The Lost Art of Calling in Your Children

When I was a boy, the late afternoon air would be split by the sound of someone — a mother, usually — hollering out the name of her child. It was just like in this classic commercial, except in the suburbs:

I haven’t heard that in probably more than ten years, when the woman across the street would stand on the stoop and call out for her son. “Matthew! Matthew!” She had amazing pipes.

Today this has gone the way of sending your kid to the store to buy you a carton of cigarettes. It’s just something that’s not done anymore.

Why is that?

Mobile phones are certainly one of the culprits. Now you just call or text the little buggers to summon them home. It could be that they’re sitting on the couch instead of tooling around the neighborhood — or at least that’s what the media keeps telling us.

Either way, it’s another one of those things swept away by changing times, once so commonplace, now just a memory.

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