A group of Poles in the village of Trzebnica spent 6 days building a giant snowman named Milocinek. Why? Because they were bored.
I’m not sure how this boredom happened. Did the snow knock out their wireless? Did they lose electricity and the Wiis went dark? Or were they, maybe, possibly, just this once, bored of electronics? News reports said once the villagers started building, they got more and more ambitious and now the snowman stands 30 feet high, as tall as a two story house. Frosty the Snowman for sure.
How often these days to we read about the power of boredom. We hear all the time that in our over-stimulated world where kids are always plugged in and parents are tuned out with Blackberries we need to be bored! Let our kids be bored! See what happens! And now, what with the Polish snowman, we see what can happen.
So, if your kids had six days for building anything in the snow, what would they build? Would they stick to a plan?
If we had all that snow (and after the big snowstorm in the west some of us do), I think my kids might start with a snowman, too. They used to love the book Snowmen at Night, so maybe with a lot of snow and a few friends they’d want to build a bunch of snowmen having a snowball fight. They’d work on that until another group of kids came along and started a real snowball fight. And then they’d all get cold and no doubt there’d be tears soothed only by hot chocolate. After which we might regroup and try sledding. By then we’d be two days into the big storm and the ice at our neighborhood skating rink would probably be cleared of snow so we’d head down there for a little skating. Skating followed by lunch followed by a movie and maybe some pizza. Four days into the snowfall they’d need a break from the powder and would probably refuse to go outside at all unless the trip involved toy purchases. By the fifth day it might be time for the museum and on the sixth day assuming there’s still enough snow to please a Pole, they could decide to return to their snowball throwing snowmen. The big difference between kids and the Poles is that for kids, snow is Never Boring.
For adults, of course, the short days, long nights and hazardous roads might make for some boring times, if you don’t have kids. Because if you do have kids, and you’re like me, you’ll just be exhausted by all that time in the snow and all you”ll really want to do is catch that new movie about the Polish guys in a bar who decide to build an enormous snowman and everyone thinks they’re nuts until the building brings the whole town together, sparks a new love affair, and reunites a family. Look what can happen when you’re bored!
What would your kids build in the snow?
When I worked in an office, I loved those days. The phone never rang, I’d clean out my file folders, organize my paper clips. Now I dream of an afternoon where all I have to do is clean out a closet, when meanwhile, one big snow and a few cold days and