Ryan Jordan

Toys for Boys

A firestarter, a whistle, a compass, a flashlight, and a pocketknife.

Fundamental tools of boyhood. You callin’ me old school? Gimme a break. I was born in 1970.

So, would someone mind telling me which generation of stupid parents replaced all this with gameboys and daycare centers? Maybe it’s the same generation that can’t afford to teach their boys to be boys because they have neither the time nor the energy because they’re breaking themselves up at work. Maybe it’s my generation. Maybe it’s me?

OK, I confess. I’m guilty, often. But I think I’d rather fight this – hard – than give up because “society (or…taxes…or…Republicans/Democrats…or…my parents…or…college debt…or…or…or…) has put me into this spot”.

Should I rather sacrifice self so my son can teach his son:

  • How to build a fire – and stay warm.
  • How to follow a path – or create his own.
  • How to pack his pack – and what to pack.
  • How to be a good steward – and why.
  • How to pitch a tent – and make a home.
  • How to tie a fly, catch a fish, and serve it on a bed of rice.
  • How to find his way.
  • How to love.

How is it that caretakers, videogames, and MP3 players have become ideological totems of the most recent generation(s) of our youth?

What am I providing my kid that directly impacts his values? How about you?

Live lightly.