And a very lovely morning to you, my precious darlings! I know its been some time - but I've been busy and promise, on my twenty-fifth birthday (which is, not surprisingly, my favorite holiday) to be more . . . 'regular' . . . in my posting. Ahhh! you're welcome.
Please read the following tidbit I came across in the news this morning:
"A study on more than 1,000 children and adolescents in grades 2 through 12 found that some of the 20 most common fears include "terrorist attacks," "having to fight in a war," "drive-by shootings," "tornadoes/hurricanes" and "drowning/swimming in deep water," based on self-reports of how scary each of 98 events or concepts seems. The study was published in a recent issue of the Journal of Counseling and Development."
Do I need to give you another moment to let that sink in? It took me about . . . 4 minutes to understand the grave problems facing children today.
As I always do when I read things that are silly, zany, delightful or saddening; I put myself in their shoes. Mother Theresa said something about walking a mile in some one's shoes before judging them - or having time to love them or something, but you get it.
I spent my time in grades 2 through 12: (1) looking like a boy; (2) trying to get the most accelerated reader points in my entire school - p.s. i was successful in this endeavor; (3) thinking of possible improvements to new sandwiches i would create after school; and (4) writing letters to President Clinton regarding the dangers of Snoop Dog and requesting a ban on gangsta rap (this is the truth, despite the fact that jorts are now a part of my daily vocabulary).
Being a child genius, former young Mensa member and having an IQ of 160 ('binge drinking' has lowered that I'm sure), I was a well informed child but had no fear of any of the above. I was more afraid that my friends would discover my 'boyfriend' was made up and didn't go to the neighboring Cary Elementary than I was of a terrorist attack. Granted, this period pre-dates September 11 - but it was right in the thick of the first World Trade Center bombings and Oklahoma City - terrorism was still known. Furthermore - deep water? Was this study taken on the island where that show Lost occurs? I mean, what normal child in America is afraid of DEEP WATER? I ask you! I loved deep water! Why? Because I was bigger than most and therefore could hold people I hated (Katie Taylor) under the water for long periods of time (come to think of it, maybe she was polled for this study, but, I digress) . . . in addition - I was on the Pirates Cove Swim Team (thanks Mom & Dad! I loved looking like a swimsuit-wearing cue ball!) and high point winner each year - I was like fucking Ariel from The Little Mermaid. Do children not know how to swim? Should that be my outreach? I don't want to have to give CPR and risk contracting an STD or Swine Flu - but perhaps I can coach from the deck . . . ? More on that later. Anyway - back to the topic.
Finally - fighting in a war? Like, a class war? A war between people that take the bus and those that can afford a car? Commoners vs. Peasants? While I am obvi avoiding the topic of the real wars we do face (including East vs. West coast rap) - this is silly. Just ask John Kerry - you should be afraid of fighting in a war if you can't graduate high school and realize that HVAC is not for you. Next!
As we examine the fears of America's future leaders . . . 'drive by shootings' is a given. On this note, and before we go on, I'd like to take a second to shout out the East vs. West coast rap battle and one of my fallen heroes - Biggie Smalls - R.I.P. (? - debatable) . . . I knew you'd never be forgotten. The thing about drive by shootings is they've got street cred. I'd love to meet the little jort-wearing brat that raised his hand and said "Yeah! I'm scurred of 'dem drive-bys," after which he probably plugged his upcoming album drop and/or his street gang. That fear is credible and, had I lived in a rougher area growing up, I probably would have been afraid of the same thing.
In summation - I feel like this study is a bit of a scam. Let's be honest, tornadoes? Where are we? In the fucking middle of a black and white Kansas with Auntie Em? You know what being scared of tornadoes got Judy Garland? Alcoholism and bulimia. The young bitches of the twenty-first century need to toughen up and be scared of a real threat like T.I. having to serve his full jail time or getting grounded for listening to 102.1 Jams from a radio under their pillow every night (in my house, "grounded" meant "beaten" . . side note). Someone needs to give these naive little ones a dose of reality and then re-take the poll - I am so sure the answers will be different - although drive-by shootings can absolutely stay.