New users: Please register in the usual way and then send an email to jasper(at)jasperfforde.com with your username, and write something 'Ffordesque' so we know you are a real reader, and not some idiot trying to flood the forum with dodgy Nike and Gucci gear. Thank you - Jasper
That reminds me of a situation I encountered just yesterday in front of the neighbouring elementary school: an appr. eight year old was stumbling along on roller blades - he wasn't rolling, his movement were just like me thirty years ago on some rusty ancient roller skates that would not budge and allways tended to go in circles. Well, he did not wear a helmet or other protective equipment. There was the mother of another pupil there, and she started to complain loudly about that boy and his irresponsible parents, claiming the perils of riding like this were much too unreasonable.
Seriously, if the boy had taken a fall at the pace he was geting out of his blades, it would have been just the five centimeters added to his height that discerened it from tripping at a run on foot.
<decides to add 'surviving youth' to the count of his blessings>
In Oz these days, kids playgrounds have to have 10cm of pine bark or similar mulch under the slippery dips, swings, seesaws and whathaveyou to cushion any falls. I seem to remember my youth being liberally sprinkled with skinned knees and elbows, sprains, splinters in the hands and the occasional lump on the head. I probably cried when I got a few of them and my parents would say, 'tut tut, there there' and then everyone (including me) then got on with life.
Now, the first thought anyone has if they trip over their own feet is, 'Who can I sue?'
I read some research on these wood chips/pine bark under swings and they found that the swingers put their feet down and the wood chips thus ended up in piles at the points in the swing where the feet did not drag, and that there was thus a greater distance for the swinger to fall and for the swing to build up energy and clout the poor sod. Cuts in budgets meant that there was no money to pay people to rake the piles back under the swings.
Net result of safety initiative was considered to be a negative. A snide comment in the margins of the copy I read stated that we should put concrete down and if the person who hurt themselves wanted to complain they could be asked how stupid they were falling onto a hard surface for if they had kept hold of the ropes/chains and not done anything silly they would not have got hurt.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/02/2009 04:59AM by bunyip.
With woodchips all around I'd be worried about getting splinters. Actually I remember when I was in elementary school and they started replacing all the sand with woodchips at the local playground. I was disappointed because that meant I could no longer make houses in the sand for the stingless "sand bees" that were always buzzing around.
Roundabouts are brilliant. There's the thrill of getting them up to speed and then the really brave ones jump off at top spin just to see if they get hurt or not! Ah, danger in the playground! No wonder people are growing up to riskseekers now, they've had no danger!
I see. Alas, where has their youth and innocence gone?
<edited because the "sweet little kids" I know, never are inncocent- and are always plotting something, (usually the more innocent they look, more plotting is involved) so it shouldn't come as a suprise>
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/04/2009 11:57AM by BibwitHart.
sadly all the safety means the loss of Mercurochrome sales. I was covered with that stuff as a kid.
I'm the healthest 50 year old far more healthy than so many people half my age. I can eat anything without a reaction and live the life of fun...I played in ate and rolled in dirt and it did me more good than harm
Remember the song 'You've got to get a little dirt on your hands'?
Ogden Nash wrote:
I think that I shall never see
a billboard lovely as a tree
In fact unless the billboards fall
I'll never see at all.
This sentiment applies to kids who have never seen real grass except the funny cigarette kind, never seen the bloom of a sunset enriched by the dust from a nuclear bomb test, never eaten DDT laced food, and now have no idea of what 'nature' is unless it's a news story of some disaster.
****message interrupted by amorous Birman cat who has decided that ape descendant should be attending to him. Commun ication will be resumed at a later date******
Ha! And try "camping" these days and you get a bunch of softies.
With electricity and all....
'We're all mad here. I'm mad, you're mad." [said the Cat.]
"How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice.
"You must be," said the Cat, "Or you wouldn't have come here."
- Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures In Wonderland