Thursday, July 17, 2008

Take That

To all the fashion mags and advice columns I've read over the years criticizing anyone over thirty for wearing a bikini - take that.

Helen Mirren is my new role model. 63 and still rocking the bikini. Now if people would only stop saying how good she looks "for her age." How about she looks good -period? What is it about being over 30 that leads people to add that epitaph to every comment, particularly about women? Annoying.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Sixteen Days

Until I no longer have to deal with this kind of thing (Run, Olga. Run!)

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Playing Outside

Perusing the Register, I saw this letter to the editor. Key quote:
Have we internalized our existence so much that outdoors is past tense? Where are the friendly games of catching a ball in the street? Where are the many children who stream in and out of schools?

Are they all tied to the screens of their virtual world? I have some fairly new neighbors across the street who actually play outside. They appear to be in the minority.

While I do know of kids who play outside, the writer has a point.

A few years ago, when discussing friend's upcoming move over lunch with some friends, I mistakenly made the comment that the new house was within walking distance to the school for her grade-school daughter. The other women looked at me, horrified, then rolled their eyes in the typical "you can tell she doesn't have kids" way that mothers reserve for their childless peers. I was informed that no one, absolutely no one, allows their kids to walk to school anymore. Too much could happen.

Really? I didn't argue, but wondered how this is such a deal, when according to the statistics violent crime rates (per 100,000 people) in 2006 were actually lower than they had been since I was two years old, and actually fell again in 2007.

However, it appears that my friends' sentiments are fairly representative. For example, I have CINA clients (both kids and parents) who have founded abuse reports for allowing grade-school age kids to play outside without a parent.

Forget "playing ball in the street" or even riding your bike there, regardless of whether you're taught to go to the sidewalk if a car comes.

Forget playing in the neighborhood yards, unless a parent is outside with you.

I have one client (this one a parent) who was told that if her six-year-old child was outside without her, even in their own yard, the children would be removed from her care.


I could wax nostalgic here about summer days when I didn't see my mother or the inside of my house from lunch 'til dinner. Walking to the pool, playing spies through three neighborhoods. Spraypainting finish lines in the street of our cul de sac to hold bigwheel racing tournaments. Okay, maybe in hindsight the playing in construction sites was a bad idea, but nobody really got hurt. (Well, except when Adam put a spike through my toe when they were rebuilding Muscatine Avenue. I was on the board first, and didnt' want him slamming the spike into it while I was standing on it, so I put my foot out to stop him. He didn't pull up in time.)

Playing outside has been replaced by organized sports, trick or treating has been usurped by Halloween Night at the mall, and kids are chauffered. I could go on and on about that, but what good is it? Times, as they say, have changed.

Bye, Bye State 29

The plug will be pulled around July 4th. Agree or disagree with his views, it will make the 'net debate around here alot more bland.