I’ve been thinking Thursday: Good Parenting?

Have you ever noticed right about the time you’re ready to send your child off to a military style boarding school they suddenly pull some amazing miracles out of their ass?

Seriously, in the midst of a heinous day of the kiddo acting like an extra from a zombie apocalypse movie (just replace “brains” with “irritate mum”), he suddenly pulls off a stunner of a twist.

He’s at his karate belt test. He’s sparing with a girl who’s his own level, they test based on belt type, so she should know everything he does. They’re the pair sparring closest to the mom zone. I can hear him coaching her. “You have to apply enough pressure to keep my elbow straight.” “They’re looking for you to do three taps to my arm before you punch my ribs.”

Warms my heart.

Then it goes on.

They’re doing kata. Now at their level, a black belt demonstrates the kata so they can follow along. But if they want a higher score (ie they want in to the coveted weapons class), they have to perform without a black belt leading. One boy volunteers to go alone. The sensei asks if anyone else wants to go with him or if he’ll have to be all by himself? The kiddo jumps up and says he’ll do it so the kid doesn’t have to be alone.

Oh, just wait….

When they finished kata they are supposed to stand at attention until everyone else finishes and they are dismissed. No problem this first go. But then a large group of kids get up to do kata without a black belt and mine goes again. He finishes and stands at attention. Everyone else finishes except one girl. She is clearly lost. Kiddo starts kata from the very next move she needs and she follows him to the end.

After the test is over, the kiddo tells me “I’m probably going to get marked down for not maintaining attention but it was worth it to help her.”

Well, damn.  Perhaps humanity is not lost.

No military school for him this week I guess.

Fiendish Friday: Protest

I usually stay away from hot button topics like politics and religion. I understand it’s how you get followers, I’ve heard the lecture many a time, but it’s not the authentic experience I want. Lately I’ve had the desire to blog about the things happening in our world but I’ve refrained and it occurs to me, refraining isn’t being authentic either.
If in the course of your protest, people are beaten to the ground with shovels, hit in the head with bike locks, chased down the block. If you destroy infrastructure with baseball bats. This is not a protest. This is a riot.
ri·ot

NOUN

  1. a violent disturbance of the peace by a crowd
Yep, a riot.
pro·test

NOUN

  1. a statement or action expressing disapproval of or objection to something
So let’s talk about effective protest. Real protest with long terms effects.
Mahatma Ghandi.
He lead an entire country to independence via non violent civil disobedience.
Gandhi first employed nonviolent civil disobedience as an expatriate lawyer in South Africa, in the resident Indian community’s struggle for civil rights. After his return to India in 1915, he set about organizing peasants, farmers, and urban laborers to protest against excessive land-tax and discrimination. Assuming leadership of the Indian National Congress in 1921, Gandhi led nationwide campaigns for easing poverty, expanding women’s rights, building religious and ethnic amity, ending untouchability, but above all for achieving or self-rule. He was imprisoned for many years, upon many occasions, in both South Africa and India. Gandhi attempted to practice nonviolence and truth in all situations, and advocated that others do the same. India got it’s independence in 1947.
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Ghandi
I am afraid of the change today’s “protesters” wish to see. Violence daily in the streets. No thank you.
I prefer to embrace this: “You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.”