Saturday, October 31, 2020

A Birthday in October

As of today I have no more minor children.

Lauren is now legally an adult, which would perhaps be a daunting thought except for the fact that she has amply proven that she can handle responsibility and take care of herself just fine.

When you become a parent you sign up for the long haul. Long days. Long nights. Long years. But you do that because you know in the end it will be worthwhile and that there will be these new people to make the world better as they make their own lives.

And then they become adults, and there it is. New challenges. New tasks. Out they go into the world and all you can do is wish them well, love them utterly, and be there for them when they need you.

They never stop being your children, though, not really.

And they never stop being worthwhile.

Happy birthday, Lauren.

I’m proud of you.



LucyInDisguise said...

"I’m proud of you." As Are We All!

And A belated Hippy Baarfin' Day.


David said...

Thanks! I will pass that along to Lauren. :)

LucyInDisguise said...

Wisconsin appears to have been holding Its breathe and seems a little blue. Good on you.

So, While I've been waiting to find out if Nevada is going to fork over our Electoral votes to Joe, I went exploring down memory lane. Odin has revealed to me that I have been stalking you for more than 5 freaking years.

More on topic, whatever happened to your annual December post " The Faces of Lauren"? The last one I could find was this one from 2016:

'Twas a worthy endeavor. Yes, it was! (Although I can imagine that Lauren would not agree with my Hmmph.

So, how are you killing time till this election thingy gets called?


David said...

Five years! That's nearly half the length of this blog! Glad to have you along. :)

The "Faces of Lauren" posts started out as my project and gradually became her project as she got older. Eventually she decided that it wasn't something she wanted to continue, so we dropped it. I did enjoy those posts, though.

Mostly I've been grading student work, trying to catch up on work-related bureaucracy, reading (I finished LOTR again on Tuesday and am now reading a description of a year spent in the US by an Italian visitor, circa 1994 - the descriptions of technology alone are worth the read), and watching carefully as the right-wing mob works feverishly to steal the election and intimidate American patriots into silence.

This election should not have been this close. No decent human being or American patriot should support der Sturmtrumper or his open Fascism, and yet here we are. It's embarrassing as an American.

How about you?

LucyInDisguise said...

“This election should not have been this close.”

You have a platinum-plated gift for understatement. Yes, you do.

That even ONE rethuglican standing for reelection on November 3 managed to retain their seat is nothing short of a national disgrace. This should have been a clear repudiation of that party. That drumphy managed to secure more than 23,126* of the votes nationwide has me wearing a paper bag with no eyeholes a Red Maple Leaf on the front.

Can you hear the world laughing at us?

Canada is going to get a restraining order to keep us at least three continents and two oceans away.

Mexico now has a bona fide reason to put up their own damn wall and make us pay for it!

May the Gods and patron saints of fools and imbeciles bestow this Republic with a ‘do-over’.

Apologies for the hijack.


* The number is not a guesstimation. I know that’s how many votes he should have received - because that’s precisely the exact number of racist assholes and con-persons I’ve seen singing his praises on TV in the last two weeks. (Give or take a couple of tens of millions, apparently.)

David said...

Well, not really a hijack since I just posted on that exact subject.

The world is horrified that it was this close, but relieved that he's on his way out - at least that's what I have been able to gather. And so are all American patriots.

I will breathe easier today, but I will not relax. There is work to be done.

LucyInDisguise said...

"There is work to be done." Yes. There is.

That is a statement that has always been true in this or any Republic. Something, perhaps, that citizens of Republics forget, from time to time, and is probably how we got here in the first place. Republics require constant, diligent, and competent maintenance. (Competence comes as a result of a proper education, which half of our society seems bent on destroying.) As an educator, you know what I'm referring to ...

We fail miserably to teach our children HOW to learn. Our national literacy rate is appalling. My 27-year-old grandson cannot fight his way through the lede of a newspaper article and understand what he just read. (We are working to correct that ... at his age, it is HARD!) It's really not his fault - there are multiple reasons why he fell behind, but they just kept pushing him through year after year despite obvious deficiencies and turned him into what I call 'a product of our public education system'.

And he's just one - I've met hundreds like him and so have you. Millions more just voted against their own best interests and anything that could be described as reason. My eldest daughter doesn't understand why I won't even discuss politics with her anymore. She didn't just drink the rethuglican Kool-Aid; she helps mix new batches daily.

Don't really know where I was headed with this. "Only the journey is written, not the destination." (Got that from one of the Mummy movies.) I was trying to make a point about republics up there somewhere and find that I have derailed myself somehow. I'm angry. I'm elated. I'm relieved. I'm discouraged. I'm not really at all certain what to feel. Such is the world we now live in.

First accumulating snow is on the ground this evening. Fall is my favorite third-quarter season.


David said...

I love the autumn. The air is crisp. The temperatures are humane. I miss the smell of burning leaves, though, since most municipalities I've lived in have long since banned the practice. Oh well. Still my favorite season since my bones started to feel the cold of winter too much. Summer is right out.

The Founders would have agreed wholeheartedly with you about republics. They knew republics were fragile. They knew that republics depended on "virtue" - a term which in the 18th century mean the ability to place the public good above one's petty private interests. They knew that this was not a natural quality but had to be instilled. They knew republics require diligence and maintenance to survive. They knew that eventually the republic would fail.

The problem with public education is that it has been taken over by politicians who see it as 1) a chance to indoctrinate students into their political agenda [e.g. Texas], 2) a useless expense that can be cut in order to provide tax breaks for the already wealthy [e.g. Wisconsin, which only a decade ago had a public education system that was the envy of the nation], or 3) a political punching bag used to score points for their uninformed constituents [e.g. also Wisconsin, though in this state even many Republicans have pushed back on that - with mixed success, alas, because that's what happens when you allow your party to be captured by extremists]. You can still get a damned good education from public schools and - speaking as a university instructor who has to teach the products of these systems - it is often a hell of a lot better than what private schools or homeschooling can provide.

The problem isn't "public schools" so much as it is a culture that has systematically devalued critical thinking and indeed any real intellectual activity more complicated than sloganeering.

It's a deep hole to dig out of.

If there still are schools and universities a hundred years from now and the planet hasn't been reduced to a smoldering ruin, marketing and propaganda experts will spend their careers studying how the modern Republican Party managed to convince 47% of the American public that slitting their own throats was somehow their patriotic duty. It's the singular achievement of that party over the last half century.