Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Not a care in the world

Things sure have changed from the days when Lincoln and I went to junior high school together.  Honestly, as Abe used to say.  Back in those days, the last thing any kid wanted was to have his/her mother within 100 yds. as he/she boarded the school bus, or covered wagon.  

But now, today's increasingly infantilized youth must remain in something womblike until they marry Kim Kardashian.  They don't go out to play before or after dinner.  If they do anything out in the fresh air, it's at some highly-organized soccer or lacrosse or softball or baseball Event, set up by adults, and full of adults, with better video equipment that Abraham Zapruder ever dreamed of, and clipboards. And more adults.  And decals on the family road buffalo with the kid's name and number, right next to "My honor student is clearly superior" and "Ehrlich for governor."  

The kids just can't be outside alone!  I know, there are creeps and kidnappers and bad people all around, but I'm fairly certain that it would be all right to send little Egbert or Mildred off to the bus stop without keeping them in the SUV and keeping them entertained with HD videos while they wait three minutes.

But here's what I really can't get.  There is a woman who lives on a major road leading to my work.  Let's call it "Walker Avenue."  

And now let's say that every morning she stands outside with her daughter waiting for the bus.  No need to warm up the Family Truckster; the bus stops right out front.  

And she and her daughter walk to the bus when the bus arrives, and the daughter clambers aboard, and cars are backed up in both lanes as the bus lights flash.

And, most days, the mom stands by the bus door and holds a conversation with the bus driver.  Not just the "Thanks for taking little Ursula to school" kind of thing, but an in-depth chat-a-thon, with gesticulations and vigorous headnods and rolled eyes.  One can only imagine they are discussing three things: the Greek debt crisis, Rick Perry's failed candidacy, and.........


I done forgot the third one there.  Consarn it all! 

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