Taking a break from smartphone was a welcome respite

For most of my daughter’s life, I’ve been a part-time dad.

That comes with the territory when her mom and I were no longer together, but I try to take advantage of the days I do have her.

This week is one of them, as I got her Thursday night and will have her until Wednesday morning of this week. In between those days, I found time to fit in some work but probably the best thing I found to do was Sunday morning.

She was a great help and trooper on Saturday as we went to events at Platte Ridge Park and in Weston.

I figured I’d reward her a bit so I decided to take her swimming on Sunday.

I floated the idea of Schlitterbahn but that was quickly nixed. Amazing how even bad publicity and a death can filter through a Twitter or Instagram feed of a high schooler.

Worlds of Fun was a maybe but that was also bypassed.

I decided to try some place neither of us have been — CocoKeys in Independence.

I worked for some time in that town before coming to this paper so I knew a little bit about it but not much. Mainly, it is in the Adam’s Mark near the Truman Sports Complex.

We had a great time. I honestly haven’t had that much fun in quite a while.

According to my Fitbit, I walked 29 flights of stairs and all of those were going from the floor to the top of the building to ride a pair of giant slides. We went down in a two-man rafts quite a few times. We went down separately once, but she said it didn’t go as fast.

Turns out her old’s man fat body somehow made her think we went faster.

We played basketball, rode probably a half dozen slides before we were finally wore out. Probably the most unique part of this three-hour span was the fact we both put our phones up and just had fun.

I can’t think very often I am away from my phone for that long. It was a nice break and one I honestly probably should take more often. I think Riley and I will both say we are addicted to our phones a little bit more than we admit.

As a teenager, she lately has had a few more breaks from her phone by not following some of her mom’s rules. But the point remains.

I’m going to try to do a better job as a dad when I have her to put the phone away for a few hours and just spend time with her. I get caught in the 24-hour new cycles and I don’t want to miss big news, whether it’s a kid committing to a college, or getting an offer, or a new coach being hired or the Royals trading someone that is halfway decent.

But, the break is very nice and one maybe more of us needs.


This is now the point where I will write about the Royals, so now my boss can stop reading at this point.

Recently I bought the Royals Fountain Pass so I have a guaranteed standing room only ticket to every game the rest of the season.

For me, it was a like a dream come true. Since, I have been able to get a few cool giveaways.

In return, I have watched some really bad baseball by the home team.

But in one way, I grew up in the 1990s and 2000s rooting for this team so for the most part, losing is all I really knew.

As I wrote before, I kind of thought this year had some promise. But here we sit on June 12, we are 13 ½ games out of first place. That says a lot since the division-leading Indians are barely a .500 team. You don’t even have to be a dominant team to win this division this year like you would’ve in past years.

There is no Justin Verlander and J.D. Martinez in Detroit. Chicago has gutted its roster to where they would be a contender for a No. 1 draft pick, but even they are ahead of the Royals at this point.

Minnesota, on paper, should be challenging the Indians for the division lead with some of its additions in the offseason.

But I foolishly thought the Royals would be in the fray at some point. I mean, you have former All-Stars in Moose, Salvy, Esky and Gordo.

Then, the team went a month or so into the season before even winning a series.

I did take great pleasure in them winning the series in St. Louis, but I am also a realist and know more changes will be coming.

If things go right over the next few weeks, there will be a lot of changes. Jon Jay came in and turned into another version of 2-hit Whit and got himself traded to Arizona.

Kelvin Herrera is the obvious candidate to be traded next. What is the reason you need a closer if you are only going to win 60 to 75 games?

Might as well exodus Esky and bring up Aldaberto Mondesi. See if you can get a bag of balls for Jason Hammels or Ian Kennedy, then bring up Josh Staumont and Foster Griffin.


Cody Thorn is publisher of The Citizen. He may be reached via email at editor@plattecountycitizen.com.Follow him on Twitter:  @Citizen_CodyT.