We have lived in our current home for nearly ten years.
I like our neighborhood. It is quiet. The neighbors are polite and the street is safe.
My street is lined with pine and oak trees.
The street seems ideal, but something is missing.
That something is the sound of kids playing outdoors.
I seldom see any boys or girls playing catch.
As a boy growing up, playing catch was an integral part of my life.
During summer I would spend hours tossing the ball back and forth with my best friend.
Once school started, the first thing I did after school got out and my homework was done, was grab my mitt and baseball and run down to my friend’s house.
I would ring the door bell and ask him if he was ready to toss the ball around.
Playing catch was our way of de-stressing.
We not only tossed the ball around, we tossed away our troubles for the length of time we were playing catch.
Though I would hear many sounds outdoors, the best sound to me was the thud the ball made once it hit my mitt.
Playing catch is simple and uncomplicated.
It doesn’t take a lot of thought, just some eye hand coordination and a decent arm. Playing catch offers benefits like fresh air, exercise and relaxation.
The best part of playing catch for me was the camaraderie I developed with my friend.
When my friend and I tossed the ball back and forth we talked (a novel concept, in today’s world).
Some days the chatter was basic and brief.
Some days it was humorous and filled with laughter.
Some days it was simple small talk. We were kids, not brain surgeons
We also had in depth conversations about our life, our hopes and dreams.
We discussed everything: girls, college plans, our future careers, how to improve our parents. You name it we chatted about it.
The days of deep conversation were the best days of catch.
When we played catch day after day, two things grew stronger: our arms and our friendship.
I think today’s world is missing activities that encourage interaction.
Today’s interaction is with texting and emoji’s.
Today’s interaction is on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
You communicate through a screen and when you communicate through a screen it’s easier to be mean. People, seem more stressed and less in tune with other’s feelings.
The thing that strikes me now, is that kids and adults need the latest gadgets
We want I-pads, video games and the latest smart phone.
We need TV’s in our bedrooms and video games in our den.
What we don’t seem to need is fresh air, exercise or each other.
I get caught up in the latest technology trends myself.
My I-phone 5 needs to be an I-phone 6S
My flat screen is only 47 inches, how embarrassing!
My vacation is full of more selfies and less siestas and sunsets!
I think we should pick a day where we delete all of our technological gadgets and re-boot our attitudes.
We adults could show our kids what it’s like to play outdoors ( their expressions would be priceless!)
We can grab an old mitt and a baseball. Call up a buddy and invite them over for a game of catch.
We can toss the ball around and enjoy the crisp air as we chuckle about the old days.
The days, when you didn’t need to plug anything in to communicate.
Sometimes, simple is better.
Sometimes, simple is more relaxing.
Sometimes, simple makes you happier and healthier.
Sometimes, all you need in life to be happy is an old leather mitt, a beat up baseball and a good friend to chat with!