So Thanks For The Lesson, Little Guy

June 4, 2018

Among other summer projects, I’m devoting time and energy toward better health and general life balance because:

A)  It’s just a good idea.

and B)  To better help my son obtain healthier life balance in his life.

Today, for instance, I went outside for some direct sunlight, not for tanning purposes, but for some Vitamin D.  Having precisely zero interest in overdoing it, I set a timer, but when the timer went off I was surprised at how reluctant I was to get up and go back inside.  I did anyway though, and with visions of a young turtle in my head as I did so.

Why a young turtle?

Because I once found a young turtle dead on the side of the road, not because he’d been run over, but because he’d been sunning himself and, as near as I could tell, had been enjoying himself so much that he couldn’t tell he was baking himself to death in the process.

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I Wonder What He Thinks About Stock Market Trends In The Coming Weeks

June 1, 2018

My son:  *utilizing a toy as a makeshift crystal ball*  I can see into your future!

Me:  Good thing I’m in the market for a peek into my future then.

My son:  You shall . . . get very little sleep tonight.

Me:  Well that doesn’t sound very appealing!  Besides, I’ve been working to even out my sleep schedule lately, so barring an emergency, I’ll probably sleep just fine.

Me:  (Later, and still wide awake at 1:30 A.M.)  Huh.

It’s Never Helped Me, At Least

May 31, 2018

Since you don’t really find out what you’re going to do until the moment comes, the wisest course of action is to not fret about it at all until the moment actually arrives.

This is a classic example of something that is true, but also profoundly unhelpful.

Memorial Day Thoughts, 2018

May 30, 2018

Sooner or later I’m going to have to acknowledge that fewer and fewer people even know what I’m doing when I observe Memorial Day on May 30th.

In the meantime, this candle is for all those who fell in service.

Since I Controlled MY First Impulse, At Least One Of Us Got Some Practice Today

May 29, 2018

Today my son and I practiced impulse control.  He’d come into the room just as I’d finished folding my laundry, so I told him I’d be right with him, and to just leave my laundry alone while I walked ten steps into the hallway to put a towel away.  When I returned to the room, my shirts had already been tossed aside in a heap.

Elapsed time:  Maybe twenty seconds.

And I Don’t Mind Telling You That

May 28, 2018

It’s in vogue these days to publicly gush on and on (usually positively) about the people in your life, and while “never say never” and all that . . . that’s just never going to be me.

What can I say?

I believe in the idea of “show, don’t tell.”

Once You Can Do That Though, You’re Golden

May 25, 2018

We’ve probably all heard some variation of the phrase “just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean someone’s not out to get you,” and that’s true as far as it goes.

The trick is distinguishing between your accurate and your inaccurate feelings of paranoia.

That’s Unfair Though. I Remember Those “Rules” Too

May 24, 2018

A friend of mine used to bemoan the loss of the “playground rules” he grew up with, most notably the rule that if you were fairly caught cheating or lying, you owned up to it and didn’t waste everybody’s time with flimsy denials.

The older I get, the more I suspect those rules might have been unique to his playground alone.

Here’s Something You Won’t Read In Any Parenting Books

May 23, 2018

“Careful, kiddo,” I admonished my son yesterday after he carelessly jostled me.  “The tea in my mug is still pretty hot, and I don’t want to spill it on me or you.”

“How badly would it hurt if you spilled it?” he asked.

Freshly sizing up the temperature of the mug in my hand, thus assuring myself that the tea wasn’t scalding, I stuck my finger in the tea.  “A little bit,” I answered after a moment.  “Not much, but it wouldn’t be comfortable.”

My son looked at me askance.  “Did you really just stick your finger in there?”

Appreciating his healthy skepticism, I demonstrated the trick again so he could see that I wasn’t trying to pull a fast one on him this time.

“Could I . . .?” he sort of asked, unsure of the words he wanted to use.

“Check the temperature of the side of the mug first to give you an idea of what you’d be getting into,” I advised him.  “Then . . . if you really want to . . . okay.”

After checking the mug, he carefully dunked his finger into my tea as well.  His eyes widened slightly, then he pulled his finger out and said, “That is hot.  I’ll be more careful next time!”

Lesson learned, for now, at least . . . and, yes, I still drank the rest of my tea.

Some Things You Have To Learn Directly

May 22, 2018

The other day I did something I almost never do anymore, namely, pass on a warning to someone I thought needed to hear one.  The result?  I was politely thanked for my concern (which is a tad unusual, I’ll admit . . . the thanks and the concern, come to think) and profoundly ignored (which is the norm).

This is known as the Cassandra effect.

This used to frustrate me to no end, but these days I can see the morbidly funny side of it, because there was a time I probably would have ignored it too had I been in their place.