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Children Are the Future

Twin of The Day – Clementine: We recently purchased a floor mobile for the girls to help foster the development of their motor skills. Clemmy was immediately drawn to the various hanging trinkets, but was frustrated with her inability to reach the objects. About a week later, she finally connected — solidly knocking a bird with her hands. We were thrilled! When it comes to your baby, every new accomplishment is exciting to watch. However, parental involvement is also key to helping kids form accurate, healthy self-perceptions. As children grow, you want to build their confidence, but also want them to have a realistic view of the themselves and their limitations.

“Daddy, look! — The birdie is swinging! I did that!”

“You sure did, sweetie! I’m so proud of you.”

“I’m a GOD!”

“Well… that’s a little hyperbolic, sweetie. Your hand-eye coordination is really improving though.”

“What are you talking about? I made the birdie move with my mind!”

“Oh, I get it. — You haven’t discovered that your hands are a part of your body.”

—I GENTLY LIFT HER LEFT HAND—

“Honey, you moved the birdie with this — it’s your hand.”

“My what? That thing can’t be a part of me? — It’s been scratching my face for weeks! I wouldn’t hurt myself, daddy.”

“I know you wouldn’t sweetie, but it’s not your fault. Children are not born with executive functioning and self-regulation. — For at least the first few months, your arms and legs spontaneously thrash around, regardless of external stimuli. You’re slowly gaining control of your limbs.”

“But why do I need hands if I can move things with my mind?”

“That’s just it, sweetie. You can’t move objects with your mind alone. Your mind controls your hands — and then your hands ultimately move the object.”

“So, I’m not a god?”

“Afraid not, sweetie.”

“Well… shit on a stick! This changes everything. I had big plans! — I was gonna use my powers to make the world a better place.”

“Honey, you’re still an amazing young lady — And I’m confident that you will accomplish great things in your lifetime.”

“Daddy, that’s bananas! — How can I reduce greenhouse gases and halt climate change with my hands?!”

“Answer me this, sweetie. — How were you going to accomplish those lofty goals with your mind?”

“Pffft! — By reducing the force of Earth’s gravity… thereby greatly reducing the energy required for travel.”

“WOW! That’s ambitious sweetie… even for a telekinetic god. — But you can still use your mind to accomplish your objectives.”

“So, I DO have superpowers, daddy?”

“Yes, sweetie. You have knowledge. — KNOWLEDGE IS POWER! — And you’ll continue to gain knowledge and wisdom as you further your education.”

“Daddy, I can’t wait 25 years! The world can’t wait! — Drastic measures must be taken now! Otherwise, it’s hasta la vista, baby! We’ll all be underwater before I even get my driver’s license.”

“What measures, sweetie? — Maybe I can help.”

“Well, if we can’t reduce the force of gravity…. we need to make a full transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy.”

“Ok! I got an idea! Lest you forget, daddy’s a lawyer. I can use my legal expertise to draft persuasive letters — urging our elected officials to pass climate legislation.”

“Daddy… you’re well educated, but you’re not very wise. — Congress will never have the courage to enact crucial legislation. — It’s not politically convenient. Change has to start with the people — We need to completely transform our lifestyle from the bottom-up.”

“Hmmm… not to pat ourselves on the back, sweetie, but I’d say we’re already ahead of the curve just by living in New York City. Your mom mostly uses public transportation, and I get around on my bike. — I even established a cycling comedy tour – Laugh Strong Comedy. Myself and three other semi-fit comedians biked from city to city across the country performing at clubs and colleges.

“Well la-di-freakin-da! — We got ourselves a rider here!”

“Well, Clemmy… if that’s not enough for you, we also live in a small apartment. — So we consume less fossil fuels for electricity and heat.”

“Daddy, our apartment is 1,200 square feet. That’s a castle in New York City!”

“Well, your mom and I used to live in a 400 square foot apartment. — We had to move into a bigger space to accommodate you and Penny.”

“Well… maybe you shouldn’t have brought us into this world. — ‘Hey, the oceans are rising and society is collapsing, what should we do? I KNOW! — Let’s add mouths to feed, and just teach them to swim.’ — That’s my impression of you daddy.”

“(SLOW CLAP) — Gee, you really knocked it out of the park, sweetie.  ——— You know, your mother and I are doing our best as parents to…”

“To what, daddy?! Prepare us for the apocalypse?! — I’m sorry, but when the sky is falling, you don’t get an honor badge just for being good parents. ———  Above all, you have to be good stewards of the Earth! Not just for today, but most importantly, the future of life on this planet.”

“Well… I’m fresh out of ideas. Tell me, OH WISE ONE… how can we SAVE THE ENVIRONMENT?”

“Sarcasm noted, daddy. BUT We don’t have to save the environment. That’s just a bull-shit hippie concept. We just have to keep it HABITABLE.” 

“Ok! What then? Should we just walk off into the wilderness, and live off the land like our tribal ancestors?”

Well, I’d rather live and die in the harsh wilderness than be a willing accomplice to its demise!”

“There has to be a middle ground, sweetie. — Somewhere between blowing the tops off of mountains and treating the planet like its going out of business VS. shacking up with wolves, and dying of dysentery on the Oregon Trail.”

“Daddy, have you heard of net-zero homes?”

“No, sweetie. Sounds like a Portlandia sketch.”

“Daddy, net-zero simply means that a home produces as much energy as it consumes, and it does so through renewable energy systems, such as solar panels and hydropower.”

“That sounds good sweetie… but solar panels require space. We’d have to move out the suburbs and build a house with a big roof to sustain the panels.”

—CLEMMY TAKES ON AN INTROSPECTIVE VENEER—

“Can we table this discussion? I’m tired, daddy.”

“Me too, sweetie.”

“Daddy, can you just place me back under the mobile — I probably have a better shot at moving this birdie with my mind than solving climate change.”

“Ha! Good point, sweetie. Climate change is a complicated issue that stirs a lot of emotions. — Sometimes we all just want to throw our arms in the air.”

“Speaking of greenhouse gases, daddy… I could use a diaper change.”

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