10 February 2010

drive by

in the morning on my way to work i pass kids at the ends of their roads, waiting for a school bus to come and pick them up. little groups of children, standing together but alone. i don't see them interact, just stand with hands in pockets and earbuds in ears, waiting. perhaps after i pass by, one will ask another how they are or what's going on with them. pat them on the back or give them a high five. smile or wink. i never see it happen. but i sure hope it does.

36 comments:

CrazyCris said...

sad.

and yet, I can't really come to regret the portability of music... it has made many a lengthy trip much less dreary! but I will admit it isolates us, how many potential friends have we missed out on discovering because we isolated ourselves in our own little bubble?

sigh...

Truth Ferret said...

I see the isolation in the cars loaded down with family members. Kids in the back with DVD movies and earplugs for the older siblings. What a shame, that being with each other isn't enough for families anymore.

Back when I was a kid, conversations about what the day held was what entertained us. We filled the car with hopes, dreams, fears, plans for the future and not the sounds of isolation.

Matt Conlon said...

I've noticed something similar, only it was with adults. I used to ride the commuter rail into Boston every day, and when you get off the train the platform is very long. I think there are 13 tracks, so multiple walkways.

Hundreds of people would get off of the train at the same time, and at a slow, measured pace we'd walk careful not to step on the heels of the person in front of us and to keep moving fast enough to get our heels out of the way of the person behind us.

I remember watching this daily ritual unfold one morning, and realizing that I was the only person out of several hundred who was looking around. Literally everyone else within my field of view was marching steadily, heads down staring at the back of the person in front of them. Nobody looked to the side, nobody talked. It's a creepy experience, and it happens every day at South Stating in Boston.

It reminded me of the video for Pink Floyd's "another brick in the wall part 2" where the faceless kids marched into a meat grinder. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=df8MikZx6w4

Kaytea said...

Sad to say but it probably doesn't. Kids today are programmed to not interact with each other socially. Between internet, texting, computers and school work and parents fears of other kids infecting theirs with socially unacceptable behaviors kids just don't know how to verbally communicate much anymore. Sad really.

JenniAsh said...

nice little snapshot.
I wish sometimes that more interaction happened at my busstop... it doesn't really.

Tyler Alyse Archer said...

I rode the school bus only one semester in high school years ago and I rarely interacted with the others on my bus. That was almost 11 years ago and I can only imagine it's gotten worse, that's sad though to think that young students don't really interact anymore because they're so engrossed in social media and new media technology...interesting though

Suz said...

It's sad that kids today have lost the ability to interact that way. They are closing each other off with ear buds in their ears or are texting or something.

Maybe in this case, they are all in some state of unconsciousness and not quite awake yet!

district friend said...

. . . i think today's children are one of the loneliest generations . . .

poppet said...

hmmm... very true. a fresh point of view. thank you for your blog

Anita Meade said...

Sure hope they do to. Sometimes I think kids are losing the skill of "face-to-face" social interaction. How sad!

Curt Remington said...

It's unfortunate that they don't take that time to have fun and interact. I think kids have lost a lot of their ability to play without an electronic device.

goodbadi said...

I hope so, too!

Nicolello said...

I hope it does too...

Alison said...

And yet, being a high school teacher, I can look outside my classroom at lunch and see hundreds of young people freely interacting. I'm sure they are more isolated than in the past, but I believe it is far from a lost cause.

My morning classes are quiet because the students are tired, but as the day progresses they brighten up as their energy flows back into them. Perhaps they are so quiet and still at the bus stop just because they haven't woken up yet!

Thanks for your thoughtful blog--always a pleasure to behold.

thinkergirl said...

A nice pic.

Im happy I decided to follow this blog.And about the musings.....sometimes even I wonder where the world is going?But then I realise the world is made up by the ones like us only.

But the flame is not yet extinguished ,it has lost its strength.Im writing this from Mumbai and every day I commute to my Office by what we Mumbaikars call a local train.

I try atleast to see the face of the person sitting next to me and try to smile and most of the times it is returned.

Observation is very good quality but followed by action it is twice as good

Willy said...

what a well written observation

riko said...

i hate it when people do that. like at this school match we went to this girl behind us was plugged into her ipod throughout and at the end she asked me what happened! like why even come if your just going to listen to music.
however not all of us are like that.where i go to school everyone interacts with everyone even if you dont know them (atleast the majority do).it's great 'cause theres always someone friendly and you end up knowing 90% of the school from the grade 1's to the a/l's (atleast thats what happened to me).i'm really going to miss that in the real world...

Neha said...

Its sad to see, if u have an ipod a cell phone and an internet u really dont feel the need to socialize.

Kristy said...

I just love kids and all their social awkwardness! (I better! I'm a mom and school psychologist and am around children all day every day!) Rest assured, at least in my world, when kids are at school, there are many adults who care and listen and give hugs and smiles.

Ash said...

Anyone considered the possibility (remote, I know) that these kids just don't have much in common, besides their age & school? I don't really interract with the people I work with, not because I don't know how to, but simply because none of them share my views & sympathies, so interraction is a futile attempt. All we have in common is our place of work - maybe it's the same for the kids you see?

I think a big problem, probably from my generation (I'm 23) on is that you often WANT to connect with others, but are afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing, & being ridiculed...however lonely it is, keeping silent, keeping your distance, is safer. How can you be rejected if you don't make an approach?

Like your blog - nice to see some people care enough about the things they see to share them, even electronically...a new way of interracting, interraction changing with the times?

Redbonegirl97 said...

I doubtt that these kids ever interact. We are part of a "point and click" society that kids don't feel the need to talk to one another unless it is necessary. The funny thing is that they are probably talking to the kid they ignore online and don't even know it.

Tiffany
http://liferequiresmorechocolate.blogspot.com/

Donna said...

Kids today are under more stringent rules than we were back in the day...zero tollerance makes for kids not to "horse around" at the bus stop, or riding privileges get taken away.
Then thinking back and in response to Truth Ferret...does anybody remember the "are we there yet?" question every couple minutes, or the Driver threatening everyone in the back seat to settle down or else? Adults supply the kids with all of these "isolation devices" to make for a more peaceful ride. Or not.
Have you tried following a bus in the am and then catching it in the pm. You would probably notice a difference in their behavior.
Or maybe it just wasn't a full moon. Try to observe then. LOL

Pinak said...

Surely it will happen some day. At least some day their parents will realise that all work & no play does not fertilise any result.

Anonymous said...

Hi
I'am not american but French from a very little village, so small it would make no sens for most of u :)
I just want to say when i arrived there, it's amazing how we have felt isolated.
We have around us a few houses with young parents, but noboby "interact" even difficult sometime to get an answer when you say "hello".
This is sad. I 'am not so old and remember my grand parents told me there was "life" before into these villages, you "had to" interact, there was no other choice. May be there are today so much communication tools that we don't feel the necessity to interact.

Last thing I live in France, Normandy, very near the beach where US troops landed on june 6, 1944 "omaha beach". Very historic and nice place where all these young guys rest..they gave us peace, if not i would write these post in german or not exist..

emmanuel

Asakuun The Great said...

I suppose that they have no reason,
No reason at all to speak.
They only wait to go to school,
Five days out of seven each week.

Their friends, possibly
Walk or are driven to school
Since to ride the bus
They'd have nothing else
Or just be fools*.

-Asakuun Draconis
http://www.asakuun.weebly.com



*That part would be my opinion.

Anonymous said...

Looks like ur having a lots of visitors to ur blog. Why don't you turn on Google AdSense or Amazon Associates Program and get rewarded

Cheerio

Debbie said...

I see this all the time we don't talk to each other anymore kids and adults we advert our eyes put our heads down. No one knows what to say or how to say it. We don't play games in the car while travling we don't see kids using their imagination unless it's on the computer and video's and this is sad yet here we sit reading blogs and enjoying them and in our strange way we are connecting with others but not on a personal level

chris said...

sounds like many of us agree that kids don't interact the way they used to. but it's good to hear from those working with our kids in the trenches (kristy, alison, tyler alyse archer) that it doesn't carry over into school, where kids spend so much of their day. i agree that the new technologies are wonderful - maybe mankind will just find ways to adapt socially. thank you for all the comments. i wish i could answer you all personally. emmanuel, i especially appreciate your taking the time to remind us about normandy and what happened there so long ago - and the impact that it still has on the world today. merci.

Andy said...

oh my, how sad,

eleanor said...

Like it or not the cyber age is well and truly here to stay - and our lives all change as a result, for good or ill. I notice in the UK also that too many kids don't seem too good at interaction skills. I think it is up to us as parents to bring a balance to our kids' lives - I went on holiday to Madeira and the hotel had an internet room - where some kids seemed to spend their whole holiday doing games and checking their mail, chat rooms etc. Where were the parents?
One of the pleasures in life to my mind is chatting to strangers across the table in cafes, or in trains etc - you can meet such fscinating people, learn such a lot about others' lives - all part of life's rich tapestry.
Super blog - glad I have found it!

Debbie said...

I agree with the fact that we have all the new cyber age equipment and some of it is way neat I myself enjoy these things as well but I like you agree there should be a balance and when you can hand a child a stick and say play pretend and they don't know how we as parents need to find a happy medium and teach them how to be able to play games and to talk with people and also agree that riding on a bus or train you can meet and hear some interesting stories things you would miss if you didn't take the time to talk.

Bea said...

On my way to school I, too, often pass kids at a school bus stop. Sometimes I see parents waiting with them. One day, as I drove toward a trailer park with a group of kids waiting for the bus, I noticed the kids pushing and playing around. One kid ran right to the edge of the road. I slowed down to take note of who the kids were, but could not stop due to traffic. Once at school, I asked about the school bus #, about three kids who got on at a specific stop. I told the prinicipal what I saw. Then, I found out their classroom. I was able to talk to them in person about their bus stop behavior. They were surprised that anyone saw, and that anyone even cared. When I drive by that stop now, the kids are standing a safe distance from the road. I'm sure kids are talking at the bus stop. I was a bus stop kid for a few years, and we talked before the bus came. None of us were friends, more like neighbors. All different ages. We looked for each other, held the bus if one of us was late, learned little personal things about each other.

HamzaSidra said...

its not entirely the family's fault, that kids are not interacting......what is society telling us these days? What is happening around us? The awful stories you hear about the kinda of things happening to kids....when I was a kid I walked a mile a day to school and back every day with my sister.....I certainly wouldn't suggest that to any kid now....and yes, in cars you see all the gadget games in use.....in my car I get my kids to play simple 'eye spy', like I used to as a kid in the back of our with my dad or mum, this develops imagination, observation skills, however, this can only be done when the kids are not buys fighting or arguing with each other ...... :-)

Pam said...

I love you blog. It reaches the soul. Thank you,

Bat Parker said...

nicely written

**Amanda** said...

That gave me chills. I hope it does too!