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Friday 16 April |

Kids these days

Simcha Fisher - published on 06/07/10

During my rounds of scholarly research today, I learned something:  kids these days are morons.

Yes, in my youth, we had a game called “water school,” where we would let the hose gush into the street and down the hill until the water was nice and warm in the sunshine, and then we would lie down in it.  In the middle of the street.  The sunshine and the mellow water with the heated pavement below were beyond relaxing, just heavenly — except for all the honking, and the screeching brakes.

We also used to ride a mattress down the stairs.  This one wasn’t actually that dangerous, because at the bottom of the stairs was a rickety metal bookcase full of art books, which would collapse repeatedly and slow the mattress down at the end.

We, um, set rolls of toilet paper on fire.

But kids these days!   First,  here’s a story which, to be honest, smells a little hoax-y to me:  eyballing vodka.  Apparently kids pour vodka directly into their eyeballs , because you can get drunk faster that way, and because parents can’t smell alcohol on your breath if you haven’t been drinking with your mouth.  Sheer genius!

I see a few problems with this system.  Granted, I don’t have teenagers yet, and so I can’t be absolutely sure of how easily I will be fooled if they come home visibly trashed.  But still.  I remember when my older sister returned from a Christmas party staggering and giggling more than usual, so she received a little stern questioning from my father.  “I’m not drunk!”  she protested.  “Look, I can keep a strange face!”  Let me tell you, he didn’t need to smell her eyeballs then.

The other problem is that I suspect that any kid who is doing this (if that isn’t actually just water in the bottles.  As I said, this story a little fishy to me)  hasn’t actually ever been drunk, and is mistaking the excruciating agony of ALCOHOL IN YOUR EYEBALLS for being intoxicated.

Well, I’m afraid that I actually believe this second story, which I found at that treasure trove of cultural analysis, Dave Barry’s blog :  it’s a new game called . . . wait, this is a game?  It’s called “sack tapping.”  Yeah, that kind of sack — sorry.  According to ABC News,  one doctor

compares sack tapping to the common game of “chicken,” where boys take turns hitting each other to see who can take the most hits without calling off the game.”Games like this are to see how tough you are,” he says. “It’s a way of establishing dominance and because it’s hard to withstand being hit in the groin, it becomes a good measure of toughness.” “It’s a pride thing, and by posting it to the Internet it’s like proof. There’s no doubt about your toughness; the whole world can see.”

Well, I guess so.  Along with a heaping helping of old fashioned, grade A stupidity, there’s a measure of toughness involved in playing this type of game.

Not much foresight, though.  I mean, who’s going to be left to appreciate you on You Tube in all your sack-tapped glory if they’ve all gone blind from pouring vodka in their eyes?

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