Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Once again I realize...

...being a parent is tough. It's little things that happen (to me at least) that make me wonder how anyone can be a successful parent.

So, our daughter is having a rough morning. She is five years old now and starting feel like she knows it all. She gets going on something and starts thinking my wife and I know nothing. She starts refusing to do things and seems to think that, "But, I don't want to" is a reason to disobey us. We spend the whole morning (before I leave for work - how does my wife deal with this all day?) reprimanding her, telling her she is wrong and finally punishing her (time out in her room).

So, now I'm in the groove. Everything my daughter has done this morning has been wrong. Everything she says is a mistake. So, we're in brushing our teeth together and she refuses to use her new tooth brush. I start to argue with her about it and I'm getting ready start yelling ("Shouldn't do that" says the parent conscience in the back of my head) and preparing a different punishment when I finally catch what she is saying, "The toothbrush tastes funny, Daddy." I take a sniff of the brush and it doesn't smell nice. I've let my daughter use a new tooth brush without washing it first. I get her old toothbrush and everything is OK.

Now I'm worried that she has lost confidence in me. I had to take back what I said in anger and now she's going to be SURE I don't know what I'm talking about. And this seems to happen almost every day. How does my wife do this every day - all day? Either I'm an example of a bad parent or I have to wonder how anyone ever raises children without ruining them (the children) or going mad (the parents). I'll let you know in seven or thirteen years (when our two children, now eleven and five, reach eighteen) if it works out.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Trying to get started again

I can't believe I've let this go so long. My last entry was back in May. I was working on a new post but it was taking too long and I kept trying to edit it down. I'll post that some day (it is about getting a flat on my way to work one day).

There is not much to say today except for one thought I had after hearing a small fact stated (as a teaser for another program) on Morning Edition on National Public Radio: Most people in advertising don't listen to (or watch) ads. It seems they don't have much faith in their own profession. But this probably happens all the time. I'll bet there are a number of Aeronautical Engineers and workers who don't like to fly. There are a lot of Civil Engineers and construction workers who never ride on the roads or use the buildings they work on. And there are a lot of contract programmers and Electronics Engineers who never use the products they design for companies they only work at for a limited time.

But I wonder if this affects their work? I have always used the products I've worked on. I think it has helped me to get better at my job and helped make revisions and updates to the products better. Maybe we should be encouraging people who work on any product to use it at least once. Of course, there are limits to this. The people who work on the Space Shuttle can't all go up in it. And I wouldn't want to force an aircraft worker who is afraid to fly to have to fly in an airplane. And we certainly wouldn't want to force munitions designers and workers to use their products.