In New York, once I had kids, I tried to ignore the 4th of July. To me the 4th meant crowds, heat, and noise: too many people jammed along whichever river was the site of the fireworks, too many picnickers having too much to drink; and too much general mayhem for comfort: call me crazy, but the idea of teen-agers roaming the streets brandishing small explosive devices doesn’t seem particularly festive.
Once or twice when the boys were young, we braved the crowds, shoving the stroller ahead of us like a battering ram through the throngs. But in the long run? Not worth it.
What else I don’t do on the 4th? I don’t wear flag colors (I’m a New Yorker. We wear black. Year-round. It’s an entire city filled with women who dress like Morticia and Wednesday). (more…)