Friday, March 11, 2011

Tsunamis and other Parenting Challenges

This morning I awoke to news of the worst earthquake in Japan’s history, film footage of a tsunami that swept over the island and predictions that tsunamis would be hitting Hawaii and the West Coast of the US. Put differently, I woke up to an Irwin Allen movie (Irwin Allen IMDB). Overwhelmingly, it seems like the news is pointing more and more toward the conspiracy theorists being right about 2012. Fine, I said it. Put me away.

So, fires rage out of control, tsunamis are sweeping across the globe, earthquakes are killing 100’s of thousands of people around the world, the Middle East is in turmoil and oh, yes, there’s Charlie Sheen. How, in the face of all this am I to seriously look at my son and, with no smile on my face, tell him it’s of the utmost importance that he learn how to flawlessly execute “Down by the Station” on his recorder? Seriously.

When the world has reached this fever pitch of insanity and mayhem, how can I really care if he knows how to reduce a fraction? Or spell a word properly? Let’s not even start questioning why spelling is even important anymore. Or math for that matter.  For crying out loud, technology has advanced to the point where he’d be better off learning how to write code than sentences! It’s arcane.

And so, today, with the news pretty much looking like the world is about to end (I won’t go too far into my own religious beliefs on that subject), I sent my son off to school to have his math and spelling skills tested. In retrospect, I think I should have kept him home, taken him someplace fun and called it a day. Tell you what, I am going to be REALLY annoyed with myself if I wake up tomorrow and find out I squandered the last day of civilization this way!