Monday, April 17, 2006


My grandmother is okay. She’s better than okay, in fact. She had a pacemaker put in over the weekend so she’s bionic now. Apparently the new pacemakers are safe around microwaves, which is good, the doctor just told her not to arc weld or hunt, so I don’t know what she’ll do with her Saturdays now.

I just got off the phone with my grandparents, Bionic Mimi and Pop, and found out that they’re both readers of this blog, which is why you’re reading this now. Not so that I can score any points, I don’t need to do that, I’m their first-born grandchild so I’m already Number One. You’re reading this now because the post I had for this space was a funny little piece on conceiving children. Then I found out my grandparents are in the audience, so that’s the end of that. In fact, I’m a little embarrassed that I typed ‘fart’ a few posts ago, but I live in a 1200 sq. ft. house with four other people so that’s just part of the fun. I’m glad they’re reading, though, because this blog is about parenting and they, along with a few others, are role models for just that. They raised seven children, which lets Kristy and I know we can easily handle our own four and that, if we can’t, we can feel comfortable sending a couple to them because they did so well with their seven.

Mimi, pregnant at least every two years for a while, was a genius at herding her children, keeping them reasonably safe when they were within eyesight, making sure they were polite, well-mannered young citizens of their community and yet knowing just when to deny they were hers. She should be sainted for her work by the Pope, though she already has been by her grandchildren. Pop was, as all fathers are for the most part, a spectator at the circus of his own house. Since nothing can breach the bonds between a mother and child, all a father can hope to do is sit back and throw out the occasional “Good job!” or “Get out of the way, I can’t see the TV!” He was Bill Cosby Himself before Bill Cosby was himself. He did what he had to to feed and clothe his family on a high school education and in doing so he made things, you can see some of them here and here.

Some of these observations may be filtered through a generation, through the eyes and memory of a grandchild (the first one!) but that’s what this is all about, my perception. The perception I have is of a house full of fun and love and good things to eat. There are kids everywhere, all related, all wondering what it would be like to have their own room. All I can hope for is that I do half as good a job at raising my kids as my grandparents did, and that my kids grow up to be as good as the adults their kids grew up to be. That, and that the doctors get that arc welding thing sorted out before I get my pacemaker.