Monday, December 26, 2011

Wrapping paper...

     David and I drove around the neighborhood on the way to the lake where he fishes just before sunset tonight.  We were going to watch a small herd of deer (also called a 'mob' which makes me laugh to think about a mob of deer, but I digress...).

     As we drove he commented on the lack of Christmas wrapping paper and boxes by the road like we used to see when we were kids.  It seemed that 'once upon a time,' on the day after Christmas there would be boxes and bags of ripped and torn wrapping paper all through the neighborhoods.  Kids would be outside riding new bicycles, skateboards, or scooters; playing with new footballs, basketballs or baseballs.  Now... there were no kids in sight.

     I pointed out that of the 30+ houses that run down our street, there were perhaps only five that had decorated for Christmas.  I remember when the odd house was the one without any lights or decorations... now it seems that the odd houses are the ones like ours with lights and decorations.

     Toys now are electronic... iPads, iPods, and cell phones to name a few.  Kids eyes are lit by the glow of Facebook, MySpace, and whatever the latest social or electronic fad is.  They aren't lit by smiles and laughter of joy as they interact with their friends and compare new toys.  They communicate by texting... acronyms and abbreviations.  We were once so worried that Ebonics was going to negatively impact the educational system... now we should be worried more about text-onics.

     Whether or not the lack of wrapping paper and Christmas lights is a sign of the economy... or green thinking... I miss both.  I miss the laughter of kids in the streets on Christmas day.  I miss driving through neighborhoods on Christmas Eve with a thermos of hot chocolate looking at the decorated houses and yards.

     I miss the Christmases of my past when all I had to worry about was whether or not I was going to get a new camera, boots like the ones Nancy Sinatra wore, or if I was going to have to suffer through the next month of school wearing slacks that my Mom made to cover the braces on my legs (sorry Mom, but I used to get teased more for my clothes than for my braces).   When the day after Christmas I was outside with my friends... with my brother... already breaking the newest toys and working on our wish lists for next year.

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