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Mall Scavengers: A new version of an old game
Posted by R. Wesley Lovil, Apr 12, 2009. 1389 views. ID = 2528

Mall Scavengers

Posted by R. Wesley Lovil, Apr 12, 2009. 1389 views. ID = 2528
This post was written in 57478340 minutes.
As we long for the way things were we must remember our children will remember this as the good old days
This post has been awarded 17 stars by 4 readers.

Long, long ago when I was young, several times a year you would attend a party where one of the games played would be a scavenger hunt. Usually there would be a paring up of people who would then be given a list of various items and then sent out in the neighborhood to knock on doors seeking said items. The items the participants were seeking had little or no value and although common, they wouldn't typically be in every house. Things like maybe a coat hanger would be easy but then your list might ask for a two week old TV Guide or a Perry Como record. I remember most of the people we disturbed were eager to help us fill our list, searching for a something they just knew they had but could not find. Many would go out of their way to help or at least would suggest somewhere else to find said items. Of course, the winner would be the team who collected the most items on the list.

Now in our modern times you can see why a parent would never let unsupervised youngsters out to roam the streets knocking on stranger,s doors not even to mention people opening their doors to stranger's knocks. Therefore, I was quite surprised to learn my granddaughter is having a scavenger hunt for her birthday but instead of going door to door, she is having it at the mall. What a great idea, because where would a young teenage girl rather be than at the mall? The game plan is simple; the participants receive a list of items to scavenge and twenty-five dollars cash. Some items they will need to purchase and some items they need to ask for, such as a broken mannequin hand or display box. They will be instructed to be courteous to mall employees and other customers. At a set time they will meet at the food court and compare their scavenged loot as they eat pizza and of course the customary birthday cake.

As I sit here thinking about how our world has changed I realized this modern version of an old party game is just an example of a modern version of an old world. It is simple if you think about it; the mall is now our neighborhood. Our kids don't go to their friend's house; they meet them at the mall, they no longer 'hang at the corner' they now 'hang at the mall', and they don't ask us to take them to the playground they ask to take them to the mall. Whether this is good or bad for our children is not the point, it just is what our culture has become. As I long for that age of innocence I grew up in I realize it is not to be. We no longer know our neighbor's names let alone send our children next door to borrow a cup of sugar. We seem to have turned into a transient society, before you learn the name of the person next door either you or they have moved.

Believe me I am a realist, I understand change is the way of the world. Furthermore, I don't sit around telling my grandchildren how I used to pay a nickel for the same candy bar they are now paying a dollar for (well maybe I do sometimes). I am just glad my granddaughter is getting a chance to play a party game I played as a youngster, a game that I thought I would never see played again.

Copyright 2009 R. Wesley Lovil. All rights reserved. has been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work. For permission to reprint this item, please contact the author.

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This post has been awarded 17 stars by 4 readers.
This post is part of a writing prompt: A Trip to the Mall

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