Sunday, August 15, 2010

Think For Yourself My Son

This past weekend my wife and I bought back to school items for our son who is going to a pre-school and it’s the first time for us. Even though it wasn’t very much in quantity I was able to get him a Star Wars folder and a Star Wars notebook and almost got him a Star Wars lunch bag but instead ended up getting him an old school looking metal lunch box from Cars. My wife accused me of pushing Star Wars on him and she’s right of course. A father’s gotta do what a father’s gotta do.

Now, I’m not stupid enough to believe that I will always be able to make my child dislike everything that I think is bad, poorly made or just plain old ridiculous crap. It’s not very sensible to think that he’ll never like any soulless music or any pandering drivel that’s only aim is to take dollars out of our pockets. I know that at least for a little bit of time it’s inevitable. No matter how much I play good music like Alejandro Escovedo, Rush, Satelite Kingston or Grupo Fantasma he will be exposed to something that will be designed to draw young ears to it but will have not one ounce of originality or heart to it. No matter how much I try to teach him to think for himself I know he’ll follow some trends and just do what’s popular. That’s the way it is.

The good news though is that if I do my job as a parent right then maybe that period of following trends will be mercifully short and it won’t take long for him to realize that there’s more to life out there than what’s being force-fed down our throats on TV, movies and radio. After all, I don’t want to raise him to like what I do just because I like it. He should learn how to think for himself and not be afraid to stand up for what he believes in and learn how to tell what’s good from what’s not. It takes time to learn what you really like in life but I think if you learn how to be yourself then the rest will come naturally. Of course what do I know? I’m just a guy trying to do right by my family and praying that I don’t do anything to mess my kid up. But then again, haven’t most of us thought that at one time or another? Thinking for yourself is about the most important thing I think I can ever try to teach my son.

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