Bugs And Windshields

What’s the last thing to go through a bug’s mind when it hits the windshield of your car?

Its ass.

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Looking For The Great Blogs!

Hey, I got this idea from another blogger.

I’m looking for more great blogs to explore.  I’m hoping that you all will help me find some.  Humor is my favorite, wild scientific (astronomical) theories, weird fiction, etc… are awesome, too, but I’m open to any genres with excellent writers that are really good reads.

So, come on, lead me to your favorites.  Post some links in the comments section and thanks in advance!

Is Pre-Kindergarten Really Necessary?

Back when my twins were going into Kindergarten there was a half step called pre-kindergarten designed for those children who fell in between age levels – as my boys did – to assist them in their social and mental development before they took on the obvious difficulties associated with full Kindergarten.  It had some advantages.  The boys, in their future school careers, would be near the oldest and most developed in their classes as opposed to being at the younger end of the spectrum.  This helped with their participation in sports, academics, social interaction, etc… or so the thought went.  Made sense.  We considered it for a while.  I, myself, was one of those kids who was at the younger end of my grade and understood what this program was designed to do.  But, I liked the fact that I graduated at 17 years old and thought of it as a head start on life.

One of the criteria that was used to help teachers decide whether or not to recommend pre-kindergarten to parents was whether or not a child could read some basic words.  After analyzing several of the other factors used to make the decision, this was the pivotal piece of the puzzle that one of the teachers was advocating as to why our children, in particular, needed to spend a year in pre-kindergarten so that they could prepare to spend a year playing with other children in Kindergarten.  This discussion went on for several weeks between me, my wife, two teachers, and a principal.  At this point we were standing inside the school’s hallway talking one last time with the teacher before we made our final decision.  My oldest son Jack (4) had accompanied us and was running up and down the hallway happily observing all of the Kindergartner’s drawing which were posted in the hallway.

The teacher continued once more about how important an early start in reading really is.  We agreed, but we thought that our twins were pretty average four year olds and, even if they needed some help learning to read, well, isn’t that what Kindergarten was for?

We continued to debate for a while, we wanted to make the right decision, but we needed a convincing argument one way or the other.  We were truly on the fence on the issue.

Just then, Jack read the word “pull.”

On or way out of the door, following all of the other children evacuating the building for the fire alarm, I proclaimed to the teacher, “looks like Jack can read the word ‘pull’ just fine, I think we’ll go with Kindergarten this year and skip pre-kindergarten.”

Poor Jack turned a little white and asked, “can we go home now?”

We’ve never regretted our decision.  All four of my boys were considered “in between ages” for their grade level.  All of them skipped this pre-kindergarten step.  All of them are 3.7 GPA level students or higher, all of them participate in sports and do well – Alec, is being looked at for a scholarship in swimming, and all of them play a musical instrument – three of them play rock and roll music in local bars and restaurants regularly.   Take a look …     https://theamateurastrophysicist.wordpress.com/2012/06/08/my-three-older-boys-band-gang-greene/

Pre-kindergarten may have its place for some, but for us it seems to have been pushed a bit too hard.

Yeah! Your Kid!

I’ve been doing some research on bullying.

Did you know that 90% of students are bullied on a weekly basis, at least verbally?  10% of them physically and on a daily basis.  7 – 14% of them have considered suicide based on being bullied.  Most bullied kids think that telling an adult is not going to help, or even that it will make their situation worse.

Did you know that bullies themselves end up in prison by the age of 24 at a rate of one in four?!?  Yes!  Look up this stuff for yourself …  25% of all of those people who choose to bully others are going to spend time in prison by the age of 24!!

Did you know that most teachers believe that statistics on bullying are over-stated?  How about that most parents do nothing even though they notice a difference in their child’s attitude toward other people and to school – they tend to write it off to “adolescence” when really it is their child’s reaction to being abused.

Do you know what the signs of suicide are?    http://www.hopes-wi.org/signs.htm

Do you know what lifelong effects come from being bullied?  Well, type that phrase into your search engine and see the hundreds of results…

Did you know that 99.9% of children (Yeah!  Your kid!) fall into one of three categories; bully, bullied, or observer who does nothing to help?  I’m telling you, look this shit up!    http://www.greatschools.org/parenting/bullying/593-the-bully-and-the-bystander.gs

What kind of kid are you raising?  Maybe you should go to his/her school and take a poll of the other students that they associate with on a daily basis.  It might change someone’s life – for the better!

I invite you to re-blog this post on your site.  There will never be enough attention given to this issue until bullying is stopped!  Do something…

Bullies: How Much Do You Really Know?

I have had a disturbing bit of post-comment-reply interaction with another blogger of late.  In his opinion the problem of bullying in schools in this country is somewhat overstated and over-punished, too.  I thought that it might be appropriate for me to relate to some of you my experiences in this arena.

I know that there are a lot of people that are under the impression that the vast majority of bullying is verbal and that those who receive this abuse should just shake it off and get on with their lives and all of that kind of shit.  Believe me, you are sadly mistaken.  You underestimate the effects on the psyche of those who are being bullied by an unimaginable margin.  If impressionable teenagers committing suicide or retaliating against their abusers by bringing guns to school surprises you, then you are out of touch with this issue.

In my four years in high school I was bullied by numerous individuals in the following ways:

–  I was punched in the face, arms, back, chest and stomach on multiple occasions and always without cause

–  Someone attempted to kick me down the stairs – again nothing had transpired prior to the attempt

–  I was kicked in the ass for no apparent reason – multiple times over the years

–  Snapping me with towels in the locker room and leaving deep welts on me was a favorite passtime

–  Bullies liked to knock my books and homework out of my hands and down the hallway – dozens of others would join in at that point and continue kicking these items down the hallway

–  I have been spit on several times

–  I have had a thumb tack placed on my seat and a bully attempt to push me down on it

–  I have had crude signs taped to my back

–  People I have never met in my life liked to yell, “hey faggot!” at me

–  One time somebody busted out the window in my car in the school parking lot

Oh, yeah, there’s more!  But I think you get the message.  Think to yourself, are your kids doing this shit to other kids?  I can guarantee that for some of you the answer is yes.  There were just too many different kids that did this stuff to me for the answer to be no.  Do you care?  Are you to busy to handle it?  Have you tried to handle it but got no results?  Try again!  I promise that this treatment is messing up someone’s life.  These memories have left a lifelong impression on me – I graduated more than 25 years ago!  I have had to have years of therapy and anger management to deal with them.

And, you want to know what?  I was thankful to be one of the lucky few who didn’t get the worst of it.  Honestly!

http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Was-A-Bully-In-High-School/1267582  Check out this post.

Bullying is not even close to being addressed in this country.  We need federal laws with minimum punishments that deal with these actions and the people who commit them – whatever their age.  Bullying should be a crime worse than domestic violence is.  If we addressed it that way then, I believe, other violent crimes would be averted – “nipped in the bud,” as it were.

Look.  I’m the parent of four boys.  Some of the things they tell me that other kids in their school say and do are abhorrent.  The way they are treating other students merits harsh discipline.  But their parents are either unaware, don’t care, or think the problem is overstated.  How do you think any of the kids – the bullies, the bullied, or the witnesses – are going to behave as adults????

People, take this issue seriously!

If you think this issue deserves more attention and you’d like to do something about it, then start by re-blogging this post onto your site.  Let’s see if we can make this go viral!

http://www.dosomething.org/tipsandtools/11-facts-about-school-bullying

http://www.pacerteensagainstbullying.org/#/home

Prometheus? P.U!

Well, my wife and I decided to catch a show last night.  Ordinarily we can expect to have a good time together even if the movie is just OK.  Unfortunately, this movie stunk.  Bad.  And, after it, all we could do was go away feeling as though we had just wasted two hours of our lives and 20 bucks, too.

Now I usually leave room for different people to form their own opinions.  I mean some people like movies that other people hate, right?  Not this one.  I promise you.  This movie sucks beyond words available to describe how badly it truly sucks.  This, honestly, is the worst movie I have seen in my 46 year old life.  Don’t go!

The scenes are completely disjointed.  The characters are ridiculous.  Every time an explanation is necessary they skip over it. The story is filled with unnecessary gore.  There’s an opening scene which never gets reconnected into the movie.  Time and time again this movie fails miserably.

What an embarrassment it would be to have your name in the credits of this movie.  If you want to have a more enjoyable experience, smash your thumb with a hammer.

A Piece Of Child Rearing Advice That You Will Never Get

I take raising my four boys very seriously.  I try many approaches and find out what works and apply it liberally.  Everyone knows the basics by now that make for great children:  Love, patience, respect, guidance, acknowledgement and discipline (reasonable discipline), these all apply and many more.  But, here’s one I have discovered and I’ve never heard it mentioned by anyone before …

You have to give your kid something to dislike about you.  As a matter of fact, they can hate it.  Now, I’m not talking about becoming an alcoholic or being abusive or anything like that.  Just give them a reason to say – even out loud to you – “I’m never going to do that to my kids.”  This gives them a degree of separation from you.  It helps them to feel as though they are their own person and not your protege (which we all know that they are).  It helps them feel as though they are rebelling without it actually being harmful.

You will find your child obsessing over your behavior just enough to keep their mind occupied away from finding ways to disobey you or harm themselves with bad choices.  They will be complaining to their friends about it if you are doing it properly.

Now, remember, this is not the cure all.  You still have to have those conversations about sex and drugs and lousy friends and responsibility, etc…  But just try what I’m telling you here and watch how nicely it fits in with these conversations and managing your child’s behavior.

Here’s an example:

Without warning, tickle your child until they can’t breath (their age is not important, this works just as well with teens if you are strong enough.)  Now, let them breath – twice only.  Now, tickle them until they say that they are going to puke.  Let them breath (four times maximum) and make it appear as though you are now finished.  Resume tickling them with a vengeance, and at a torrid pace, until the image of the grim reaper appears before them, draws back his scythe and begins to swing it forward (you will know this has occurred by the change of the sound of their excited screaming to the kind of screaming that a parachutist chooses when his reserve chute turns out to be his dirty laundry and, secondly, by the sudden death throws of their body which resembles epileptic seizures.)   Now, when they look up at you with eyes that clearly have seen their short lives pass by in mere seconds you must proclaim, “isn’t this fun!”  Finally, and this is critical, give them your best “The Wizard of Oz” wicked witch of the west laugh.

Congratulations, you have now successfully placed your sanity in doubt and triggered your child’s self preservation instinct.  Your child will not find the humor in this and will find a strong desire in themselves to not witness this side of you again.  You have achieved ultimate leverage.  The mere sound of the wicked witch’s laugh from you will quickly correct any and all misbehavior.

Do this regularly and I guarantee results.

If this particular method doesn’t work for you, then you will need to find your own.  Just make sure that whatever you choose does not give them a complex about themselves and all of the blame can be associated with you (don’t complain about them.)

Now lay back and watch your kid behave – “my pretty.”