Pulling your fat little children in a super sized wagon isn’t helping to dispel the image of us being fat lazy Americans.
Maybe I should start at the beginning. This past weekend I attended the Big E! For those who don’t know this is the Eastern States Exposition and is held every year for two weeks in Sept. in West Springfield, MA. This event is really like three attractions rolled into one.
First there is the midway. This houses the usual carnival games and rickety rides. I don’t ride the rides because any type of equipment that is put assembled in under a week, then disassembled, trucked across the country and reassembled, just plain scares me. Sure if I have kids I will let them ride till they throw-up, just like my parents let me, but kids are smaller and they heal quicker than I do. Sorry, back to the point….
The second area is the boulevard of states. Here there are model state houses for each of the New England states. In each building there is tourist information, exhibits and my favorite……FOODs from each of the states. Some of the highlights are: Maine baked potatoes, MA apple crisp, Vermont fresh baked pizza, RI clam cakes (or fritters) and so on.
Finally there are a couple of buildings that don’t fit in either of these areas. One houses all types of agricultural displays, including giant pumpkins, baby chicks hatching, and piglets and their huge mama. The other buildings are very cool, one is called the Better Living Center and the name says it all. Within this building are gadgets and gizmos a plenty. This is where INFOMERCIALS COME TO LIFE! This year I purchased Sham WOW and I am completely satisfied that if my home filled with water I would easily be able to sop all of the water up with my new purchase. Why didn’t the give these out to the people of Louisiana, after Katrina, all of those homes would be dry as a bone?
Wow, that is a lot of info on the Big E! Anywho, moving on…..While at the Big E! I noticed a very disturbing pattern, which was kids being transported by their parents in huge wagons. I am not talking the old Radio Flyer small wagon that hurt your bum and tipped over when you pushed your sibling down a hill, but rather huge, padded, wide wheeled wagons. You could call them the Escalades of wagons. Why did this bother me so much? Well let me tell you why…the kids that were riding in these things were clearly too old to be in a stroller any longer. So, with that said, shouldn’t they be walking?
I know, I know, kids whine and get tired and ruin the shopping experience for adults, they wander and hide and run when not confined to a small area.
So, how did all of our parents manage the incredible challenge of allowing us to walk around without the benefit of a huge wagon with cup holders? Um, the let us walk around. That’s right I played outside and ran around, so when we went places……I could walk without getting tired. I am sure that sometimes I whined and I know my sister ran around and hid like a little fiend, but you know what happened then. My parents found us, told us not to do that and then held our hands. I know what you are asking yourself…..how in the world did they do that? (I hope you are picking up the sarcasm I am putting down)
Let me take a step back here and clarify some things. 1. I do not have kids, so how could I possibly have such a strong opinion? I don’t know what it is like---Well you know what, I was a kid once, my brother is 10 years younger than me, so I watched a lot of child rearing and I babysat a lot! I also have eyeballs and see that there are some very good parents out there with healthy well adjusted children, so I do believe it is possible.
2. I am not thin. However, this is my own fault. I was not overweight as a child or young adult. My parents did their job; I just fell off the regimen when I hit college and discovered midnight pizza delivery. 3. I am someone who has to deal with injured toes by these mammoth traveling living rooms and I don’t like it
Back to the parents: they managed to do that, because that was the way they were raised and they mirrored that behavior. I don’t know what happened between my parent’s generation and my generation but somewhere along the way my generation decided that rather than teach kids to support their own weight and carry their own burden, we would just throw money at the situation and buy something that would solve the problem for us….a huge freakin wagon. Just throw the kid in, shove some food, drink, and electronic device in their hands and you probably won’t have to deal with them for a couple of hours. Awesome!
In conclusion to this rant, I think that if kids were allowed to walk, run and play we as a society would be taking a positive step in changing our image in the eyes of the world to not be fat, lazy and uberconsumers. Expending the energy to parent your children and not just getting them to behave should be the goal and it would be a bigger gift to kids than a wagon so they can sit on their pampered little butts. So, that is all I have to say about that.