I want to start this by saying, I’m not old by any stretch of the imagination. At just 31 I still consider my self young. But when I look at the younger generation today, it feels like they are missing out on so many of the pleasures my generation and the generations before my maybe took for granted. Hell even the generation behind me probably experienced these pleasures.
I’ll start with the easiest one, Summer time comes around, even early spring and the temperature starts to creep up. Some of us would be finishing up the Football and Rugby league season, others would be getting ready for Little A’s(Little Athletics) for those not familiar with the term. It truly was a changing of not just the Weather season, but the aspirating season to. The feeling of playing in higher and higher temperatures made you feel different. The sadness of one season ending but the excitement of another just beginning.
Now the current generation obviously gets to feel the way I used to feel at this time of year but one thing I’m seeing less and less of as the years go by, is kids playing sports in the street. I was driving down my street while thinking about this, and thought back to last summer and honestly don’t think I saw a single game
Of street cricket. I live across from a park with plenty of space for a game of football or League and I haven’t seen that happen once.
I’m pretty confident in saying everyone, well, at least 90% of the people who read this have had the inconvenience of having to pause a game of street cricket because a car had the nerve to travel down you street or the privilege to have your bin be chosen to be the wickets in the game and you painting the stumps on there (Without telling your old man). Playing until the street lights came on or you couldn’t see the ball anymore. Any kid in the street was welcome to come and play, the more the merrier was always the way.
I have great memories of growing up in a small suburb in Campbelltown, Raby and heading down to the hockey fields to play full on tackle league, the type we weren’t allowed to play at school, Or using the Field Hockey goals and fields for games on 5v5, 6v6 or even if the number were there 11v11. If it rained it made it better, the slide tackles would fly all over the field. We had a Cul-de-Sac at the bottom of our street and we’d set the Bin up at the bottom and play street cricket for hours.
These days, I guess you could say that kids are still playing with each other, and every kid on the street may well be invited, but it’s online on PlayStations and Xbox’s, Playing FIFA instead of actual football, Ashes cricket(insert year here) instead of backyard or street cricket. While the friendships may be real, the bonds of beating the crap out of your neighbour on the field is gone. Sure putting 6 Pat your mates Ultimate team might be fun, I wouldn’t know I’m garbage at it. But it doesn’t beat skinning your mate one on one, Megging them and embarrassing them in front of the rest of the lads.
I hope when my kids are older and can play in the street with there neighbors, they get to enjoy something that my generation experienced but now I feel we took it for granted, but at least we did it.