What Children Think about Y2K

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From: Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr (pic), near Monterey, California

I asked some questions and David dictated his replies. They are unedited. While deciding whether to do this project he asked who would be reading this. I said lots of strangers that he would probably never meet. By the way, he didn't get that Russia/China comment from me. Also, I have to laugh at his answer about school. We have a running joke in our family about what we call "Out of Service" days, when kids usually end up at our house because their parents are working.

What do you understand about what people are saying the Y2K problem actually is? Some people act like they think it's going to be a big disaster and then they say they're kidding. They sound like they're really scared when they're really not. They know about it from the ads or Kia or something and they make jokes about it, like Y2Kia. They just think it's a big joke. I've heard some people on the streets that were talking about Y2K. It was some old beggars who were saying, "It's going to be so bad for me," or something. I didn't really hear much of that conversation.

Why do you think people are so worried? The computers will think it's 1900 and they'll go "Oh, I'm so confused, I give up." ::: bzzzzz kchook ::: On the year 2000, some people think if you turn off all your computers for a couple hours after the new years then it'll come back on and won't do any damage. But some kids might sneak out of bed and say, I wonder if the computer still works. ::: bzzzzzz ::: "Oh, shoot!"

Why is it such a big deal if the computers don't work? The electric companies depend on them. The water companies depend on them. Some of the chips are in cement that's buried in the water for the big oil rigs.

What do you think a typical day will be like next year? Helicopters flying all around. Giraffes loose in the park and everything. Circus Elephants. Bulls from the Rodeo charging. Power is out. You can't get your water. No trash service. No grocery store. Riots in the street.

Tell me a typical day like, "I would wake up," and then what? I'm not very sure of that.

What do you think the biggest dangers are? Probably not having any water. And the smallest dangers? Not having any TV. I mean, anybody can live without TV.

Are the kids worried about not having TV? They would be kind of disappointed but if there's a bad Y2K they wouldn't really care because they'll be too busy working.

What will you do for fun? Probably ride my pony, play tennis and swim (hopefully), which is pretty much what I do now.

Is it hard having something like this that you can't talk about? Yes. It is very hard because I have to laugh with all the other kids because you've heard the jokes that they make. So, yes, that is kind of hard.

Do you worry about your friends? Only my good ones.

Will you do anything to help other people? I can't exactly answer that question right now because it depends on how well we're doing.

What do you think about any of the Y2K Conference Videos that you've seen? I've just seen a little bit of one. I said "Oh this is so boring, I have to go do something else."

What percentage of people do you think are preparing? I can't really say anything because I don't really know any people who are preparing. I only know like three or four, unless we count the people that were at the Y2K picnic.

Besides Y2K, what other problems have you heard about for the near future? Too many shootings. The tobacco company has some issues. I'm not really sure because I don't really pay attention to much stuff.

Do you think planes will fall out of the sky? If they can't get their maintenance checks and fuel yes. But if they have both of those and they have good pilots I think planes will be OK.

Have you heard anything about Russia and China? Not really. As you heard, I don't really listen to the news and stuff. I'm not really sure. I think they're having a war or something, and boy would they be happy to bomb us in Y2K.

What do you think will happen with schools? I'm a homeschooler, so this is a total guess. I think they'll just give them like a week or two off, come back and teach for two or three days, and then more time off. Some days do school and some days not. Not really well controlled, but whatever can be done. About like how they do it now.

Are you scared about anything? I think just have as much fun as you can, and if it isn't a big disaster you just got some stuff.

What has been done for you personally to be prepared? Planning on riding away on my horse to my grandmother's house if something happens to my parents. We've got a bugout bag put together. I haven't figured out how to carry that on my pony, yet, but I'm thinking of getting saddle bags.

Why do you suppose nobody seems to think that there could be much problem? There's Y2K books all over the place. I don't know why they won't look at them.

Do you think there might be a problem or do you think nothing much is going to happen? Well, I get it, kind of, but I'm not really saying if I was alone I would stock up or anything.

-- Dancr (addy.available@my.webpage), November 16, 1999



What an incredibly smart kid you've got there! Reminds me of my eight year old. Her answers would vary a little, but she knows what is going on too.

Thank you for posting this...And give David a big hug! Hope he never has to use that pony to get to grandmas.

-- Ynott (Ynott@incorruptible.com), November 16, 1999.


You've a wonderful son, please give him a big hug for me! I wish that people 5 times his age had the amount of insight that he shows - he's very advanced for his age.

Best wishes to you both, and I hope he never has to ride to Grandma's because he HAS to.

-- Deb M. (vmcclell@columbus.rr.com), November 16, 1999.

And the predictable Debunking response:

What brainwashed children think about Y2K

Posted by ( Buddy on November 16, 1999 at 07:25:38:

"What do you think a typical day will be like next year? Helicopters flying all around. Giraffes loose in the park and everything. Circus Elephants. Bulls from the Rodeo charging. Power is out. You can't get your water. No trash service. No grocery store. Riots in the street. "


I am so tempted to say something, but I don't want to post to that stinking place any more. I hope this kid recovers from being so misled.

-- Just (so@you.know), November 16, 1999.

...giraffes loose in the park

is a perfect way for a child to express the sense that there will be chaos, things out of control.

Yet, this (so-called) "misled" child doesn't seem to be fearful, most likely due to the fact that his grownup's are taking measures to explain things to him and to include him in contingency plans, even to the point of addressing a child's worst fear: losing a parent.

I commend Dancr for taking a proactive stance, and send David hugs along with everyone else.

It is the children who will be taken by surprise and be faced with parents who are stunned and unprepared - and, hence, unable to give them the comfort they need - who will be dealing with the most suffering.

Only our prayers can help them now.

-- Sara Nealy (keithn@aloha.net), November 16, 1999.

From: Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr (pic), near Monterey, California

David and I have talked about how some people have misunderstood his intent in talking about the possibility of chaos. This was a good lesson for him in how writers need to understand the background of their readers in order to communicate clearly. Apparently, some of the readers on this thread were not aware of the most recent Nike "Just Do It" commercial, in which a runner is shown waking up and going on his usual morning run, through a world of chaos.

I haven't personally seen the commercial, but he did while watching the Cowboys play football Monday. He thought it was great and hilarious, and ran to tell me about what I had missed. Here are some threads about that on this forum:

did any of you see the nike y2k commercal, Nike Y2K ad WOW!!, NIKE......Doomer commercial

So I can't really take the credit for teaching him this way of thinking about the future, and he can't take credit for cooking it up from his own imagination. My impression is that he wanted to pay homage to this great commercial, and also to say that he truly does think the world will be a bit crazy, but maybe in a fun way or at least not dangerously so. He clearly does understand the seriousness, though, as shown by the remainder of that answer, in which he talks about utilities problems that don't really play all that well in commercials.

He got his three extra hugs today. What are other kids thinking or saying?

-- Dancr (addy.available@my.webpage), November 17, 1999.

My seven-year-old was at Gramma and Grampa's. They tend to let stuff stack up, and he got interested in these black plastic microwave dishes from Stouffer's dinners or something. He had so many he filled a grocery bag with them and insisted we take them home . . . .for y2k, of course.

Please don't tell me he is really smart and I should give him hugs.

-- Becky (rmbolte@fortnewsalem.nut), November 17, 1999.

From: Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr (pic), near Monterey, California

The inspiration to interview my son and post it here started with a suggestion at How are you preparing your children ?. This link will take you to a description that I posted on that thread, telling what I have done to prepare my son mentally and emotionally for Y2K. Responses there have been entirely negative. Maybe I just don't express myself as well as my son does.

-- Dancr (addy.available@my.webpage), November 19, 1999.

And then again......maybe you just express yourself too often, complete with photos. I'd like to read David's resume. Did you videotape his birth? Whip it out.

-- Will continue (farming@home.com), November 20, 1999.

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