You Seem A Decent Fellow. I Hate To Kill You
Have you ever woken up in a mood so foul even you don’t want to be around you. It happened to me twice this week and both times it was exacerbated by my not understanding why I was so damn irritated.
I literally stared at myself in the mirror and asked why I wasn’t smiling. Â So I did what old curmudgeonly bloggers do and I went back a year and read some old posts. When I stumbled across No One Wants Rotten Miracles my mood lightened somewhat because I gained more insight into what was making me want to punch a clown in the mouth.
Yeah, I know you want to know why I would go after a sweet Â and innocent clown. I don’t suffer fromÂ Coulrophobia and though some people think it is cool to beat up mimes I am not one of them. Besides what could I do to someone who is trapped inside an invisible box.
A Fearful Society- Rearing Children in a Scary World
Two days ago I watched a mother at Target guard the men’s room door. I didn’t see her son go in but I guessed he was around ten or so because somewhere around that age boys have no interest in being forced by mom to use the ladies room.
After I paid for my purchases I walked past the mom at the door to answer a call of nature and shook my head. Shook it because the look she gave me made it clear she wasn’t comfortable with her son being in the restroom with a strange man.
Shook it and thought about how many times I have listened to parents talk about how unsafe the world is and how they wished they could wrap their kids up in bubble wrap.
Part of me understands the fear of the unknown. Part of me understands the anxiety that comes from being a parent but I always fight that.
It is not just because statistics say that crime is down. Not just because the population continues to grow and that proves that more people survive than die.
But because I don’t believe in teaching children to fear the world and fear people. My job as a father is to provide them with the skills to function and become a productive member of society.
I can’t be there to protect them from every possible danger, real and or imagined. So I have to give them the tools to take care of themselves.
Most of the time they figure it out, whatever it may be.
Ask me what I fear and I’ll tell you I fear the bullies more than the stranger/danger. I worry more about mean girls and their impact. I worry more about my kids making some of the same silly decisions I made when I was younger.
Doesn’t mean I never think about bad people but the bad decisions are really more troublesome. One day these kids may have a drink and get behind the wheel or be passengers of someone who has been drinking, that is what I worry about.
One day someone will break their hearts and I will ache for them because I know heartbreak but I can’t fix that, only they can work through those moments.
They Â have to figure it out.
Ask me to share with you a couple of movie clips that sum up my life and I’ll give you these:
It is important to me that you understand the relationship between me and those clips. I opened this post with a quote about how we don’t always recognize the most important moments in our lives.
The few regrets that linger are big and they are tied into my disappointment in and with myself. I blew it a few times, everyone does but I am not everyone.
I haven’t always been good at forgiving myself for those moments.
But the clip from Rudy is my reminder to me that I recognize the importance of being alert and last year is proof I have and I did. The moment came and I took it.
That second clip is me saying I hit the home run. I swung the bat and did the impossible but what is critical is to not see that as my swan song.
I am too damn young to say it was my finest moment because I am not willing to say the best is all behind me. That is impossible, got too much ahead and too many opportunities.
It is just one of a series of moments in time. I’ll have more, especially if I don’t punch any clowns in the mouth. You get arrested and imprisoned for that kind of stuff and those aren’t the kind of bars you can mime your way out of.
Nina February 28, 2014 at 1:49 pm
I recently loved an old article of Wendy Mogel’s about why camp is so great for kids–it allows them to get away from their parents and fall and get in arguments with cabinmates and have counselors they don’t like, etc. All important growing experiences! So true that the worry of safety is over the top.
Jack February 28, 2014 at 10:37 pm
I like Wendy Mogel’s philosophy or at least as I understand it. She speaks often at my shul, I should go hear what she has to say.
Larry February 28, 2014 at 10:08 am
Two great movies. It’s a shame this distrust we feel towards each other.
Jack February 28, 2014 at 10:37 pm
David Kepley February 28, 2014 at 5:49 am
Sometimes I wonder if the world is more dangerous now or we just hear about it more with social media and news promoting fear. Could it be said that living in the past is just another example of living in fear?
Jack February 28, 2014 at 3:03 pm
Hi David, you’re right. The 24 hour news cycle and constant flow of information has created confusion. I don’t believe things are worse now than before.
Stan Faryna February 27, 2014 at 5:36 pm
The best of you is yet to be.
Jack February 28, 2014 at 3:01 pm
I think that applies to both of us.