Is This You?: Life is a playground | NevadaAppeal.com

Is This You?: Life is a playground

Trina Machacek

Not to get too deep, but have you ever considered how playground equipment crosses over to how life can be thought of? Don't get too worried about having to use too many brain cells here. It's just I was driving by a school yard recently and the kids were covering the brightly colored equipment with themselves and having such untethered fun I started to remember those days and, of course, my gray matter sloshed around until … well … this is what I came up with.

The teeter-totter. Yes, life is a balancing act however the teeter-totter is designed unevenly. If you're just a regular Joe, you can only teeter with another regular Joe. But someone with a larger-than-average, uh, totter, cannot teeter with a regular Joe. I know this from first-hand experience. In my teeter-totter days, well, let's just say I didn't have teeter-totter days. The teeter-totter is designed to keep things even. But life isn't all that even. Look around you — how many people in your life could you teeter-totter with evenly? Not many I bet. So should teeter-totters be dismantled because they set us up to either go with the flow or feel left out? No, of course not. Teeter-totters are a first step into what life has to offer in the way of keeping you on an even keel.

What about the merry-go-round? Oh, I like this merry little apparatus. Nothing gets little Johnnie's innards going like being spun around right after having a warm box of purple grape juice and four chocolate cookies! You know, don't you, there's a reason why the merry-go-round is set in a slight depression of tiny gravel. It's so when that one little tyke gets too much go-round and loses that juice and cookies, the outpouring of spray is sent up and out away from where everyone steps when getting on and off of this spinning life cycle! Yuck. Let's keep spinning this tale …

The merry-go-round is the equal opportunity part of life. Everyone has the same chance of getting on and off. All who approach can either spin or be spun. Depends on how hard you want to work. That's kind of like life. Are you a sitter or a spinner? I, of course being a fence sitter, hope we all are both during our times at the merry-go-round of life. Naturally, we all get caught up in doing too much occasionally and we feel like we have had too much warm grape juice, et al. Well, let's just equate those episodes with clearing the air — you always feel better afterward.

Now for the big one. The slide. When wee tykes first learn about a slide it's a cute four-foot angled piece of colorful plastic that has big sides to hold the slider on the glide path. So cute. Mom and tyke squeal with delight as a speed of three feet per hour are reached coming down. Wee! Then we all grow and face the behemoth. The 10- to 12-foot-climb up the stairs to face … the drop of faith.

It's summer and you're just a kid playing. You start that climb up those stairs and there are kids in front of you and kids behind you and you don't dare say, "Wait just a moment here, my friends. I do believe I have changed my mind. I would like to retrace my steps, go back down the steps and get off this part of life." No, you continue to climb. With each step your heart races a bit more. Each step you take you see your life skidder along and remember you always said to yourself, "I will not let the crowd determine the outcome of my existence," but you take yet another step up. Finally, you reach the top and all eyes are upon you. Gulp!

Recommended Stories For You

There you finally are. Top of the game. On one side you are being pushed to take the next step, on the other side you're being pulled to move over the top and enjoy the ride. So you squish your feet under yourself, position your buns on the flat spot and with youthful abandon you push off. Double wee!

Then, about halfway down, you realize this aluminum slide is sitting in the sun — the hot summer sun. Your buns are now on fire! "Yeow!" tries to come out of your mouth, but all that escapes is, "Ahgggllgg!" Then you're shot out when thankfully you reach the bottom. All those who have gone before you have knowing looks on their faces. A wink from one. A nod from another. What do you do? Do you try to forewarn the next person in line or do you let 'em slide, learning life is just a playground with all its ups, downs, twists, turns and hot seats?

Triple wee …

Trina lives in Eureka, Nevada. Share with her at itybytrina@yahoo.com. Really!