David Reynolds | Kids know
Columnists often fall prey to that which we constantly warn our readers: You are not as smart as you think you are because you don’t know what you don’t know. Somehow we think that the world’s problems can be easily solved if only the world would listen to us, that our wisdom will point civilization in the right direction. And our readers can take it from there.
Then we get hit by a ton of bricks. This one thrown by a kid. And a grand kid, at that. We learn lessons which can only be learned while submerged in a sea of humility. We learn that writers are no different than readers — none of us know what we don’t know. And at times we know far less than our children and grandchildren.
This is one of those times. Last week when it rained I could not do my usual outdoor chores. The mowing and the painting would have to wait until the sun came out. So I cleaned out a closet – and found truth.
This is what I found. My grandson Jackson, then seven and no relation to the general, wrote down one summer day in large block letters “THINGS TO DO TONIGHT.”
Here they are, 17 ways to live a happy life, 17 way to chase the blues away. I thought I would pass them on completely unedited:
1. HAVE A BIG CAMPFIRE.
2. HAVE A FEAST.
3. GIVE THE PEPO THIER FATHER’S DAY PRESENTS.
4. HAVE A BREAKFAST CAMPFIRE WITH PANCAKES, FRENCH FRIES AND DOGHNUTS.
5. PLAY SOME GAMES. HAVE SOME FUN, JOIN EVERYONE.
6. PUT ON YOUR SHOES IF YOU DON’T HAVE THEM.
7. CUDDLE BABY ELLY-TELL HER YOURE’’ LITTLE SO SHE KNOWS.
8. GO TO THE SWIMMING POOL AND SEE IF IT IS OPEN, WE SHOULD GO THERE! AND SEE HOW GOOD I SWIM AGAIN.
9. DO THE CROSSWORD PUZZLES IN THE NEWSPAPER WE GOT WHEN WE DID ALL THAT!
10. PLAY TENNIS IN THE SAME TENNIS COURT AT THE SAME POOL AS THE SWIMMING POOL I WROTE DOWN ON NUMBERS.
11. WATCH TV ON ALL CHANNELS UP TO CHANNEL 730!
12. READ THE BOOKS I GIVE YOU NO MATTER IF YOU DON’T LIKE THEM!
13. LISTEN TO MUSIC WHILE YOU SLEEP THAT WILL MAKE YOU WAKE UP!
14. THE DADS WILL BLOW OUT THE FATHER’S DAY CANDLES.
15. GO TO BED SLEEP TIGHT, TOMORROW YOU’LL BE ALL RIGHT. SLEEP.
16. IT’S THE NEXT DAY! NOW WE CAN START PLAYING AGAIN!
17. LET’S DO THE SAME THING AS YESTERDAY.
Please reread the last three items. Not bad advice. So, listen to your kids for they live in a spin-free zone. They let their imagination do life’s spinning. If you follow their advice your next blue Monday won’t be so blue. Take care.
– Column by David Reynolds