Saturday, February 28, 2009

Kids and Spring Break

Well Spring is around the corner, but not as close as Spring Break and kids are gearing themselves up to have a blast to celebrate the end of winter and the dreariest term of the school year.

Being from the tropics myself, I never experienced "winter or spring break". We had Easter holidays which was celebrated quite differently and so I don't really relate, but I understand the need to unwind.

Now my son tells me that members of his senior class will be celebrating by heading to Cancun!! He of course wishes to go so that he can avoid being "that guy". Assurances have been made, adult chaperones will be attending, he is mature and won't do anyting stupid, blah,blah blah.

Fortunately, yes fortunately for him, he will be the one, that one, yeah that guy, this year for a number of reasons.
  1. He is too young. The child is 16, yes he is a senior but a pretty young one. His classmates are 17 and 18 year olds and could be inclined to take more risks and get involved in more adult activities;
  2. At 6'2", he does not look his age, and likes to pretend to be the same age as his friends;
  3. I will not be one of the chaperones;
  4. Take a look at wikipedia and see what it says about common practices at Spring Break. Now with the real time information that is common these days, and memories of our own youth, we don't really need wiki to remind us that binge drinking, casual sex and rec drugs form part of the spring break tradition but zeroing in on Cancun as wiki does, makes the point a lot stronger;
  5. The principal sent out an email reminding us of the dangers and reinforced that the trip is not endorsed by the school;
  6. He is a border, and should be seeing his parents during vacation;
  7. We are in a recession for chrissakes.
  8. Does anyone remember Natalie Holloway?
Parenting involves making decisions to protect our kids. If these decisions are unpopular so be it. This is not to say we have not raised them to protect themselves, but why tempt fate especially knowing that our world has become such an unsafe place? There are lots of other ways to have good fun closer to home and in any event kids don't need to grow up too fast do they?

Leave it for college, high schoolers.

As an aside, see how Spring Break was born here.

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