“It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities.”
Josiah Charles Stamp
I have been concerned lately about the drain some of the children of my generation are putting on their parents. These are the parents who worked hard all their lives living modestly, taking care of their children, paying school tuitions, seldom vacationing, and missing most of the luxuries of life. They did so with little debt other than the mortgage on their homes. They seldom used consumer credit and yet they made sure their children had everything they needed within reason.
When they retired with a small nest egg they looked forward to traveling and enjoying many of the things they had missed as the years went by. After retirement they continue to drive a modest car while living in a modest home. They still watch the TV they bought ten years ago. They have not purchased the latest gadgets since all they want to do is to settle in and enjoy their golden years, living off social security, their savings and if they are lucky, their pension.
Meanwhile their children went on with their lives often moving to a different part of the country. The kids bought big homes, the latest large screen TVs, purchased cars for all of their children, bought computers and the latest in electronics, as they enjoyed their upscale life. Many got further into debt as time went by and since their house was worth more than they paid for it they took out a loan on the equity so that they could continue their lifestyle. Unfortunately for them, the world changed, some were not making as much money as they had been, their taxes increased, their interest payments rose, and then the real estate bubble burst.
Fortunately most families have found ways to struggle through. But unfortunately too many believe that it is their parents responsibility to bail them out of their financial problems. They have no reservations about asking their parents to mortgage their home, give them all or part of their life savings even asking their parents to forgo any plans they may have had to travel and enjoy their retirement. The parents in effect are being told by their kids to give up their lives so the kids can sustain their lifestyle. And unfortunately far too many parents end up doing just that.
The sad part is that many parents have let this happen. They have always said yes to their kids requests. They always made the sacrifices while seldom saying no. I honestly think letting children avoid their own responsibilities just delays the inevitable since the day will come when they will crash and burn and when that happens they will be unable to cope. Sadly these children are teaching their own kids to believe that you can have everything you want and that there will always be someone there to pay for it and who are ready to bail them out of trouble.
“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.”
- "Take your hands off the car, and I’ll make your birth certificate a worthless document."
- "Can you run faster than 1,200 feet per second? In case you didn’t know, that is the average speed of a 9 mm bullet fired from my gun."
- "So you don’t know how fast you were going. I guess that means I can write anything I want on the ticket, huh?"
- "The answer to this last question will determine whether you are drunk or not. Was Mickey Mouse a cat or a dog?"
- "Fair? You want me to be fair? Listen, fair is a place where you go to ride on rides, eat cotton candy, and step in monkey poop."
- "Yeah, we have a quota. Two more tickets and my wife gets a toaster oven."
- "Just how big were those two beers?"
- "No sir, we don’t have quotas anymore. We used to have quotas, but now we’re allowed to write as many tickets as we want."
- "I’m glad to hear the Chief of Police is a good personal friend of yours. At least you know someone who can post your bail."
Follow your dream! Unless it’s the one where you’re at work naked during a fire drill.
"My father refused to spend money on me as a kid. One time I broke my arm playing football and my father tried to get a free X-ray by taking me down to the airport and making me lie down with the luggage."
The tourist in London climbed into a cab and noticed by the license that his cab driver’s name was "Winston Churchill." Trying to make conversation, he said, "I see your name is Winston Churchill."
The driver simply said, "Yep. That’s my moniker."
The passenger, not willing to give up yet on some banter said, "That’s a pretty famous name."
The driver responded with: "As well it should be too. I’ve been driving a cab here for over forty years."
It’s the little things you do day in and day out that count. That’s the way you teach your children.
A Student’s Creed
The more you study, the more you know.
The more you know, the more you forget.
The more you forget, the less you know, so why study?
The less you study, the less you know.
The less you know, the less you forget.
The less you forget, the more you know, so why study?
You can’t argue with that.
Boy, am I confused… I think.
There is an old story about a mother who walks in on her six-year-old son and finds him sobbing. "What’s the matter?" she asks.
"I’ve just figured out how to tie my shoes."
"Well, honey, that’s wonderful." Being a wise mother, she recognizes his victory in the Eriksonian struggle of autonomy versus doubt:
"You’re growing up, but why are you crying?"
"Because," he says, "now I’ll have to do it every day for the rest of my life."
There has been an alarming increase in the number of things I know nothing about.
At one point during a game, the coach called one of his 7-year-old hockey players aside and asked, "Do you understand what cooperation is?
What a team is?"
The little boy nodded in the affirmative.
"Do you understand that what matters is not whether we win or lose, but how we play together as a team?"
The little boy nodded yes.
"So," the coach continued, "I’m sure you know, when a penalty is called, you shouldn’t argue, curse, attack the referee, or call him a pecker-head. Do you understand all that?"
Again the little boy nodded.
He continued, "And when I call you off the ice so that another boy gets a chance to play, it’s not good sportsmanship to call your coach ‘a dumb ass’, is it?"
Again the little boy nodded.
"Good," said the coach. "Now go over there and explain all that to your mother!!!"
If you want children to keep their feet on the ground, put some responsibility on their shoulders.
Abigail Van Buren
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.
The editor is somewhat senile.