The Word

Seeing the World Through the Word

“Let’s play outside”: A lost phrase of childhood

boy child clouds kid

Photo by Porapak Apichodilok on

Remember when we were kids “OUTSIDE” was that place we couldn’t wait to get to so that we could  play any assortment of actual or made up games? That place where we’d stay all day after school, or from morning to evening during summer vacation or from the end of the Kung Fu matinee following Saturday morning cartoons, onward each weekend, until we were forced, literally forced, to go “inside.”

At the behest of our parents we’d grudgingly drag ourselves  indoors, smelling of outdoors, physically spent from a full day of running, jumping, climbing, wrestling, chasing and so much more.

For kids today, “outside” is that undesirable transitory space between the various “insides” they’re determined to get to. It is a means to an end; a barely endured conduit made tolerable only due to the numbing effects that smartphone screens produce through their hypnotic arrest of children’s eyes. Their minds, captivated by those tiny portals to a digital world illogically made equal to our physical world, are wholly dulled to the engulfing reality of the “outside” all around them until they are relieved of its burden of open air and sunshine when they enter their home, a friends house or a mall.

Sadly they find solace and comfort doubly insulated from “outside” by the physical walls of the structures they enter and the digital walls their smartphones erect around their minds obscuring their very intellects and wanting childhoods from the very concept of “outside” and its indelible relation to thier formative years.

I’m so glad I was born in the 70’s, before the internet and social media became our prisons and smartphones became the wardens of our childhood.

By Jason L Ward

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This entry was posted on September 3, 2018 by in Uncategorized.


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