Kicking back with a Shiner and some good music after a fun night out with my fellow local jewelers and a long day of figuring out how to say things in Polish.
So in less time than it takes to have a baby…
I’ve broken up with the girl I once thought I’d marry*.
I’ve moved over 600 miles away from home** leaving my family and basically everyone I’ve ever met up to this point.
I’ve taken a new job after seven years that cut my pay significantly***, made my customer base obsolete, and even changes my overall job description.
So here I am. Single, missing my people, taking home less than I did before college, and in a strange place; and I’ve gotta tell you…
It’s all an incredible and wonderful adventure.
This is the best me I’ve been.
*And stopped talking and gotten back together and stopped talking and finally lost the girl and found my friend.
**Almost 1000km, or roughly 16x the width of Rhode Island at its widest point, if you were wondering.
***Ah, and money… I never thought it mattered to me when you said it did, and we were both right. See the thing is, I didn’t care about having lots of money because I wanted to be rich or show off, or even cause I wanted to be comfortable. I cared because I’m competitive as hell and it gave be a way to quantify my performance. Now that I’m making less, I realize it’s not that important. Wouldn’t mind making more again though, and one day I will.
My ten year old cousin has been staying with me for a week. She’s great, and I’m happy about this.
What I’m not happy about is that she has an iPhone with a password on it, that she and her friends talk about boys and use suggestive language, that she believes saying “shut up” is acceptable towards adults, or that she has scads of homework and talked with me about whether it’s okay to cite Wikipedia. It’s one of the most adult conversations we’ve ever had. Smart little kid. She’s ten.
What happened? We can’t have an educational system where kids are taught to develop their strengths, or to appreciate classics, to recognize history, or to increase their critical thinking… But we can have sex ed and too much homework.
When’s a kid supposed to be a kid? I know at ten I thought I was more grown up than I was, I’m sure I knew a lot more bad words and a lot more about sex than I should have, I’m not saying it’s all that different. For that matter, we sure didn’t get a good education… But that doesn’t make it okay.
She’s telling me how her teachers teach them to be politically correct. She knows about gun control but probably can’t name five presidents or point to Scotland on a map. She’s been inundated with black history month because it’s the part of history they actually go over, and yeah, it’s important, but what about the rest? We didn’t go from ancient Egypt to pilgrims to slavery to now. There were things in between.
What kills me is I know it’s not just her. We’ve got people voting who don’t know the names of all the candidates, let alone what they stand for. We’ve got people writing for the newspapers that couldn’t point out why that last sentence is technically grammatically incorrect. Art students who don’t know the difference between deco and nouveau.
Ten year olds who have hours of homework, but don’t know why South Africa is different than North Africa.
World leaders who don’t know the difference between an N and a Q.