Thursday, September 9, 2010

My child, king of left-brained creativity

As I watch my baby turn into a little boy, I am constantly amused and horrified at his imagination. He's a kid, an "all-boy" at its finest. He likes dinosaurs, cars, and letters. And when I say he likes letters, I mean the A-B-C type of letters. Right now, everything in life with him is broken down into letters. Aside from the usual stable of imaginary friends, he has begun to add 26 more.

Our day often involves discussion of letters, what they say, what they do (which starts with the letter sound), and what color they are. For example, quite often, there is a blue K kicking its way through the house. Or, as today, there was a red J jumping down the hallway. This can be complete with body twisting to make the shape of the letter. Though some of the shape making doesn't make sense, as in the letter C requiring you to wrap your arms about yourself.

His writing is full of letters too, and not necessarily in any order, but I am gathering sheet after sheet after sheet of random letter scribblings. It's amusing, but aren't most kids drawing pictures? If I ask him to draw a cat, he'll tell me no. He'd rather write the word cat. On the bright side, his writing is improving, but I am worried about other aspects of his creativity.

Perhaps this all stems from being right handed. Letters are logical and ordered, like math, and logic and order are domains of the left side of the brain. The right side, which controls left handedness is spatial and artistic. It's why I can't do math or taxes and why I love the diagramming of sentences. I don't worry too m uch about his imagination. The child comes up with all sorts of stories and involves so many things in them, I find it hard to keep them straight. He makes up songs and we have a very good time together playing in the realms of his world... I'm afraid we've broken him though. He's so full of life and so vivacious that sending him into the real world would crush him, I'm afraid. I love who he is, but the rest of the world won't understand him and that terrifies me.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Oil and Apathy - a rant

In general, I am anything but apathetic. I run into apathy quite a bit while teaching though. It drives me insane to see people who don’t think they can do anything or don’t care enough to change anything. The explosion in the Gulf today is an example of more apathy in action.

We depend on oil so much that we plumb the bowels of the earth to dredge it up, and then we seem to be surprised when things don’t go as easily as planned. Twice this summer, we’ve wreaked havoc on nature and things went badly. And yet, people seem surprised again that something bad has come from humanity’s greedy nature. What did they think was going to happen?

Business as usual to the oil companies seems to mean bitching about having to follow regulations and then demanding help when their efforts NOT to follow regulations lead to something bad… Like an oil spill or a rig explosion. They then turn around and try to blame someone else, anyone else, for their own mistakes or, in the case of BP, try to minimize the damage and pain they have caused.

And people seem to be OK with this. Why? Because actually doing something about it might put them out a smidge. They might have to take action or pay attention to something outside their own wants and desires. Or, even worse, they feel locked in to the situation, so why bother? What happened to the country that rose up against the British Tyrants and established the Democratic Republic? What happened to the people who fought for civil rights and justice? Has cable and fast food really turned our nation into this?