Saturday, October 04, 2008

Packing it in and Up

When I was a kid, I always used gym bags to cart around my stuff. I’d stuff my school books, pens, papers, stinky gym shorts and probably right on top of that my lunch, into a big old gym bag.

I went through many gym bags over the years – they wear out, become frail and break. Or they just get plain nasty, all stinky and eventually my mom would complain about the smell.

These days, all the kids use backpacks. Backpacks are easier to, using your back to toss all your possessions on. This frees up your arms and hands, but I wonder what back problems today’s kids will have – or already have – from putting their lives on their backs?

I see little kids with enormous backpacks – often the backpacks are bigger than the kids! And these things look like they are overflowing, as they probably are.

Just as when I was their age, I’d stuff as much as I could cram into them, kids these days probably do the same.

The start of every school year is filled with media reports about the proper use of backpacks, but as the year progresses, those stories fade away and the backpacks become these giant back breakers.

I have a backpack even today, I use it for carting my laptops from place to place. But I don’t overload it, and I sure don’t jam in my stinky workout shorts into it!

Kids today have access to things we never had when I was growing up. Computers and the Internet have made great strides in developing the future leaders of tomorrow.

But backpacks probably have ensured that those future leaders will be more hunched over and in pain, than we ever are.

Well, I suppose someone has to keep the chiropractors in business.

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