What I Learned
My son was home sick for two days this week, which turned out to be educational (for me). One day we watched Martha Stewart carving pumpkins on TV and she made an amazing point--if you cut the lid at the bottom instead of the top, you can put a candle on the ground and set the pumpkin on top of it. So much easier, no need to arrange candle inside of gooey pumpkin.
What I learned was...not that, but actually something about myself. I really am sort of a conservative. You have to carve the lid at the top of the pumpkin! If you don't, there won't be that nice little jagged line at the top, with candlelight showing through.
That's the way it's always been. Is she crazy?
The other thing I learned. My son has a thing about turning off all the lights in the house these days. Well, I did buy him Al Gore's book An Inconvenient Truth, so I've got to be pleased. There we were eating lunch in a dark room and I said "You know, it really is kind of gloomy with no lights on." He said "That's nothing compared to how gloomy it's going to be when the world comes to an end."
Hmm. My own ten year old kid is outdoing me at environmentalism. My ten year old daughter regularly outdoes me in the area of animal rights. For no principled reason, I eat fish but not meat. Now when we go shopping together, she makes speeches at the seafood counter. Most of the time I succumb to her good sense.
I heard a charming monologue on NPR recently by a man who said his son is smarter, more talented, better looking, and much nicer than he is. Only a parent can take so much delight in being outdone.