Needing more of a little less ?A double cheeseburger ― without the ketchup and pickles ― is meant to be conquered. Two burgers at once. Slowly. It’s bad, but still good. Now, however, we have the government saying it will restrict advertisements for fast food on television and ban soft-drink vending machines in schools to fight obesity among the young.
Nonsense. I thought this was a free country. What sort of cheese-head thinks that reduced air time for fast food will reduce the weight of kids? It’s like saying the Philadelphia Eagles will win the Super Bowl if they get rid of troubled player “TO.” He’s bad, but still good.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t fancy eating burgers, fries and sodas three times a day. We all know what obesity can do to us. Diseases such as arteriosclerosis, diabetes, coronary heart disease and high blood pressure can be the unwelcome results. What awaits us with hyper-caloric food is clear, but obesity relates to an overall lifestyle that is bad for one’s health.
We all know that kids here spend more time behind the desk than engaging in any other activity, except for sleeping. Throw in the occasional time they spend in front of the tube or computers and that eats away at the scarce free-time they have available ― it’s no wonder that we are where we are.
But we are not facing an obesity crisis here because kids have been eating burgers like kimchi. We are having kids getting fat because parents here treat their kids like robots on the wrong schedule. I guarantee you if parents paid attention to their kids’ outdoor activities, the problem of child obesity would be fixed in no time.
Here’s the proof: In recent years, the military has started to run special boot camps for their young overweight draftees. It’s not entirely scientific, but a recent report said that about 12 percent of a class of 3,700 draftees was classified as fat.
There was no such thing a couple of years ago, but the drill sergeants are saying that everybody loses weight at the special boot camp. “Guaranteed,” is how the course is described. Of course, for a 120-kilogram (260-pound) person to get down to a more presentable weight will take more time than six weeks at a boot camp, but you get the point. So all we need is just a little bit more attention in the right direction.
Typical parents here shuttle their kids from school to cram school and back home so that the kids don’t get tired from walking and are fresh enough for another round of studying. That’s thousands of unburned calories waiting to explode. All it takes is a balanced mind that leaves room for kids to have a little exercise. Needless to say, it would be great for kids and parents to do it together.
Here’s how I would do it:
One day I would pick up Brian Jr. after school, taking him on a stroll to Yeouido Park with cheeseburgers in our hands while having a good talk.
“Son, how was your day?” (Mouth full)
“Great, but we aren’t talking about my mid-term results, are we?” (Worried, but mouth full)
“Are you kidding me? No, after we’re done with this feast we’ll shoot some hoops. Rollerblade some. And then throw some soju bottles into the Han River. That’s what we’ll do. And we’ll tell Mom that cram school was great.”
“No, we can’t. Can we?”
“Yes we can, sonny.”
by Brain Lee
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