THE PARENT FILES: FEELING GOOD ABOUT ME
I have three reasons for living. The first is to be a good husband. The second is to be a good father and the third is to be a good citizen. I honestly have no idea if I am any good at any of these things – or, to be more precise, good enough. But today something happened that made me feel good about being me.
I was driving back from church with my son and we were talking about Time – or, to be more precise, we were talking about how important it is to have a proper relationship with Time.
I was explaining to my son that success – and by “success” I mean living a long life in good health, not missing any meals and being content more often than being dissatisfied – depends in large measure on whether or not a person has a good relationship with Time.
Successful people live in the Past, Present and Future simultaneously. You probably do it but don’t realize it. When you are confronted with a choice you automatically draw off of past experience, apply information you’ve gathered in the present and then use both Past and Present to anticipate Future consequences of your actions. The deeper your grasp of the Past – both personal and historical – and the more extensive your Present data gathering, the better you can project into the Future to avoid unpleasant or undesirable consequences.
Most people can’t do this. They cannot remember the past in any meaningful way, they fail to gather data in the Present, which means they cannot anticipate the Future consequences of their actions.
For example, millions of Americans bought items using credit cards today who should not have made those purchases. They don’t remember the purchases they made in the Past, they have failed to gather data in the Present as to whether they can afford to make more purchases on credit, which means they don’t – can’t – understand the dire Future consequences of going deeper into debt.
People who do not integrate the Past, Present and Future have no control over their lives. They are the most likely to lose their jobs during economic bad times. They are the most likely to lose their homes to foreclosure. They are the most likely to eat too much fast food, gain too much weight, develop life-style related diseases and die young.
I don’t want my son to be one of those people. So today I was talking to him about how important it is to gather information – any information – as he goes about his daily life. I told him that all information could be important and useful. I struggled with the concept, trying to explain it, and then said:
“You never know when the trivial will become pivotal.”
The moment I said that I realized it was pretty cool. Almost like poetry. And I felt like a good father and felt pretty good about being me.
Which I am never comfortable with. So the next thing I told him was:
“Jews control the media.”
It isn’t true and I don’t believe it, and I know my son won’t believe it, but I don’t want him to get used to me being wise. I want to ge a good father but I don’t want to work too hard at it, and the less my son expects of me the easier it will be.
This entry was posted on January 25, 2010 at 12:46 p01 and is filed under Getting it Right, Globalization, It's not what you think, Life, Paying Attention, The River of Time. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.