Monday, May 9, 2005

Adventures In Parenting

I suppose this is a bit of a continuing series, but I have to tell you that this stuff just kills me. It comes when you least expect it, provides a wonderful glimpse into the mind of your little buddy, and perhaps reminds you of some of the crazy stuff that you said to your parents way back when.

Conversation #1:

Pursuit Daughter #2 is 10 years old, and fancies herself as a free spirit, artiste. For example, on her tenth birthday she asked for a dress maker's dummy so that she could begin to design clothes. Of course we agreed because we encourage this, to a point, and want her to pursue her own dreams. We do, however, expect her to be responsible, caring and open to other opportunities in life.

Accordingly, I told PD2 that she was expected to go out for soccer this year. I think sports are an important pursuit for all kids, but for girls in particular since it helps them develop strong self images, and teaches them the rewards of effort and perserverance at an early age.

"No way Dad! I'll look like such a loser, I don't know anything about soccer!"

I pointed out that this part of her childhood was not open to negotiation.

A few days later PD2 comes to me with a shopping list for a ball, shin guards, shorts and cleats. I'm very impressed, both at her willingness to take on a challenge and at my superior persuasive talents.

"PD2" I say, "What made you change your mind about trying out? You suddenly seem very excited about making the team" I add suspiciously.

"Oh, I am Dad, I saw the team jacket that you get if you make it, and I really like it!"

Whatever works I guess.

Conversation #2:

PD1 as I've written before is very sports oriented, a hardline conservative (she is a Sean Hannety fan - something I'm gently trying to move her away from), and at 13, just beginning to think about clothes, make-up and of course, boys.

Me: "PD1, you look great this morning. That jacket is fantastic on you"

PD2: "Obviously she has a crush on X and is trying to impress him!"

PD1: "I do not, you're the boy crazy one PD2"

Much back and forth ensues, I then interject:

Me: "Well any boy that likes you is going to have to look pretty good to keep up"

PD1: "Oh, I won't date any boy that doesn't look good"

Me: "Thats kind of shallow don't you think? There are many other factors to consider"

PD1: "Of course, he is going to have to agree with all my political opinions too!"




All of us: Uproarious laughter.

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