Perhaps someone -- one brave soul committed to the cause -- just needs to take a stand. Doctors? Public health officials? Pfft. What kind of credibility do they have? They're not the ones doling out the snacks. A mom is what's called for here.
And parent Jennifer Steinhauer writes in today's New York Times:
"When it comes to American boys and girls, snacks seem both mandatory and constant. Apparently, we have collectively decided as a culture that it is impossible for children to take part in any activity without simultaneously shoving something into their pie holes." Read the full story.
Columnist Sarah Smiley wrote in a similar vein on Military.com last summer:
"After-game snacks are no longer about hydration; they were about one-upping the sorry mother who brought the kids raisins the week before." Read more.
Then she got warmed up. There's this from her follow-up column:
"Conflict ensues when on the baseball field being a 'good parent' is paradoxically defined as making sure that no one feels discomfort, whether it be hunger pain, the 'pain' of sitting on the bench and waiting your turn, or not being picked to play first base. The children naturally want to feel good and have a reward. We as parents have unfortunately catered to them." Read more.
Perhaps this is how attitudes change. A mom here, a mom there. ... (Sorry, dads, I realize that you too bring snacks and that you too could draw a line in the snacking sand, but the other moms are not going to follow your example in this matter. They'll just figure you didn't know better.)
In the matter of full disclosure, let it be known that I'm not completely without bias in this matter. Having once carried approximately 20 bananas to a girl's softball game for the post-play, coach-talk, snack-fest -- and having returned home with approximately 20 bananas -- I'm looking for any moral support I can get.
And quite obviously, I'm not the one to lead the revolution. I now take cookies, pleaded-for by the kid whose mom once took bananas. (Sure, the cookies make the kids happy -- and, as a bonus, tweak the other moms -- but the guilt ...)
If you can stand to look at any more stats on kids and obesity, here they are.
-- Tami Dennis
Photo: Maybe some kids used up this many calories -- and then some -- and need to have their blood sugar spiked just to have the energy to make it home for dinner. But I doubt it. ... I watched the game. ... Credit: Daniel Acker / Bloomberg