I think that, maybe, I should feel badly about what I did. After all, he’s just a kid –- and a 6-year-old at that. I rationalized it by telling myself that “he’s got to learn sometime” and “this is just the way the world is.” What makes the situation more questionable is that he has no clue -– yet, that is.
You see, I had my little son sign a contract. In exchange for $1 a week, he agreed to keep his room clean, take out the garbage, set the table, get the mail, get the paper, clean up the dog poop in the backyard and my favorite – the catchall – “anything else that Mommy asks you to do!” The reason he hasn’t a clue about what he signed up for is because he didn’t even bother to read the contract before he signed it. What a knucklehead! I figure it will be a good lesson for him. I hope it will help him to not only avoid getting taken advantage of in the future, but will also show him just how easy it is to unburden oneself by taking advantage of others. As I said, this is just the way the world is.
It’s kind of like taking your car in for the 60,000-mile check-up. After you enter the “service” department, the enlightened service “professional” will quickly review the relaxing experiences your car is about to enjoy, jot a few things down in his “doctor-like” handwriting and have you sign an agreement while asking for your key at the same time. You sign off as you’re fumbling for the key and head to the waiting room clueless about the joy ride your wallet is about to take. Why? Because you didn’t bother to read the agreement, bless your heart. Meanwhile, Mr. Service Professional is donning his Member’s Only jacket and heading to Sears for his Employee of the Month portrait followed by a memorable lunch at Arby’s.
Another great way to use this strategy is in the teaching field. Think of those poor college professors taking the time to tirelessly read through a huge stack of overly intriguing term papers. Why bother when they could take a load off by reading less? After all, they’re part of a pretty select group that may be invited to nominate someone for the Nobel Peace Prize and such future decisions should not be clouded by stress or exhaustion. All kidding aside, those professors could get to the weekend a lot faster by only reading every fifth paper and randomly assigning a grade to the others. After all, they’re probably familiar enough with the students’ work products by the end of term.
In the case of law students, this would be great training for a future career in politics. They could enter their first term in office already knowing how not to read a bill, thus helping to keep our country running as smoothly as it is today. It’s possible that this transition of technique is already taking place… I whisper to you: Did you ever wonder if law students really read all of those big law books? I mean, gosh, there are SO MANY of them. I’m not suggesting that they have an agreement with the professor along the lines of: If you don’t read it I won’t tell if you won’t tell that I don’t read it. That is just silliness.
In the case of politicians, does it really matter if they read bills before they vote on them? Maybe we should cut them some slack since they’re working so hard for our country, bless their hearts. Americans have no long-term memories anyway, so we’re fortunate that nothing is a lasting cause of concern for us. The stimulus bill managed to pass unread and we’re all reaping the benefits of that. I’m sure our new healthcare system will be just as worthy of accolades.
There are just oodles of opportunities for me to teach my young son that he doesn’t have to mean what he says, he doesn’t have to know anything to form an opinion and it’s really easy and fun to take advantage of others. At the end of the day, though, what do I care? I’ve got the poop under control in my backyard for only a dollar a week.