even when we were little kids...and went on to the next things. It's sad to me that everyday I see people who need someone to tell them what to do or how to do.  It's sad that we don't play hard and then shake hands when the day is done.  But maybe most of all, it's sad to me that we don't cheer each other on every day.  But maybe it's not hopeless.  Cheer someone on today.  You'll feel good.  They'll feel great.  Maybe our kids will take the cue.

1 comment:

  1. Funny to read this as my 2 boys have been playing wiffle ball in the back yard all summer long! I try to join them, but also enjoy watching them play and learn to get along without my interference. Their concept of Ghost Runners and their actions on the basepaths is an incredible sight to see.

    The best part was joining them last week. I hit weakly back to the pitcher and my 12-yr old athlete. He threw at me to get me out (legal in dodge ball as well as wiffle ball). Still holding the bat for some reason, I swung at this throw - and hit the ball into the outfield! I rounded the rest of the bases much to his disgust.

    After explaining how things like this are permissible in wiffle ball versus real baseball - it served as a life lesson that dad is always a step ahead of you. Just when they thought they had 'caught up' to me in something, i pulled a rabbit out of my hat. it was such a fun afternoon, I am sure they will re-count the story of my hitting the ball a second time to their children.

    FYI, we stopped playing backyard baseball when we broke the neighbors window!