Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Sometimes a picture says it all...

...and sometimes a picture cries out for a caption.

Here is an illustration of a picture that says it all (OK, a comic strip that says it all):
And here is a picture that cries out for a caption:

(And, yes, your honor, I can tie these up.)

The cartoon mentions lawyers. The photo is a detail of an ad for title insurance appearing in this month's issue of the CBA Record, a magazine for Chicago lawyers.

Presumably the girl is happy because her parents have wisely protected the purchase of their new home with title insurance. Even the training wheels and dorky bicycle helmet are probably intended as symbols of protection.

Hey, it's title insurance: You gotta get visuals where you can.

But I looked at this picture and thought, you know, if the girl's parents had spent less time obsessing over title insurance and more time teaching their little girl to hold on to the handlebars when she rides her bike, she might not need to wear the dorky little helmet.

The use of the adjective 'dorky' may (perhaps) give away my views on the subject of bicycle helmets.

Certainly, I can appreciate that helmets would be useful accessories for bicycle racers or persons who ride their bicycles on unpaved trails. But this little girl is on her way to visit her friend Zuzu Bailey, two blocks over, so they can compare rose petals. Why does she need a helmet for that?

No wonder kids today won't get off the couch and go out in the sunshine and play: If they do, someone may strap a dorky helmet on them! It seems as silly to me as safety posters and guardrails on the scaffold.

(I told Your Honor I could tie these up!)

My kids (now 14 to 23) never wore helmets. My perception is that none of Youngest Son's contemporaries wear these contraptions but that many of the younger kids do. In fact, in my neighborhood I have seen entire family groups riding their bicycles in the nice weather, each wearing a sillier helmet than the next -- even mom and dad! When did this become the norm?

An Unscientific Survey on this subject follows immediately.

13 comments:

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

well luckily you still don't need a dorky helmet on a cruiseship! ha.

smiles, bee

SQT said...

I live in Ca and my kids are required by law to wear bike helmets. I suppose it's good for my daughter who is not the most coordinated child, but my son could probably do okay without one. But it's a moot point here. The cops in my neighborhood actually cite kids if they don't have their helmets on. *sigh* I guess I should be glad we live somewhere so safe that the police don't have something better to do.

The Curmudgeon said...

SQT -- Really? When did that law come into effect? Is it a State law or just a local ordinance?

You know, in Illinois, motorcyclists don't have to wear helmets -- just glasses. (And even I can see that you'd have to be a goof to ride a motorcycle without a helmet... but a 12 year old going to the 7-11 isn't going to travel nearly as fast on his Schwinn as someone on a Harley.)

The Curmudgeon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jean-Luc Picard said...

In Britain they are paranoid about dorky helmets. People have to wear one...unless you have a turban on..

Rositta said...

Here in Ontario there is a helmet law for children,has been around for some time. I raised my offspring without helmets and he survived just fine. Today's kids are being wrapped in "cotton wool" so to speak, kind of sad...ciao

AMAZING GRACIE said...

Hah! Jean-luc...too funny!
Yes, California is probably one of the most litigious (sp?) states in the union. No, I would risk a ticket before I'd wear a dorky helmet, but only in my neighborhood. I wouldn't push it out on the highway. Fortunately, my children grew up in an era before all of this nonsense and have the scars to prove it. They were not mollycoddled and sissified so they don't fall apart when life throws them a curve ball.

susan said...

LOL! You probably let your kids play on death traps like swings and teeter-totters, too, didn't you?

Oh, and P.S. what camp of dorkiness does it put me in if I admit that my bike helmet matches my bike? Might as well admit that I've never suffered a broken bone while I'm at it...

SQT said...

Curmudgeon

I'm not sure how long it's been in effect. If I had to guess I'd say it's statewide. A neighbor kid got a ticket recently by a city cop for not wearing a helmet; so it is enforced around here. But I'd have to look up the state law to tell you any particulars.

The Curmudgeon said...

susan -- hey, we got rid of the lawn darts. Isn't that a start?

Lahdeedah said...

Kids have to wear bike helmets now, by law.

I think next helmets for scooters may be required.

Chris said...

Said it all on the other post.

Frankly amazed at some of the comments here.

Letting kids experience life without being wrapped in cotton wool is one thing, avoiding the risk of a fractured skull in a young child 'cos it looks dorky? Heaven forbid.

Linda said...

One of my cousins got nailed in the back with a lawn dart by another cousin when he ran in front of the target at the same time the other cousin threw the dart. Luckily he wasn't paralyzed or anything and no one thought to sue the manufacturer or anything.

Not sure what that has to do with anything but I thought I'd throw it out there ...