August 27, 2010

Survival of the Fittest?

At 10PM tonight, my doorbell rang. That is NOT a common occurence in this household.

I opened the door to find four 11 year olds beckoning for Bones to come out and play Manhunt. They were decked out, from head to toe in black.

I had them all in while Bones got his shoes on and changed into black, telling them of course he could play for an hour or so. The boys love playing Manhunt. They love it more in the winter when it gets dark earlier and it's cooler... they can play for longer.

As the crew stood in my family room I looked at them and said, "Did you boys ride your bikes here?"

They all nodded to the affirmative.

"Hmm," I continued. "Do you have... lights on your bikes?"

They all shook their heads no.

Looking at the boy whose house they were spending the night I said, "Does your MOTHER know you are here?"

He shook his head yes, "Yes she does!"

I took a deep breath and said, "So let me get this straight. You all rode your bikes to my home, in the dark, at 10PM at night, wearing black, with nothing more than a reflector or two on your bikes?"

I was met with silence.

The one boy replied, "Wow. I'd not ever thought of that..." and he stripped down to a lime green undershirt he had on under his black tshirt.

Bones was ready and I said to the group collectively, "I tell you what. I'm going to DRIVE Bones to your home and I'm going to follow slowly behind all of you with my lights on, so everyone will see you."

And I did... and realized to my utter horror... that not one of them was wearing a helmet either.

A big no no in our home.

Bones had a good time, but I'm just left shaking my head. What the heck?

Posted by Boudicca at August 27, 2010 10:21 PM

Ok, the dark clothes at night I completely get, but no helmet? C'mon. Kids rode bikes for years without helmets and the next generation still survived.

Posted by: Ted at August 28, 2010 01:24 PM

I know I never wore a helmet as a kid...but neither was I on the road that late at night...with drivers who were on cell phones!

Posted by: Mrs. Who at August 28, 2010 03:12 PM

Ted- In the state of Florida it's the law. We have a bicycle helmet law for every child under 16. Add to that they were riding in the dark, at 10PM, it just adds to the potential.

Posted by: Bou at August 28, 2010 04:28 PM

Maybe someone had added chlorine to their gene pool, and it was beginning to take effect.

Posted by: Angus of Argyle at August 28, 2010 05:05 PM

I regularly see black adults, wearing dark clothes, cycling at night with no lights. You see them more by the sudden dark spot ahead of you than anything else! But they're asking to be hit, and I've heard of cops stopping and ticketing cyclists who don't have proper lights. They're a traffic hazard and make lousy speed bumps.

Posted by: George P. at August 29, 2010 09:35 AM

Hey...when I was that age...I didn't need lights, or a mom.

Live and learn.


Posted by: Yabu at August 29, 2010 11:30 AM