Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Brainwashing your child: hey, it happens

We all brain wash our kids, without even meaning to. They're just so impressionable and even the most mindful and mild of us parents pass on our beliefs and opinions about things.

My children, for instance, have a beef with teenagers. All of them, in general, as a category.

"I don't want to be a teenager!" exclaimed Primo one day, "They are so annoying!"

"Oh honey," I replied, "Not all teenagers are the same. Just like with everything, there are some nice ones and not-so-nice ones, and annoying ones, and perfectly pleasant ones."

"Well then why are you always complained about them?" he volleyed back.

This illuminated two things to me.

A. When did I become such a grumpy, crusty old octogenarian?
B. I have to be more careful about the shit I say in front of the kids.

"Yes, you're right, I do sometimes complain about teenagers," I agreed, "Because when I'm trying to walk you home from school and they take up the whole sidewalk and yell like maniacs and bump into us, it drives me crazy. But that's not ALL teenagers. And the truth is, I was the most annoying teenager around. Really. So I probably shouldn't complain."

But it was too little, too late. My kids are now prejudice against teenagers. And I have to launch a PR campaign in defense of them, to highlight the many positive qualities of many of the city's adolescents.

The other day, I noticed a new way I'd brainwashed Primo (Sec's way tougher to brainwash as she kind of just doesn't give much regard to anything I say).

I was limping around, moaning about my back pain and grumbling about being nauseous with my massive pregnant belly was sticking out of my pajamas and I just looked like the most miserable excuse for a human you've ever seen.

"Daddy, you're SO lucky," Primo pointed out.

"Why?" David took the bait.

"Because you get to have a baby without doing any of the work," he explained, "And poor Mommy has to feel SO BAD."

That time, I didn't bother to correct him. David had plenty to say on the matter.