Doppler Radar is Ruining Our Kids

Now they know a week-and-a-half ahead of time when a blizzard or hurricane will hit — and when school might be canceled. But once upon a time, before Justin Bieber, kids used to wake up surprised.

The TV weatherman might have predicted precipitation the night before, but people didn’t rush out and empty store shelves like they were preparing for the Apocalypse. 

Sadly, all this advance preparation stunts our kids’ natural critical thinking skills. Departments of education have to pay curriculum writers to add it back to their text books.  Years ago, kids were infinitely more inventive.

Imagine the critical thinking skills set in motion when kids woke up to the sight of an unexpected snow. They’d immediately begin doing mental gymnastics, not to mention a happy dance.

You could almost hear the collective shifting of gears. Everyone stayed glued to the radio to see if school would be canceled.

Another fault of Doppler Weather Radar is that it helps kids skate on their school work. Now they know well in advance if a snow day will give them extra time to finish their math. But in days gone by, they would have had to tell the teacher the dog ate it.

With so much lead-time, parents are beseiged before a storm, their kids begging them to let Brianna or River spend the night. (Nobody was named Brianna and River when I was a kid.)

Mostly, though, snow days were rare. More often, it was school as usual.  With just a slushy mess on the ground, kids had to shift from Plan A — walking to school in a ski jacket and penny loafers (with those detestable waterproof covers) to Plan B — ski jacket and penny loafers without the waterproof  covers, only hitching a ride from mom in the family station wagon, which was even more detestable than the shoe  covers.

Some people blame the terrorists for the mania that grips the country, and our children, before a storm. Because of terrorists everyone is possessed by the idea of “preparedness.” Do you have enough rock salt? Toilet paper? Tic Tacs?

I vote for more surprises. Without advance notice, you wake up in the morning and there it is. Snow.  FFG

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