Back-to-school Hoopla

Have you noticed all the back-to-school commercials that are on TV? They are adorning our screens and imbedding themselves in thirty second spots in our beloved summer programming.

So what’s the rush to get back to school? I’m not even sick of my child being underfoot yet and already advertisers are bombarding us with back to school ads. Here’s the problem: parents and children haven’t even begun to enjoy their time off. And the innocence and freedom that summer beholds is being compromised by all this advertising.

I can tell you unequivocally that as a teacher, I have just spent the last thirty-five days trying to forget the trials and tribulations of the last year. Just now, two weeks before back-to-work starts, I am starting to enjoy, I mean really enjoy, my time off. I don’t care about rushing around to get things completed. Finally I can relax without worrying and no advertiser or company is going to dictate what I should be buying at the stores in July and August. With great certainty, I can assure you that school supplies and back-to-school clothing are not at the top of my list. Bathing suits, camping gear, sandals, propane for the barbeque, and a frisbie are at the top of my list.

"No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers' dirty looks”

is still too fresh in my mind and no amount of advertising is going to change my perspective. No matter how many times I see a commercial with a frantic mother breezing through the aisles with the school supply list like she's conquering a marathon with dad sitting in the minivan ready to take off like a race car driver once the family is in sight, my mind is unchanged. I am not rushing around like that in mid-August for something as un-fun as school supply shopping. No matter how catchy the tune is in the foreground of some commercials featuring kids performing a cool scientific experiment, my daughter is not convinced that school should receive a moment of thought in the middle of her summer vacation. 

So, to all the advertisers and companies trying to promote back-to-school: 

back off…quit trying to rush us…we aren’t ready yet…summer is short and needs to be enjoyed unfettered by commercialization.

~Jennifer Ward

RantingnRaven on twitter