If you read my last blog, you were introduced to the reasons we had for developing the Express concept. Let’s face it, we are all so freakin’ busy we barely have a chance to just sit and relax without feeling guilty about doing so.
Me: I’m 46 years old and, admittedly, struggle to understand my own family. Sounds crazy but everything that made sense to me as a kid growing up has been thrown out the window. We were left alone to fend for ourselves, get from point A to point B alone, in all kinds of weather, without a cell phone and, we did it. Somehow.
I have strong memories of being a kid growing up in Western Massachusetts (I now live in Austin, TX). We had seasons to contend with, cold weather, real Spring Fever. When we had baseball practice, we rode our bikes with nothing but our cleats and hand-me-down gloves hanging on our handlebars. Our Coach was given a bag full of helmets, catcher’s gear and bats. We all used the newest bat and shared the 3 best helmets. G-d forbid if you were the youngest on the team and got the uniform that had the stretched out elastics and the helmet that didn’t have any foam inside anymore so you had to wear it over your hat! Batting practice was 10 swings and “next!”
Let’s compare to our lives today. My daughter played select softball for years. The team cost hundreds of dollars to join, then there were travel and tournament costs, a $400 bat, $100 glove, home and away uniforms, bat bags, batting lessons, etc, etc. Every child is driven to the field and parents stay at the practice. That is a massive investment in time and money and that is just one child!
We used to play with our friends all day! We would leave our house in the morning, walk to ride to a friend’s and not talk to our parents until dinner time and the only way we could be found is if your parents called all around to everyone’s house and asked them to tell you to come home. True story; my son was about 8 and had some friends over the house. My wife told them they needed stop playing video games and go outside to play. I was out there already mowing the lawn and some them just standing around. They did not know what to do! So, I proceeded to tell them about my youth when, as kids, we would play “guns” using sticks. “And then what?” he asked. “We would shoot each other saying ‘Bang, Bang, I got you.” I said. “How would you know who got shot?” he asked. I said, “We would say ‘I shot you, you’re dead’, and the other person would say,’no you didn’t, you missed.” Shay and his friends stared at me blankly, “I don’t get it” he said.
I guess that is the point. He didn’t get it because everything is done for him. There is no more need to fill in the blanks, we fill them in for our kids. No need to figure out HOW to get to his or her friend’s house, we drive them or they follow a map on their phones. Am I such a bad parent that I don’t WANT to drive my kids to a friends house or pick them up at school? Am I so horrible to think they will be better off and be more independent if they had to walk and I could relax for 15 minutes? Why is it we think something horrible will happen to our kids walking home simply because the 24 hour news cycle needs to scare you into watching so they can feed it with advertising dollars or to pay Nancy Grace’s salary? Contrary to popular belief, our children have never been safer!
I truly lament the days when my Father was served first at the dinner table, when the only way you got a trophy was by winning something and when you had to wait in the dark for someone to pick you up and had to fight back the fear of having to wait there forever because there was no way to get a hold of your parents while they were en route. I lament that because I think our kids are missing out on the opportunity to grow and become independent young adults.
The reality of today is today. It is what it is and, because of that, we need a better way to eat on the go, we need Jason’s Express. Maybe someday we won’t need this concept, we will all slow down, realize our kids may never be good enough to get a scholarship or play professional ball and that rec ball is good enough for their development. We may then be able to share a regular meal around the dinner table as opposed to in the minivan.
Daily 6:30 a.m.-9 p.m.
Breakfast served 6:30-10:30 a.m.
8517 Davis Blvd
North Richland Hills, TX 76182