Archive for October 22nd, 2009


The Ultimate Birthday Present

October 22, 2009

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This is my oldest son. He’s five today. He arrived on my 30th birthday, thus freeing me from having to celebrate my own for the near future.

I handed out a lot of advice during my last birthday post, and it all holds as true for him as for his brother.

Some things I have neglected to mention:

Stay in school
I don’t just mean put in an appearance. Make sure your education is important to you as you are to us. Keep going, push yourself and rise above the mediocrity that will surround you.

Go to college
Get a degree in something you want to do for the rest of your life. I blew off college until I felt it was too late to go back. I regret this mainly because it limits my earning power, which means it punishes you as much as it does me. The only difference is you had no choice. Don’t make my mistake.

Speaking of school… You’ll be headed there in a year. I’m anticipating/dreading that day. I want you to go and I know you’ll make me proud. I just have the somewhat justifiable fear that kids these days have turned into cruel, worthless bastards. It makes me feel that you’ll spend a large part of your day surrounded by the living, breathing equivalent of Youtube commenters.

Don’t let their stupidity and cruelty grind you down. I would hate to see your youthful innocence shattered but I know that time is coming. I dread this like nothing else in my life.

It may never come. You might be fortunate enough to just deal with a few jackasses. Either way, I know that the more I want to protect you from, the less you’ll be able to handle on your own. I think my knee-jerk reactions could be damaging, as I tend to favor the “hit them back” method of dealing with problem classmates. I’ll work on that because that goes against my better judgement but satisfies me more quickly.

But we won’t dwell on this. Those days will come and I’m sure we’ll all weather it just fine. Enjoy your birthday and lack of responsibility. Those days are numbered as well.