cloudy days, and links

We’ve had a cloudy week in Florida:  it’s been cold and gloomy, suffering from the trace remnants of the tropical storm.  That – plus a visit from relatives – conspired to reduce my writing time to almost nothing.

I did attend a birthday party for a friend of my son’s on Saturday at the dreaded Chuck E. Cheese’s.  We had told my son that no CEC existed in our city; until the birthday party he had assumed we were simply a backwards, uncivilized corner of the world.  But since we got the invitation – for one of his best friends – we had to go.  So we went.

My kids go to a Waldorf-inspired school.  It’s focused on art, singing, creativity, etc.  TV, computers and electronica in general are all strictly forbidden.  We cheat, of course – at home we do watch TV, and I do let the kids play www.poissonrouge.com and similar sites.  But when I get dropped into an environment like CEC I realize that there is a tidal wave of electronic media overpowering our kids today.  A level of electronic stimulation almost unimaginable to Gen Xers like myself exists.  I don’t know what the long term effect of such heavy duty electronic stimulation will be…but wow.

Links

I have to be honest – I didn’t get around to reading much on the internet over the past few days, so I don’t have much of a roundup to promote.  But, such as it is, here you go:

3 comments

  • Ha Ha, Chuckee Cheese is not only full of loud noises and electronics but germs. Seems like my kids get sick every time after we visit there.

  • “A level of electronic stimulation almost unimaginable to Gen Xers like myself exists. I don’t know what the long term effect of such heavy duty electronic stimulation will be…but wow.” Oh man! Having taught middle and high school, I have to say, I really wonder at the effects of such over-stimulation as well. It would make me insane, but the kids actually seem to like it?!?!? Or are addicted to it. I sometimes used to start class with 2-3 minutes of lights out, heads down (maybe a little soothing music) and no stimulation. It really worked.
    Thanks for the link!

  • Horrors! Is Chuck E. Cheese still in business? Worst pizza in town, and most horrible birthday experience for grown-ups!

    My son is 35. Our first CEC adventure occurred when he was 5, so…we should be able to see the results of the overstimulation in the generation that’s now in its late 20s and early 30s. They don’t seem to be harmed too badly.

    CEC is a powerful engine for removing money from parents’ pockets. The business model targets young kids who aren’t skilled at computer games and then puts parents on the spot at a time when they feel they should be giving generously: the kid’s birthday party! No one is going to be a troll and refuse to buy more (and more, and more, and MORE) tokens for the kiddie guests.

    We were pressured into doing a CEC birthday party once and that was it. Our son was invited to another one later; the food was so awful and the experience so unpleasant that I simply refused to take him to any more of the things. After that, when he got an invite to a CEC party, we would have a previous engagement that day. Mercifully, other parents had the same idea, so we didn’t have to resist very forcefully.