Monthly Archives: April 2011

Who needs All My Children??

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Epic Fail

Image by j.gurian via Flickr

I get to be the center of a much sleazier reality show as mom of the Planet Teenage Girl citizen who apparently fell out of bed and hit herself on the head with a sledgehammer…. or whatever is necessary to make a person capable of INSANE behavior.  Ahem… After yesterday’s edge-of-your-seat episode with the Planet Teenage Boy citizen and the Old Guy with the road rage problem to mask the Equality Of Immaturity Demonstrated Across Generations problem, I thought perhaps, I might have earned a milder day as a mom juggling the ricocheting Planet Teenager inhabitants. I think God laughed. Instead, things get more epic by the minute, as I am electronically informed that my PTG citizen received an office referral for “Profanity with hand signs” and no, this did not involve any standard form of manual obscenity, but rather the creativity channeled by a child who has a Deaf mom and therefore has taken it upon herself to invent some new, previously unheard of sign language (being the expert with the Deaf mom and all) to express vulgar-ness towards her friend she was mad at.

I was requested to write some “Parental Comments” on the detention form. Best I can come up with so far is “Epic Fail,” although I’m not sure if that pertains to my parenting ability or my Planet Teenage Girl citizen’s ability to attain civilization. Her Life Is Over, by the way. She protested, “But, I still have a life, right?” (big hopeful puppy dog eyes.) I informed her that I Have Canceled Her Life, as she surrendered her rights to said life when she crossed the boundaries to insanity and behaved in a manner unbecoming of someone whom I Physically Gave Birth To.

Planet Teenage Boy citizen jumped in with a well-timed comment about how he felt so “trusted” that I let him drive the car alone, without the hassle of having to bring me along….. oh, wait, he meant without having to hassle me with riding along in the car….. Anybody want some teenagers cheap?

Crash Course In Maturity

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Moms of teenagers do not like being in the passenger seat when our beloved Planet Teenage Boy (PTB) citizen is driving and decides that he “has” to cut someone off.  If you are a mom with a PTB/PTG citizen and feel I am taking liberties with this statement, please feel free to express your willingness to get yourself killed by teenage offspring in the comments. I will update this post as necessary. I am still unsettled about my helpless position during my brush with death this morning on the way to school. Helpless beyond the screaming and yelling at the top of my lungs, that is, but I remain confident my input was somewhat effective if only to equally scare the bejeebers out of my Newly-Licensed Teenage Boy in the moment.

Of course, my PTB Citizen found the nastiest old guy (yeah, I know, who’s talkin) with the shortest temper on Earth to cut off. Thus we had war between the Old Guys and the Teenage Boys occur on our normally peaceful roads this morning, with me and all of my Mom-ness literally a captive audience. Let’s see, first OG flipped off TB, which TB found shocking, then OG chased us down, cut us off and tried the I’ll-teach-you-a-lesson-by-suddenly-slamming-on-my-brakes-in-front-of-you thing twice, allowing TB to show off his “skills” by swerving and testing the limits of our Minivan’s Antilock Braking System. Fittingly, OG’s license plate proudly states he is a “Dad,” and I must say the maturity level verified it. While I’m exceedingly grateful that OG’s wife didn’t let him pack the gun this morning, the whole flipping/chasing/lesson-teaching thing was not an effective example of mature conflict resolution skills for my citizen of Planet Teenage Boy. “Whoa, that guy has a temper!” was foremost in our debriefing.

Responsibility is sexy…

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Choosing not to go with either of the moral puppy dilemmas presented in today’s Post A Day question, I have been re-energized in my crusade to save the Earth, one teenager at a time. I came across Bridget Baker’s post where she mentioned a saying of her’s, a revolutionary one in my opinion, that “Responsibility is sexy.” While this has motivational pull for my own life, I immediately thought “Well, duh!” How did I miss this beguiling approach with my dear citizens of Planet Teenage Boy and Planet Teenage Girl? (PTB/PTG)  Advertisers know the key term to motivating their gold mine 18 to 24 yr old male segment of the population is via the word and or concept sex. While they use this to get young guys to eat more hamburgers, I am wondering why no one has turned this little gem on it’s head for the Betterment Of Mankind In General? No one, that is, until Bridget Baker.

Teenage boys care about 3 things: girls, food, and sports. Not necessarily in that order. Moms of teenagers everywhere want one thing to occur on Planet Teenage Boy: maturity, civilization (ok, so that’s more than one thing, but it’s closely connected.) Why not create a win-win situation by marketing responsibility as a Sexually Desirable Trait? “Chicks think responsible guys are totally hot.” Can we get one of those video game makers to have those type of statements subliminally flashed across the screen when someone plays their game? I’m in.  If I actually had any capital to venture, I would quickly sink it into a product which could simultaneously satisfy both teenagers and their parents. Forget the “Carl’s Jr. Burger Break” at halftime, replace it with a scantily-clad, flirtatious hottie lamenting the serious lack of responsible and mature guys to satisfy her needs. Can anybody say “Superbowl ad”??

More than amusing…

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turn creativity to money

Creatively productive. There’s the holy grail. To express the fullness of my potential as a unique individual and somehow do it well enough and often enough to get paid for it. Which is more important? Caitlin Kelly blogs about this and points out some of the beloved irony of us creative types — she won a Canadian National Magazine Award for humor for an essay about her divorce.  Humor and divorce really don’t seem to go together, but that’s probably what made it work. I will spare you all the make lemonade with the lemons of life metaphor (whoops, that didn’t work.) In Real Life we must be productive, but do we put the cart in front of the horse with our focus on quantity?  I am fascinated by Austin Kleon’s advice not to wait around until you know yourself to make things.  Just make things, which leads to knowing yourself and thus the well of human creativity.

People tend to be amused by my eccentric creativity, but where is it’s value? That’s the big question. What makes a painting created by random slinging and splattering worth thousands of dollars, or not? I’ve got some pretty amazing metaphors and word plays up my sleeve, but what makes it marketable? Austin Kleon’s work, Newspaper Blackout, is a smash hit, but does the monetary value lie in the use of markers on newspaper? Would people value the same poetry if it were just typed out on regular ole paper? People are funny like that. Some things are perceived as wickedly cool, while others are relegated to lame gimmicks. I happen to think Austin’s work is Wickedly Cool, by the way. Does anyone care about the monetary value of Mom-ness? Is my in-depth research on the citizens of Planet Teenage Boy and Planet Teenage Girl significantly marketable? I have lots of creativity, but creating productively is the heaven to which I aspire.

Image via Galerieopweg

The best gift ever….

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Came from my hubby when we first got married.  I had been a needleworker of various sorts for many years, but without anything more than the dime store cheap plastic frame that came with the kit to display my work.  My wonderful hubby took my most recent and rather large needlework and had it professionally matted and framed. Is My Husband Awesome Or What?! He took something that obviously was valuable to me, or I wouldn’t have created it in the first place, and gave it honor and beauty.  No amount of diamonds could ever replace that.

Seeing the music….

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Im DeafThe Irony. I just got back on track with Post A Day, and today’s question requires the impossible.  Which music act in history would I, a Deaf individual, like to see? At least the question is accurate, as I wouldn’t be able to hear anything. Nonetheless, since I lost my hearing 13 years ago and was not born Deaf, I do have the ability to extrapolate what music I would want to hear — if I could. Very definitely would be John Tesh Live At Red Rocks concert, as in, to be there live, fully able to hear and enjoy. Awesome. I know my music knowledge is de facto dated, but I still remember the fascinating sounds of what seems to be a musical genre of it’s own — “Tesh music.” You can call it whatever you want, but you can’t put it in a box… Classical, contemporary, rock? Yes and no. All I really want to tell you readers is to shut up and listen! Because You Can.

For all my fellow deafies, I think you’ll agree with me that Sean Forbes has the best music to see.