Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Oh No, they are just like me!

Waiting at midnight for StarCraft II to be released...
Son #2 (D):  Daddy!  DAD!!!
Me:  What?  Is something wrong?
D:  No.  I just need to know how to say something.
Me:  Oh, sure.  What are you trying to say?
D:  Your mother has a smooth forehead.
Me:  Your mother has a what?
D:  It's Klingon!
Me:  Yes, I know that.  It's also a pretty big insult in the Klingon language.
D:  Yea!  I know!  Look at this website!  Its called the Klingon Learning Institute.
Me:  Aaaaaah... memories.  Yes, when I was young, I used to goto that web site to learn how to speak Klingon.  I had a couple of guys in College who could speak it better than me though... good times.

... begin wavy flash back ...

Wife:  I'm so scared for our kids.
Me:  What?  Why?!  We're great parents!
Wife:  You promise you won't get mad?
Me:  Of course not.  What's wrong with the kids.
Wife:  Well, I'm afraid... oh never mind.
Me:  No no, tell me... what's wrong.
Wife:  Well, I'm afraid our kids are going to grow up to be geeks!
Me:  Oh, I see.  And this is MY fault?!

... end flash back ...

Me:  Huh... I guess it IS my fault.
D:  What is your fault Dad?
Me:  Oh nothing.  Go practice your Klingon.

Fighting over the StarCraft II game on the way home...
I love the fact that children study us parents.  We don't always know that they do.  But as much as we study them, they are studying us.  Sometimes, this is a good thing.  Sometimes, it causes them to want to learn Klingon.

Now I am more than happy to take the credit when our children display good behavior.  In fact, I would say that they learned their empathy, love, compassion, patience, long suffering, were learned by watching me.  I'm also pretty sure that all the bad behaviors are learned from their mother.  :-)

I was overwhelmed with geekish pride that my boy wanted to learn an Alien Language.  But at the same time, I was horrified that I apparently really WAS turning my children in to geeks!

What is going to come of my girls?!  Are they going to grow up enjoying Star Wars, Star Trek, Paintball, Computer Programming, String Theory, Physics and literary works by Hofsteader?!?!  Oh my!
Are they all doomed to be like me?
I can see their teen years unfolding now...
Some Greasy Boy (SGB):  Hey baby!  How YOU doing?
Ping:  Are you talking to me?  Ewwwww...
SGB:  Wanna come back to my place and see my car?
Ping:  Uh, no.
SGB:  Come to the football game?  I'm the star quarter back!
Ping:  Nah.
SGB:  Ummm, want to see my new AMD Bulldozer based computer system with 1333MHz overclocked RAM with 7-7-7-9 timings and a overclocked 2.2Ghz Hyper Transport Bus?!
Ping:  WHAT?!  Yes I DO!
SGB:  And then maybe after that we can watch the original Stargate Series!
Ping:  I think you are my soul mate!

Oh thats not good.  My work as a father is not done.  I still have a long way to go with my kids.  But hopefully at the end of my career as a father, my children will be able to look back on many wonderful things I taught them, even if I'm never aware of what those things are.

All the teaching, preaching, talking, yelling and such I do to help "teach" my children how to behave, or how to be polite well adjusted members of society is probably useless in comparison to what they learn simply by watching me.  I think with our adopted children (especially those who are older children), this is even more true.  They are being dropped into our lives unable to speak our language, without years of history being our children... all they can do at times IS watch us.  Hopefully while watching us, they will learn that they can trust us, and eventually love us.
Old picture, but you can see there is a history of my child trying to stab me with pointy thing...
When Ping came home with us, she was smart enough to hear what we were saying, and understand it.  But she was also wise enough not to trust what we said until she saw us live it out.  There was this gap between saying "I love you", and getting it at a head level, versus being told "I love you" and truly grasping it at a heart level.  I think the heart level becomes established when our children can actually SEE us living out what we say with our words.  I think Ping finally understood that I loved her, not when I told her for the 1000th time, but when I simply scooped her up in my arms instead of getting mad at her when she attacked me with the pointy stick.  Or when I let her curl up in my lap and cry after she tried to push me down the stairs...

Now, I have to go, teach my son how to insult an alien from the one of the Neutral system in their native tongue, and let him know just how proud I am of him.  All while making sure he doesn't tell his Mother what I'm teaching him...


  1. What, it took you this long? My sister and I already had the, "Omigawd we've turned into our parents!" talk over 20 years ago... at which point we realized it was pretty much inevitable. :-) The real trick will be to teach Ping to use those sharp, pointy sticks on enemies of the Empire instead of on you...! (Geeks of the world, unite!)

  2. Loved this blog post, I read it somewhere other than on your site! I had to share it with my son, it was wonderful!

  3. Hopefully you had read it on No Hands but Ours - its where I originally posted it. :-) If you read it somewhere else, please let me know.

  4. it does happen, those pick-up lines...I was once asked if I wanted to come back to see a boy's Nintendo...(yup, dating myself here). However, I ended up marrying him!


  5. Well at least you didn't marry a SEGA fan. That would have ended poorly. :-)