Monday, June 7, 2010

37/365 A trip to the playground

The swing set was always one of my favorite playground features as a kid.

Chase and I had a swing set in our backyard while we were growing up, and we each had "our" swings. If you used the other person's swing, not only did you risk getting kicked out of it, it just felt wrong. The world was situated incorrectly, and the airflow felt different.

I drove to a school near my house to get this photo. It was after hours and after school had let out for the summer, so the playground was empty.

One thing I noticed about these swings -- something different from the ones I remember -- is that the chains are covered. They've been dipped in a plastic coating, eliminating the finger-pinching and hair-entangling links.

While eliminating this kind of hazard is probably a good thing, and I'm sure it eliminates some crying trips to the nurse, I can't help but be struck by some eye-rolling nostalgia. Do we really have to remove every possible danger for our kids now? Does every surface have to be padded and smooth?

I'm sure a parent somewhere sued a school or swing manufacturer for millions of dollars in damages when their child pinched his finger or caught her hair in a swing's chain. Then all swings were probably removed, the chains coated in plastic, and reinstalled. It's a little sad.

Nevertheless, after I photographed these swings -- padded chains and all -- I did set my camera down and swing for a few moments myself.

And I enjoyed it.

Camera: Canon 40D with 24mm wide-angle lens, 1/125s, f/2.8 at ISO 160 at about 7:30 p.m.


  1. Love, love this photo - everything going on in it as well as the subject matter. :)