I have been dipping into Richard Louv’s Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder, where I learned, amongst other shocking things, that the average 8 to 10 year old spends six hours per day watching T.V. or playing computer games – in front of a monitor, in other words. That same kid spends four minutes per day in unstructured outdoor activity, FOUR MINUTES! So, no splendor in the grass, no pondering cloud shapes, no making forts in trees, and no chance to make friends with nature …and yourself.
Meanwhile, I notice kids driving to school in this below zero weather – wearing shorts, with no coat. When I was a kid we didn’t wear shorts in the winter. Call me old fashioned, but we kind of understood that it was cold out, that cars sometimes break down, and that the cold was real, not some virtual projection of reality. Yeah, I know. I’m showing my age.