The Importance of Going Outside, or, How I Learned To Embrace My Inner Child

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m an admin in a group called RTDFW – short for Rooster Teeth Dallas/Fort Worth. We’re a group of fans of Rooster Teeth, creators of Red vs. Blue and RWBY. It all started back in December, when some people went to a book signing of theirs, and decided it would be pretty cool to hang out with each other. It started small, but ever since the release of Rooster Teeth’s first full-length film, Lazer Team, it exploded. We host podcast watching parties every Monday and Saturday night, and do other events throughout the week as well. I really consider it to be my second family – my second really weird, loud, obnoxious family.

With the weather getting warmer (although in Texas, we didn’t really have much of a winter), a few of us decided it would be fun to have a Field Day event. Arabella, Ashe, and I planned the whole shebang in two weeks. To be honest, we’re procrastinators – we had the idea for it back in February, but didn’t end up doing any real planning until mid-March. If I’m being honest, I don’t know why I was so hyped to plan it. I’m not an outdoorsy kind of gal (as evidenced by my super pale skin), and physical activity is not exactly my forte – I’d rather be curled up with a good book or lounging around playing a video game.

Well, the big event happened. It was bigger than we anticipated – there were probably about 25 people, maybe more. I didn’t exactly do a headcount. I was so hyped the night before that I couldn’t sleep. Nate bought a gigantic water gun for it, while I opted to dual-wield a pair of water pistols (although I should have checked – one of them required two hands to shoot). We had potato sack races, capture the flag, water gun fights, paint Twister (like regular Twister, but messier), jump ropes, hula hoops, the whole shebang. The food we brought was reminiscent of what you’d eat playing at a park as a kid – peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, Goldfish crackers, and Kool-Aid Jammers (don’t worry, we ended up with like five cases of water, because not only did Arabella and I bring a case each, but a bunch of other people chipped in and brought some too).

On a normal day, if you asked me “hey, do you want to go to the park and throw around a football, or just hang out outside?” I would say “Um…No, do you even know me?” But to be honest, after today I’m starting to think I’ve changed a little. Maybe it was the company, maybe it was just the extraordinarily pleasant day (seriously, it was in the mid to high 70s and sunny all day), or the great park (I can’t praise the city enough for this place, it was wonderful). Whatever it was, I was there from 1:45pm to 9:00pm, and I never once thought “Jeez, can I just go INSIDE already?”

Did I hurt a lot afterwards? Hell yes I did. I stood basically all day and did some running around – a lot more physical exertion than I usually do, to be honest (I take a walk every day and work out a couple of days a week, but that’s for short periods of time!). Did I sit at a picnic table and eat a PB&J, Goldfish crackers, and juice from a pouch? Of course I did, and I’ll admit that I brought my knees up so I could kick my feet under the table like a kid.

All in all, after this experience, I will say that I am a huge supporter of going outside and playing like you did when you were a kid. Make it a little competitive, sure, but overall just go out and have fun. Toss a Frisbee, throw a boomerang (I definitely did buy one for our resident Australian), have a giant water gun fight. My parents have always told me that if you act young, you’ll stay young, and I’ll believe them, since neither of them look their age (the other day I saw my mom get absolutely giddy when she had the chance to show off her newly developed ukulele skills, just like a kid learning a new instrument, and my dad still makes fart jokes at every opportunity).

Summer approaches! Go forth and play outside!

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