Here at the Cove, we haven't been exactly blessed with the regular joys and curses of raising children. We have three kids here, the older two boys have Autism. There are parts of raising autistic kids that is normal, and some things that happen in our family at the age of 18 or 21 are things that your children might have experienced at, say, 12. The learning curve is pretty steep here at times.
You might imagine my surprise when the youngest child--my daughter--suddenly expresses an interest in the news and some politics. "I'm going to be 16 soon, I need to start paying attention to what the fuck is going on."
I'll address the F-Bomb in a minute, but the upshot is that my daughter and I are now watching the PBS Newshour together. She asks questions, and I tell her some answers and challenge her to look up the rest. I'm all for it. When I was her age, my family watched the news, and my father would expect that I had an opinion, and challenged me to convince him that my opinion was correct. Often, I wasn't excused from dinner until I had backed up my opinion with some facts.
Critical thinking over Sloppy Joes and french fries. You can't do better. I owe a lot to those dinner conversations with MacNeil/Lehrer and The Chief. So, I passed that story on to Migs, and she said "You're not going to make ME do that, are you?
"I'm not going to make you stay at the table, but yes, I'm going to ask you what you think. You're going to be voting in about two years, and it's really important that you know about these things that directly affect you."
During that first newscast, there was a story about Family Planning in the Philippines. Her eyes got dinner plate wide as she watched 14 year old kids with babies. "NO. FUCKING. WAY," she shouted.
"Yes, absolutely. That's what happens when you don't have access to the tools that allow you to chose when you might like to have a baby. Of course, that's assuming you say yes to some boy in the first place without using those tools."
Jaw wide open, she asks "HOW IS THAT EVEN HELPFUL? THEY CAN'T WORK."
'The people who dont want you to have access to birth control don't want you to work. They want you to have babies. That's it. But, once you have that baby, let's say you're out of work and on your own. Those same people don't want to help you or that baby, because it costs money to do that."
"What do you think?"
She thought about that for a second and came up with birth control as being the less expensive option. "Because shoes."
"You just bought three pairs of shoes for school. You've done that every August for how long? Birth control HAS to be cheaper than that..."
She's right, of course. She's smarter than me, that's for sure...
A note about my child cursing: I was dropping F Bombs a la Jackson Pollock at her age, my parents were under no illusion that I was ever a Boy Scout, and there rule was, as long as you don't curse where it is totally NOT appropriate to do so, then say what you like at home. I may not like religion very much, but you can best believe I knew the difference between cursing in the car on the way to church, and cursing IN church. So does my kid. Trust me when I tell you, her hair color and whether or not she says FUCK a little? Not things I worry about.
Do not underestimate the power of a pair of Bose Quiet Comfort Headphones when you really need to focus. Alternately, when you need to sleep despite the noise. It's one of those. Maybe both.
A thought to ponder, "Be ok with disappointing the right people." As someone who has gone way beyond the call of duty when it comes to pleasing people, it's been a very hard road to owning the word no. I've written about this before, but suffice it to say that I would rather gouge my eyes out with a grapefruit spoon than to say no to my wife or kids. On the other hand, My time to write and produce is my time, and I've gotten very good at saying no when it comes to protecting the time I have to create.
Giving some serious thought to reverting to one podcast only, that being Roley. I have a lot I want to say,and the Pirate show, as much as I love it, is a second podcast to produce at a point where I think focusing on one thing is important. Comedy, Piracy, Life...there's not a valid reason in my mind that I have to continue doing two podcasts when I can put it all in one under the Roley name. I need to give this a little more thought, but I'm leaning right now towards the RoleyShow being the only show going forward.
That's it from Providence Cove this week, see you next time.