Kid Skillz

Kids 3

While taking a bike ride with my wife this evening, I attempted a rare feat. Drumroll, please! Opening a 20 oz. bottle of Coke Zero while still in motion! It wasn’t all that impressive, though. The bottle had already been opened once, so I didn’t have to apply a lot of pressure to the cap. However, this led me to take a hard left turn down memory lane. I started thinking about all those skills we mastered as kids, without even thinking about it. Skills we would never attempt to use today, without possibly winding up in a hospital, or a graveyard.

Some of these skills weren’t all that dangerous. Like calling on a friend. You just rode up to his or her house, and in a sing-song voice, shouted out the name of the kid you were there to meet. Nobody EVER knocked on a door. Two syllable names were the best for this type of communication. Jim-mee, Jim-mee, works much better than Broo-uce, Broo-uce! Unless your last name happens to be Springsteen, of course.

Jumping fences is an activity I certainly wouldn’t try today. Unless I was being chased down a dark alley by Cujo, or a legion of zombies. As kids, we could scramble over one of those barriers like a bunch of spider monkeys going after a stash of bananas! Tiny hands and tiny shoes fit in the holes, and up and over you went. Nowadays, if I tried to get my size 13s in those fence links, Cujo would surely take a bite out of my ass!

When we rode bikes as kids, we could drink a pop, wolf down a Hershey bar and a bag of chips, all while riding wobbily down the street. Not only that, many times this display of dexterity was accomplished with no-hands on the handlebars, at all. We never gave it a second thought, we just did it.

To honor those bygone days, on tonight’s bike ride I rode home no-handed for a couple of blocks. It had been a long time since I had tried it, and I’m happy to say I pulled it off without major injury. So what’s your forgotten skill? Riding a unicycle? Doing a cartwheel? Or, maybe just riding a bike no-handed? Give it a try. Just make sure your insurance is paid up first!

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