It’s struck me often how structured the lives of my friends’ kids have become. One aspect of that structuring is the degree to which sports have become organized into jillions of leagues involving many parents. It wasn’t that way when I was a kid.
Probably from about age eight or nine up until most of us got our hands on cars, I probably participated in some kind of sandlot (not really - usually a vacant lot or a park) ballgame organized solely by us munchkins once or twice a week. Several of us played on school teams in 7th grade or later, and, while Little League existed, most did not participate.
This is not meant to be a debate about whether the way it was or the way it is is better. I find it easy to believe adult coaching that a kid gets in today’s leagues can be of long term benefit. Whether or not all those parents’ involvement is an improvement could be a debate. Not here.
But in light of the present existence of near year round scheduled practices and league games for all kinds of sports, I have to wonder if the kids still self organize for a game.
Do they? If so, I never see them.
If 16 or so unsupervised 10-14 year olds got a game going in a park, would a cop show up and shut it down?