“I’m so glad I had a childhood before technology took over.” - Banksy
I just had my third baby and I hate to admit that Lori and I are letting Netflix take over Marian and Viola's brains of late. We feel miserable for doing it, but nevertheless they just sit on the couch, mouths hanging open like lifeless zombies. I literally have to get 10 inches in front of Marian's face before she realizes it's me. Etta has made us go from man-to-man defense to zone defense and we (Lori, especially) are definitely feeling that stress.
The thing that bothers me is that I want to give my children the same awesome childhood I had, but I'm afraid that iPhones, iWatches, mini-van movies, and iPads will completely ruin it. I recently read that Steve Jobs didn't even let his own children use his Apple products! It makes me think he was afraid of the same thing!
I don't know if you're familiar with Stranger Things, a new show on Netflix, but it was absolutely fantastic! I was gushing over this show to a customer at The Sparrows and had an employee ask me why I thought the show was so good. I told him that the show perfectly represented my childhood, where I rode around on bikes with no helmets and full backpacks while my parents had absolutely no idea where I was or when I was coming home. That was just the norm in those days!
Growing up, I used to go over to my neighbor's house, The Porteras. We used to watch (on VHS, of course) Rocky 4, The Karate Kid, and Dirty Dancing (my parents told me I was too young to watch Dirty Dancing, so I had to escape my house to watch Patrick Swayze do his thing). And I absolutely loved it! So after each of these movies, my best friends Rich and Gayle and I would go out to the backyard and reenact these movies. All of the dancing, all of the boxing, and of course, the final crane kick in Karate Kid. (But of course our favorite part was when the Cobra Kai yelled, "GET HIM A BODY BAG, YEAH!) It was one of my favorite childhood memories!
I recently had a moment that brought up all of these childhood feelings once again. I heard that Hope Network was showing movies called the "Overcomer Free Film Series" at Wealthy Street Theater! And there is only one movie left, THE KARATE KID! I was considering taking my girls to it, but I still think they will most likely throw a fit when they realize they have to sit still for 90 minutes. So I told me wife I'll give up EVERY event this month to go and reminisce my childhood.
Then I thought that as I watch it, I should turn my phone off, old school style. No rings, no beeps, no vibrations, just... nothing. I wanted to relive my childhood with no fancy phones blowing up and nothing else on my mind. Which made me think... Who wants to join me? My friends and I are all Millennials and we have ALL been taken over by the newest and shiniest technology products. But what would happen if for one night we all turned off our phones and actually "hung out", sans cell phones. Afterwards we'll head over to the Meanwhile, sans cell phones, and eventually, decide to go home, sans cell phones. Maybe I'm crazy but I feel this would be so refreshing these days.
So I've decided I am going to send an email to Hope Network and propose they take me up on this suggestion: I want them to encourage the entire audience to give their cell phones to a Hope Network representative before the movie starts and enjoy the movie as they did when they were kids!
What do you think? Are you up for this?! How about this? Let's use this miserable social media for what it was intentionally meant to do and cause a ruckus! I will tag Hope Network on this Facebook post, but will mention them on the next (shorter) FB post and would love for you to Like/Heart/Laugh/Cry these posts on Facebook and make as much noise as possible to get their attention. If they respond, I'll propose this idea to them and will even offer my services to them to help them pull it off! As they (kinda) say on Portlandia, "The dream of the 80s is alive in Grand Rapids!"
WHO'S WITH ME?!?