Alarming News: I like Morgan Freeberg. A lot.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: We were following a trackback and thinking "hmmm... this is a bloody excellent post!", and then we realized that it was just part III of, well, three...Damn. I wish I'd written those.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: ...I just remembered that I found a new blog a short while ago, House of Eratosthenes, that I really like. I like his common sense approach and his curiosity when it comes to why people believe what they believe rather than just what they believe.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is an intriguing guy...[he] asks great questions and answers others with style, flair, reason and wit. On the blogroll he goes. Make him a part of your regular blogospheric reading. I certainly will.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is brilliant.
Common Sense Junction: Misha @ Anti-Idiotarian never ceases to amaze me. He keeps finding other good blogs. I went over to A.I. this morning for my daily Misha fix and he had found this guy named Morgan Freeberg in Fair Oaks, California, that has a blog, House of Eratosthenes. Freeberg says its "The Blog That Nobody Reads" but it may now become the blog that everybody reads.
Jaded Haven: Good God, Morgan, you cover a topic from front to back with a screwy thoroughness I find mind boggling. I'm in awe of your thought proccesses, my friend, you're an exceptional talent. You start by throwing in the kitchen sink, tie in someone's syphilitic uncle, bend around a rip tide of brilliance and bring it all home in a neat, diamond dripping package of an exceptionally readable moment of damn fine wordsmithing. I love reading you.
Mein Blogovault: Make "the Blog that No One Reads" one of your daily reads.
Philmon: When Morgan meanders, stick with him - he's got a point and it'll be worth it in the end. He's not a hit-and-run snarky quip kind of guy. The pieces all fall into place like tumblers in a lock and bang! He's opened a cognative door for you.
Rightlinx: Morgan at House of Eratosthenes is one of the best writers out there. I read him nearly every day because he manages to provide an interesting perspective, even though I don't always agree.
Poetic Justice: Cletus! Ah gots a laiv one fer yew...
Caught a couple of fresh-grilled hamburgers at the company pool party yesterday, somewhere around three in the afternoon. They were a little on the rare side, and I rode my bike home some seven miles, getting a flat on the way…lots of dehydration, more sunburn than was planned, some indigestion from the raw meat, which means Friday evening was spent in a nap. And all this culminates in the conclusion that as of this morning I was starving. So I rode my bike to a local sandwich shop. It’s a “Hof Brau” imitation thing where they carve up the meat right in front of you. Right next door to where they had a mail stop for my Netflix drop-off, so that was pretty cool.
So in line in front of me, is a momma and her whelps. She’s about a decade younger than me…I have no idea where the dad is…there are a couple of male ten-year-old tow-heads in Judo outfits, and a pair of teenage trollops decked out in the “cootchie cutter” super-tight jean shorts I wish the ladies would be wearing in their mid-to-late twenties or so. So we’ve got two ten-year-olds and two sixteen-year-olds. And I was struck by the “mother ship” configuration going on here…Mom was just barking out order after order after order, command after command after command. Really something to watch. You go here, you go there. The tow-headed kids are having salads — wonder how that came about. So the guy behind the counter is asking the little guy what kind of cheese he wants on top and the Mom is interrupting her own commandment-dishing-out exercise long enough to yell over “He probably wants blue cheese”…and then an issue is somehow made of the idea that salad consumed by a person wearing a Gi, is likely to become salad worn on the sleeve of the Gi. So she instructs the little cretins to roll up their sleeves. Oh no she doesn’t; she has one hold his arms out, and she rolls up the sleeves for him while she continues to belt out Great Santini commands in all directions.
What struck me was the reaction of the four kids. The two jean-short-sluts, of course, immersed themselves deeply in “Best Friends Forever” hobnobbing, jibber-jabbering to each other a mile a minute while all the people and furnishings and air space around them disappeared. The two tow-heads did what boys will do, taking a more individualized approach, daydreaming about Pokemon or Fred Flintstone or something. Mom continued to belt out orders as if she was the center of attention…and nuclear powered.
Mercifully, I was allowed to line-jump. I got my grub. They got theirs. I got a pub table, teen trollops got another pub table and Momma and Judo artists got a booth across from the trollops. When Momma had to excuse herself to go resolve biological issues, things got real interesting. Wonder sluts began assaulting the martial artists…something to do with wiping salad dressing on the Judo outfits or something. Martial artists are not just sitting there & taking it, they’re dishing it back out. It was pure chaos. And, on some level, rather healthy and therefore appealing; a wholesome chaos. Mom’s gone, let’s act like people again.
Momma emerged and there was a predictable smackdown as she busied herself with restoring order. Each of the four combatants was entirely innocent — you could just see the golden halos over their heads. Momma barked out some more orders, replied with a wordless upraised hand to this-or-that protest, and made some superficial motion toward actually consuming food.
Anyway. It’s just interesting, to me, that nobody has any interest or ability to socially interact as normal people until the momma bear is gone. And that only has to happen for about five seconds or so.
Let’s just cut to the chase here: Kids do not take care of what they see someone else is already managing…or trying to manage. They will not join in any team effort with Mom, to “help” get their own food ordered. Frankly, I wouldn’t either. If Mom takes over the whole show, they quietly fantasize about the ground swallowing them up…and yeah…that’s what I would be doing, too, if I were them.
Learning disabilities? Social immaturity? Let me just state the obvious — that which everybody knows to be true, but everyone’s too smart to say out loud except me. Kids do what they can see needs to be done. They are not going to participate socially until such time as an avenging angel descends on us, spreads pixie dust around all the Moms, and silences them. Is that not sexist enough yet? Shut UP, moms. Let the kid order his own salad.
Or else…I don’t want to hear a single word about ADHD. So long as I see the adults show the behavior I saw today, I will expect to see the kids showing the behavior I saw out of them. The operative formula here is something like: Social competence in the kids, plus words-per-minute out of the Mom, equals C, a constant. So zip it. Let’s see what your kids really have going on.
I imagine a hundred out of a hundred mothers will reply that this advice, for this reason or that one, somehow doesn’t apply to them. How I wish that were truly the case.
Update 9/11/11: You know, it occurs to me — over the last twenty years, what is the caricature of the parent that has been most stigmatized other than the deadbeat dad…it is the overly-involved dad, sitting in the front row at the soccer match, yelling at the whelp to do everything that’s needed to score the goal. Win! Beat! Get! Grrrr! From the beginning, I’ve been a little confused and disoriented as to which entity I found less sympathetic; the Great Santini dad who’s ruining what should be a pleasurable outing for everybody, or his critics. Who are these people who are signing their curtain-climbers up for soccer and then working so hard to make it into a non-competitive sport? And since when is it the worst thing a dad can do, to want his kid to do something well — how’s that even make the list? What happened to burnings & beatings and sending ten-year-olds out on liquor runs?
But this thing with the moms who won’t shut up, it’s exactly the same thing. It has the same effect. The only difference is, the pushy moms are interfering to stop their kids from living life, and the pushy dads are interfering to stop their kids from losing a game. If you accept the premise that both are doing damage, the dads at least stop doing the damage when the game is over and the van doors slide shut.
Here we are all puzzled about why learning disabilities are skyrocketing; I’ll bet if you round up lots of SLD kids, you’re not going to find too many with dads berating their game performance on the soccer field. But I’m pretty sure you’ll find they all have pushy moms. I’m really not sure how & why the moms are getting away with this behavior that does this kind of damage to our society. Is it just because they’re girls?
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