Secrets You Might Only Share With Dad Bloggers

What is your story?

What is your story?

You might call that headline linkbait or you might ask if old Jack Steiner is engaged in keyword stuffing.

Might be a combination of both or it might be something else. Don’t put too much thought into it, because I didn’t.

At the moment I am recovering from a food coma. Went out for some barbecue and ate far too much brisket, it was good but not as good as the Texas barbecue I am dying to get back to.

That teenage boy of mine, the one I call Steiner the minor told me tonight he doesn’t care what stories I share about him on the blog because no one will ever believe he said or did those things.

I told him he ought to think very carefully about what he says will or won’t bother him because who we are today isn’t necessarily who we’ll be tomorrow.

Coincidentally I came across a post I wrote five years ago called My Penis Died. I was tempted to show it to my son because he is the star.

The title alone would make his eyes bug out and he’d probably ask me if I was crazy. I’d say yes and explain that the link to the five-year-old version is an example of me working smarter and not harder.

When he asked me how that could be I’d tell him the post is actually ten years old and that five years ago I ran it a second time.

And then I’d explain how it relates more to my desire to chronicle the fun and interesting questions he asked when he was truly little.

Most importantly I’d ask him to read it so that he could see how the title makes it appear to be something other than it is.

And then I’d offer the following video as part of a musical interlude.

Young Master Steiner has told me many times that he is frustrated because he is shorter than many of his friends.

I always nod my head and talk about genetics. It is hard to be the tall kid when your dad is average height and mom is short.

As it happens many of his friends have mothers who are almost my height and fathers who are over six feet.

But most are skinny beanpoles and I am not.

I have big hands, big feet and broad shoulders. You won’t see me dancing with Baryshnikov but if you need someone who can rip out a stump, tear down a wall or run through the defense, well I just might be your guy.

The Importance Of Playing To Your Strengths

That Iron Maiden video is a link to Old Man Steiner’s youth. It is part of a mix of music that I often listened to while working out.

Every time my son talks about his height I tell him that confidence can make us giants.

I tell him to play to his strengths and remind him that even though we may not have the same height as some of the other guys we are usually stronger.

We don’t have to put as much effort into lifting weights as they do to put on muscle.

I figure that if I can get him into slinging the weights around and doing pushups in bunches he’ll develop some great habits and gain confidence.

He loves playing soccer and the extra strength will serve him well there. When he sees how he can out muscle the little guys and hang with the bigger ones he’ll understand part of why I have pushed him on this.

But between you and me it has less to do with trying to help his game and more with just instilling more confidence in general.

And in addition to all of that I hope he’ll help push me to keep up the lifting.

This aging thing has been a grind lately and I am having a much harder time doing things the same way I used to do them.

My knees ache in a way they never have and I have a bunch of other odds and ends of physical irritations that are making me reevaluate how I exercise.

I hate it.

And then I look at my son and I have to look extra hard to find hints of the boy he used to be. He is truly a teen now and if he takes my advice about exercise he’ll be shocked at how quickly his body responds.

You might ask if I am trying to live vicariously through him and I’ll tell you no. But I’ll also say a father’s obligation includes trying to help their kids take advantage of opportunities and this is one of those.

More Narishkeit

My guess is a small number of you speak or understand Yiddish which is too bad because it is an amazing language. My grandfathers used to teach me and though I was never fluent I once knew far more that I know now.

When people use narishkeit in a sentence they are referring to something as nonsense and or trivial so take that as you will in regard to what follows here.

I make a point of engaging in simple blog maintenance in a number of ways. Some of it is the basic stuff, fixing broken links, adding/replacing pictures and checking to see that things work in general as they should.

But it also includes flipping through the pages to see if there are old posts that are worth sharing again.

That is how I come across things like Twitter Is Dead!- Long Live Twitter! and Come Sail With The Dread Pirate Roberts and decide to share them with you.

Sometimes I do so without comment and sometimes I point out that there is a screenshot of a conversation I had with the Original Karate Kid in one of those.

That happened back in the old days when Twitter served as more of a conversation channel and wasn’t a place marketers used to broadcast everything under the sun.

Speaking of the sun  I just noticed the time and if I don’t want to still be typing when it rises I need to go grab some shut eye.

So I am off to dream of how to become a better storyteller and a reminder to make a point to try and comment on more blogs.

See you on the other side.

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  1. Andrea B. March 31, 2015 at 6:06 am

    There are so many things I want to say in response and the only thing that’s coming to the surface of my brain is that I wish I spoke more Yiddish these days. I miss doing that with my dad.

    Your points are perfectly worded and the flow of this piece kept me with you the entire time. That’s probably not the kind of comment you’re looking for but I’m giving it anyway. And I miss old Twitter.

  2. Janine Huldie March 27, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    Confidence is truly key and I can tell you this that I do try with both my girls. This is something that isn’t necessarily the easiest part of parenting by any mean, but just so essential. And like you on a side note, I love rerunning blog posts and try once a week on my Facebook page to update and re-share an older post if I can, too. Have a great weekend now!

    • Jack March 28, 2015 at 11:52 am

      Hi Janine,

      Confidence is what gets our kids and ourselves through the harder moments. It is the secret sauce, of this I am certain and I am not certain about much. 😉

      Rerunning blog posts is a smart move. No reason to work harder when we don’t have to.

      Hope you have a great weekend too.

  3. The Imp March 27, 2015 at 7:28 am

    As a mother to both sons and daughters, I can honestly say that concerns about their physical can sometimes supercede their concerns about their emotional and mental.

    I figure it’s my job to keep them balanced. To ensure that they place more emphasis on developing their minds, their personalities, rather than height or boobage. Height or boobage is predetermined…but WHO they become is completely in their control. A good person, or not. Intelligent or not.

    Yes, I believe that intelligence is something that is aquired, rather than innate. Some may have an easier time learning, but all can learn.

    • Jack March 28, 2015 at 11:49 am

      That is a great point about pushing for balance because there is no reason not to influence that which we have control over against that which we don’t.

      I am very big on education because material things can be taken from you but education is something that no one can repossess, borrow or steal.

  4. Gins March 27, 2015 at 3:16 am

    At that age, all it seems they can think about is how big they are. They’re always comparing because size in Middle and High School is so important to them. My son was tiny at that time (5’3″ and 90 lbs.) and remained so until the end of high school but really in college is when he grew. Now we can’t stop it! It’s too bad that their identity and confidence is tied to it. As you pointed out, so much is determined by genetics. You’re helping him though!

    • Jack March 28, 2015 at 11:45 am

      Hi Gina,

      I guess it is just one of those things we go through. I remember desperately wanting to be taller than I was at 14 so I am not surprised to hear my son or nephews say the same thing.

      I never mention that when I was their age I was bigger than all of them.

      When they ask I just tell them that genetics plays a role but we have to wait and see what happens because I didn’t stop growing until I was in college either.

      But I remind my son that if he wants he can influence some things and that it won’t hurt to start hitting the pushups and weights.

      This size and strength thing has to be tied into something primal from when we were living in caves and hunting.

      For me the most important thing is to help them with their confidence, that has such a big impact on our lives in general.

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