What is Critical – A Different Perspective

playground
Newly refurbished Central Park playground is now open for business

By Tia Will

It is the morning of Saturday July 5th and I have just returned from Farmer’s Market.

Like most every Saturday, I check out not only the food and craft offerings, but wander the whole length of the park to see what informational booths have been set up. This morning held a special treat.

The new Central Park playground has opened and was full of children ranging in ages from those still confined to strollers or their parent’s arms, through toddlers, to a few representatives of the preteen set. With the exception of the occasional tears associated with an unexpected fall to the soft underfoot surface, all were happily engaged with the many different features of the new playground.

It occurred to me as I watched them play that what I was seeing was not only the joy and intrigue of the moment – the swings, the climbing structures, the water features, the musical structures and the not-so-parent-friendly mud pit. I was also seeing the early hands-on education of our future gymnasts, architects, city planners, water experts, musicians and diplomats.

Not one of these residents of our community has the ability to express convincingly to the older and supposedly wiser members of our community just how essential these types of experiences are to their development. As adults, we of course believe that we know better. Just this morning, I wrote that I believed that we needed to prioritize roads above recreational infrastructure. But, that was before I watched the sense of wonder on the face of a young girl when she realized that she could block or increase the amount of flow just by changing the position of a paddle. That was before I watched two boys changing their world by operating the “earth movers”. Now, I am not so sure I was correct.

Roads, sidewalks, greenbelts and their maintenance are of course critical to the well being of our community. As adults, it is easy for us to appreciate this. What I am afraid we may have lost sight of is what is critical to the smaller, less articulate members of our community. If they could make the comparison, I would bet that many of them would prioritize this playground above the presence of potholes on their street. Now as adults, it is our responsibility to make the important decisions for them. It is our responsibility to provide a fiscally sustainable, safe environment with an intact infrastructure for them to inherit from us.

Today highlighted for me that it is also our responsibility to provide a stimulating, thought-provoking environment for them to explore and grow in. While some may see this as secondary, or as “nice to have,” today’s experience showed me that such spaces are critical (not optional) for the well being of our community. Within this space was not only the joy of discovery for the little ones, but also the direct involvement of their parents strengthening family ties and the delight of those seniors amongst us who could relate to this time spent happily with our own children or grandchildren.

Today, in the playground, I was reminded of the importance of that which is intangible. While we certainly need to be cognizant of the amount of money needed to repair our “necessary” infrastructure. Perhaps, over time, we might want to reconsider just what we define as “necessary” and for whom. Although we cannot measure joy, or a sense of peace and well being, or determine which experience it is that draws a young child to a particular interest, or which shared experience it is that bonds a family together, that does not mean that these are not all critical aspects of the well being of our community.

I am not making a case for playgrounds or pools over roads. I am just no longer quite so certain in my conviction that they are not of equal importance.

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130 Comments

  1. Matt Williams

    There is a second lesson for us all in your experience Tia. Human beings often make decisions based on the information that is available to us at the time the decision is made, and often that information is limited. When new information is subsequently obtained that expands the parameters of the original decision criteria, some people are comfortable revisiting their decision, and if the new information warrants, revising the decision. Other people adamantly resist such an adjustment.

    I’m not sure whether others see it this way, but I often find that the key factor that determines whether a person falls into the former group or the latter group is testosterone.

    1. TrueBlueDevil

      If you made a similar analogy towards women, you’d be tarred and feathered as sexist, right? But it’s OK to take swipes at men, no points lost. Such is liberalism.

      1. Matt Williams

        I have reread my comment numerous times and try as I might, I can’t for the life of me find any analogy. I see only see the description of a cause/effect relationship.

        Regardless of whether my comment is an analogy or an opinion, it is not a swipe at all. Swipe means to strike with a sweeping blow … coming in from the side rather than a no-nonsense frontal blow, head-on with nothing disguised.

        Of course it is sexist … sexist by definition.

        It also is a generalization that clearly does not have universal application.

        With that said, Queen Gertrude would be proud of your response.

          1. Matt Williams

            Queen Gertrude was/is Hamlet’s mom.

            It has nothing to do with being liberal. TBD didn’t accuse me of being liberal, s/he accused me of being sexist.

  2. Matt Williams

    There is a second lesson for us all in your experience Tia. Human beings often make decisions based on the information that is available to us at the time the decision is made, and often that information is limited. When new information is subsequently obtained that expands the parameters of the original decision criteria, some people are comfortable revisiting their decision, and if the new information warrants, revising the decision. Other people adamantly resist such an adjustment.

    I’m not sure whether others see it this way, but I often find that the key factor that determines whether a person falls into the former group or the latter group is testosterone.

    1. TrueBlueDevil

      If you made a similar analogy towards women, you’d be tarred and feathered as sexist, right? But it’s OK to take swipes at men, no points lost. Such is liberalism.

      1. Matt Williams

        I have reread my comment numerous times and try as I might, I can’t for the life of me find any analogy. I see only see the description of a cause/effect relationship.

        Regardless of whether my comment is an analogy or an opinion, it is not a swipe at all. Swipe means to strike with a sweeping blow … coming in from the side rather than a no-nonsense frontal blow, head-on with nothing disguised.

        Of course it is sexist … sexist by definition.

        It also is a generalization that clearly does not have universal application.

        With that said, Queen Gertrude would be proud of your response.

          1. Matt Williams

            Queen Gertrude was/is Hamlet’s mom.

            It has nothing to do with being liberal. TBD didn’t accuse me of being liberal, s/he accused me of being sexist.

  3. Tia Will

    Matt

    I don’t know about the testosterone part. However, I do think this demonstrates the difference between those who consider a change of opinion “flip flopping” vs those who consider it reasoned reconsideration of one’s initial position. It also demonstrates a difference between those who see and appreciate nuances and those who view the world from a more “black and white” perspective.

    Thanks for the comment Matt. It did indeed present me with a different perspective !

    1. Frankly

      “flip-flop”

      It depends if the initial arguments in support of a position where reasoned or principled/biased/political, etc.

      It is the difference between “I am, hence I know”, and “I know, hence I am”.

      I very much dislike stubborn dismissal of the facts just because they inconveniently disrupt an agenda… almost as much as I dislike over exploitation of facts to push ann agenda.

      Every decision can be optimized as long as facts, honesty and objectivity rule the process. We are all emotional creatures and our feelings are a necessary consideration, but only after they are rationalized (i.e., why do I feel this way). Except for fundamental fight or flight situations, decisions made from primarily an emotional basis will always be sub-optimized… they might achieve an agenda of short-term good feelings, but at the expense of long-term good.

      Looking at the children playing and learning would swell the heart and inspire interest in more of the same.

      But then there are other considerations in terms of city funding and taxation. And util those that can’t find an expense or tax they don’t like figure out a way to grow money trees, math will be their eventual downfall.

      There are many, many amenities we can think of that will make our hearts swell. But someone has to pay for them and there are consequences for where we direct our limited resources.

      1. Barack Palin

        “There are many, many amenities we can think of that will make our hearts swell.”

        Frankly, like our new Arnold Palmer designed public golf course?

        1. Frankly

          I support that! Think about how great it would be for more young people and older people to learn how to golf… get out there in a beautiful park setting getting exercise.

          And what about a city-owned gun range to teach gun safety so that we reduce the risk of accidental shooting?

          1. D.D.

            Hello Frankly,
            How is your day going?
            Re: golf, my kids couldn’t learn golf because we couldn’t afford the equipment and the greens fees. Thy wanted ski lessons, but transportation, equipment, and lift fees also restricted that sport. I suppose some kind hearted person in Davis may have donated old golf clubs to my kids, and waved or reduced the green fees. But then we would have felt like we were accepting charity, and that would have felt uncomfortable.
            My kids were not nvolved in private soccer leagues for the same reasons. They are just way too expensive for a middle income family.
            🙁
            Re: gun safety: I don’t own a gun but I’m 100% behind your idea to teach gun safety.
            (Also don’t believe people under the age of eighteen should have sex, but I believe in teaching safe sex in jr. high and high school, too.)
            Hope you had a nice Fourth of July.

    2. SODA

      I admire (you, me and others) being able to change one’s mind and admit it! But I am reminded that playgrounds and other amenities which help our next generation to grow into their best selves, do not need to cost as much as roads or pools. Keeping your thought but prioritizing our money might be the best solution. There undoubtedly are low cost/free amenities which can accomplish the goals you outline for our kids….I am reminded that pans, spoons and pots plus wooden sewing thread spools were often the ‘toys’ my kids liked the best….and for me I was a mud pie maker and seller when young. Taught high finance and supplies were free!

      1. Tia Will

        Frankly

        “I very much dislike stubborn dismissal of the facts just because they inconveniently disrupt an agenda… almost as much as I dislike over exploitation of facts to push ann agenda.”

        I am in complete agreement. I also feel that it is very much easier to perceive these tactics in others and very hard to perceive them when we ourselves are employing them.
        This was exactly how I felt when you were calling fluoride a poison when the proposed levels were well below those that any of the articles cited by the opponents considered as dangerous levels. You persisted in this hyperbole even though you had provided fluoride to your own sons and advocated that it be provided for free to those needing it.
        I am fairly sure that you would not have attempted to poison either your own children or those less wealthy, and yet you were fully willing to exploit “facts” to “push an agenda”.

        1. Frankly

          Fluoride is a drug when administered or prescribed by a dentist, otherwise it is a known toxic substance. And at high enough qualities it is certainly a poison. In in case, it is amoral to add a drug or toxic substance to the drinking water against the will of the majority only to benefit a small minority.

          So where we should have ended up is exactly there. You admitting that, based on what the medical profession tells us today, the fluoride we would have put in the water was in industrial compound that was potentially toxic/poisonous if ingested at higher quantities, and me agreeing that the PPM the city would add to the water was significantly less than what the medical profession has found to be harmful.

          1. Tia Will

            “Fluoride is a drug when administered or prescribed by a dentist, otherwise it is a known toxic substance”

            Then there must be a lot of companies selling “toxic substances” in tooth pastes which are marketed and sold freely without a dentists prescription, application, or even recommendation.
            I don’t disagree with anything you said about dosage. My point was your willingness to imply that the amount planned for the water supply was harmful when all the evidence, event that provided by the opponents demonstrated that it was not.

            My point was not to argue the pros and cons of fluoride, but in response to your statement that you disliked exaggeration to push and “agenda”
            which was most certainly what you and the opponents were doing.

        2. Barack Palin

          “almost as much as I dislike over exploitation of facts to push ann agenda.”

          Yes I agree, it reminds me of the plastic bag banners who falsely stated that Davis plastic bags made their way to the ocean in order to push their agenda.

          1. Tia Will

            BP

            I thoroughly agree. Surely the distastefulness of seeing the plastic bags hung up on fences and bushes around town ( I had pictures of 7 that I saw on one side of the street while walking from 2nd and J to 14th street a few months ago but couldn’t figure out how to post them) would be enough to convince people of the need to minimize their use. One shouldn’t need to exaggerate to convince reasonable people of reasonable environmental protection steps !

  4. Tia Will

    Matt

    I don’t know about the testosterone part. However, I do think this demonstrates the difference between those who consider a change of opinion “flip flopping” vs those who consider it reasoned reconsideration of one’s initial position. It also demonstrates a difference between those who see and appreciate nuances and those who view the world from a more “black and white” perspective.

    Thanks for the comment Matt. It did indeed present me with a different perspective !

    1. Frankly

      “flip-flop”

      It depends if the initial arguments in support of a position where reasoned or principled/biased/political, etc.

      It is the difference between “I am, hence I know”, and “I know, hence I am”.

      I very much dislike stubborn dismissal of the facts just because they inconveniently disrupt an agenda… almost as much as I dislike over exploitation of facts to push ann agenda.

      Every decision can be optimized as long as facts, honesty and objectivity rule the process. We are all emotional creatures and our feelings are a necessary consideration, but only after they are rationalized (i.e., why do I feel this way). Except for fundamental fight or flight situations, decisions made from primarily an emotional basis will always be sub-optimized… they might achieve an agenda of short-term good feelings, but at the expense of long-term good.

      Looking at the children playing and learning would swell the heart and inspire interest in more of the same.

      But then there are other considerations in terms of city funding and taxation. And util those that can’t find an expense or tax they don’t like figure out a way to grow money trees, math will be their eventual downfall.

      There are many, many amenities we can think of that will make our hearts swell. But someone has to pay for them and there are consequences for where we direct our limited resources.

      1. Barack Palin

        “There are many, many amenities we can think of that will make our hearts swell.”

        Frankly, like our new Arnold Palmer designed public golf course?

        1. Frankly

          I support that! Think about how great it would be for more young people and older people to learn how to golf… get out there in a beautiful park setting getting exercise.

          And what about a city-owned gun range to teach gun safety so that we reduce the risk of accidental shooting?

          1. D.D.

            Hello Frankly,
            How is your day going?
            Re: golf, my kids couldn’t learn golf because we couldn’t afford the equipment and the greens fees. Thy wanted ski lessons, but transportation, equipment, and lift fees also restricted that sport. I suppose some kind hearted person in Davis may have donated old golf clubs to my kids, and waved or reduced the green fees. But then we would have felt like we were accepting charity, and that would have felt uncomfortable.
            My kids were not nvolved in private soccer leagues for the same reasons. They are just way too expensive for a middle income family.
            🙁
            Re: gun safety: I don’t own a gun but I’m 100% behind your idea to teach gun safety.
            (Also don’t believe people under the age of eighteen should have sex, but I believe in teaching safe sex in jr. high and high school, too.)
            Hope you had a nice Fourth of July.

    2. SODA

      I admire (you, me and others) being able to change one’s mind and admit it! But I am reminded that playgrounds and other amenities which help our next generation to grow into their best selves, do not need to cost as much as roads or pools. Keeping your thought but prioritizing our money might be the best solution. There undoubtedly are low cost/free amenities which can accomplish the goals you outline for our kids….I am reminded that pans, spoons and pots plus wooden sewing thread spools were often the ‘toys’ my kids liked the best….and for me I was a mud pie maker and seller when young. Taught high finance and supplies were free!

      1. Tia Will

        Frankly

        “I very much dislike stubborn dismissal of the facts just because they inconveniently disrupt an agenda… almost as much as I dislike over exploitation of facts to push ann agenda.”

        I am in complete agreement. I also feel that it is very much easier to perceive these tactics in others and very hard to perceive them when we ourselves are employing them.
        This was exactly how I felt when you were calling fluoride a poison when the proposed levels were well below those that any of the articles cited by the opponents considered as dangerous levels. You persisted in this hyperbole even though you had provided fluoride to your own sons and advocated that it be provided for free to those needing it.
        I am fairly sure that you would not have attempted to poison either your own children or those less wealthy, and yet you were fully willing to exploit “facts” to “push an agenda”.

        1. Frankly

          Fluoride is a drug when administered or prescribed by a dentist, otherwise it is a known toxic substance. And at high enough qualities it is certainly a poison. In in case, it is amoral to add a drug or toxic substance to the drinking water against the will of the majority only to benefit a small minority.

          So where we should have ended up is exactly there. You admitting that, based on what the medical profession tells us today, the fluoride we would have put in the water was in industrial compound that was potentially toxic/poisonous if ingested at higher quantities, and me agreeing that the PPM the city would add to the water was significantly less than what the medical profession has found to be harmful.

          1. Tia Will

            “Fluoride is a drug when administered or prescribed by a dentist, otherwise it is a known toxic substance”

            Then there must be a lot of companies selling “toxic substances” in tooth pastes which are marketed and sold freely without a dentists prescription, application, or even recommendation.
            I don’t disagree with anything you said about dosage. My point was your willingness to imply that the amount planned for the water supply was harmful when all the evidence, event that provided by the opponents demonstrated that it was not.

            My point was not to argue the pros and cons of fluoride, but in response to your statement that you disliked exaggeration to push and “agenda”
            which was most certainly what you and the opponents were doing.

        2. Barack Palin

          “almost as much as I dislike over exploitation of facts to push ann agenda.”

          Yes I agree, it reminds me of the plastic bag banners who falsely stated that Davis plastic bags made their way to the ocean in order to push their agenda.

          1. Tia Will

            BP

            I thoroughly agree. Surely the distastefulness of seeing the plastic bags hung up on fences and bushes around town ( I had pictures of 7 that I saw on one side of the street while walking from 2nd and J to 14th street a few months ago but couldn’t figure out how to post them) would be enough to convince people of the need to minimize their use. One shouldn’t need to exaggerate to convince reasonable people of reasonable environmental protection steps !

  5. Nancy Price

    A reminder …..If Davis residents , in 1986, had accepted the then City Council’s decision to turn Central Park into a 3-tiered shopping mall, we would not have the wonderful Central Park with all it’s facilities and amenities that we have today and Tia and others are celebrating. Thanks to 5 visionaries, myself included, who met one early evening in the park back then, and were able to gather enough signature to qualify a referendum and take it to a vote – and voila.

    1. Matt Williams

      Yes … I too thank you Nancy. Sometimes we are so busy living our lives that we don’t pay attention very well. You and your four cohorts were indeed paying attention.

    2. DavisBurns

      I am happy to have Central Park as it is. I remember parking in the lot when we rode the Davis Double century. But I am surprised the folks who bemoan the lack of retail in Davis don’t think it was a mistake. Third street IS the gateway to the university and we are revisiting that and considering some improvements. And had we done the Third Street Parade we would surely have had more commercial space and more income for the city and less pressure for retail on the perifery. It’s interesting to consider how different it would be today and if it would have improved the downtown.

    3. TrueBlueDevil

      Thank you for your input. I love Central Park.

      However, how many tax dollars would that business development have brought, how about surrounding businesses, and how would that have reduced the current financial problems? A new park would have been created, and the business community would be more vibrant.

  6. Nancy Price

    A reminder …..If Davis residents , in 1986, had accepted the then City Council’s decision to turn Central Park into a 3-tiered shopping mall, we would not have the wonderful Central Park with all it’s facilities and amenities that we have today and Tia and others are celebrating. Thanks to 5 visionaries, myself included, who met one early evening in the park back then, and were able to gather enough signature to qualify a referendum and take it to a vote – and voila.

    1. Matt Williams

      Yes … I too thank you Nancy. Sometimes we are so busy living our lives that we don’t pay attention very well. You and your four cohorts were indeed paying attention.

    2. DavisBurns

      I am happy to have Central Park as it is. I remember parking in the lot when we rode the Davis Double century. But I am surprised the folks who bemoan the lack of retail in Davis don’t think it was a mistake. Third street IS the gateway to the university and we are revisiting that and considering some improvements. And had we done the Third Street Parade we would surely have had more commercial space and more income for the city and less pressure for retail on the perifery. It’s interesting to consider how different it would be today and if it would have improved the downtown.

    3. TrueBlueDevil

      Thank you for your input. I love Central Park.

      However, how many tax dollars would that business development have brought, how about surrounding businesses, and how would that have reduced the current financial problems? A new park would have been created, and the business community would be more vibrant.

  7. Tia Will

    SODA

    “do not need to cost as much as roads or pools. Keeping your thought but prioritizing our money might be the best solution. There undoubtedly are low cost/free amenities”

    I agree that these types of amenities need not cost “as much”. Many costs can be defrayed by seeking volunteers as during construction of Rainbow City when my children were little. As an administrator, I am however aware of the implications of the expression “what gets counted, gets done”. Goals and parameters that we measure and give feed back on actually get accomplished while those that we pay lip service to are frequently neglected.
    This mornings piece was largely a plea, not for any specific amount of money, nor to equate needs, but rather to highlight that a strong community is based not only on its readily measured infrastructure needs, but also on that which cannot be measured but is of equal value.

  8. Tia Will

    SODA

    “do not need to cost as much as roads or pools. Keeping your thought but prioritizing our money might be the best solution. There undoubtedly are low cost/free amenities”

    I agree that these types of amenities need not cost “as much”. Many costs can be defrayed by seeking volunteers as during construction of Rainbow City when my children were little. As an administrator, I am however aware of the implications of the expression “what gets counted, gets done”. Goals and parameters that we measure and give feed back on actually get accomplished while those that we pay lip service to are frequently neglected.
    This mornings piece was largely a plea, not for any specific amount of money, nor to equate needs, but rather to highlight that a strong community is based not only on its readily measured infrastructure needs, but also on that which cannot be measured but is of equal value.

  9. D.D.

    Wow. Very eery timing of this essay by Tia. I’m finishing up a book in progress for the better part of two years. I’m writing about the intangible stress relief I get from being around children and watching children play. I devoted many years to my job at W.I.C. because I believe, as corny as this sounds, that “children are our future.”
    This article was released at a perfect moment, while I’m finishing my book. I won’t be publishing it for the public. It is a cathartic book being self published for my family and friends. I can’t get over the timing of Tia’s essay. It is just perfect.
    Enough said. Wow.
    Thank you, Tia. This was a very nice piece you wrote.

    1. Tia Will

      D.D.

      Thank you so much for sharing. I also find the timing interesting and am wondering if when published you would be willing to share the book with me ?

  10. D.D.

    Wow. Very eery timing of this essay by Tia. I’m finishing up a book in progress for the better part of two years. I’m writing about the intangible stress relief I get from being around children and watching children play. I devoted many years to my job at W.I.C. because I believe, as corny as this sounds, that “children are our future.”
    This article was released at a perfect moment, while I’m finishing my book. I won’t be publishing it for the public. It is a cathartic book being self published for my family and friends. I can’t get over the timing of Tia’s essay. It is just perfect.
    Enough said. Wow.
    Thank you, Tia. This was a very nice piece you wrote.

    1. Tia Will

      D.D.

      Thank you so much for sharing. I also find the timing interesting and am wondering if when published you would be willing to share the book with me ?

  11. Michelle Millet

    I am not making a case for playgrounds or pools over roads. I am just no longer quite so certain in my conviction that they are not of equal importance.

    So we have a brand new playground at Central Park, meanwhile the path I take to get there on my bike is crumbling, (I have some big chunks of gravel if you need some more proof). I agree it’s time we start giving them equal importance we have no money set aside for sidewalk, bike path and street repair, but we clearly have some for a new playgrounds, its time this changed.

    1. D.D.

      Off subject, but where did Davis High get the funds for the high school track it built a few years back? What about the kids who don’t run track? Did the other kids get new musical instruments, yoga clothes/mats, softball fields, tennis courts, or drama stage equipment, etc? Who decided to pour money into an athletic track?

      1. Tia Will

        D.D.

        Please anyone correct me if I am wrong. I believe that the Davis track upgrade was largely funded the the Davis Blue and White Foundation, a school booster organization. I do not know who spearheaded the campaign in which I believe that Rochelle Swanson was active prior to her election to City Council. I also do not know who made the decision for allocation of funds.

        1. DavisBurns

          You are correct. There was a big fundraising effort by the Blue And White, or something like that. They raised big bucks to upgrade the playing field with those god awful lights. Walked past it every day including the sign saying who paid for it. It was not public money.

      2. wdf1

        Money for the new stadium came from Blue and White fundraising (I think $1.5+ million) and from borrowing against money still left (to be collected) on a school facilities bond ($4.4-$4.9 million). The Vanguard wrote about it at the time.

    2. D.D.

      Another thought- maybe those future scientists don’t want roads for automobiles because they won’t be driving cars? We build a playground because it is for the next bright generation, not our sorry generation that is fossil fuel dependent.

      1. Tia Will

        D.D.

        I agree that we seem to make a lot of assumptions about what our children are going to want when they grow up. My personal feeling is that we should be responsible enough to pay for the cleanup of our own mess ( including the deteriorating infrastructure ) by taxing ourselves for our own mistakes and preferences. This seem to me to be the height of “pay as you go” personal responsibility.

        We should be allowing some freedom of decision making to our children as to whether they prefer further growth rather than trying to grow our way out of the hole we have created.

        My personal preference would be for a relatively large parcel tax combined with a single initial innovation park such as might accommodate Mr. Schilling. This, plus the planned Nishi development should be the starting point after which a thorough reassessment of our assets and obligations should again occur. I do not believe that the “boom and bust” cycle serves well whether at the local, state or national level and that change should be adopted carefully and deliberately while reserving some room for decision making for those who will follow us.

      1. Michelle Millet

        I have no idea how it was funded, but that is not relevant to my point. If we didn’t have parks, regardless of where the funding for them came from then I would put a tax increase to fund them closer on the “need to have list”. Clearly we are not lacking access to funds to install brand new play structures, we are lacking funds to fix the roads though.

        1. Tia Will

          “Clearly we are not lacking access to funds to install brand new play structures, we are lacking funds to fix the roads though.”

          I see this differently. For me, who paid for the park does matter. If it was the city, then it could reasonably be claimed that the city was prioritizing parks over other infrastructure needs. If on the other hand, there was a large component of private input such as is true with the high school track, then one could reasonably believe that the city is not stepping up to provide playgrounds but is relying on private funding and or volunteers to do so. ( Rainbow City now 20 + years old was largely built in this manner ) Please correct me if I am wrong.

          For me, this would be like the city saying,” well its ok that we have pot holes in our roads because if it gets bad enough we know that a group of citizens who care more about roads than parks will step up and provide the finds for paving. ”

          I don’t think that this approach is optimal for either roads or parks.

  12. Michelle Millet

    I am not making a case for playgrounds or pools over roads. I am just no longer quite so certain in my conviction that they are not of equal importance.

    So we have a brand new playground at Central Park, meanwhile the path I take to get there on my bike is crumbling, (I have some big chunks of gravel if you need some more proof). I agree it’s time we start giving them equal importance we have no money set aside for sidewalk, bike path and street repair, but we clearly have some for a new playgrounds, its time this changed.

    1. D.D.

      Off subject, but where did Davis High get the funds for the high school track it built a few years back? What about the kids who don’t run track? Did the other kids get new musical instruments, yoga clothes/mats, softball fields, tennis courts, or drama stage equipment, etc? Who decided to pour money into an athletic track?

      1. Tia Will

        D.D.

        Please anyone correct me if I am wrong. I believe that the Davis track upgrade was largely funded the the Davis Blue and White Foundation, a school booster organization. I do not know who spearheaded the campaign in which I believe that Rochelle Swanson was active prior to her election to City Council. I also do not know who made the decision for allocation of funds.

        1. DavisBurns

          You are correct. There was a big fundraising effort by the Blue And White, or something like that. They raised big bucks to upgrade the playing field with those god awful lights. Walked past it every day including the sign saying who paid for it. It was not public money.

      2. wdf1

        Money for the new stadium came from Blue and White fundraising (I think $1.5+ million) and from borrowing against money still left (to be collected) on a school facilities bond ($4.4-$4.9 million). The Vanguard wrote about it at the time.

    2. D.D.

      Another thought- maybe those future scientists don’t want roads for automobiles because they won’t be driving cars? We build a playground because it is for the next bright generation, not our sorry generation that is fossil fuel dependent.

      1. Tia Will

        D.D.

        I agree that we seem to make a lot of assumptions about what our children are going to want when they grow up. My personal feeling is that we should be responsible enough to pay for the cleanup of our own mess ( including the deteriorating infrastructure ) by taxing ourselves for our own mistakes and preferences. This seem to me to be the height of “pay as you go” personal responsibility.

        We should be allowing some freedom of decision making to our children as to whether they prefer further growth rather than trying to grow our way out of the hole we have created.

        My personal preference would be for a relatively large parcel tax combined with a single initial innovation park such as might accommodate Mr. Schilling. This, plus the planned Nishi development should be the starting point after which a thorough reassessment of our assets and obligations should again occur. I do not believe that the “boom and bust” cycle serves well whether at the local, state or national level and that change should be adopted carefully and deliberately while reserving some room for decision making for those who will follow us.

      1. Michelle Millet

        I have no idea how it was funded, but that is not relevant to my point. If we didn’t have parks, regardless of where the funding for them came from then I would put a tax increase to fund them closer on the “need to have list”. Clearly we are not lacking access to funds to install brand new play structures, we are lacking funds to fix the roads though.

        1. Tia Will

          “Clearly we are not lacking access to funds to install brand new play structures, we are lacking funds to fix the roads though.”

          I see this differently. For me, who paid for the park does matter. If it was the city, then it could reasonably be claimed that the city was prioritizing parks over other infrastructure needs. If on the other hand, there was a large component of private input such as is true with the high school track, then one could reasonably believe that the city is not stepping up to provide playgrounds but is relying on private funding and or volunteers to do so. ( Rainbow City now 20 + years old was largely built in this manner ) Please correct me if I am wrong.

          For me, this would be like the city saying,” well its ok that we have pot holes in our roads because if it gets bad enough we know that a group of citizens who care more about roads than parks will step up and provide the finds for paving. ”

          I don’t think that this approach is optimal for either roads or parks.

  13. tj

    Central Park is lots of fun, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that it’s good for children to explore their own backyards, play there with their friends, and create their own games and activities. I had a wonderful summer with a library book of science experiments for children, using a magnifying glass, making a pin hole camera myself. Sometimes children these days are overly scheduled, and information is poured into them, instead of kids figuring things out for themselves, studying nature in their own backyards.

    1. Tia Will

      tj

      I agree with your comment for those who have backyards. However, it makes the assumption that all of the children in our community have backyards. I have known a number of children whom I met when volunteering
      in my kids schools who did not have this amenity that most of us take for granted.

      1. D.D.

        Re: back yards, they are a luxury because a parent can feel relatively “safe” (unless there is a pool or other danger) leaving their kids unsupervised for short periods of time in their own backyard. Apartment dwelling parents do not have this luxury.

  14. tj

    Central Park is lots of fun, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that it’s good for children to explore their own backyards, play there with their friends, and create their own games and activities. I had a wonderful summer with a library book of science experiments for children, using a magnifying glass, making a pin hole camera myself. Sometimes children these days are overly scheduled, and information is poured into them, instead of kids figuring things out for themselves, studying nature in their own backyards.

    1. Tia Will

      tj

      I agree with your comment for those who have backyards. However, it makes the assumption that all of the children in our community have backyards. I have known a number of children whom I met when volunteering
      in my kids schools who did not have this amenity that most of us take for granted.

      1. D.D.

        Re: back yards, they are a luxury because a parent can feel relatively “safe” (unless there is a pool or other danger) leaving their kids unsupervised for short periods of time in their own backyard. Apartment dwelling parents do not have this luxury.

  15. Nancy Price

    Backyards are great. Our Central Park has many functions …. as our Community Commons – the Community Town Square – the “village well” – where traditionally women (and but now in modern times men) with their children met up with friends and neighbors not just to draw water, but to exchange news, gossip, discuss local issues, and learn from each other all sorts of things to do with everyday life and death.

  16. Nancy Price

    Backyards are great. Our Central Park has many functions …. as our Community Commons – the Community Town Square – the “village well” – where traditionally women (and but now in modern times men) with their children met up with friends and neighbors not just to draw water, but to exchange news, gossip, discuss local issues, and learn from each other all sorts of things to do with everyday life and death.

  17. DavisBurns

    I researched the safety if the Unitarian Universalist playground equipment about 20 years ago. It wasn’t up to standards but I had a hand in the upgrade. About the same time, there was a letter to the editor of the Enterprise about the hazards of the dust from the sand in the playground at Central Park. It was located a lot closer to the historic bathrooms at that time. Soon thereafter, the playground was closed. When it reopened the sand was removed and, I think there were wood chips in the place of sand. I was out of town getting my daughter educated at a not Davis high School in 2002-2006. When I came back the playground was relocated to its present spot. I believe there were wood chips or recycled rubberized chips at that point. Two weeks ago, I noticed the new surface. I think it is much safer than what was there previously however I, personally, think what our kids really need is less playground experience and more opportunity for unsupervised play–running around the neighborhood with friends, playing hide and seek, running from one backyard to another, finding an empty field to play in, getting dirty and having the chance to fall down and skin a knee. Children need wild spaces but we are trained to provide constant supervision and parents not providing it would probably have the kids removed by CPS. There is a professor (or was) at UCD whose field was landscape architecture who wrote about children ‘s need for such places, but that was at least 15 years ago so maybe it isn’t even considered anymore. Yes, let’s give them an ultra safe playground experience. It’s not the best we can do but it may be the least we can do.

    1. D.D.

      Nike recycled sports shoes into playground surfaces. I notice some of the surfaces at North Davis Elementary and other places around town have that soft, springy, cushion-y surface. Is that surface made from the same type of materials? It is wonderful!

  18. DavisBurns

    I researched the safety if the Unitarian Universalist playground equipment about 20 years ago. It wasn’t up to standards but I had a hand in the upgrade. About the same time, there was a letter to the editor of the Enterprise about the hazards of the dust from the sand in the playground at Central Park. It was located a lot closer to the historic bathrooms at that time. Soon thereafter, the playground was closed. When it reopened the sand was removed and, I think there were wood chips in the place of sand. I was out of town getting my daughter educated at a not Davis high School in 2002-2006. When I came back the playground was relocated to its present spot. I believe there were wood chips or recycled rubberized chips at that point. Two weeks ago, I noticed the new surface. I think it is much safer than what was there previously however I, personally, think what our kids really need is less playground experience and more opportunity for unsupervised play–running around the neighborhood with friends, playing hide and seek, running from one backyard to another, finding an empty field to play in, getting dirty and having the chance to fall down and skin a knee. Children need wild spaces but we are trained to provide constant supervision and parents not providing it would probably have the kids removed by CPS. There is a professor (or was) at UCD whose field was landscape architecture who wrote about children ‘s need for such places, but that was at least 15 years ago so maybe it isn’t even considered anymore. Yes, let’s give them an ultra safe playground experience. It’s not the best we can do but it may be the least we can do.

    1. D.D.

      Nike recycled sports shoes into playground surfaces. I notice some of the surfaces at North Davis Elementary and other places around town have that soft, springy, cushion-y surface. Is that surface made from the same type of materials? It is wonderful!

  19. Tia Will

    DavisBurns

    I had to smile at your comment. I am firmly in favor of a middle ground. I grew up rurally with lots of “wild spaces”.
    I remember my mothers “cautions” to me when I would go out to play in “an empty field” or the woods.
    1) When you play behind the house, remember that there is a well back there somewhere. We might not find you
    if you fell in !
    2) If you see a bear ( they were seen fairly commonly in our neighborhood) back away slowly, don’t run.
    3) Don’t tease the neighbors bull. ( I had been caught doing this several times.)
    4) Please, please stay out of the rafters of the boat houses ( our “climbing structures”) .

    “Wild spaces” is a relative term. I think those which allow children to play with no more injury risk than a “skinned knee” are certainly desirable. I also think it is possible to romanticize this concept thus not recognizing the real dangers of the environment that some of us grew up in.

    1. D.D.

      In Massachusetts winters, we were warned not to build snow tunnels and not to walk across the local pond, no matter how thick the ice looked, without an adult.

  20. Tia Will

    DavisBurns

    I had to smile at your comment. I am firmly in favor of a middle ground. I grew up rurally with lots of “wild spaces”.
    I remember my mothers “cautions” to me when I would go out to play in “an empty field” or the woods.
    1) When you play behind the house, remember that there is a well back there somewhere. We might not find you
    if you fell in !
    2) If you see a bear ( they were seen fairly commonly in our neighborhood) back away slowly, don’t run.
    3) Don’t tease the neighbors bull. ( I had been caught doing this several times.)
    4) Please, please stay out of the rafters of the boat houses ( our “climbing structures”) .

    “Wild spaces” is a relative term. I think those which allow children to play with no more injury risk than a “skinned knee” are certainly desirable. I also think it is possible to romanticize this concept thus not recognizing the real dangers of the environment that some of us grew up in.

    1. D.D.

      In Massachusetts winters, we were warned not to build snow tunnels and not to walk across the local pond, no matter how thick the ice looked, without an adult.

  21. South of Davis

    Tia wrote:

    > I also think it is possible to romanticize this concept thus not recognizing
    > the real dangers of the environment that some of us grew up in.

    How many childhood classmates of yours died because they were not playing in a safe ADA approved playground (or died because they were not wearing a bike helmet)?

    1. D.D.

      P.S. Re: safety, my dad used to knock all the icycles off our front door and the surrounding areas of our house before we left the house He also climbed out the second story window of our house to shovel us out of the snow, on more than one occasion. And put stuff down on the ice so we didn’t slip. I think he put salt down, can’t remember.

  22. South of Davis

    Tia wrote:

    > I also think it is possible to romanticize this concept thus not recognizing
    > the real dangers of the environment that some of us grew up in.

    How many childhood classmates of yours died because they were not playing in a safe ADA approved playground (or died because they were not wearing a bike helmet)?

    1. D.D.

      P.S. Re: safety, my dad used to knock all the icycles off our front door and the surrounding areas of our house before we left the house He also climbed out the second story window of our house to shovel us out of the snow, on more than one occasion. And put stuff down on the ice so we didn’t slip. I think he put salt down, can’t remember.

  23. Tia Will

    South of Davis

    Only one death that I can recall. The sib of a classmate hiding in an abandoned appliance ( refrigerator or freezer).
    But there were a lot of broken bones and similar injuries ( falls from rafters and off ladders not intended for play.
    I had seven stitches placed in my chin from playing in a construction site where I was not supposed to be.
    Also, a few hunting accidents ( we were rural) that I can recall, none lethal.
    And my sister’s boyfriend was killed in a car accident in which he was not wearing a seatbelt.

    Prevention really does matter !

  24. Tia Will

    South of Davis

    Only one death that I can recall. The sib of a classmate hiding in an abandoned appliance ( refrigerator or freezer).
    But there were a lot of broken bones and similar injuries ( falls from rafters and off ladders not intended for play.
    I had seven stitches placed in my chin from playing in a construction site where I was not supposed to be.
    Also, a few hunting accidents ( we were rural) that I can recall, none lethal.
    And my sister’s boyfriend was killed in a car accident in which he was not wearing a seatbelt.

    Prevention really does matter !

  25. Tia Will

    South of Davis

    Perhaps I should clarify. I was born in 1952 and so effectively grew up in a world with very different safety standards. I can remember my mother’s reaction ( which mirrored that of all the mom’s in our neighborhood).
    When something like the above events would occur, she would making a “tsking” sound with her tongue if we didn’t know the family well, or cry if we did, and then say something like”Well that’s life. What can one do ?”.

    What she, and most everyone at the time, neglected to do was to follow up on that question, to determine exactly what one could do to prevent these things from happening. Because many of them are entirely preventable.
    One can choose not to leave a dangerous appliance in one’s yard. Seatbelt laws can be enacted. Children can be mandated to wear helmets. All very simple steps that can prevent a real tragedy.

    1. South of Davis

      Tia wrote:

      > One can choose not to leave a dangerous appliance in one’s yard.
      > Seatbelt laws can be enacted. Children can be mandated to wear
      > helmets. All very simple steps that can prevent a real tragedy.

      Fortunately it has been close to 50 years since a home appliance that locks a kid inside has been made in America (very small kids can still die inside a modern fridge since they are not strong enough to push the door open). For the most part people tend to learn and I’m pretty sure that most people (today) would wear seatbelts and bike helmets oven if the government didn’t “make us”.

      I’m about 10 years younger than you and in the 70’s it was not “cool” to wear a helmet or pads when skateboarding, but after hitting my head so hard as a junior high kid that I was out for a few minutes I decided to start wearing safety gear (that saved my life, knees and breaking my wrists a few times) when I really started doing crazy stuff on a skateboard as a young high school student…

      1. Tia Will

        South of Davis

        “For the most part people tend to learn and I’m pretty sure that most people (today) would wear seatbelts and bike helmets oven if the government didn’t “make us”.”

        I do not share your optimism about how well people “learn”, especially from the mistakes of others. Especially children. By this rationale no one would ever start smoking since the lethal effects are now obvious and widely known.
        If people learned from the mistakes of others, I would not have been the first responder to a young man dead on the side of the road from having rammed his motorcycle into a tree without the benefit of a helmet. He was dead by the time I got there.

        Now I know that many believe that this is just the individual’s personal choice. I would respond that this opinion would change if everyone were aware of just how much this
        individual “free choice” costs us as taxpayers. Had the young man at the side of the road
        been resuscitable, I would have done so ( I was working an ER rotation at the time). Had he survived he would have been life flighted to Fresno County, where he would have required surgery, intensive care, prolonged rehab., all on the taxpayer tab for something most likely avoidable. Oh, did I mention that he reeked of alcohol at the time ? Completely avoidable !

        1. South of Davis

          Tia wrote:

          > I do not share your optimism about how well people “learn”,
          > especially from the mistakes of others. Especially children. By
          > this rationale no one would ever start smoking

          People do learn, with rare exceptions only stupid people smoke today. When I was a kid most MDs smoked (like tellers at most banks and secretaries at most offices). I’m betting that very few (if any) of the MDs you work with today smoke…

          1. TrueBlueDevil

            Only stupid people smoke? I think not. Many get hooked when they are teens and find it extremely hard to quit. I have a friend who quit numerous legal and illegal drugs, and he said tabacco was by far the hardest to quit. FYI.

          2. DavisBurns

            Kids make up almost all of the new smokers. They start to conform, because it gives them something distracting to do. My parents smoked, a lot. All their friends smoked. I tried it once when alone while babysitting. No fun, no thrill. My husband and I never smoked raising kids but our daughters became smokers on the sly. Both were light smokers and finally quit without much fuss. They knew it was stupid and unhealthy but their friends smoked. It begins socially but everyone quits alone.

        2. DavisBurns

          My son clipped the back of a parked semi while wearing a helmet riding a motorcycle. You every notice how the cops always pull up in front of you when they pull you over? People tend to track the car in front of them and apparently the cops had enough cars rammed that they learned they are safer in front of the car they pulled over. Anyway, no alcohol, wearing helmet, same outcome, no cost to taxpayers.

          But that does remind me about disappearing cash in emergency rooms. I have only two experiences so it’s a small sampling, but memorable. In both cases the young adult was admitted to emergency unconscious and was intubated. In going through their belongings, there was a total absence of cash. Like not even a penny. In both cases, the cash they would have had on them would have been insignificant but there should have been something. It remained a mystery with my son for 27 years but when the same thing (ICU, not a motorcycle) happened with my daughter last year, I began to suspect that someone along the way helped themselves to the cash. Everyone’s response to this is to be appalled and talk about their procedures and safeguards and professionalism. I’m not making a federal case out of it but I really wonder how often it happens. Parents in ICU have other things on their minds but as the days pass one has an excess of time. Any one else with similar experience? How many of you right now have not one penny on cash on you when you head to the store?

        3. DavisBurns

          Does anyone else get on their bicycle and have the impulse to fasten their seat belt? It’s a strange feeling. When on the road, I wear a seat belt except when on a bike.

  26. Tia Will

    South of Davis

    Perhaps I should clarify. I was born in 1952 and so effectively grew up in a world with very different safety standards. I can remember my mother’s reaction ( which mirrored that of all the mom’s in our neighborhood).
    When something like the above events would occur, she would making a “tsking” sound with her tongue if we didn’t know the family well, or cry if we did, and then say something like”Well that’s life. What can one do ?”.

    What she, and most everyone at the time, neglected to do was to follow up on that question, to determine exactly what one could do to prevent these things from happening. Because many of them are entirely preventable.
    One can choose not to leave a dangerous appliance in one’s yard. Seatbelt laws can be enacted. Children can be mandated to wear helmets. All very simple steps that can prevent a real tragedy.

    1. South of Davis

      Tia wrote:

      > One can choose not to leave a dangerous appliance in one’s yard.
      > Seatbelt laws can be enacted. Children can be mandated to wear
      > helmets. All very simple steps that can prevent a real tragedy.

      Fortunately it has been close to 50 years since a home appliance that locks a kid inside has been made in America (very small kids can still die inside a modern fridge since they are not strong enough to push the door open). For the most part people tend to learn and I’m pretty sure that most people (today) would wear seatbelts and bike helmets oven if the government didn’t “make us”.

      I’m about 10 years younger than you and in the 70’s it was not “cool” to wear a helmet or pads when skateboarding, but after hitting my head so hard as a junior high kid that I was out for a few minutes I decided to start wearing safety gear (that saved my life, knees and breaking my wrists a few times) when I really started doing crazy stuff on a skateboard as a young high school student…

      1. Tia Will

        South of Davis

        “For the most part people tend to learn and I’m pretty sure that most people (today) would wear seatbelts and bike helmets oven if the government didn’t “make us”.”

        I do not share your optimism about how well people “learn”, especially from the mistakes of others. Especially children. By this rationale no one would ever start smoking since the lethal effects are now obvious and widely known.
        If people learned from the mistakes of others, I would not have been the first responder to a young man dead on the side of the road from having rammed his motorcycle into a tree without the benefit of a helmet. He was dead by the time I got there.

        Now I know that many believe that this is just the individual’s personal choice. I would respond that this opinion would change if everyone were aware of just how much this
        individual “free choice” costs us as taxpayers. Had the young man at the side of the road
        been resuscitable, I would have done so ( I was working an ER rotation at the time). Had he survived he would have been life flighted to Fresno County, where he would have required surgery, intensive care, prolonged rehab., all on the taxpayer tab for something most likely avoidable. Oh, did I mention that he reeked of alcohol at the time ? Completely avoidable !

        1. South of Davis

          Tia wrote:

          > I do not share your optimism about how well people “learn”,
          > especially from the mistakes of others. Especially children. By
          > this rationale no one would ever start smoking

          People do learn, with rare exceptions only stupid people smoke today. When I was a kid most MDs smoked (like tellers at most banks and secretaries at most offices). I’m betting that very few (if any) of the MDs you work with today smoke…

          1. TrueBlueDevil

            Only stupid people smoke? I think not. Many get hooked when they are teens and find it extremely hard to quit. I have a friend who quit numerous legal and illegal drugs, and he said tabacco was by far the hardest to quit. FYI.

          2. DavisBurns

            Kids make up almost all of the new smokers. They start to conform, because it gives them something distracting to do. My parents smoked, a lot. All their friends smoked. I tried it once when alone while babysitting. No fun, no thrill. My husband and I never smoked raising kids but our daughters became smokers on the sly. Both were light smokers and finally quit without much fuss. They knew it was stupid and unhealthy but their friends smoked. It begins socially but everyone quits alone.

        2. DavisBurns

          My son clipped the back of a parked semi while wearing a helmet riding a motorcycle. You every notice how the cops always pull up in front of you when they pull you over? People tend to track the car in front of them and apparently the cops had enough cars rammed that they learned they are safer in front of the car they pulled over. Anyway, no alcohol, wearing helmet, same outcome, no cost to taxpayers.

          But that does remind me about disappearing cash in emergency rooms. I have only two experiences so it’s a small sampling, but memorable. In both cases the young adult was admitted to emergency unconscious and was intubated. In going through their belongings, there was a total absence of cash. Like not even a penny. In both cases, the cash they would have had on them would have been insignificant but there should have been something. It remained a mystery with my son for 27 years but when the same thing (ICU, not a motorcycle) happened with my daughter last year, I began to suspect that someone along the way helped themselves to the cash. Everyone’s response to this is to be appalled and talk about their procedures and safeguards and professionalism. I’m not making a federal case out of it but I really wonder how often it happens. Parents in ICU have other things on their minds but as the days pass one has an excess of time. Any one else with similar experience? How many of you right now have not one penny on cash on you when you head to the store?

        3. DavisBurns

          Does anyone else get on their bicycle and have the impulse to fasten their seat belt? It’s a strange feeling. When on the road, I wear a seat belt except when on a bike.

  27. D.D.

    Re: the remark re: bike helmets- just ask the wonderful woman who used to be (maybe she still is?) the speech therapist for North Davis Elementary. She was a good neighbor of mine. She always cautioned my two kids to wear their bike helmets. Someone may not die, but head injuries due to a bike fall cause much damage to a child or an adult.

  28. D.D.

    Re: the remark re: bike helmets- just ask the wonderful woman who used to be (maybe she still is?) the speech therapist for North Davis Elementary. She was a good neighbor of mine. She always cautioned my two kids to wear their bike helmets. Someone may not die, but head injuries due to a bike fall cause much damage to a child or an adult.

  29. South of Davis

    D.D. wrote:

    > Someone may not die, but head injuries due to a bike fall
    > cause much damage to a child or an adult.

    I agree that helmets are a good idea and I wear one most of the time (and make the kids wear one all the time), but if we want to REQUIRE everyone wear a helmet on a bike why not make EVERYONE (especially seniors) wear them ALL the time, (even at home)?

    According to the CDC:

    •One out of three older adults (those aged 65 or older) falls each year
    •Among older adults, falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries
    •The death rates from falls among older men and women have risen sharply over the past decade

    http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/adultfalls.html

  30. South of Davis

    D.D. wrote:

    > Someone may not die, but head injuries due to a bike fall
    > cause much damage to a child or an adult.

    I agree that helmets are a good idea and I wear one most of the time (and make the kids wear one all the time), but if we want to REQUIRE everyone wear a helmet on a bike why not make EVERYONE (especially seniors) wear them ALL the time, (even at home)?

    According to the CDC:

    •One out of three older adults (those aged 65 or older) falls each year
    •Among older adults, falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries
    •The death rates from falls among older men and women have risen sharply over the past decade

    http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/adultfalls.html

  31. Tia Will

    South of Davis,

    “if we want to REQUIRE everyone wear a helmet on a bike why not make EVERYONE (especially seniors) wear them ALL the time, (even at home)?”

    I can address that question. The set of injuries that we see from falls at home is quite different than the set of injuries that we see associated with bike and motorcycle accidents which occur at higher speeds and often include being pitched over the front of the vehicle thus resulting in closed head injuries.

    In falls in the elderly at home it is more common to wrist, forearm or hip fractures. Since the mechanism of injury is usually different, strategies for prevention also must differ. In terms of home fall prevention we tend to stress good lighting, no loose objects on the floor ( grandchildren’s toys, animal toys, loose rugs, articles of clothing…)
    We also emphasize single level homes thus preventing falls down stairs and hand rails if there are stairs and where falls are likely such as in the shower or tub. I also encourage my senior citizens to continue exercising including exercise which strengthen their major muscle groups and improve balance.

  32. Tia Will

    South of Davis,

    “if we want to REQUIRE everyone wear a helmet on a bike why not make EVERYONE (especially seniors) wear them ALL the time, (even at home)?”

    I can address that question. The set of injuries that we see from falls at home is quite different than the set of injuries that we see associated with bike and motorcycle accidents which occur at higher speeds and often include being pitched over the front of the vehicle thus resulting in closed head injuries.

    In falls in the elderly at home it is more common to wrist, forearm or hip fractures. Since the mechanism of injury is usually different, strategies for prevention also must differ. In terms of home fall prevention we tend to stress good lighting, no loose objects on the floor ( grandchildren’s toys, animal toys, loose rugs, articles of clothing…)
    We also emphasize single level homes thus preventing falls down stairs and hand rails if there are stairs and where falls are likely such as in the shower or tub. I also encourage my senior citizens to continue exercising including exercise which strengthen their major muscle groups and improve balance.

  33. Tia Will

    ” if we want to REQUIRE everyone wear a helmet on a bike why not make EVERYONE (especially seniors) wear them ALL the time, (even at home)?”

    I can answer that. The mechanisms and types of injury in a bike accident and home fall are quite different and require different prevention strategies. Bike accidents usually occur when the bicycle is in motion and frequently involve the rider being thrown over the front of the bike thus resulting in closed head injury.

    Falls in the home typically are low speed, involve less distance travelled and less frequently involve head trauma.
    More common home injuries involve broken wrists, long bones and hip fractures. The home prevention measures that we encourage include keeping floors clear of slip and trip hazards such as fluids, children’s toys, articles of clothing, loose rugs. Night lights in the homes of the elderly are helpful as are hand grips on stairs, tubs and showers.

    Another aspect of why we make some safety measures mandatory while others are merely highly encouraged might be that an accident on our public roadways has the ability to adversely affect the public. For example, a car swerving to avoid a bicyclist who has fallen in front of it may run into bystanders. This kind of secondary injury would never occur to a non related member of the public in the home of the accident victim.

    Finally, there is a difference in what we enforce in public and what we enforce on public property. While one cannot ride a motorcycle on the public roads without a helmet, one can certainly choose to do so on one’s own property.

  34. Tia Will

    ” if we want to REQUIRE everyone wear a helmet on a bike why not make EVERYONE (especially seniors) wear them ALL the time, (even at home)?”

    I can answer that. The mechanisms and types of injury in a bike accident and home fall are quite different and require different prevention strategies. Bike accidents usually occur when the bicycle is in motion and frequently involve the rider being thrown over the front of the bike thus resulting in closed head injury.

    Falls in the home typically are low speed, involve less distance travelled and less frequently involve head trauma.
    More common home injuries involve broken wrists, long bones and hip fractures. The home prevention measures that we encourage include keeping floors clear of slip and trip hazards such as fluids, children’s toys, articles of clothing, loose rugs. Night lights in the homes of the elderly are helpful as are hand grips on stairs, tubs and showers.

    Another aspect of why we make some safety measures mandatory while others are merely highly encouraged might be that an accident on our public roadways has the ability to adversely affect the public. For example, a car swerving to avoid a bicyclist who has fallen in front of it may run into bystanders. This kind of secondary injury would never occur to a non related member of the public in the home of the accident victim.

    Finally, there is a difference in what we enforce in public and what we enforce on public property. While one cannot ride a motorcycle on the public roads without a helmet, one can certainly choose to do so on one’s own property.

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