Monday, August 11, 2008

Hankering for a Hunk O Cheese

I just saw a public service announcement encouraging children to play. The slogan "Get Up and Play (at least an hour a day)" is endorsed by LPGA golfers, pro-footballers, and Shrek characters, just to name a few. Apparently there are several versions of the commercial.

Geesh, the public service announcements sure have changed. When I was a kid, a yellow blob named "Timer" told me that when I was really really hungry, I should go get a hunk of cheese, or make orange juice popsicle sticks. Then again, I do not remember being allowed to stay indoors and play video games or watch TV all day. It was my mother who encouraged me to "Get Out and Play", not the TV. My sister recalls being forced to do chores if we chose to stay inside. I do not remember this, but that is probably because I never wanted to go inside. I have memories of being about four or five years old, and pooping in the yard because I did not want to go into the house. (I have since amended this preference - though my bowels have not always cooperated.)

My fondest memories of childhood were outside - sledding on the toboggan, taking nature walks in the woods, playing "red light, green light" with my grandmother, playing volleyball with my Dad and his friends, playing house with my brother and sisters in a big tree down by the creek, and swimming at the pool all day. It is sad that there are so many kids out there missing out on these experiences that the government has decided to spend money telling them to go outside.

I did go to the government site shown at the end of the "Play" commercials. It includes a lot of good information for those of us struggling to be healthy in an unhealthy world. Check it out here. I especially liked the part on portion control, one of my arch nemeses.


CaraBee said...

I'm dying about the pooping in the yard bit. Classic. I totally agree with you, I was NEVER inside as a kid. I live directly across from an elementary school and I never see the kids walking to/from school or just generally out running around the neighborhood. I tell you what I do see almost every day, a dad PULLING his 4ish year old kid in a wagon. WTF? I have seen this kid walk, so I know nothing is wrong with him. And we wonder why our kids are so fat.

Elizabeth said...


You pooped in the yard?? (See my later comment about how I enjoy conversations including poop.)

I remember playing house in the tree down by the creek. That was one of my funnest memories. I also remember wanting to eat lunch outside often. Mom packed me a lunch and I took it out to the swing set and ate it there. And I love the tobaggon. It was fun because Dad was like a little kid with that thing! Good times, good times...