I’ve blogged before about how I think we’re doing our kids a disservice by giving them too many gadgets to distract them in the car but it was recently pointed out to me that maybe adults aren’t much better in that regard.
When I was a kid we knew what our neighborhood looked like. We had no choice but to look out the window when we were driving around. We had to talk with our family on road trips. Today’s kids get in the car, bury their eyes in the DVD player or portable video game and don’t look up until they get to the destination. Parents are all too often happy to let Nemo or PlayStation keep their kids quiet in the backseat but as a result I think a lot of kids today have no idea what their neighborhood looks like. And I think we spend a lot less time talking with our kids than our parents did or their parents did.
Same is true of the parents, I think, to a lesser extent. So intent are we on our cell phones and the back of the Buick in front of us how often do we actually lift our eyes and appreciate the mountains, desert, ocean or whatever natural beauty surrounds your neighborhood. Even if it’s just a beautiful tree or an elegant piece of architecture.
Next time you’re at a stop light try looking around. Don’t just stare at the dashboard or fiddle with your iPod. And for pete’s sake say something to your kids other than "Do you want to watch Toy Story again?"