Frum Outdoorsman: Rare but Possible

The wanderings and adventures of an orthodox Jew

Jewish kids don’t care

Posted by Frum Hiker on July 24, 2008

This is very random, no idea what was going on in my head:

Jewish kids just don’t get nostalgic about Americana, they don’t care about old route 66, the mother road as they called it in the Grapes of Wrath. They don’t pull over to the side of the road fumbling around for their black and white camera body and their tripods as they wonder whether the rain storm in the distance will provide good light for the perfectly preserved service station on the side of the road, with weeds breaking the cracked concrete surface and rusted pumps hanging to the side like a last will and testament that gas pumps were once built with aesthetics in mind.

Jewish kids don’t care about rusted hulks of the classic cars of yesteryear buried under decades of rubble, rust and garbage, strewn about the side of the road like some dumpster dropped them here and totally forgot about them. They don’t care about the old license plates with their stickers denoting the year of registration, or the smooth lines from the grill to the headlamps.

Jewish kids don’t care about ghost towns, unless there is a theme park park surrounding them with little stands explaining what this house used to be or why there is a big slab of concrete here or there. They don’t care to wander around broken homes that once belonged to families that could have left for a million different reasons. They couldn’t care less about the old milk bottles, cans and signs that lay under fallen down roof panels.

Jewish kids don’t care about the abandoned railroad tracks, that crisscross this country like a spider web in the attic. They don’t care about those flat expanses with nothing but old fences and tumble weeds. They don’t care about, old diners with their flashing neon lights and their waitresses named Gene and Joe.

Jewish kids don’t care about old motels advertising air cooled rooms and color zenith color TV. They don’t care about the motor court with the dried up pool in the center and the pale blue peeling paint and brown carpets.

Jewish kids don’t care about abandoned roads, old roads, old bridges and the old byways, US highways and other nondescript roads that were heavily traveled before the easy on easy off interstates were built.

Jewish kids and most kids and most people and most everyone just don’t care anymore, about anything beyond super sized, super easy, super electronic, super fast and super flashy. No body seems to care…..

13 Responses to “Jewish kids don’t care”

  1. You make a good point. The problem is that I just don’t care.

  2. s(b.) said

    Brody cares (he’s not Jewish, but I linked his photography site to my name in this post).

    I got a spider bite last week and the venom infected me. I had it bled last night. It was totally cool in an incredibly gross way. The kids don’t care because they aren’t ever unsupervised or allowed to go exploring. Play dates are scheduled, everything is structured. F that. Time to put the date book down and just breathe.

  3. “Jewish kids don’t care”

    You mean frum kids don’t care.

  4. deeni said

    that’s because kids– all kids usually– just don’t get it yet. eventually some of us do. frum, jewish, or just plain americans.

  5. KT said

    time to put to put the negaitivity aside…..

  6. Alan said

    I care. I’m also 27 now.
    But I think it’s not a Jewish problem. It’s a lack-of-connection-to-the-world-outside problem that afflicts everyone.

  7. heimish in bp said

    I care, I am jewish, I am a kid at heart, and i care. I love olden time relics. I can spend hours just walking and exploring in the woods.

    Any museum of yesteryear, I will be there. If you ever get a chance to go to Mystic Seaport Museum, it is the greatest old time museum ever. So cool and so much to learn. I spent a whole day there, adn didnt finish. My wife wanted to kill me. i loved it.

    Dont ever say we dont care. Well, most of us dont, But I do.

  8. Moshe said

    I have to agree with Deeni and Alan; this isnt a Jewish/non-Jewish/frum phenomenon. Granted, many of the people you try to enthuse about these things to, may be Jewish. But I see this as a byproduct of our “instant-gratification, prepackaged-entertainment” culture; who has time to appreciate the past, when the present is so flashy and colorful. One of the many things I am grateful to God for is that my parents raised us with an appreciation for history and nature. (Just to shatter some stereotypes I’ll tell you, they are college-educated, streimel-wearing, rebbe-visiting Chasidim). My siblings and I visited and camped in places like Sequoia, King’s Canyon, and Big Sur. So don’t despair too much; there are some people, even Jewish people, who have an appreciation for these things and places.

    BTW- my brother, who is a frequent visitor to your other blog, introduced me to your blogs, and I’m pretty impressed. Keep it up!

  9. Ira said

    What a stupid blog entry this nonsense is. WHy do you post this crap? KIDS, IN GENERAL, don’t care about the history behind things, either. KIDS, in general, clown around and act like stupid kids. How stupid are you to say “Jewish kids” don’t care and then insert about 50 things that MOST kids, regardless of their religion, don’t care about?

    And, who are you to declare what an entire religion of kids cares about? You’re some idiot with a blog, like a billion other blogs.

  10. whistleblower said

    What do you expect from kids who grow up to care only about the Torah, Talmud, and Shulchan Aruch??
    They get 1 hour of secular education during which they only make trouble, and don’t pay attention whatsoever; that behavior is not even discouraged by their principals…
    I talk from personal experience.

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  12. I heard there’s a jewish girls summer camp starting up to do some incredible outdoors trips out in colorado, trekker girls, sounds cool

  13. Bob Butler said

    I hope this adds to the discussion:
    Lets make absolutely sure we understand Chapters of the Fathers (Pirkei Avos) 3:9 (3:7 on Bar Ilan CD 20+) “Rabbi Yaakov said: One who is walking along the road and is studying Torah, and then interrupts his studies and says, ‘How beautiful is this tree! How beautiful is this plowed field!’, the Torah considers it as if he bears the guilt for his own soul.”
    That is those who experiences the world, and this does not bring them closer to God and the Torah are fundamentally flawed and have a lot of work to do. That said, and I do appreciate the things you write about, it is hard to imagine everyone being inspired and being able to learn from the same things. After all, there is Shakespeare, Yellowstone, Mayan pyramids, Machu Pichu, Art, Music, Animals, Birds, History, Asimov, Rand etc. and even some on-line content.
    Are all teenagers doing this? Clearly not. Are some trying? I’m willing to bet that there are such people. Is the internet smartphones and social media more distracting than the sexual revolution, hippie lifestyles, the fear of nuclear destruction, Communism, Zionism, Shabbtai Tzvi, Hellenism, etc? I’m not so sure.
    One thing I am sure of is that we need to stop, appreciate the world we have been given and access our priorities. Vacations in lonely places and a quiet Shabbos are two good ways to achieve that.
    Bob Butler

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