My son is having a playdate right now, in the room right next door to where I type.


He’s alone, you understand. But perched in front of his iPad screen, with a Lego brick military base providing safe haven for his Star Wars figures, he’s engaged in a tense stand-off with his wee pal’s bad guys. A mile or so from each other in reality, as they ‘pee-yew’ and ‘pow-pow-pow’ their way through their latest imaginary battle, for a brief interlude they seem able to forget the screen between them. And then, their call time is up, and all goes black.


This is play, 2021 style. And it makes my heart break a little.


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